BILLY CORGAN Laments Lack Of 'Innovation' In Rock Music

September 2, 2023

In a recent interview with "Soundcheck" host Jen Eckert, SMASHING PUMPKINS frontman Billy Corgan discussed the impact the Internet and social media have had on the evolution of rock music over the decades. He said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "We've faced a sort of economic, cultural change with music going digital that really changed the unbroken narrative for about a hundred years of how people released and consumed music. And the fact that catalogs are more present with the click of a button, I think, puts bands in a different situation as far as how to reach an audience. So I think there's less emphasis in rock on innovation and more on sort of keeping your spot — my own band aside, where we've kind of pushed to continually innovate, even at the dismay of our fans. So it's hard to say. Yeah, it hasn't really evolved the way it would've, but that would've required a different world. And, obviously, when the Internet became the thing, when digital media became the thing, it changed everything — it changed journalism, it changed politics. So it's to be expected."

He continued: "When the alternative thing started, it was kind of very much from the underground. So the first wave of it was, like, 'Who's in? Who's out?' And then there seemed to come this second wave. And we, as the first wave, kind of looked around and said, 'Who are all these other bands and where are they coming from?' Of course, it was a generational moment and it was to be expected, but at the time it seemed like a bunch of people jumped into grunge, flannel shirts and suddenly everybody's rocking out and kind of doing what we were doing only a few years before. So we treated, I think, people in that second and third wave as sort of interlopers."

SMASHING PUMPKINS' North American "The World Is A Vampire" tour kicked off in late June in Las Vegas. Produced by Live Nation, the 27-date trek features special guests INTERPOL, STONE TEMPLE PILOTS and RIVAL SONS as support on various dates, as well as some of the world's biggest champions from the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA),who are competing in most cities.

The sequel to 1995's "Mellon Collie And The Infinite Sadness" and 2000's "Machina/Machine Of God", SMASHING PUMPKINS' critically acclaimed trilogy album "Atum"features 33 tracks in three acts and was written and produced by Corgan over the past four years.

When SMASHING PUMPKINS first emerged out of Chicago in 1988, the world had never heard a band quite like them. They spun together rock, pop, shoe-gaze, metal, goth, psychedelia, and electronic into a kaleidoscope of saccharine melodies, fuzzy distortion, bombastic orchestration, incendiary fretwork, eloquent songcraft, and unshakable hooks. Upon their formation, their sound was different, iconoclastic, and wholly new — and it still is today. As a result, they've sold over 30 million albums worldwide and collected two Grammy Awards, two MTV VMAs, and an American Music Award. Their catalog is highlighted by the platinum "Gish" (1991),the quadruple-platinum "Siamese Dream" (1993),diamond-certified "Mellon Collie And The Infinite Sadness" (1995),platinum "Adore" (1998) and gold "Machina/The Machines Of God" (2000). In 2018, they embarked on one of their most successful tours ever, the "Shiny And Oh So Bright" tour.

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