I'll try not to bore you all with the rant you've heard thousands of times before, but today's music is so... cold. While the advent of MIDI sequencers and cheap pro audio equipment caused a grassroots indie revolution on the internet (Creative Commons/Jamendo), it also allowed the labels to easily produce a single sound. Today's "artists" have very little creative input on their work.
Any idiot can open up one of the many audio editors, lay down a synthesized rhythm track, and make a dance single. Try it yourself. Pop open an editor, get a beat, record some shitty lyrics (you can fix them with a harmonizer, just like the pros), and add tons of distortion and digital effects. Hey, look at that: you have a rap song that sounds just like one of the top 40.
You think with the power of modern synthesized composition, real artists could actually take advantage of the limitless possibilities. Need a 300-member orchestra for a difficult piece? No problem! A good composition program and a nice set of sampled sound and you've got it in a few days' work.
The problem, really, is the labels. There are LOTS of good independent artists and composers out there, who are doing good things with all these new tools. But the mainstream labels seem to stonewall all of them. All we get is dancefloor song after dancefloor song with the same sound.
Of course, the related issue is the conglomerate ownership of radio. I know of very few independent stations left that aren't owned by some massive corporation. In the local radio market where I live up in Canada, we have four main stations. They are/were called Jet, Magic, CBC, and Jump. Jet and Magic are/were both owned by one of the media conglomerates. CBC needs no introduction, as it is the Canadian national public radio service. Jump is a community-licensed, volunteer run station.
So, massive conglomerate decides that Magic (more locally-focused than Jet) is under threat from the community station, Jump. So they shut Magic down, and seek a new license from the CRTC to open a new station.
Now here's the fun part. The CRTC grants the license to the conglomerate. The new station, Sun, has as of now almost entirely eradicated the publicly-accessible community station, which appears will have to shut down. The airwaves are now pumped with top-40 crap, instead of locally produced content. What gets me is that the CRTC WILLINGLY chose to give priority to the station airing music that has ALREADY SATURATED the market, rather than LOCALLY PRODUCED content. The CRTC needs to be shut down and control transferred to Industry Canada, who at least understand the importance of niche radio applications (Canadian HAMs enjoy some of the laxest restrictions in the world).
Whew... now that that's off my chest...