Is there much? I'm not so sure, I hear tons of bands using it as an excuse to cover straight up shoddiness and a lot who are writing completely standard NME fodder and beleive they gain an extra line of defence vs criticism/a pretense of artistry by fucking up the mix. There's something really shallow about those guys and I don't see why they do it when it either adds nothing to the aesthetic or makes no sense with the songs.
I'm a massive fan of Ariel Pink and think the way he uses production completely transforms the songs. They wouldn't have even close to the same impact for me if they lost all the graininess and were slickly produced. There's something really evocative about his stuff, this bizarre sense of desperation and loneliness in the production aesthetic, like its this dude that time and society has forgotten. I could wax lyrical about Ariel Pink for an age, I think his music communicates a whole heap and the production aspect is a massive part of it, but with so many bands it seems like improving the production would either have no discernable effect to the record or would infact improve it dramatically.
Basically, my thoughts are that production "ethics" are being used way way way too much as a mask for a lack of ideas and even worse it seems like a lot of (rubbish) bands see it as a fast track to creating something "artistic". Thoughts? Counter examples?