When rock and roll was first getting started, the idea was to have one amazing acoustic rock band kicking out the jams for hours on end. Even if you weren't on acoustic instruments, it was still all about people playing off each other and thrashing the place to the ground. As technology reared its head though, the more adventurous rockers decided to branch out a little bit more.
Once computers became a big part of the conversation, you had acts popping up left and right bringing in samplers and having the synthesized sounds of rock and roll become the wave of the future. While you do have some of the gatekeeping stripes of rock and rollers turning their nose at this genre, the beauty behind these bands lies in just how much they can do with what they have.
Instead of just writing a tune on the guitar or the piano, these bands sought to stretch sounds out to their limits, bringing in different production styles in the studio and eventually making some of the most forward thinking rock music of all time. Even when they weren't about the guitar, these songs could still catch you off guard, with sounds that could desensitize you and scare you to death if you weren't careful. You can pack away the band setup for now...this was the way to the future.
If the 2010's are any indication, the future of rock and roll seems to be with adding in some electronics into your work. Though there are people like Imagine Dragons who claim to be rock and roll with their billion and one sound effects in their songs, the real craftsmen in the genre are the ones that really know what to do when you have the computer at your disposal. Just because it's the future of rock though doesn't mean you can't pull from the past when you want to.
Over the past few years, Chvrches have been the one band pushing the '80s pastiche sound forward, starting all the way back in 2013 on the Bones of What You Believe. Across their past three albums, the ethereal voice of Lauren Mayberry is exactly the kind of spine tingling sound that would have made for some of the greatest hits of the '80s had they gotten the chance to shine back then.
With the rest of the rock scene not too far behind in adopting some new '80s retro vibes, Chvrches are actually starting to innovate beyond their competition, with Screen Violence getting even more expansive and verging on shoegaze territory a lot of the time. As they work their way into the 2020's, these are the kind of musicians who will be leading us into the future.