- Miley Cyrus, who plays teen music idol Hannah Montana, has a YouTube channel where she and her best friend / backup dancer Mandy Jiroux record their girly goofing off and answer readers' questions. (At 2:08 in the first video, you can clearly see that Miley Cyrus' digit ratio is slightly masculine. It must take balls to be a performer.) I haven't seen her TV show or heard her music, but it's worth keeping a finger on the pulse of youth culture -- in this case, you'll breathe a sigh of relief that this is who younger teenagers look up to. It's not like if the Blonde Ambition-era Madonna had a YT channel.
- Indie bands often get too much credit for making revolutionary or pioneering music. Here's how Wikipedia describes the sound on The Jesus and Mary Chain's album Psychocandy, which is the Farah Fawcett swimsuit poster of '80s indie rock:
The album fused together the Reids' two primary influences, the guitar noise of The Stooges and The Velvet Underground with the '60s pop leanings of The Beach Boys and Phil Spector -- in fact, the album's opening song, "Just Like Honey," borrows Hal Blaine's famous drum intro from The Ronnettes 1963 classic, "Be My Baby", produced and co-written by Spector.
A whole four years before this album came out, a very similar sound -- a dark, noisy guitar take on the oldies -- was "pioneered" by 19 year-old girl pop singer Rachel Sweet, in "Then he kissed me / Be my baby". The scarequotes are there since this may go back even earlier, but it goes back at least this far. (At 0:24, you can barely make it out, but she too appears to have a slightly masculine digit ratio.)
- Speaking of noise rock, is it angry nerd rock? Take the legendary noise rock band Big Black: Steve Albini went to Northwestern for undergrad, and Santiago Durango went to law school after the band broke up. Also, Ian Mackaye, frontman of hardcore punk band Minor Threat, was born to a wealthy smarty family, and guitarist Lyle Preslar studied briefly at Northwestern (playing in Big Black while there). Indeed, the very wealthy Georgetown neighborhood was central to the DC hardcore and later "underground music" scenes. I think it was only around 1998, or a bit earlier, when most of those punk-themed stores on the otherwise ritzy M Street began relocating, except for Smash!
So what distinguishes noise rock from, say, death metal, which has lower-IQ / lower-class fans in addition to some college student fans? It can't be musical complexity or technical skill, literary sophistication, allusions to classical music, or song length.
Noise rock may have been popular among smarter people just as a fad, with no rational explanation for it, in the same way that ugly, stripped-down painting, sculpture, and movies were (and somewhat continue to be) fashion statements within the contemporary elite art world.