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Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal

Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 22, 2011, 04:54:30 PM
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Over the past few years, we metallers have seen our special sigil—the goat horn—stripped of its significance (i.e., magical power) by clueless celebrities (Miley Cyrus gets it wrong first then gets it right second) and pop culture junkies looking add ‘edge’ to their persona. That ‘edge’ they seek is, or rather was, ours. True, I’ve seen movie and television stars in Maiden, Priest, and Baroness shirts, but it’s hard to tell if they, like us, revere those bands like gods or are meddling in mundane hipster irony. Probably the latter. Occasionally, the Earth parts and I feel ‘good’ about peeps in high places repping the darkest of metals—often willingly exposed by dB’s Closet Metalhead feature (see Jeanne Fury’s Cee Lo Green intie)—but usually my suspicions are confirmed. Dorks like Lindsay Lohan, Justin Bieber, Rihanna, and Kid Rock show the maloik, as popularized by the late great Ronnie James Dio, for no other reason than to appear ‘dangerous’. Milk in cereal poses a greater threat.
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So, maybe it’s time we retire the maloik and the reverse maloik.

We’ll have to be intensely creative to come up with something new. Options are damned sparse. We’ll have to avoid sign language configurations—don’t want our new sigil to unintentionally translate to ‘cucumber’ or ‘fail’—and gang sign configurations—don’t want to be gunned down outside a club (hello, Harpo’s in Detroit) for hoisting our new digit designation—in our pursuit of a replacement for the oft-misused maloik. Whatever we come up with, just don’t let it be the Witchery ‘W’.

http://www.decibelmagazine.com/featured/reclaiming-or-replacing-the-goat/

Does this symbol formerly used by metal heroes lose or have any value when hollywood celebrities and hipsters misuse it as a petty means for teenage rebellion?  I don't know if I agree with Decibel that a new symbol needs to be devised as it is easy enough to reroute any symbol's meaning, but I can't help but feel that it's association with metal is being diminished with its use.  This leads me to question whether metal still needs this symbol?

Some metallers have been diverting to a more offensive symbol, that you are unlikely to see many celebrities and hipsters use in public, but I don't see this as becoming a substitute for saluting metal.

What do you think? Are the "horns" still relevant?

The more important quest for me:

In 1995, alternative rock took over metal.

In 2000, emo/progressive hardcore took over metal.

In 2005, indie/post-rock took over metal.

When do we reclaim metal for metal's sake?

Metal is a unique culture, not some flavor that can be added to such variations on the usual as post-rock, hardcore, rock, alt-rock, indie, etc.

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 22, 2011, 11:01:42 PM
"When do we reclaim metal for metal's sake?"

we all go out and set our metal spirits free on June 6th for METAL!!!!!!!!! and SLAYER!!!!!!!!

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 23, 2011, 02:33:58 PM
Replace the genre but keep the metal spirit.

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 24, 2011, 01:16:02 PM
Don't replace it.  RECLAIM IT.  It's all about tradition the way I see it.  No sexy answers.  Just tradition.

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 24, 2011, 01:21:55 PM
It's all about tradition the way I see it.  No sexy answers.  Just tradition.

Could you elaborate?

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 24, 2011, 08:57:52 PM
It's all about tradition the way I see it.  No sexy answers.  Just tradition.

Could you elaborate?

Well first of all, this is what Fenriz says in Until the Light Takes Us - Darkthrone was created to uphold tradition.  The paradigm of the Norwegians was not to "out-do" the sweatpants wearing Floridian Death Metal at their own game, it was to go BACK to the 80s, back to first principles.  It's one-upsmanship through "regress."  As brilliant as the No Mosh, No Core, No Fun mantra of the Norwegians was, I think it's time metal rediscovered some of its "loudmouth redneck" again.  I remember a commenter/hipster in the blog say something to the effect of: "Infernal Warriors of Death???  how crude/garish!  why I never!!" (it helps to imagine it in an effeminate or English accent). See, Norwegian Black Metal became too refined.  And I believe in the Tao Te Ching it says: "When you sharpen a blade for too long it becomes dull."  I think, for metal, anyway, the bigger risk is becoming too refined, not too "rough around the edges."

I certainly like projects like Lord Wind, but there's no reason for metal to totally jump ship and become ambient.  If an aesthetic/appearance has worn out it's welcome, what makes us think that abandoning it will help us "find the spirit?"  Appearance is not reality, but it also does not imply a lack of reality or an "opposite" reality.  In other words, people rightfully conclude that just because something has the metal aesthetic does not make it metal, but then some of those people think "see..we're too reliant on aesthetic, we need to abandon the aesthetic altogether."  Evolution happens SLOWLY

Think about the recent story of Cosmic Atrophy.  That album is a few hours of work away from being complete.  I guess I shouldn't jump to conclusions, but one wonders if shame is involved on some level.  I read an interview with Antti Boman yesterday, and he said he regrets abandoning metal for 5 years from 94-99.  You see this happen all the time.  A person loves something, then is ashamed of it, then is ashamed that they were ever ashamed of it.  It's the Eternal Recurrence.  You have to say Yes to EVERYTHING.

Metal should not "out-think the room."  Regrets and second guessing are not metal.  I think that if Norway challenged Florida, then that means that America still owes Europe one.  Is the next "challenge" of metal for America to find it's rough-around-the-edges loudmouths?

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 25, 2011, 04:38:49 AM
Or: we take the best that metal has put out so far, and more fully unite it under a recurring artistic movement which shares the general aesthetic character of metal, i.e. we give a stronger foundation to Hessianism. Evolution does occur slowly - metal is the result of a few millenia of evolution, not a few decades. It's just one piece of the puzzle, one weapon in the arsenal. Romanticism, Gothic/horror, (True) Pagan literature, Mysticism - all the lasting cultural expressions of Power, of which metal is merely the contemporary example.

Thumos!

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 25, 2011, 09:32:35 AM
It's all about tradition the way I see it.  No sexy answers.  Just tradition.

Could you elaborate?

Well first of all, this is what Fenriz says in Until the Light Takes Us - Darkthrone was created to uphold tradition.  The paradigm of the Norwegians was not to "out-do" the sweatpants wearing Floridian Death Metal at their own game, it was to go BACK to the 80s, back to first principles.  It's one-upsmanship through "regress."  As brilliant as the No Mosh, No Core, No Fun mantra of the Norwegians was, I think it's time metal rediscovered some of its "loudmouth redneck" again.  I remember a commenter/hipster in the blog say something to the effect of: "Infernal Warriors of Death???  how crude/garish!  why I never!!" (it helps to imagine it in an effeminate or English accent). See, Norwegian Black Metal became too refined.  And I believe in the Tao Te Ching it says: "When you sharpen a blade for too long it becomes dull."  I think, for metal, anyway, the bigger risk is becoming too refined, not too "rough around the edges."

I certainly like projects like Lord Wind, but there's no reason for metal to totally jump ship and become ambient.  If an aesthetic/appearance has worn out it's welcome, what makes us think that abandoning it will help us "find the spirit?"  Appearance is not reality, but it also does not imply a lack of reality or an "opposite" reality.  In other words, people rightfully conclude that just because something has the metal aesthetic does not make it metal, but then some of those people think "see..we're too reliant on aesthetic, we need to abandon the aesthetic altogether."  Evolution happens SLOWLY

Think about the recent story of Cosmic Atrophy.  That album is a few hours of work away from being complete.  I guess I shouldn't jump to conclusions, but one wonders if shame is involved on some level.  I read an interview with Antti Boman yesterday, and he said he regrets abandoning metal for 5 years from 94-99.  You see this happen all the time.  A person loves something, then is ashamed of it, then is ashamed that they were ever ashamed of it.  It's the Eternal Recurrence.  You have to say Yes to EVERYTHING.

Metal should not "out-think the room."  Regrets and second guessing are not metal.  I think that if Norway challenged Florida, then that means that America still owes Europe one.  Is the next "challenge" of metal for America to find it's rough-around-the-edges loudmouths?

This is to say metal lacks that youthful energy of the past. The real question is how can it retain that energy while becoming more serious and long-standing than 1-3 albums then sellout. I would like to see a new music whereby the musicians are more like composers, getting better and even more profound with age. As far as the timespan between evolutionary steps is concerned; there shouldn't be one. It evolves when necessary or otherwise becomes irrelevant.

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 25, 2011, 11:00:52 AM
Quote from: aquarius
This is to say metal lacks that youthful energy of the past. The real question is how can it retain that energy while becoming more serious and long-standing than 1-3 albums then sellout. I would like to see a new music whereby the musicians are more like composers, getting better and even more profound with age.

The problem is that, for the most part, metal has simply been about unleashing that youthful energy. The compositions are simplistic and flow intuitively based on that energy. Composers in the past have been able to develop as they matured because they started from the compositional point of view, and thus were able to gradually build this up. Metal musicians have largely not consciously considered composition, and so once their energy is used up they have no where to go.

We need to develop a Theory for Metal music, as was done with Classical music in the past. We won't see much in the way of maturation in Metal musicians until we have a generation who learn their principles from this basis.

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early music -> classical music

metal music -> ???

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 25, 2011, 03:09:57 PM
yeah, I guess I do hate the idea that metal is ONLY a "young man's game."  that seems totally ridiculous.  Patience and brains is the ultimate trump card.

"recurring artistic movement which shares the general aesthetic character of metal."  BINGO.  Metal Mythology.

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 26, 2011, 02:08:54 PM
Part of the problem in my opinion is that historically metal has always been the counter-culture. From the 70's through the mid 90's, metal was good at targeting the most predominant degenerative culture and smashing it which kept it relevant.

The 70's had hippies, so out grew Black Sabbath
The 80's had Pro-life Christian Conservatives, so out grew Slayer
The early 90's had directionless, culture-less lemmings & hipsters, so out grew Burzum.

Since then I feel like metal has been reinventing the wheel as far as being the counter-culture and also not bringing much new enough to the table. Not that metal needs to up the ante to be more extreme, but it needs to correctly identify the largest enemy to civilization, and go in a direction that shakes the spirit of the dominant ideology.  What this is, I have no idea, I'm not a musician. Obviously, society has gotten used to black & death metal and are pretty comfortable with it.  I just know that when Burzum, Emperor, & Darkthrone start getting sold at Hot Topic (which happened a long time ago) we need to go in another direction with the metal spirit.

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 26, 2011, 03:31:00 PM
What's the enemy?  The same one as ever - morons, trendies, liberals.  What form is it manifesting itself in nowadays?  At the moment, we're directionless because we haven't collectively identified something against which to band together.  Why is this?  There's an absolute plethora of targets, some of them the same that were there back in the '80s and '90s, which are still unvanquished, having mutated with the passage of time to become more resilient to our previous methods.

I like Conservationist's suggestion of an exploration of Folk Metal - not the gawdy Power Metal version (Ensiferum, Korpiklaani, Finntroll, and all that bollocks), but the disastrously underdeveloped Isengard form, which manages to remain dark and "evil" despite its obvious use of Folk scales and mindset.  This music could more obviously espouse a nationalistic/naturalistic/ecofascist ideology than Black Metal or Death Metal, both of which have been turned to the ends of whimpy eco-faggot bands etc.  Generally, the hipster mob hasn't infiltrated Narrow Squirting Bowel Movement and other overtly anti-modernity collectives, because, as you might expect, since they can't see past the exterior anyway, they are turned away by the imagery and thence suggested extremism (it isn't safe, acceptable, namby-pamby liberal "extremism").  At the moment, only morons have flooded Narrow Squirting Bowel Movement, which accounts for the shocking amount of shit music in that "genre".  I'm not suggesting we pretend to be Nazis, but I am suggesting that we need to display more extremity if we're to be recognised as extreme (and, really, the only way we're going to "reclaim" Metal is by being frigging extreme about it).  A lot of this is post-production; we first need suitably good/extreme music, and then we need to present it in a way which says "this is for us, not for you".

Also, we need far better networking between Hessians worldwide, so that these kinds of ideas can be more easily disseminated, and these topics can be brought to a greater audience.  Just a side point.

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 27, 2011, 04:05:18 AM
The target? Modern society as a whole. None shall be spared.

Only the greatest examples of human achievement throughout history shall be deemed acceptable.

It's time for metal to become truly elite.

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 27, 2011, 12:16:38 PM
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I'm not suggesting we pretend to be Nazis, but I am suggesting that we need to display more extremity if we're to be recognised as extreme (and, really, the only way we're going to "reclaim" Metal is by being frigging extreme about it).  A lot of this is post-production; we first need suitably good/extreme music, and then we need to present it in a way which says "this is for us, not for you".

Hessians should adopt aspects of the Blasphemy ethos: powerlifting and barbarism. Take back metal by force and rule by fear.

Re: Reclaiming (or Replacing) Metal
May 28, 2011, 04:23:10 AM
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I'm not suggesting we pretend to be Nazis, but I am suggesting that we need to display more extremity if we're to be recognised as extreme (and, really, the only way we're going to "reclaim" Metal is by being frigging extreme about it).  A lot of this is post-production; we first need suitably good/extreme music, and then we need to present it in a way which says "this is for us, not for you".

Hessians should adopt aspects of the Blasphemy ethos: powerlifting and barbarism. Take back metal by force and rule by fear.

In a time where everything is image-based, it's probably better to ignore image and concentrate on the music and its formative philosophy otherwise the message is too easily lost in extremism. Clean cut and well dressed should be ample for image.