Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan has offered his thoughts on the state of guitar music, praising Radiohead - and only Radiohead - as the band who’ve kept things going with new ideas.
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, Corgan spoke about the prevalence of “EDM” and how guitar bands haven’t been able to adapt.
“We get our asses kicked by EDM or some of these artists that are more keyboard and drum machine and reverb,” he said. “They’re engaging in new technology. Guitar isn’t new technology—there are only so many ways you can warp it around. Radiohead was probably the last band that really did anything new with the guitar.”
If Corgan’s thoughts were to be summed up in one photograph, this trip-to-Disneyland shot does the job:
Things aren’t all doom and gloom for Corgan. He reserved some praise for chart-toppers Royal Blood. “There are some flashes, like a Royal Blood or something, where they’re trying to figure that power out, but they’re dealing with an audience that is so predisposed to pop,” he said.
But generally, as of the past fifteen years, things have been in a complete state, according to the Smashing Pumpkins frontman. “If all you hear is pop and all you see are perfect performances and everybody smiling, to actually see a band invoke a darker spirit on stage and conjure it right in front of you in a mass of power you can’t explain, that is quite rare to that audience. No band in the past 15 years has come along and figured out how to do that. Most of the bands you can point to that have been successful that still do that, like Queens of the Stone Age, they’re coming from an earlier generation of power and an earlier language, even though they’re having contemporary success.”