I'm sorry Black Metal, but I'm leaving you. I can't continue living like this. We've had a good run, and in the end we both tried our best. I know that deep down inside, we still both love each other, or at least I love you very, very much. But sometimes love just isn't enough, and we have to part ways.
Last Tuesday I went to see Goatwhore and Watain in concert. Lemme tell ya, it was something wicked. Course, I'd seen Watain live once before so I knew what was coming. But none the less it was still an incredibly powerful performance. There was much blood, filth, and mayhem all across the stage. Goatwhore was pretty good too, which was was pleasantly surprising. I've heard their albums before and didn't think all that highly of them, but they sound a Hell of a lot better live than they do on recordings. They got a pretty good mosh pit going, and myself and a friend of mine jumped on in despite being half to a quarter of everyone's size in there. Those guys were huge! I was pretty surprised by my friend Kal jumping in too. He was really only along because he'd come down to visit me and his other friends from Austin, and there was no way in Hell I was going to miss out on seeing Watain again. So he sorta came along for the ride, but in the end he seemed to really enjoy himself. Which is pretty nuts, really. The dude is gonna be a teaching aid for a bunch of elementary school kids in a few months, and he's been doused in blood by the fiendish Erik Danielsson!
Man do I love being a degenerate.
Well anyways, that whole "Watain are fucking excellent" rant kinda clashes with my opening bit a little if you noticed. I love Black Metal. My favorite band of all time is a Black Metal band. But I can't deal with Black Metal culture anymore. See, the genre isn't really a genre of music so much as its own little world. It has its own values and ideals, and for the longest time I really identified with that. But as of late the scene has been getting worse, and its values have changed in light of a lot of stupid shit that's been happening. People are now starting to loathe any band with moderate success and accuse them of being "mainstream." I've seen people accuse Funeral Mist of being mainstream. Really? Fucking Funeral Mist? Holy shit dude, I wish music like Funeral Mist was mainstream. People would be so much more interesting.
Now, in all fairness I sort of understand where this is coming from. I've met my fair share of morons who think that bands like Cradle of Filth are Black Metal. Not to mention there's Dimmu Borgir, who pretty much wrote the book on selling the fuck out. But popularity alone has nothing to do with it. A band, an act, a musician can be popular without "selling out." The problem with Dimmu Borgir isn't financial success, it's that they fundamentally changed their music to achieve that financial success. I mean, you can't deny the fact that half the tracks from Death Cult Armageddon were clearly inspired by Danny Elfman and meant to appeal to the Hot Topic crowd. Listen to this shit.
Now, don't get me wrong. Danny Elfman does some great shit. But seriously, don't act like you're somehow a part of the "Black Metal scene" when you're busy sucking off the guy who does the music for half of everything that's done in pop culture. It was a cold, calculated business decision and nothing more, and thus the antithesis of everything that Black Metal stands for. You really shouldn't pretend to be a part of something when you very obviously aren't.
All that being said, the Black Metal community has, as far as I'm concerned, gone way too far in the opposite direction. If you're reaching the point where you're afraid the financial success of a band is ruining their integrity, but the band pretty much sounds the same as they always did or at least has a logical sound progression that isn't motivated by making cash, then you're letting the attitudes and behaviors of the so-called "Mainstream" influence you as much as it does Ke$ha. And that's just as bad.
So I guess I can't in good conscience call myself a Black Metaller anymore. And I guess I'm fine with that. Bought the new Sargeist album and am very pleased with the results. Still heavily into the Orthodox Black Metal music and all that jazz. But I'm into lots of music, so it's no love lost really.
What I am totally into now, though, is horror punk. Mostly the hard core stuff, mind you. Punk tends to be very hit-or-miss for me. That being said, I'm having a blast with Order of the Fly. Just bought their new album, "Hollow Voices of a Dead Generation," and it's unbelievably good.
I also recommend, among horror punk bands...
Crimson Ghosts: Hunted
The Other: Howl at the Moon
The Hitchcocks: Renegade
Left For Dead: Tonight You Die
Schoolyard Heroes: Attack of the Puppet People
I guess I can also post some great Deathrock.
Theatre of Ice: Tomorrow Never Comes
45 Grave: Evil
Corpus Delecti: Patient
Not quite Deathrock, but a favorite of mine.
The Screaming Marionettes: Screaming Monster
The Wake: Nazerene
Anywho, I've got a ton more but I think I'm good for now. Hot damn I don't know what I'd do with myself without all this great music out there in the world.
As always, Love Under Will