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(Credit: Alamy/Sheri Lyn Behr)

Iggy Pop's issue with electronic music

Iggy Pop is one of rock’s most treasured souls. It’s over 50 years since he made his grand entrance into public consciousness when The Stooges released their forceful eponymous debut and, since then, Iggy has become one of the great raconteurs.

His topless serenades have made him one of the quintessential frontmen. Still, over that time, Iggy Pop has been prone to hand out the occasional ill-thought statement. The most bizarre time that Mr Pop has stepped out of line and had a tantrum came in 2007 when he obscenely ranted about his hatred for electronic music — which makes little sense considering his association with the genre.

“It’s the fucking techno before and after, I fuckin’ hate that fucking techno shit,” Iggy said whilst climbing into his personal ride following an appearance at the Caprices Festival, slamming a roll of paper at the car seat in a moment of anger. His rant then continues as he yells: “I will fight you ’till I die, you techno dogs. Fucking pushing buttons on your drum machines. It’s fake. Fake!”

In 2016, Pop spoke out of term about the genre once more – saying that analogue noise simply can’t be beaten and likened it to “throwing an amp into the spirit of man.”

While analogue music makes him feel alive, EDM makes Iggy feel the opposite emotion. He recalled a painful encounter with a fan he described as “a big yob from Serbia” who told Iggy how much he loved his music before chewing his ear off about his love of techno music. “You gotta be polite,” he noted. “But then when the guy walks away, you’re gonna be like: ‘Oh fuck you, Igor.'”

What makes his hate of techno music particularly strange is how influential Kraftwerk was in reinvigorating his career when he and David Bowie moved to Berlin, the home of techno music. Whilst Iggy perhaps has a disdain for the commercialised modern EDM sound, rather than the Kraftwerk brand of electronic music, that contemporary quality is just a continuation of technology and moving the musical landscape along just like Iggy did with The Stooges, but, made for a different demographic.

In 2018, after publicly berating how much he hates electronic music, Iggy decided to make an EP with legendary English dance group Underworld. The duo creates authentic electronic music, a pure sound that isn’t soulless commercial efforts churned out for the masses to quickly consume before moving on to the next fad.

This collaboration isn’t even Iggy’s only encounter with the world of modern electronic music, he’s collaborated with German DJ Westbam on his track, ‘Iron Music’ and linked up with Death In Vegas for their 1999 anthem, ‘Aisha’.

If it wasn’t for technology that came out of the electronic scene, then Iggy Pop would never have made The Idiot, which was the most pivotal record of his career. Whilst it’s a world away from modern electronic music, this backwards look at how technology is affecting music makes Iggy sound like an elder statesman from the ’70s who would have poured scorn on the Berlin era. If music is making you feel uncomfortable to that degree, then it’s doing something right.

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