In a recent interview with Terrorizer magazine, Kylesa guitarist/vocalist Philip Cope said ” I don’t generally sit at home and listen to stuff with 13 minute jam sections in it, or stuff that goes too crazy……Who has the time to listen to long conceptual albums?I know I don’t. maybe there are some people that have that kind of time but I don’t. i think it’s just cool to have a bunch of songs.”
I read this and though to myself; the man has a point. Now don’t get me wrong, I love a well put together album, that flows naturally and effortlessly from song to song, taking the listener on a journey. However, in this rapidly paced life we now all have, who does have the time to sit down and listen to an hour long album in one sitting. As a college student, i definitely don’t and I’m sure any of you with a job don’t either.
When a band release an album which is a collection of great songs, a fan can chose their favorites and listen to them in isolation and not have the song watered down as a result. i think this is one of the reason’s that Slayer have been so successful for so long as each of their songs can be enjoyed as an individual piece of music, besides the obvious example of “Postmortem/Raining Blood” which together are still under 6 minutes long. they can enjoy the album piece by piece, at their leisure. I always feel that between 3 and 6 minutes is the perfect song length as it prevents a track from becoming repetitive while still giving a band/artist plenty of time to change the dramatics of the song, experiment and keep the song interesting. The Dillinger Escape Plan are a perfect example of this.
Many music fans will probably be aghast as these thoughts but it’s just my personal opinion. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a massive fan of bands who tell a story, with Opeth being one of my favorite bands. But as Mr. Cope says, I just don’t have the time to sit down and listen to their albums the whole way through, and have to absorb them little by little, which may prevent me from experiencing and appreciating the album fully.
I still try my best to find the time to sit down and enjoy albums by bands such as Opeth, as I do think they are in a league of their own in terms of creating an atmosphere and telling a story. But when I want to listen to something while in the gym or walking to college, i’ll always go for the short and sweet choice.