Tuesdays used to be my favourite day of the week because it was the day when a bunch of new music would typically be released. That is no longer the case — but only because music releases were moved to Fridays. The music itself is as good as ever.

It remains a frustratingly recurring theme that today’s music is garbage, and yesterday’s music is gold. Music today is “just noise”, according to generations of people who insist the music in their day — probably when they were in their twenties — was better. Today’s peddler of this dead horse trope is YouTuber and record producer Rick Beato, who published a video about the two “real reason[s] music is getting worse”: it is “too easy to make”, and “too easy to consume”.

Beato is right that new technologies have been steadily making it easier to make music and listen to it, but he is wrong that they are destructive. “Good” and “bad” are subjective, to be sure, but it seems self-evident that more good music is being made now than ever before, simply because people are so easily able to translate an idea to published work. Any artist can experiment with any creative vision. It is an amazing time.

This also suggests more bad music is being made, but who cares? Bad music has existed forever. The lack of a gatekeeper now means it gains wider distribution, but that has more benefits than problems. Maybe some people will stumble across it and recognize the potential in a burgeoning artist.

Aside from the lack of distribution avenues historically, the main reason we do not remember bad records is because they are no longer played. This does not mean unpopular music is inherently bad, of course, only that time sifts things we generally like from things we do not.

Perhaps one’s definition of “good” includes how influential a work of art turns out to be. Again, it seems difficult to argue modern music is not as influential as that which has preceded it. It may be too early to tell what will prove its influence, to be sure, but we have relatively recent examples which indicate otherwise. The Weeknd spawned an entire genre of moody R&B imitators from a series of freely distributed mixtapes. The entire genre of trap spread to the world from its origins in Atlanta, to the extent that its unique characteristics have underpinned much of pop music for a decade. Many of its biggest artists made their name on DatPiff. Just two of countless examples.

If you actually love music for all that it can be, you are spoiled for choice today. If anything, that is the biggest problem with music today: there is so much of it and it can be overwhelming. The ease with which music can be made does not necessarily make it worse, but it does make it more difficult if you want to try as much of it as you can. I have only a small amount of sympathy when Beato laments how the ease of streaming services devalues artistry because of how difficult it can be to spend time with any one album when there is another to listen to, and then another. But anyone can make the decision to hold the queue and embrace a single release. (And if artistry is something we are concerned with, why call it “consuming”? A good record is not something I want to chug down.)

We can try any music we like these days. We can explore old releases just as easily as we can see what has just been published. We can and should take a chance on genres we had never considered before. We can explore new recordings of jazz and classical compositions. Every Friday is a feast for the ears — if you want it to be. If you really like music, you are living in the luckiest time. I know that is how I feel. I just wish artists could get paid an appropriate amount for how much they contribute to the best parts of life.