Hooks are these small patterns of music that gets stuck in the listener’s head. It’s always been the trademark of good songwriters to write hooks that become memes, spreading like a mind virus, resulting in more people purchasing the songs, of course.
Recently, the whole notion of hooks have changed with contemporary electronic music. It’s no longer a matter of writing an interesting small piece of melody, a guitar riff, or a three part chord that sticks. It’s becoming a matter of finding an interesting/odd loop that is the hook. As an example, a lot of Acid music is really trying to figure out interesting hooks in forms of acid loops.
That’s fine. My problem is that such hooks don’t stick as well into the mind compared with melodies. I myself have a hard time remembering odd non-musical hooks. Maybe it’s just me, but I think it’s a bigger problem.
Some classical composers, such as Claude Debussy, just ignored the whole notion of a memorable hook, and did their own thing. A lot of contemporary techno is also going along this road. Then again, most of the population would recognize any of Mozart’s most famous compositions, while fewer might recognize Debussy’s works — Clair De Lune being of course the big exception.
There are some interesting exceptions in the electronic world, Daft Punk and Chemical Brothers being those I think of (and of course Kraftwerk, Underworld, and the electronic music by New Order, of which Blue Monday is one of the biggest electronica memes ever). Hmm, what’s in common with these acts? Memorable hooks?