Universität Wien FIND
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160071 VO Perspectives on British Rock Music (1964-2001) (2014W)


Sprache: Englisch




Mittwoch, 15:30-17:00, HS B, Campus (Altes AKH), Hof 2
1. Termin: 15.10.2014


Ziele, Inhalte und Methode der Lehrveranstaltung

The local British narrative provides the structure of the course, as we look at the evolution of not only of the various genres and subgenres, but also of the attitudes, language and fashion with which they were associated. While the artists concerned were often at the forefront of sonic innovation, their music was also shaped by Britain’s unique social and political climate, as it negotiated its decline from a world power to an average European state. A chronological framework will provide a starting point from which a number of historical and critical perspectives are then taken. We explore how cultural, social and political phenomena impacted on the sound, the lyrics, the performance styles of the various bands covered, and how recorded music has been appropriated by various social groups, often in unexpected or surprising ways. This will require us to develop a language for talking about (i.e. analysing) popular music and its performance that necessarily differs from the methods usually used for classical music.

Art der Leistungskontrolle und erlaubte Hilfsmittel

A written exam at the end of the course, including an aural component (only stylistic recognition no dictation!).

Mindestanforderungen und Beurteilungsmaßstab

The purpose of this course is to resituate British rock in its own political, social, and musical context, where American rock, and the social trends it reflected, becomes an influence rather than the dominant narrative. By the end of the course, students will be able to:
- aurally recognize and describe the unique features of the major artists and genres in British rock music,
- understand how genres evolved from or revolted against prior and current styles,
- appreciate the uniqueness of British rock, as well as its connections to a broader global context,
- situate the sound, the attitude, the fashion of groups into their historical context of culture, society, and politics,
- assess how commercial and technological innovations, as well as media, marketing and dissemination impacted the way British rock was produced and received,
- talk about a musical art form in which timbre, rhythm and performance are more important than harmony and structure in differentiating between styles (and hence in conveying meaning).


Weekly lectures, reading, exercises.


Readings will be set weekly from the most important books on British rock music. Students wishing for a relaxed introduction to the material before the course begins might wish to read Bob Stanley’s The Story of Modern Pop (2013) and to watch the BBC series The Seven Ages of Rock (2007), which is available in its entirety on YouTube.

Zuordnung im Vorlesungsverzeichnis

B06 (Populäre Musik), B14; M02, M03, M04, M05, M11; EC EMG 2, EC POP

Letzte Änderung: Mi 19.08.2020 08:01