Which is more important? The LYRICS or the FLOW? - Page 2 - U2 Feedback

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View Poll Results: Which is more important?
Lyrics 5 16.67%
Flow 25 83.33%
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Old 08-16-2007, 04:11 PM   #16
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Oh boy.
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Old 08-16-2007, 04:12 PM   #17
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But anyway, so as to contribute to the question at hand:

Assuming the standard definitions of "flow" (act of moving in a steady continuous stream; the rate or speed at which a stream moves; menstrual discharge), in the realm of popular music I'd have to say lyrics are more important.
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Old 08-16-2007, 04:20 PM   #18
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Oh boy.
Yeah.
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Old 08-16-2007, 04:38 PM   #19
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To me, it's not about a single song and comparing its music vs. the lyrics. It's about an entire piece of work, and how it flows from one track to the next, thereby creating a cohesive form of art.
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Old 08-16-2007, 04:48 PM   #20
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This one's easy. Lyrics.

Don't get me wrong, I think good "flow" is important (whatever definition we're going with here) but not entirely essential. I will always prefer a song that has great lyrics over a song that has good music/flow and average lyrics. For me, music is about conveying ideas. Not all of these ideas can be channelled through an instrument. What's the point in creating great music if you're just going to plonk some juvenile poetry on top of it? Freedom has a scent like the top of a newborn baby's head... Might as well just write instrumentals if you're going to churn out crap like that. Bad lyrics just distract me when I'm listening to music.

That said, there are A FEW bands that I like purely for the sound of their music. These tend to be poppier bands/artists (The Beatles, Red Hot Chili Peppers, etc). Not to mention bands whose lead singers have vocals that sometimes function more as instruments (Sigur Rós, Radiohead, etc). Still, I'd rather listen to good lyrics that centre in on topics that are important to me.
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Old 08-16-2007, 05:04 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally posted by GibsonGirl
This one's easy. Lyrics.

Don't get me wrong, I think good "flow" is important (whatever definition we're going with here) but not entirely essential. I will always prefer a song that has great lyrics over a song that has good music/flow and average lyrics. For me, music is about conveying ideas. Not all of these ideas can be channelled through an instrument. What's the point in creating great music if you're just going to plonk some juvenile poetry on top of it? Freedom has a scent like the top of a newborn baby's head... Might as well just write instrumentals if you're going to churn out crap like that. Bad lyrics just distract me when I'm listening to music.

That said, there are A FEW bands that I like purely for the sound of their music. These tend to be poppier bands/artists (The Beatles, Red Hot Chili Peppers, etc). Not to mention bands whose lead singers have vocals that sometimes function more as instruments (Sigur Rós, Radiohead, etc). Still, I'd rather listen to good lyrics that centre in on topics that are important to me.
I find it interesting that you of all people would say this considering the musicians you like. Take Sheep for example. The lyrics are great but they would be meaningless without the chillingly playful sounds of Gilmour and the keyboards. The song wouldn't have any power without the glorious end. You're also a fan of classical which often has lyrics in other languages. If you don't understand what they are saying how can you still like the peice? I'm not making a point just kind of curious and intrigued by your response.
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Old 08-16-2007, 05:26 PM   #22
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I find it interesting that you of all people would say this considering the musicians you like. Take Sheep for example. The lyrics are great but they would be meaningless without the chillingly playful sounds of Gilmour and the keyboards. The song wouldn't have any power without the glorious end. You're also a fan of classical which often has lyrics in other languages. If you don't understand what they are saying how can you still like the peice? I'm not making a point just kind of curious and intrigued by your response.
I don't think it's interesting at all, as I have always told people on this site and beyond that lyrics come first for me. (plathegreat knows this all too well ) I said in my previous post that I believe music is important, just not absolutely essential to my enjoyment of a song. Music serves as the backdrop on which a great poem becomes a great song (IMO). The thing that attracted me to "Sheep" to begin with had absolutely nothing to do with the overall sound of the thing. It was this line that did it for me: "wave upon wave of demented avengers march cheerfully out of obscurity into the dream." It's the kind of thing I wish that I was capable of writing. I also loved the whole theme behind the words, as Orwell's Animal Farm is one of my all-time favourite novels. Without those lyrics, Sheep would just plod around pointlessly and it would not be my favourite Pink Floyd song. It would simply be an overly long version of Gilmour's solo track, "It's Deafinitely" (which is a nice bit of music that's similar to "Sheep", but terribly unremarkable on the whole.)

Classical music is something else entirely. This thread seemed centred on popular music, so I that's what I base my comments on.
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Old 08-16-2007, 05:27 PM   #23
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Originally posted by Lancemc
I'm just pointing out how lame and meaningless the word "flow" is in this situation. Why couldn't you have just said Lyrics or Music?

Then again, I'm amazed at how easily people understood what the hell you were talking about when talking about "flow" which has more to do with liquid dynamics than anything remotely music-related.
Uh-oh!

Someone just got Lanced.

Again.
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Old 08-16-2007, 05:43 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally posted by GibsonGirl


I don't think it's interesting at all, as I have always told people on this site and beyond that lyrics come first for me. (plathegreat knows this all too well ) I said in my previous post that I believe music is important, just not absolutely essential to my enjoyment of a song. Music serves as the backdrop on which a great poem becomes a great song (IMO). The thing that attracted me to "Sheep" to begin with had absolutely nothing to do with the overall sound of the thing. It was this line that did it for me: "wave upon wave of demented avengers march cheerfully out of obscurity into the dream." It's the kind of thing I wish that I was capable of writing. I also loved the whole theme behind the words, as Orwell's Animal Farm is one of my all-time favourite novels. Without those lyrics, Sheep would just plod around pointlessly and it would not be my favourite Pink Floyd song. It would simply be an overly long version of Gilmour's solo track, "It's Deafinitely" (which is a nice bit of music that's similar to "Sheep", but terribly unremarkable on the whole.)

Classical music is something else entirely. This thread seemed centred on popular music, so I that's what I base my comments on.
I missed those discussions then.

So I have one question, do you find the research or investigation for lack of better terms to be more fascinating than the music itself? Or in different words, was looking at the Orwell connection more interesting then examining the music? I can relate to that if so.

By the way, I'm sure one day as a musician you'll come up with a line as good as the "avengers" line. That album was magical. Some day that magical moment will happen for you.
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Old 08-16-2007, 05:57 PM   #25
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I think I'd be more inclined to listen to a musically interesting song over a lyrically interesting one. The lyrics would be icing on the cake for me. To have a good song you can have one of the two, but to have a great song you have to have both, in my estimation.
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Old 08-16-2007, 06:09 PM   #26
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This is a tough call for me, in that like some other posters, I feel both are equally valuable when it comes to making an amazing song.

However, if forced to choose between the two, I'll choose flow. I can find great lyrics in good books, poetry, etc....but songs are the only thing I know that can get my head bobbing up and down.

And, Beav, for the record, I managed to understand you perfectly well.
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Old 08-16-2007, 06:27 PM   #27
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What are "lyrics"?
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Old 08-16-2007, 06:29 PM   #28
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What are "lyrics"?
I believe they are people who lyre.
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Old 08-16-2007, 06:38 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally posted by GibsonGirl
This one's easy. Lyrics.

Don't get me wrong, I think good "flow" is important (whatever definition we're going with here) but not entirely essential. I will always prefer a song that has great lyrics over a song that has good music/flow and average lyrics. For me, music is about conveying ideas. Not all of these ideas can be channelled through an instrument. What's the point in creating great music if you're just going to plonk some juvenile poetry on top of it? Freedom has a scent like the top of a newborn baby's head... Might as well just write instrumentals if you're going to churn out crap like that. Bad lyrics just distract me when I'm listening to music.

That said, there are A FEW bands that I like purely for the sound of their music. These tend to be poppier bands/artists (The Beatles, Red Hot Chili Peppers, etc). Not to mention bands whose lead singers have vocals that sometimes function more as instruments (Sigur Rós, Radiohead, etc). Still, I'd rather listen to good lyrics that centre in on topics that are important to me.
Interesting. I was actually going to ask if the people that chose "lyrics" over "flow" were more inclined to listen to singer songwriters like Bob Dylan over bands like Floyd or Zeppelin. But based on your answer, I guess not.






Nickelback references thus far: 0. Shocking.
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Old 08-16-2007, 06:39 PM   #30
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Originally posted by UberBeaver
Nickelback references thus far: 0. Shocking.
I'm pretty sure they'd apply more to the manstrual blood-related definition of flow.
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