Normally I try to keep politics separate from my website but in this case I'll make an exception. This year I've noticed a lot of people here in the states who in 2008 supported Obama for President but now clearly have buyers remorse. Hey you know what, it happens to everyone sooner or later. So come election day in 2012 it looks like the overwhelming majority of people who voted for Obama in 08 but feel like complete idiots for it, will throw their support behind the more qualified candidate, whoever it may be. Of course there are those in the minority who will still support Mr. Obama on election day fully knowing that he's a failure but they just can't bring themselves to admit it. I don't consider those loyal supporters, on the contrary these people are ignoramuses. They realize they supported a bozo in 08 but will continue to ride inside his clown car for as long as they have to because the alternative is to admit they were wrong, that their man's policies were complete failures and lose all credibility.
But this is not about the political situation here in the states. This is about dragging music into the political swamp, creating false controversies and pseudo intellectual types being exposed as phonies. When I jumped into this whole alternative to the norm of music journalism back in 1987. There's been one thing that's never changed as far as the way I looked at music. I've always called myself a music fan and not a music critic which is similar to the difference of being a public servant and not a politician. The job is similar but one takes it as a profession. You see a music critic considers them self an authoritative figure, an intellectual who knows what you should be listening to. In some ways they even believe themselves to be creators of taste and interest. They feel that the keys to the gates of greatness are in their pockets which gives them the power to make or break careers. On the other hand a music fan has a more simplistic common sense approach which actually wields more power then any critic. The music fan simply knows what they like and hates what they don't. Also since they (music fans) vote with their own dollars they can tell the critics to fuck off which is something music fans have been doing for a long long time. A perfect example is BLACK SABBATH a band the critics hated but fans liked and well the rest is history.
Here's something else that separates music fans from music critics. The music fan is into sharing what they like in order to create a family or a community of like minded individuals. Once something like that is established then good things come about. The bands or artists sell more records and CDs, people come out to see shows, non musicians start bringing in their own talents like art, promotions and technical performance like lighting and sound. Record labels are created, distros and fanzines sprout up in order to spread the word. A micro economic situation is created that benefits all who are involved. On the other hand what the music critic does is more selfish. The whole idea of the music critic is ambition. Don't get me wrong since I have nothing against personal ambition. I'm just calling it out to what is going on. To the music critic it's all about themselves and not the music. To the critic, the music is secondary to their own ambition towards social economic climbing and becoming arbiter of taste. Years ago I read a book on music criticism and it pissed me off so much that I wanted to find the author to kick the living shit out of him. Ten percent of the book actually dealt with the writing craft but the rest of it was about how to become a pseudo intellectual, lying in order to gain influence and peer respect along with occupation standards. Since I couldn't find the book's author I did the next best thing. I looked for the students and beat them to a pulp.
HOW TO GAIN INTEREST AND NOTORIETY? START A FAKE CONTROVERSY
Opinions are like assholes, everybodys got one but they don't sell papers, controversies do. If there's one band that knows all about that one it's DIMMU BORGIR. For the past decade every time the Norwegian band released a new album a so-called controversy surrounded it prior to it hitting the streets and the band got to talk about it in magazine spreads. What was the big controversy? Some people thought DIMMU BORGIR was not a black metal band anymore because they were on a major label (Nuclear Blast) and became popular. Personally I thought those were pathetic reasons to discount a band from being part of a genre. Call me old school but to me it's always been the music which matters, not the label who puts it out. As far as popularity goes well that's something all bands want in order to make something of a living off of their music. Now I can see one story concerning the topic on whether or not the band's sound and style has progressed away from what it originally started out as. But to run the same damm story line for every album, along with cover photos, they've put out for the past ten years shows that some people have created the so-called controversy in order to sell magazines. Personally I think the band's sound has strayed away from their original black metal roots since they now incorporate more signature song structures used by various European power metal bands. Their releases owe more to the symphonic and orchestral elements than black metal. I also see them as boring. But opinions like that don't sell magazines now do they? Trying to create a controversy by pitting one side against another does. Using that controversy in order to slip in your own personal dogma is the disgusting part.
Is this guy above telling you what's great in modern metal?
Have you ever had vegetarian beef tips and rice? I have and well it made me sick. I have nothing against vegetarian meals it's just that the flavor of the fake beef as well as the sauce tasted horrible. I also have a problem with the use of the word "beef" in a dish were there clearly is none. Sure it might look like beef but one taste will tell it's not. And if one important ingredient, the beef, is missing from a two main ingredient dish than it's not really beef tips and rice. Now someone will come along and say well it's for vegetarians. Fine but it's really vegetable product and rice, slapping the "beef" title on it is a lie. Here's another food analogy for ya to savor. I use to live with this one chick who wanted to cook me dinner. For the time we lived together, which was just a year, I did all the cooking at home. One day she decided to cook me a meal which she promised I'd love. When I came home from work that day she kept me out of the kitchen in order to surprise me. When dinner time finally came I sat down at the table and was presented with a plate of pink spaghetti with some brown bits of matter mixed within. I politely asked what she called her dish which she proudly said was spaghetti and meat balls. As I ate she told me that the sauce was made from one 8oz can of tomato sauce and a half a bottle of ketchup. The browns bits were crushed up meatballs from a can of spaghetti-os she threw in. That was fuckin it! Yeah the meal sucked but what I'm trying to convey here is that what she made was a sad interpretation of a traditional dish. Here's another example using food. You ever have infused dining? That's when a chef will take some traditional recipe and infuse it with something different there by changing it. Some people will swear it's just a modernized version but no it's changed. If you take a traditional recipe, remove key ingredients and add new ones than it's changed. Look you can make chicken soup with various added ingredients but as long as you got the chicken in it then it's okay. Do the same recipe but minus the chicken then it's not chicken fuckin soup.
This idea also works with the various genres of music but here we're going to concentrate on metal. Now we all know what metal music is but for any bozos lurking here I'll supply a simple definition. Metal is traditionally characterized by loud distorted guitars, emphatic rhythms, dense bass-and-drum sound, and vigorous vocals. It also has splintered into sub genres which variously emphasize, alter, or omit one or more of these attributes. I got that definition from Wikipedia by the way but it works. If you're a fan of metal music you can disseminate what's metal and what is not. Metal music has a specific base recipe. Just like you can't make chicken soup without the chicken or beef tips and rice without the beef. You can't create metal music without it's base ingredients. Also like the horrible spaghetti meal I got, if you've never made the traditional meal then throwing a bunch of things together is not the same thing. You can't be a metal band by just tossing in few characteristics and calling yourselves metal. Finally by infusing two complete opposites does not mean you can call the creation one or the other, it's now a different item all together. You could even call it a hybrid but not a clone. Some people, normally non metal fans, will call this attitude elitist or intolerant because it embraces rigid boundaries. I say those people who disagree with me are the real intolerant ones because they want their own personal tastes and ideas embraced universally, by stealth if possible by force if necessary.
ONLY A DICKLESS WONDER OF THE ELITIST MEDIA WOULD COME UP WITH THE TERM "FORWARD THINKING METAL"
How do outsiders destroy traditions they disagree with? They start by attacking the loyalists by calling them stagnant, unflinching, elitist and ignorant. Next they produce a different version which they call new improved, progressive and diverse. Finally they use hype within various informational institutions in order to promote it. Now this goes on with a variety of institutions be it political ideology, religion, economics and so on. The question that needs to be asked is why do outsiders feel a need to do this? For me the only reason is that these outsiders are not comfortable with themselves. They perceive themselves as inadequate therefore they need to water down everything else in order to be build themselves up. I call this the intolerance of diversity. You have these outsiders who hate the existence of your traditional group so they tear it down in the name of diversity and progressiveness. Of course they tell you it's for your own good which is a complete lie. When these outsiders get caught in that lie it's like watching a snail squirm in a pile of salt.
ah yeah sure, wanna try that search again?
ARE YOU READY FOR SOME TRANSCENDENTAL BLACK METAL?
Black Metal is a sub genre of metal music. It's relatively looked upon as an extreme genre of metal with common traits such as fast tempos, shrieked or raspy vocals, distorted guitars played with tremolo picking, a rapid fire drumming technique called the blast beat, barely audible bass plus unconventional song structures. Now throughout it's history the black metal music genre has been diverse as far as bands adapting different characteristics. At it's peak in popularity in it's second wave you could take five top releases and each one would have it's own distinctive style and unique sound. Today there are black metal bands on every continent. The template has been expanded to include a lot of diverse musical as well as ethnic influences specific to their nations like folk and various ties to pagan religious beliefs. That's only a small portion of it all which I'm referencing. Black Metal has also gone on to influence other established metal genres like death metal, thrash, doom, grind and crust. It has also influenced non metal genres like punk and post rock. The key wording used is "blackened" as in blackened thrash or blackened death. Yes people Black Metal is diverse. Black Metal is influential. But there's one basic tenet to the genre that separates it from all others and that's it's dark foreboding atmosphere which conveys extreme evil. You take that important portion out and all you are left with is noise. That's why in order to create truly evil music one must be evil to start with in order to reach that goal. That's why you can never have something like blackened indie rock because it would be a pathetic joke.
THE LAUGHING STOCK AND BIGGEST LOSERS OF 2011
There was nothing funny about MORBID ANGEL's long awaited 2011 release Illud Divinum Insanus. It was clearly looked upon by fans as a disappointment. Things like that happen. But there was one real laughing stock of 2011 and they are all of the music critics who laid their proverbial reputations out to be shit upon when they promoted the band LITURGY and their 2011 release Aesthethica. Now before we go into this year's joke lets review this band as well as bring everything I've previously written about together. A few years ago LITURGY was an unknown act from New York City who released an CDEP in 2008, Immortal Life, which was rejected by the respected metal media because it was simply nothing more than pretentious noise created by a few stoned losers. The band considered themselves "experimental black metal" even though there was little to do with black metal in their music. They basically were a handful of indie rock losers still dressed up in 90's grunge attire fucking around in a studio for fifteen minutes. Normally bands like this quickly disappear without even leaving a shit stains worth of evidence to show of their existence. Unfortunately that wasn't the case.
Enter in the pseudo intellectual music critic crowd who specialize in musical propaganda. It was these domesticated herd of pigs who for a while watched their past favorites like Indie Rock and Alt. Country die horrible deaths on the music vine although they still have hip hop and Lady Gaga type acts to fall on. It was these sanctimonious pipsqueaks who were responsible for the urban subculture known as hipsters. It was these decrepit imbeciles, who in the past championed music only fit for coffee house worms, which decided it was now time to move on to other feeding grounds. Their new target was a musical genre they have always despised and ridiculed, metal. Although these masturbating monkeys without a culture of their own to speak of didn't just go after any genre of metal. They went for the unholy grail of black metal, although they also planted their parasitic cock sucking lips onto certain versions of Doom. Of course they really couldn't jump into the traditionalist black metal crowd because of their non masculine behavior. So they found someone who not only defied the orthodoxy of the genre but also looked like a bunch of pretentious douche bags, which was like looking in the mirror for the pseudo intellectual music critic crowd . They broke LITURGY into the music world by way of websites like Pitchfork and magazines like Spin who cator towards the trendy indie rock loser crowd.
Calling these losers the new leaders of USBM is equal to career suicide
So in 2009 the band released their full length debut, Renihilation, on the label 20 Buck Spin which supposedly gave it street credibility. It was at this point were the outsiders started their attack on black metal's loyalists by calling their devotion to their norm as arcane, stagnant and dwelling in the past. They used LITURGY, as well as a growing number of pseudo metal acts (strangely enough mostly from NYC), as their plastic versions of weapons in order to knock down the black metal orthodoxy. Ladies and gentlemen (and you others) it was like a bunch of hipsters with their purses versus a battalion of panzer tanks. The best the hipster crowd could do was hold up in their hovels of hoover-dom whining over the Internet like a bunch of faceless pussies while the blackened stormtroopers surrounded them. Google LITURGY - Renihilation review and the first post you will see is from Pitchfork. From that post on you will find other websites calling it a parody, an experiment with mixed results or simply indie rock. That's only from the sites with questionable integrity the ones who have been known for respectable practices wanted to know what was the punch line to this joke which came with all the hype. When it came to black metal purists the general consensus was enough was enough. It's one thing to lean over the edge of the black metal template (aka: shoegazer, ambient noise, drone, seventies prog rock influences, goth) but there was no way they would accept a bunch of black metal haters into their collective consciousness. It was bad enough when mall rats started donning corpse paint a year before now you had this infestation from the indie rock stool walking in to claim a seat in black metal? Fuck you and your self satisfied rules of conformity.
Which brings us to 2011 and the band's latest release which naturally was hyped by the hoover class but out right rejected by black metal / extreme metal enthusiests. The difference this time around is that the cocksucking media elitists got more than they bargained for. Not only were their boy toys, LITURGY, rejected once more but the debate which transpired before was over. Not only was LITRUGY's 2011 release a shitty joke but the now laughed at elitist hipster media's support for them only made them look even more pathetic. These psuedo intellectual types who look down their brown noses at everyone outside of their circle jerk got their noses broken forever. All they could do was create a fake controvesy by claiming victimization because their pussies hurt from being kicked in the mouth by the evil, mean black metal purists. Well it didn't work. They are the fake beef, the pink spaghetti and the infused fools of congealed ignorance. Their faces are red from the back handed slap from a extreme music loving public who rejects them more than ever. There once hipster havens now resemble colonies for lepers. Hell a week ago I chastized a few on a Facebook post. Even while I was leaving my size 13 boot marks on their parasitic behinds (covering up the lip marks by their fellow brethran) I was receiving thank you remarks and encouragement from people not involved but just reading the post and laughing at my victims. They rooted for a final death blow as if it were some type of gladiator game which I gladly performed for their amusement.
But I'm not niave to believe these cowards of the music revisionism will die. In 2012 I'll have been writing about extreme music for 25 years and in that time I've come to the realization that the elitist music media are like a roach infestation of an apartment building. You might remove them from your place but they just move on to another apartment and so on and so forth. Even if we tore the whole place down they would still move into the next building over. Therefore if we (aka: the extreme music community) cannot exterminate them permanently the only thing left to do is crush them with extreme prejudice publically for all to see. So what does this all mean to you the reader, the fan, the extreme music enthuisiest? Well first off know who the person is you're getting your music information from. If the person telling you who's great in black metal also hypes on in the same breath about the greatness of some lesbian bluegrass act then I'd walk away. Far be it for me to say a person can't have variety in their personal musical tastes. I am saying if your tiolet breaks who are you gonna call first to get it fixed, an expert in plumbing or someone who knows a little about plumbing as well as Ethiopian fertility rituals? That analogy works with music as well. Besides liking those two styles of music seems more like forced ironic symbolism than edgy musical taste. That's a trait of hipsters who are better to be seen and laughed at than heard.
NEXT MONTH: Why Your Social / Political Ideology Ruins Your Music Credibility