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Averse Sefira denounces part-time metallers

Averse Sefira denounces part-time metallers
April 29, 2009, 04:44:10 PM
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...we use the word "Hessian" to point to our interests as a cultural phenomenon rather than a hobby or weekend thing. Some "metalheads" find this outlook weird and pretentious, which mystifies me. So many people around the world dedicate the wholes of their lives to this music; they travel great distances to experience it, they refuse to cut their hair or cover their tatoos because they are unashamed and don't care if it costs them promotions at work... I don't think a transient term like "metalhead" captures any of this at all. I am a metalhead, yes, but more importantly I am a Hessian - to the death.

http://www.blastzine.cjb.net/

I think this is an important point being made here. Is showing dedication and giving the appearance of focus and sincerity "unfashionable" in metal nowadays, and - if so - can that be anything other than damaging to the music as a whole?

Or should we be optimistic and see this as simply inevitable? After all,  the transient fair-weather metallers will always appear the most excited about the novelty value of the music, but for a short period of time. This makes their voices appear louder and more numerous than the die-hards. But in the end, they will play little part in the music in the long term.

Why would anyone give up a career in order to grow long hair and keep tattoos? There are hundreds of better things to show focus, dedication and sincerity to rather than metal fashion.

Because for some, personal appearance is not so much a matter of fashion as it is a means of maintaining personal integrity -- simply allowing the outer self to reflect the inner self.

The same could be said of one's line of work -- whether one gives up self-respect for a soul-crushing office job or finds ways to live through more gratifying means.

I can see where they're coming from but Hessians will never be taken seriously by anyone but each other if they keep the attitude that metal is all that matters. I might be considered a part-time metaller; that is, someone who is trying to get ahead in the world while staying true to himself as a metalhead. It's tough sometimes, to be honest.

It would be a different story if I had the potential to create quality metal, but since I don't I see no problem in simply remaining a loyal fan while focusing more on other things in my life.

Metal's heart, when it was honest, was anti-fashion and nomadic, not an entrenched culture with a fashion. You're not supposed to come at it from the outside. You ought to find yourself in it. Honesty is never fashionable.

Long hair and tattoos will never really be fashionable, even if some people see it as a fashionable ideal in their own little sub-cultural corner. If they're in it for the fashion, they might end up looking the same as a Hessian but they will be living their lives in a peculiar middle ground between an ideal they want to live and the normal life they should be living if they weren't being pretentious as fuck but are instead failing at due to interference from their fashion pretense. The honest Hessian has no such problem. When an honest genre is new, the pretentious doppelgangers don't exist, so there's no chance of being fooled and optimism runs rampant across all circles. When the genre gets old, the imitators appear. The honest folk wont be fooled. The imitators don't mean much to them. However, the public wont be able to tell the difference between truth and lies. They aren't the artists, they don't have access to the generation side of things, only to what things look like coming from the other side. They get all the representation, but might be lacking in apprehension of the nature of the will behind it. That was of course already a problem anyway, already something to thematize and express in art. Even for those that do feel the force behind the music, all new music will be automatically accompanied by doubt. Our present condition: we love the old classics, but we are presently sick of metal. Anything within its confines seems superfluous and capable of being an aspect of corruption. The truths must be kept healthy, they must be dressed anew, a new work must be written. Why write Hamlet over and over, find a new vessel for truth. The genre is a collected work, there is no point repeating it over and over once it's finished.

Since the existence of imitators fucks public perception generally, it fucks over the audience for the music. Suddenly you can't reach your audience with your art anymore by playing the same style. No matter how honest you are, there is doubt and confusion on the other end. The representations are fucked. Any form of recognition is warped. The need to effectively reach an audience will also push metal beyond its old masks. Averse Sefira are correct about honesty, but it's over for black metal. An honest creative calling shouldn't tell one to repeat the style of black metal to deliver artistic truths. There's no point saying the same thing the same way. Say the same thing in a new way.

If we're talking about individual-focused expression, then who fuckin' cares of course. Do what you want. Do what makes you happy.
You call yourself free? Let me hear your ruling thoughts, and not that you have escaped bondage. Are you one who deserved to escape from it?

Does Averse Sefira not think other types of music are worth listening to? I would consider being a full time metaller if only there wasn't so much other music i'm interested in listening to and playing.

Why would anyone give up a career in order to grow long hair and keep tattoos? There are hundreds of better things to show focus, dedication and sincerity to rather than metal fashion.

You're thinking about it backwards. People generally get into metal as a cultural identity before the "real world" comes in and starts making all sorts of absurd demands (e.g. a necktie and haircut will somehow make you smarter or more capable at a job). Nobody gives up a career to maintain an independent identity, but they may refuse career paths that make these kinds of requirements, even if it means missing out on a lot of money. According to interviews, the Averse Sefira guys have college educations and good jobs. The fact that they choose to keep doing a black metal band for over a decade says a lot about about what motivates them as people. This is where weekenders should take note.

Why would anyone give up a career in order to grow long hair and keep tattoos? There are hundreds of better things to show focus, dedication and sincerity to rather than metal fashion.

You're thinking about it backwards. People generally get into metal as a cultural identity before the "real world" comes in and starts making all sorts of absurd demands (e.g. a necktie and haircut will somehow make you smarter or more capable at a job). Nobody gives up a career to maintain an independent identity, but they may refuse career paths that make these kinds of requirements, even if it means missing out on a lot of money. According to interviews, the Averse Sefira guys have college educations and good jobs. The fact that they choose to keep doing a black metal band for over a decade says a lot about about what motivates them as people. This is where weekenders should take note.

It is remarkabe how many of the truly dedicated I know from the "old-days"(80's-early90's) still generally maintain, in some fashion, an undeniably Metal/Hessian appearance all these years later - whether in bands or not, in fact. Most have at minimum, very respectable to altogether professional jobs, and many are married, have children, own/lease homes, etc. I worked in a professional office for many years - starting with long hair(neat ponytail is a wonderful thing) and ultimately hacking off the ever-thinning hair(gentics!!)entirely, and immediately growing an obnoxiously long goatee, long before that look was hip - the boss never complained. That said, I have been reasonably successful in life thus far, and still feel more at ease in a band-t, jeans and a leather jacket than ever I did or do in a pressed shirt and tie. So long as you can adapt to situations as becomes necessary, you can dictate much about your appearance, musical tastes, social-circles and activities, etc., without losing all professional respectability and/or being a 40 year-old grocery bagger living in your Mom's basement. There are many paths to success...and personal satisfaction.

Why would anyone give up a career in order to grow long hair and keep tattoos?

I interpret this symbologically. For me, Hessianism was always about living by the philosophy of metal: there is no good and evil, destruction and construction are both needed, and in this abyss of meaninglessness, we have a chance to create more beauty/order/complexity (evolve) or slack off into ourselves and do nothing (devolve).

I know which one I choose. That's the real truth of metal: nihilism is real, nothing "means" anything except in our heads, so our choice is predominant and of vital importance.

The same could be said of one's line of work -- whether one gives up self-respect for a soul-crushing office job or finds ways to live through more gratifying means.

Although I think there are those who do find great satisfaction in office jobs.

I think the bigger question is why are people so stuck on trying to define what one, "should" do with themselves, as if they have the authority to speak for all. Isn't it enough when one says, "I like doing this because it's what I want to do"? I think so.

It's the people who are trying to create one path to happiness alone that are the real enemies and threat to society.

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The same could be said of one's line of work -- whether one gives up self-respect for a soul-crushing office job or finds ways to live through more gratifying means.

Although I think there are those who do find great satisfaction in office jobs.

Yeah, I find great satisfaction in academia, even though it's essentially non essential work, meh.

Although I think there are those who do find great satisfaction in office jobs.

Two types, actually - executives and gutless drones.

I think the point of the original statement was this:

In life, there's always what's convenient.

And then, there's what has spirit and values above the normal "I want freedom," want fries with that, want a big SUV, want to be the center of attention, etc. type of neurotic human reasoning.

Metal has those values.

Whether you cut your hair and work in an office or not, don't bend to the will of the herd: stick for real values.

I think the point of the original statement was this:

In life, there's always what's convenient.

And then, there's what has spirit and values above the normal "I want freedom," want fries with that, want a big SUV, want to be the center of attention, etc. type of neurotic human reasoning.

Metal has those values.

Whether you cut your hair and work in an office or not, don't bend to the will of the herd: stick for real values.

I think the band's comments go beyond that - although I agree that the meaning was not so black-and-white as it is interpreted by most of the replies here. They are speaking about what they perceive as hessian identity; they are criticising those who undermine the identity for their own personal reasons, ie defense.  AS are not saying that ONLY those with tatts/long hair/patch jackets should be seen in the pit, but it is definitely true that these traits make someone recognisably "metal". You can greet a stranger from recognising them as such, and it forms communal recognition.

And then you have those who come along and - because they feel perhaps dishonest in themselves, and do NOT show their allegiance externally, seek to undermine the appearance of other metalheads as ridiculous, untrendy or - worst of all - unironic nonconformity (remember - you can only rebel ironically if you want to fit in...). The band is not saying that ALL those with short hair/no piercings etc will display this behaviour, of course. But when the actions of the few are damaging in this way, it is good to recognise and praise those who defend and uphold a certain code that many thousands of people quietly adhere to.