Dee Snider Blasts Bands For Relying Too Heavily On Backing Tracks During Live Shows

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Dee Snider recently voiced his concerns about the growing dependence on backing tracks in live performances, highlighting that some veteran bands seem to be miming rather than playing live music.

In an era where live shows often incorporate some pre-recorded elements, the debate around the acceptable extent of using backing tracks has intensified, especially after an incident where Falling in Reverse had to cancel a performance due to misplaced laptops, sparking further discussions on the matter.

In an interview with Classic Album Review, the rock icon Dee Snider shared his nuanced view on the issue. He acknowledged the longstanding use of backing tracks to enhance live music, referencing an altercation between Ronnie Radke of Falling in Reverse and Sebastian Bach, formerly of Skid Row, over the use of such tracks. Snider pointed out that while augmenting live performances with tracks has been a practice for decades, overreliance on them compromises the authenticity of a live show.

Snider explained, “There’s a difference between using tracks to enrich a performance and relying on them to the point where the performance is no longer live. We’ve seen legendary acts like Queen use backing tracks for complex pieces like ‘Bohemian Rhapsody,’ which is understandable. However, when artists can no longer perform their music live without assistance, it’s perhaps time for them to step down and make room for new talent.”

The issue, Snider suggests, is particularly prevalent among some established bands, where performances are so heavily supported by pre-recorded tracks that the musicians appear to be lip-syncing or miming their parts. He expressed his disappointment without naming specific bands but mentioned that it’s easy to find evidence of such performances online, where the synchronization between the live performance and the backing tracks visibly fails.

Snider’s commentary highlights a growing concern in the music industry about the balance between live performance authenticity and the use of technology to enhance shows. He advocates for a more genuine live music experience, suggesting that while some use of backing tracks is acceptable, it should not replace the live performance entirely.

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