Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Teenagers: The Future of Heavy Metal?

Do you all remember a band that came out a couple years ago with these teenage kids who played 80s type thrash metal named Black Tide? They made quite a buzz in 2008 with that single "Shockwave"? Well...look at and hear em now...

My my. How things have changed.
If you think the image is bad try listening to one of their latest singles posted in the link above. Clearly they've been hanging out in LA for too long.

It's really interesting to spot the different trends throughout the years in metal music and how they affect the industry as a whole. I think for any band that wants to become successful, while (Mind you, I said successful not famous or even mainstream) it will be difficult holding on to your integrity as an artist and keeping the original intent of the band pure.

There have been plenty of disbanded bands and "Hiatuses" popping up recently in the metal world that include Cathedral (Seriously, not that much of a loss IMO), The Human Abstract, Oceano, Ludicra, Dismember, and Carnal Forge (loved em').

As famous metal/hard rock icons die, like Dio, Nevermore's Loomis and Williams quit, Arch Enemy releasing the fucking godawful Khaos Legions (I freaking hate when people misspell something to make it sound cooler, like "kvlt.")and even Killswitch Engage's Howard Jones walks, I'm sure fans are wondering what the sordid and unknown future is headed for metal.

I just heard this Dubstep/Djent/Prog Metal Fusion band or I'm sorry, "project" that made me scratch my head.
I don't have a problem with Djent or experimenting but I'm pretty much DONE with dub step. I never really took to it so I hope that it doesn't bleed too much into metal. *shudders at the thought of a dub step black metal/jazz fusion album*

I'm all for experimentation but I think it certainly comes to a point when your losing a sense of your original and organic sound to the need to be unique and different.
I like my metal traditional, straight to the point, hard, fast, guttural and mean.

To get back on topic, I think teenage metal heads have the right idea. Take the example of Black Tide I have above. They are seemingly influenced by bands like Death, Metallica, and I even hear Testament in there. They clearly had a set style that they started out with.
As you all know, metalcore/deathcore is this looming black cloud that seemingly is engulfing the mainstream music of the genre (anyone still remember nu metal?) and and has clearly seeped into the once virginal ears of Black Tide. That new single that I linked you to sounds like some Attack Attack BS with better guitar work.

Metalcore/Deathcore/all the other cores is where I'm seeing a lot of young people get into metal from and THAT scares me. If a band like the Black Veil Brides is the first band that got you into any kind of metal then you may be doomed for all of eternity.

And here here! That's not to say that there aren't great bands in which young people play in....but for the life of me I can't think of any at the moment that formed RECENTLY who impress me enough to consider mentioning in the blog. I could go on about new releases from excellent bands (Vildhjarta, Across The Sun-thanks Israel-, Arkona, etc) but none formed by younger metal heads.

I honestly think there is a good interesting future for metal, you just have to wade through all the shit to get to it.

What say you?

Side note/P.S: I was walking through Target the other day and saw a black kid around 11 or 12 wearing a Venom T-shirt. I wanted to take a subtle picture but I couldn't because his mum was hanging around. But it made me really happy to see someone so young and black (yeah, I said it) listening to it. True metal knows no age, color or boundaries. I would have been just as happy to see some white kid that age wear the shirt as well. Maybe there is hope.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Ego and Loner- ism In The Metal Scene

"Why do you listen to that stuff?"

The common metal head-no matter what genre of metal you listen to-has constantly been berated with similar inquiries from various people in their lives asking this question.
In a sense, metal music goes against our basic human instincts of what 'classically' is considered music. Granted, now that metal has branched off into multiple genres that statement could lose some of its accountability, what with Symphonic and Operatic metal, etc.
But I'm sure when metal first began to develop around the late 1960s, the general consensus was that it was just 'noisy'.
Its a type of music that from the very beginning was never fully accepted.

As a result of this, I've noticed that generally speaking, those that do listen to metal have certain loner tendencies.
I'm definitely not saying the culture as a whole is isolated since when metal heads do come together-they can most surely be just as social as other groups. And also as susceptible to peer pressure and conformity.
But to really accept this sort of music, I've learned that a person has to cultivate and learn their 'darker' side, a side that not many people willingly accept.
I know that sounds lame but hear me out.
I believe there is something innately savage and vicious about this type of music that scares people because of its honesty. It's raw-its not manufactured or wrapped into a pretty package (well, perhaps lets forget about hair metal). In essence-its real. That's what attracted me to it all those years ago and what continues to.

Personally, metal helped me get through a lot of strife in my life. I had always turned to music before when I was distraught but when I started listening to metal I got out a much needed amount of aggression from my system. Every time there was a scream or growl in the song, I felt like the artist was venting everything out for me that I was too scared or embarrassed to do myself. I still feel that way-its a great outlet.

NOW, that being said, within the metal scene certain genres add to this theory and take away from it.
I mean, your average Metalcore/Deathcore/Screamo/Symphonic female fronted bands are extremely targeted to younger mainstream types of people. These genre's are considered to cater to the more casual and social metalhead.

As for Thrash, Death, Black/Grindcore bands are usually listened to by far older, extreme metalheads who are less prone to be into the social aspect of metal.
There. I said it.

If you take a look at Black Metal, for example, being a loner is not only accepted but encouraged to an extent. It's considered a more introspective type of genre. And it is PURPOSELY not intended to be meant for a mainstream type of mind.
Fans of extreme metal also tend to have ample sized egos as well as arrogance to match. The reason of this I'm not so sure but I believe it stems from the fact that metalheads generally think of themselves as reaching a higher state of consciousness somehow because of the fact that they do listen to the genre-and thus-have evolved more-so than the average music fan. (Especially true for fans who are also musicians)
Mind you all, I'm generalizing but this is what I've found to be the case.

The bottom line is metal is very attractive to individuals who consider themselves or were pariahs in their early youth, people who like to deviate from the norm, and anyone who is in tune their more animalistic and essentially human side.

What's interesting about this is that with most shootings of any kind, the culprit is always found by the media to listen to metal and be some type of loner. Such is the case with Columbine, Jared Loughner, and the more recent Norwegian gunman. Mainstream media will use any excuse to condemn metal music. Blame it on the mental state of the individuals and not what they listen to.

But that's just what I think, what about you?

*BTW you guys, pick between Finding (Good) Christian Metal and The Future of Heavy Metal: Teenagers in the comment section. These two were tied so I want you to pick the next post.
Thanks for continuing to read and I hope to hear from you all soon.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Off Topic-ish: BM Is Not For Niggers

(Off Topic)

"bm is not for niggers stupid bitch. now listen jay -z ." -anon

Awww, Varg is that you? Just kidding, hehe.

Just thought you all would like to read this anon comment I received on the Varg post in case you didn't see it. Clearly, punctuation is not strong with this one.

That stuff isn't discouraging but it definitely is a sign that some metal heads are not as progressive in their thinking as others. Not that they should be either because we all are entitled to our opinions. But it is provocative.

Oh, by the way. I'm still alive. And I really want to continue the blog its just I'm really backlogged at the moment. Ego and Lonerism in Metal was the clear winner of the poll so look forward to a post soon.

Thats all folks'

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Topic Vote And Update (Off Topic-..ish)

So, sorry for the absence, in case your wondering why I've been gone so long. Oodles of drama is going on in my personal life that I would rather not get into online.

Don't fret though. I actually have time in July to really get back into the swing of things with the blog. I've been thinking about a bunch of new topics I want to blog about and i've concocted a list. Remember last time how anyone could vote on what they wanted me to post about and I would write about each starting with the highest rated? Well, thats going to be the case this time as well.

Here is the list of available topics:
Female Musicians in Metal?

I'm not Impressed by Lady Gaga: Shock Jocks

You Assimilator!
Teenagers:The Future of Heavy Metal

Flavor of the Week: Last Years Tragedy

Ego and Lonerism in the Metal Scene

Sex in Metal Music

Sexism in the Videogame Industry

(Good) Christian Metal

Vote Using the link Below

If you have any suggestions/requests/concerns, leave them in the comment section or email me.
*BTW, you can vote more than once if you wish

Thats all folks'

Monday, June 20, 2011

Flavor of the Week:Tetrarch

*shyly waves* Hello. I know, I know. Before you jump down my throat about not posting for a while, I plan on writing an off topic blog post about why I've been gone for so long. Don't worry, I'm not quitting the blog especially since everytime I come back to check on it the number of followers keeps on increasing. Thats actually pretty amazing. But you know what else is?


You know, unlike some metalheads, I don't look down on a band that wants to make it big and even, *gasp* wants to played on mainstream radio. But these guys may actually deserve it. Hey, we all have got to make a living.

Formed out of Atlanta, GA in 2007, Tetrarch is an unsigned young thrash metal band with a hint of the melodic, looking for the right break. I really like this group (Not only because they feature a black girl on lead guitar, which is pretty groovy to me), but they really have a passion for the music and are not trying to be like a lot of the deathcore bands that are popping up out of the Atlanta region.

I hope someone snatches these kids up quick.

Check out some tunes from myspace and some live footage:

Yay or Nay? I want your opinion

Friday, April 8, 2011

The Akira Issue

If your any fan of anime/manga, I'm sure you have heard about this upcoming Akira american adaptation of the 1988 Katshiro Otomo classic...and the controversy surrounding it.

First off, for those who don't know, Akira is this psychological thriller that encompasses many themes that include corruption of power, super-human abilities, bildungsroman , and tons of other issues that I can't even began to cover and won't. Basically, if you haven't seen it, SEE IT. Before this new film completely butchers it.
Its among anime staples (some may argue) such as Ghost In The Shell, Vampire Hunter D, Grave of Fireflies, Millennium Actress, Princess Mononoke, etc

Phew. So, a few months ago I heard that Leonard Di Caprio (of all people), bought the rights for the movie. Immediately, I was weary but then I read that Otomo himself was going to be one of the producers (as well as Di Caprio) for the movie-so it can't be all that horrible right?

So currently, Warner Bro's is negotiating with the Hughes bro's to remake a live action version of the movie.

Thats great and all but the question is-who will be cast?

I'm a HARDCORE advocate for Asian men getting more roles in Hollywood (And not just that martial arts crap). Why does it matter to me? I'm not really sure but I think they have gotten nearly as bad a rep as black women have in Hollywood (same roles much?). And Ninja Assassin was disappointing, no matter how hot Rain was (That's Jung Jihoon to you!)
Anyway, I saw who they were honestly thinking of casting as leads and I'm not going to lie to you guys, I'm starting to sweat bullets about this one.

I mean, this could potentially be a BREAKOUT role for anyone if casted.

James McAvoy?
Andrew Garfield?

I flew into nerd rage.
And apparently, the only Asians they MAY cast will be extras and/or just Asian girls in various roles. -_-

(And am I the only one pissed off that its going to be in 'New Manhattan?' and not freaking 'Ne0 Tokyo?' like in the actual story)

I realize, they are JUST in the beginning stages, so I shouldn't be freaking out that much. I hope the Japanese are just as furious about this as I am and ARE NOT pandering to Western sensibilities just because they like it. Have a voice and really complain about this you guys.

Just look this up and see the other fans enraged by this. I know I'm not the only one.

For the love of God, Otomo, say something!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Flavor of The Week-Animals as Leaders

So I found this little metal gem of a band the other day. Their name is Animals as Leaders, a prog metal outfit found by Tosin Abasi (Clearly an African name which set my interest even more on high, plus he is kind of a guitar genius) formed in 2007 in Washington D.C. Their first self titled album came out in 2009. Wave of Babies is a single released in 2010 by them as well.

They are extremely underrated (I think) but the reviews that I have read proves that these guys will have to be watched in the coming years.

If you like Periphery, Messhuggah, and Born of Osiris (Who just came out with a new album), you will enjoy these guys.

Check out these songs and see if you like them:

Yay or Nay. I want your opinion.

(Sorry for the shoddy description. I'm kinda in a hurry)

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Vargi-Kins on the cover of Decibal Magazine

Okay guys. While perusing the magazine rack at the local bookstore I came across the image of Varg Vikernes on the cover of Decibal magazine.
I know I'm going to get a shitload of flack for this post but I've got to comment on this.

I read the interview. Mainly about the music-which is good.
Okay, the problem I have with this is that anyone who is remotely interested in black metal and its history knows about Varg and his past. He says he is not a neo-nazi anymore or NSBM (but I'm sure some of the old ideologies/beliefs he had has still got some grip on him) . Oh yeah, and he is a murderer.

Why are we putting him on the cover as if he is to be idolized? But then I feel like a hyporcrite for saying that because wasn't I the one saying that it should be all about the music in my other post?

I know, I know. A lot of you say that lyrics/ideologies don't matter to you anymore and that you solely listen to music just for the music. >_>

And anyone that says metal is not political in anyway is a fucking liar.
However, as I've said before in the past, I simply will not/could not buy any of his records, even if I liked some of the songs. Knowing that I support someone who compared black metallers to black and homosexuals...and he tried to re-explain himself but it did not come out as an apology or sincere. Its was very brazen and matter of fact.
I don't think he should apologize for his views, per se. Lets be honest, me and about maybe a handful of other black people may know of him. And the rest of his fans are mostly whites-who when perusing the Internet don't seem as offended as I am by his statement. I guess it doesn't effect them in that way.
I know black militants who are just as racist as he is and they don't want to apologize for it either. Freedom of Speech and all. However, I'm not supporting him and his ridiculous radical ideologies in any way. I'm sure he is not lamenting over the loss either.

(From Metal Crypt magazine)
You once stated that "metal is nigger music", do you still believe this to be true? "Yes and no. I think the metal culture is nigger culture, in the sense that the traditional metal people look like, behave like and think like a bunch of "white niggers". It's (at least often) an extremely primitive, unintelligent and pointless subculture, like all rock 'n roll subcultures are. I too listened to metal music, but I never behaved like a nigger just because of that, and I don't understand what the point with this metal subculture is. Smoking pot or getting drunk, sleeping around and giving each other venereal diseases, partying all the time, going to concerts to meet other vacuum-heads, and so forth. What's the point? Even bush-niggers can be more sensible and constructive, and deeper than that. ‘The true attraction people have to this particular subculture is probably something else, like contempt for the modern world, fascination for death and the Gothic, romanticism and even Pagan values, but it all becomes so very wrong when mixed with traditional rock 'n roll or heavy metal culture."

I'm not supposed to be offended by that?
Yeah, right.
So, I want your opinion on this one, guys. Maybe I should just mind my own freaking business.
I'm anticipating some interesting comments from the Scandinavian readers, however.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Why Women In Metal Are Not Taken Seriously Pt. 2

I have been meaning to do a part 2 about this topic and today I just saw this ad for the Hottest Chicks In Metal-excuse me-Hard Rock: Hall Hath No Fury Tour with In This Moment (ick) headlining. Other bands on the bill include Sister Sin (eek), Straight Line Stitch (Meh, but I respectfully applaud), and System Divide. (Ugh)
Whenever I see the Hottest Chicks In Metal anything I receive a mixture of emotions that consist of anger, shame, and frustration. Why is this?
This kind of promotion is a double edged sword.
The Hottest Chicks In Metal title, I believe, does abso-fucking-lutely nothing for women who sing or listen to heavy metal. Its not empowering and its not honorable. Some may disagree but I believe this sort of title is setting us back.
First off, by creating this (be it man or woman) we have essentially separated ourselves from the metal community by gender first and not anything else. That's the first red flag.
The second, of course, would be the blatant hyper-sexualized photo/promotion for it. I think in my last post about this I said that men are not going to take a women seriously who dresses like one of the above ladies as showed (I'm thinking you can guess which one). Women who make it a point to dress provocatively in an industry that is ruled by men will not be regarded as a serious band. The only angle they may have is 'Uh, well she's hot so I'll watch them anyway'. An anon commenter left this comment in Pt.1:
"...If women are gendered into the beauty complex and use this to their advantage, I take my hat off to them.
Judge musicians based on the music they make, not their clothing.
It's not about the way women dress. It's about the normalisation of belittling women for the way they dress, rather than judging their talent."

You should go back and read the whole comment. Very interesting.
However, I disagree.
Again, that's taking leaps back. Specifically the first sentence. That's the exact reason why we should not take that angle because its expected and its very easy to gain notoriety for beauty rather than talent. People will be so blinded by the lead singers tits to really notice that the music may actually be great...or terrible. Its also different depending on the type of metal we are talking about as well. Women in symphonic metal bands may dress different than women in metalcore or black metal.
The Hottest Chicks In Metal title may give a lot of bands great promo but I also notice that this tends to shift the focus from not only the actual music but the other members of said band.

I actually have tons of respect for Angela Gossow (as I said before pt.1, she may be one of the few who successfully separated herself from 'lead female singer' and band to just Arch Enemy. She has really proven that she is in it for the music. Whether or not you dislike Arch Enemy, you have to respect that.)
Gossow did an interview for and the interviewer asked if she had basically ever wanted to be involved with the Hottest Chicks of Metal.
Angela said: " It's funny that you mentioned that because I just had a huge clash with the editor of Revolver. He's put me into the 2010 "Hottest Chicks in Metal" calendar with that picture in of 2004, so they keep kind of recycling that one. And, I've explained several times I don't want to be featured in that — in that corner. If they want a picture of the band and it's about the music, all cool. No problem. But if it's about me being a woman… I don't like the "Hottest Chicks in Metal" movement at all. I think it's very counterproductive and kind of retro, you know?...
I hate the "Hottest Chicks in Metal!" It's an embarrassment for women, I think (laughs). It's an embarrassment for female musicians, who actually are musicians.

You can read the whole thing in it's entirety here:
I have to say I agree with her.
I understand why some do it though. For promotion and all. But I honestly think that its a path that doesn't have to be taken if your serious about being in this business. I really do.
I literally had to do my research in order to find out that its for the Keep a Breast foundation. ( I was too focused on Maria Brinks to notice any other breast anything. As I'm sure most men who look at this are).

I dunno, maybe its just me.
I'm not saying a woman has to growl or act like a guy in order to gain respect in metal music. But ladies, show a little respect for yourself and then maybe you can gain respect from everyone else.
I want your opinion, guys.

(By the way ladies, Who would your nominees be for the Hottest Guys in Metal? Post some below!...I know how hypocritical. But I couldn't help myself)

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Flavor of The Week-Orisha Shakpana

Who knew that Jamaica would be the next promising area for the metal scene?
Found this gem thanks to one of the followers (Thanks Navlos!-I know its kind of late)
Since then, I have been researching a good bit of bands from Jamaica as well as other emerging African bands. (I have lots of fuel for flavor of the week for this month)

Formed in 2004, Orisha Shakpana is a one man black metal project originating in St. Catharine, Jamaica that was originally a three piece band. What I find really interesting are the themes in the music. There are both satanic and African paganism within the content. (He even has a song title called Ancient Ghana 1265...I had to mention that because of that's where my family is from. I know, I'm a dork but I'm really excited about this guy...doesn't hurt that he's attractive). Orisha Shakpana has three full length albums that have been released since 2006 and one demo as well as LP.
At least in my case, I will be ordering any music I can get my music geek hands on.

Okay, Okay, I know I made that recent post about "The next blog will be a topic you all pick". Which is still true for the next real post. However, I just could not resist sharing this with you guys. Especially you obscure music lovers.

Check out some of these song links as well as the myspace:

Monday, January 31, 2011

Your Pretty Cool...For a Black Chick: The Backhanded Compliment

(Warning: This Is A Whiny Rant)

Any black girl into this scene has gotten this comment. I guarantee it.
Or the Oreo reference. (If you don't know what that is-look it up).

I've also received:
"Wow, your really pretty for a black girl".
"I've never met a black girl like you"
"Your skinny for a black girl."
"Your the nicest black girl I've ever met"
"I never considered dating a black girl until I met you "

Yadda yadda, these weird pseudo-compliments.

Apparently they come from a good place but if anyone ever seriously gave you a "compliment" like this, would you be pleased or mortified?

You can guess which one I am.

I'd say 75 % if this dribble comes from guys and the other 25% from girls.

Although I'm not a fan of the band Straight line Stitch I like to keep up with them because they are the biggest upcoming metal band fronted by a black girl...ever. At least that I know of.
Sometimes it frustrates the hell out of me reading the comments people write about them...and by them I mean her. Just peruse the Metal Sucks topics on SLS, as well as YouTube comments. on their videos.

It literally makes me sick. It must drive the lead singer crazy.

I don't know how many comments I've seen about her being a heavy metal Beyonce (of course, the only black singer they could come up with) or her 'whipping her hair back and forth' better than Will Smiths' daughter. All of these references are irrelevant because the girl has a heavy metal soul. I don't have an issue with them comparing her to Jada Pinketts' band Wicked Wisdom so much because I can understand that.

This issue is obviously due to her race. Plain and simple. No tip-toeing around it. And she's a female.

I think the issue with blacks in metal-the core issue-is that we want to be treated just like every other metal head and not bombarded with these tags and labels that confine us to the place we are trying desperately to escape.

I know, that equality shtick is such an overused motif for the black race but in this case it is extremely important. I hate harping on this crap but every time I see a glimmer of hope in humanity I read a few comments on YouTube and am thrusted abruptly back into the ignorant mass consciousness that we live in today.

I guess I should say unconscious rather than ignorant. They don't think its a bad thing to say but its not necessarily good either. And, I realize its a "free" country-anyone can say what they want (behind the safe glow of a computer screen-much like myself) but, call me crazy, I always try to think about what I write or type before I commit it.

To black people (and the other enlightened handful) into the scene, the lead singer is just a pretty girl who fronts a mediocre metal band. That is all.

To everyone else she is a surprisingly pretty black girl that fronts a nu metal band that isn't that good but that's okay because she's fuckable.

And for the record if the girl is pretty, she MUST be mixed with something for the person to have found her attractive let alone human.
I even weep for females in general when I read the comments comparing her to bands that don't even share the same genre within metal but because they are both female fronted-we have to compare and decide who is better. As if females don't compare themselves to each other enough already.

A few more points I want to make:

*I realize that not everyone thinks this way. Most of the time when I generalize in the blog, I really mean what I believe the mass (as a whole) of metal heads are thinking. There are exceptions in every minority and majority.

*Not to call black folks out but like I've said before-we don't help our own situation. I'm definitely not saying anyone should contour to anyone elses' sense of standards. However, I believe if most people are stereotyping us a certain way-that may be an incentive to change a bit, yes? I know that's a hard pill to swallow but just think about it.

So, any black girls that read this blog, post your own ridiculous back handed compliments you've received and lets compare. I'm positive that you have gotten your fair share.

I will close by saying if at any point you have thought of saying any of these "compliments" to a girl/guy-regardless of race or have said them; perhaps you should edit either black, white, brown, yellow or girl/guy out of the sentence and rather put person, woman/man, or human being.

"I am not an elephant! I am not an animal! I am a human being! I am a man! "

Flavor of The Week: Vale of Amonition

I had forgot about this band until one of the followers (Thanks Kelly!), reminded me in a post about them.

Hailing from Kampala, Uganda- VoA is an unsigned prog/doom metal band. They released their first demo this past year called Curtain of Doom and The Broken Shield. There also may be a complete first album coming out this year.

It is very exciting slowly seeing all black heavy metal bands in the homeland start to pop up every now and then. It makes me feel like in the coming years metal will become even more diverse and interesting. We need to get these bands noticed in the metal world!

Unfortunately, it is very difficult hearing more of their music as I can't find other singles besides the one on their myspace.
If anyone has better sources, please list them below.

Yay or Nay? I want your opinion.

*I know, kinda hard to give your opinion with just those two songs on their myspace but, try to at least give a first impression. Besides, anything is better than Lord Toph. (Myspace) (Facebook)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The "Non"-Conformist Metalhead

Have you ever heard anyone say this?:

"I'm so metal, I shit steel!"
or this?
"I'm so metal, I shit studs!"
Or perhaps my favorite,

"I'm so metal I listen to troo underground metal like Lamb of God, Slipknot and Disturbed."

Perhaps you have seen individuals dressed mostly in black wearing a studded belt, faded t-shirt with some obscure (or not so obscure) band, tattoos, with dyed tresses?

Would it be safe to naturally assume such individuals listen to or partake in the metal or even rock culture? I would even say that the metal/rock culture decrees a certain 'look' to ascertain that such individuals are practically wearing a name tag stating 'Hello my name is___, and I'm into metal."

(Mind you, I said assuming. I suppose it could be interpreted as stereotyping)

I also believe that these individuals wouldn't be caught dead at, say, a Lil Wayne concert? And, on the flip side, I'm sure you would not witness a Timberland/BabyPhat donning, gold chain swinging, corn rowed person at a Cradle of Filth show, yes?

(Hopefully no one is at that show-but that's just my opinion. Sorry to the CoF fans out there)

I know many a folk who proudly explain to me why they are non-conformist and give me a 25 page dissertation on their reasons. And you know what I usually say?

"YOU LOSE! GOOD DAY SIR!" (*cue dramatic finger pointing)

...I really don't. But I should. Usually I listen to the self fulfilling dribble while in my mind I make my own list of reasons why this is absolute bullshit.

I rarely meet anyone who are non-conformist in the true sense of the word. That doesn't make them better or worse. Of course they never know that they are.

I'm not saying I'm innocent. Far from it. When Pokemon was huge in my youth, I flocked to see the show, movies and even got a gold plated Mew Two card complete with a pokeball stand from Mc. Donald's in my happy meal. Didn't you?

But most people generally have a 'follow the flock' mentally because to be outside of the flock is considered bad.

When examining the metal culture there are three main facts that remain true. Metal is male dominated. It is mostly straight and inherently white. Again, not a problem.

The issue is for the people outside of that.

The female metal head.

The gay metal head.

The non-white metal head. (Not only blacks, but Asians, Latinos, etc)

All minorities who have been persecuted in one way or another.

I received an email from Micheal Zinkowski, a lecturer at UNC Greensboro, who is writing a paper related to this topic called "Discarding Macho Posturing, Maintaining Sonic Devastation: Disidentification in Extreme Metal Subculture." I read the bit that he presented and was amazed because he illustrates exactly what I wanted to say in this post but couldn't find the right way to put it. Thankfully, he does:

"...The majority of the metal community remains white, straight, and male, who by and large live normative lives and whose identities are hegemonically powerful already. Rallying against the powers that be while refusing to acknowledge the inherent privilege already granted to many of its members leaves metal looking like a space of contradiction. Within this contradiction women, people of color, and queer folks may and do situate themselves as metal fans in order to access and reshape the power the genre promises, sonically and hegemonically."

"How do those in the extreme metal community who are not white, male, cis-gendered, straight, or able-bodied negotiate their identities within and against an individualist culture that effectively re-presents and re-affirms Western normative standards of masculinity, whiteness and heteronormativity and simultaneously performs as a counterpublic? How can the minoritarian subject claim a metal identity, thus “be metal,” without completely conforming to majoritarian standards of identity formation enacted by the metal community?"

The metal community is, lets be honest, a boys club. The controversial issues in metal generally focus around the female, gay, or ethnic presence in metal that is scene as the 'un norm'. How can a community that prides itself on being different alienate those who flock to it for that reason? Or even, abide by such rules as what the listener should wear/look like.
The individuality in this scene should be celebrated-not scorned.
(Again, not everyone does but many do)

I believe the answer is because metal was intended for one audience only. But now that globally its this huge subculture-it cannot be restrained to the normalcy that it once was contained by.

What that means is that all types of people are now enjoying metal music and are not necessarily bowing to its creed of what metal looks like, acts like, or even performs like.

I believe I've said something to the similar effect in a different post. Metal is already a minority so the community really doesn't have a choice to be picky in who is included or not.

(Thank you Mr. Zinkowski for letting me use your words/thoughts.)