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How Internet Music is Frying Your Brain

Harper, A. (2017). How Internet Music is Frying Your Brain. Popular Music, 36(1), pp. 86-97. doi: 10.1017/s0261143016000696


This article argues that the production and reception of certain recent electronic musics has resonated with criticisms of the perceived degenerative effects of digital technology on culture and ‘humanity’ – such as the lack of attention it promotes or the ‘information overload’ it causes – in an at least partially positive way. The resulting ambivalent aesthetics, sometimes thought of as one of ‘Internet music’, embraces particular negative notions of digital mediation in ways that can and have been thought of as satirical, exploratory or ‘accelerationist’. I examine three facets of this aesthetics: maximalism, kitsch and the uncanny valley. I also question the legitimacy of dramatising, even positively, digital media and culture as effectively ‘degenerate’.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2016 Cambridge University Press
Subjects: M Music and Books on Music > M Music
Departments: School of Communication & Creativity > Performing Arts > Music
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