Let’s look at history for a moment. Within any temporal perimeter, for whatever sector and discipline that human contribution has experimented with, diverse schools of thought have existed and been engaged in a constant ideological (and in many cases physical!) battle to demonstrate the undisputed and exclusive truth of one’s own language at the expense of any kind of alternative. Such a claim is destined, in the end, to be exclusive to the faction of the most able elite and to pander to discontent and the necessities of the historical age in which it was thought up – its legitimacy is often founded on the basis of experience that has been consolidated to a greater or lesser extent over a handful of years, strengthened by the consensus of a large number of acolytes and the kind of presumption that has always obscured the possibility of other solutions. Thus, these all-knowing higher beings, throughout the course of history, have done nothing other than freeze every form of language which had rules that differ from those expressed in their dealings, supplying detailed vade mecum on how to become perfect followers of the trade.
The fact is however that, at a certain point of any era or any dispute, something has to happen – namely, at the edges of these cultural feuds, an incautious fervour that escapes control and that knows how to upset every equilibrium, the vigorous impulse of an alternative always inevitably presents itself. Desecrating and impudent, right at the moment of greatest stagnation, ‘the new’ arrives in the form of languages and methods that have never been expressed – these are the paths that have often been wandered by solitary pioneers who dared to call their era into question.
Naturally, the new solutions that were apparently free from rules and irremediably distant from preconceptions have consistently, and often violently, been indexed – they become a danger for all to avoid, ridiculous insolence, an offence to the common good and an unpardonable anomaly to keep hush and keep away from. Even to kill, if necessary.
With extreme slowness, nevertheless, surviving even its outcast pioneer’s life, ‘the new’ has managed to breach the walls of its persecutors, even if it is now old and on its last legs, winning in time over every attempt of repression and attracting a sufficient number of followers to give life to a school of thought that can finally be taken into consideration by everyone.
Therefore even ‘the new’, despite the most stubborn reactionaries, has sometimes managed to find a place in the ideological disputes of its time. It has even become, with the mocking irony of history, a renewed point of cultural reference for the people of the era in which it was born and which it has conceded itself to, rapidly changed in its nature from a simple alternative until it has eventually become the only one.
Every time that an era has become the maker of this debasing process, it has done nothing other in fact than to regenerate the obtuse desire for ideological supremacy at the cost of any other new solution. In this way, faced with the vigour of the nth leap, that has cyclically and punctually appeared at the boundaries of the newborn cultural feud, it has once again pointed its index finger against ‘the new’ – the latter once again considered to be, lacking in wisdom and predisposition to learn, an evil to be eliminated forever.
In art, and more specifically in music, this unhealthy vortex continues to repeat itself endlessly, even if less violently, like a loop that has gone crazy. ‘The new’ never has any supporters whatsoever. New languages are immediately denied the attention and curiosity they deserve, because they are misunderstood. They are boxed up by force within the inverted commas of a genre with inevitable approximation, so as not to constitute a threat for anyone. Meanwhile, the various schools of thought are at each other’s throats to claim ideological supremacy and the nobility of their intentions.
But history teaches us that the seed for renewed solutions is always hidden inside the new, even where there would seem to exist only an undecipherable confusion, and it’s necessary to be predisposed to decipher its benefits. Let’s sharpen up humility and curiosity, so as to reinvigorate our wonder and amaze ourselves again before the mysterious and unexplored dimensions of the new. Let’s not ostracize it with arrogant prejudices. Because knowing how to welcome ‘the new’ doesn’t mean obtusely accepting any alternative with passive compliance simply because it’s new. It means knowing how to wisely take everything into consideration, aware that cultural puddles drown any possibility for evolution and fade beauty.