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Subjectivism

Subjectivism
October 29, 2006, 10:57:27 PM
Scattered throughout this forum are the inevitable questions as to why [insert asinine metal band here] is not featured amongst the Dark Legions Archive. The usual response from the elitist regulars is to summon the art/entertainment dichotomy or merely dismiss the mentioned work as utter bullshit. In nearly every case, I find myself agreeing with the dismissal, though I've yet to encounter an argument which explicates the link between the more cerebral metal and 'art'. I find myself unable to articulate precisely why it is the case that Burzum is majestic, and Arch Enemy is bullshit without appealing to a certain level of subjectivity.

With this in mind, I urge those amongst you who share the opinion that metal has degenerated to argue as to why it is the case that one can objectively label certain metal acts as 'art' rather than entertainment. Solid argument will be appreciated, for I myself can point to the erudite intent and execution of Burzum's work compared to his mechanical contemporaries, though this again becomes merely an opinion. And opinions are largely worthless.

Re: Subjectivism
October 30, 2006, 08:56:19 AM
Arch enmy's early stuff was alright, but they always sounded amatuer compared to others around them. Now more than ever their lyrics are childish and they rely too heavily on a flashy guitar solo to make a song.

As for people's opinions, there is a general agreement on this site as to what is good and what is bad, but every now and then someone comes along with a band considered by everyone else to be shit. They are usuially attacked to the point of leaving the site, and the popular opinion remains the right one. Much like democracy.

Re: Subjectivism
October 30, 2006, 11:00:30 AM
Quote
As for people's opinions, there is a general agreement on this site as to what is good and what is bad, but every now and then someone comes along with a band considered by everyone else to be shit. They are usuially attacked to the point of leaving the site, and the popular opinion remains the right one. Much like democracy.



Where's the "Checks and Balances" or a "Bill of Rights"?

Annihilaytorr

Re: Subjectivism
October 31, 2006, 04:50:28 AM
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As for people's opinions, there is a general agreement on this site as to what is good and what is bad, but every now and then someone comes along with a band considered by everyone else to be shit. They are usuially attacked to the point of leaving the site, and the popular opinion remains the right one. Much like democracy.


Example?

Re: Subjectivism
October 31, 2006, 11:35:23 AM
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I urge those amongst you who share the opinion that metal has degenerated to argue as to why it is the case that one can objectively label certain metal acts as 'art' rather than entertainment.


Objective to a smart person is subjective to a dumb one. It's clear why these bands are ahead, and if you look at the mathematics of their compositions, obvious. People who have trouble with this are already lost and should be killed as painlessly as possible.

Re: Subjectivism
October 31, 2006, 11:36:34 AM
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II think anything can be deconstructed, which might not serve Burzum too well.


Deconstruct "My Journey to the Stars" and compare to any other metal tune, deconstructed. Which has more complexity and more coherence? Oh, yes, it must be Objective Proof for the crowd. Anyone who thinks that way is delusional and has a severe mental illness as a result.

Re: Subjectivism
October 31, 2006, 06:19:51 PM
Christian Holocaust has demonstrated exactly the kind of answer I was not looking for. While I agree that 'objectivity' to the superior is the normal's 'subjectivity' (only because I am one to favour Journey To The Stars rather than what is granted bullshit), this is the kind of arbitrariness I hoped to avoid. You haven't provided a justification, 'compositional' or otherwise, which doesn't rely on unsubstantiated opinion, to reason why you favour Burzum.

This 'idiots simply won't get it' rhetoric is useless. So, I challenge you to elucidate (for I could summon the same arguments that you do, only rather than take for granted that my objectivity is indeed that, I'd prefer to investigate the reasons why).

Re: Subjectivism
November 01, 2006, 04:00:59 PM
well you must remember that most of us have no control over the site so if the person with power decides that amon amarth (for the sake of argument) were good enough to mentioned it would be put there      
and his opinion becomes law. After all if a owned a store i would like to be able to sell what i wanted to and not what others wanted me to

Re: Subjectivism
November 01, 2006, 05:40:15 PM
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Christian Holocaust has demonstrated exactly the kind of answer I was not looking for.


You didn't see the comment about deconstruction? Maybe you're looking for a "proof" that doesn't exist. Can the inverse be proven? Uh oh... real philosopher territory here, and you'd be too glad to conclude nothing can be decided.

Re: Subjectivism
November 01, 2006, 06:11:32 PM
Art is communicative ritual; in its highest forms, it transmits suprahistorical (mythological) truths by means of culturally encoded symbols. Folk music, for example, simultaneously served as a creative mode of cultural expression--and thereby, both enrichment and progation--artform that it was, while actively chronicling the history of a given race, which, for necessarily it alone, contained implicit spiritual meaning.

The best of metal attempts to soar to such elysian heights, while most of it, like the vast majority of visionless modern music, flounders winglessly prior to being engulfed by time, forgotten.

Re: Subjectivism
November 01, 2006, 06:35:26 PM
"culturally encoded symbols"

For metal of the future, what symbologies can be drawn upon, considering these are culturally sterile times (and likely only to become all the more domestic)? Invented symbological systems? Ancient symbology?

Re: Subjectivism
November 01, 2006, 06:49:06 PM
"You didn't see the comment about deconstruction?" - ChristianHolocaust

I did see the comment about deconstruction, but that to me is simply a case of subjective rhetoric. Lacking technical engagement with the piece itself, any expressive musical retard could craft a sentence to pay tribute to a piece. 'Complexity' and 'coherence' are in this case, again nothing more than opinion. Perhaps I struggle to relinquish my arbitrary opinion which is similar to yours because of my love for Burzum. However, when comparing certain death metal bands with their weaker counterparts, the distinction between stupidity and coherence barely exists.

Furthermore, regarding hate edge's articulate response: While I agree with your description, even the most commercial and simple-minded pop of the 21st century conforms to those values about "[transmitting] suprahistorical (mythological) truths by means of culturally encoded symbols" - It's merely a far less impressive encapsulation of the time. The fact that we regard metal as soaring to 'elysian heights' isn't a definitive conclusion that metal is superior.

There is ice in ChristianHolocaust's reponses. First he tried to implicitly label me 'delusional' and with 'severe mental illness', and then tried to dismiss me by claiming I was stepping into 'real philsopher territory'. This post was not attempt to bring some kind of revelation, it was merely a genuine observation, and I wish that you would engage the question (without sidestepping it with your convenient elitist rhetoric), rather than me. I ask, that in the overwhelming absence of proof to crown cerebral metal, does an emasculating cultural relativism take place? And if not, why?

Re: Subjectivism
November 01, 2006, 06:55:06 PM
Have you considered, even for a moment, that there are many things that are factually true but can only be subjectively perceived?

Re: Subjectivism
November 01, 2006, 07:09:08 PM
What makes art?

Perhaps not a full account, but at least what I think is essential in looking at a work:
The relationship between a) the artistic technique and b) the subject matter.

Put another way, it is the relationship between what's being said and how it's being said. If you want to discover the artistic merit of something, I think you need to analyze these aspects.

In Burzum, there is a close relationship between the subject matter and its manner of presentation. In fact, it seems so close as to give the music a magical flair, as if it is in fact a ritual being written to audio disc. Metal is being used as a tool in this case to communicate something. Metal is the paint. Oppose this to other bands that throw together a bunch of metal riffs with a loose connection to the subject matter. Often the best connection one can draw is "well, the music seems intense and angry, so the musical topic is something intense and anger-inducing". Even the subject matter itself often seems "insincere" if you will, as if the performers are somehow not "going all the way" through with their chosen expression of their ideas, as if they are hitting only the surface of something and not investigating deeply into their choice of subject (into that which inspires their music). One is often tempted to say the music sounds uninspired in these cases as well. I think art is necessarily inspired.

I'm not sure of the level of proof desired here, nor what purpose deeper "proof" would serve aside from answering doubt for the sake of doubt. Afterall, can we even give some kind of purely objective scientific evidence as to why X is art and Y is not? Isn't it the case that you have to appeal to how X and Y impress themselves upon a listener to get any kind of answer about their merit in the first place? If you want to call this opinion, then perhaps all science is at the mercy of the opinions of the observers.

Ack... that last paragraph is basically a reiteration of what Mahmoud said...

Re: Subjectivism
November 01, 2006, 07:23:00 PM
In response to My Man Mahmoud:

So, if it is only possible to subjectively perceive metal, how can it be factually true that it is a superior work? How did you even come upon the knowledge that it is factually true when all you have are your tools of subjective perception?

In response to detrath:

You said that "In Burzum, there is a close relationship between the subject matter and its manner of presentation".

This is exactly the case in almost every idiot-pop band I've ever heard- Whether expressing hedonism through bubble-gum vocals, or every other imaginably trivial contemporary motif through equally uninspired work, there is a close link between their subject matter and deliverance.