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Topics - My AIDS, Your Arse

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Metal / Distortion/overdrive, and separating individual voices
« on: September 04, 2008, 01:27:03 AM »
Like the oft-noted issue of bass being washed out by the guitars in most later metal music, one of the main problems noticed about distortion and overdrive is that when all of the instruments are bathed in noise, it becomes more difficult to discern which is which in a song (except for drums in most cases), unless great care was taken to mix them properly in separate ranges.

For example, if one had two distorted/overdriven guitars playing a power-chord based segment with some counterpoint between the two instruments, would it work to have one guitar have a boost in the high and mid ranges, and the other a boost in the low ranges? Or perhaps separate tunings, one lower than the other?

How would you accomplish this without drowning out the bass guitar? Downtuning it more? Keeping it clean instead of distorted?

It would be nice to achieve this, mostly to avoid too much dissonance so that the chords don't cancel each other out, or melt into one big, messy chord. Also, having activity on all sound ranges: low, middle, and high; seems (in theory) like it would make for a more dynamic wall of noise effect.

Interzone / Hip To Be Square: The Failure of Pop Irony
« on: July 07, 2008, 01:54:02 AM »

What makes [Ironic hipsterism] a rebellion at all? It is an attempt to defy stereotype, especially hipster stereotype. Categorizing oneself under a certain label requires taking on a series of pre-defined tastes. The goth vests in black, the prep listens to Dave Mathews Band, the neo-hippie wears hemp necklaces, and so forth. To refuse to have one's tastes defined by one word involves adopting haphazard, unpredictable styles; co-opting objects considered unacceptable by any subculture--particularly hegemonic hipster culture--is an act of resistance. The postmodern aspects of this trend are at once evident: the hip is un-hip, and vice-versa. To reject the current hegemony one must accept and bask in consumerism, if only superficially. Deviancy requires partaking of mass culture. Living in society today involves a bombardment of advertising and popular forms; it is perhaps natural to take on chunks of popular idioms and construct an identity based on contradictory bricolage. The move towards irony can be interpreted as an end to claims of authenticity; everyone recognizes the pretense behind every art form and expression of selfhood; if one can purposefully construct an identity based on material objects, nothing is real, so we are obliged to bring silliness to the forefront.

This is dangerous nihilism: one takes the devaluation aspects of nihilism, but instead of constructing or confiding in sound values after making a clean slate, they just sit there and fill the slate with as many random things as possible, until it becomes as useless as when it was empty. While viewing everything as pointless, one engages everything as pointless, then one's life becomes pointless and replaceable, like the products they choose.

As with any rebellious subculture, once everybody engages in it, it becomes hegemonic and is no longer rebellious. I.H. is unique in that it becomes bereft of meaning once it attains any subcultural status. The ironic hipster syndrome is the dying gasp of resistance in our postmodern society; every wave of hipsters since the Industrial Revolution has disdained kitsch, but the only resistance offered today is through it. It represents the penultimate method of rebellion against commercialism and that rebellion's utter defeat.

Why go through such an endless, pointless resistance against the frivolous with the frivolous? Why not reform this empty culture?

Or rather, they should settle with a solid, established, eternal culture that you can't buy, like the culture of one's ethnic background, instead of pointlessly "rebelling" against vapid consumerism by distastefully engaging in it head-on, ironically ::) hypocritically enough.

Though this seems to be difficult to do with the multicultural nations, so no wonder such a "rebellious uprising against commercialism" has developed. Rebel by taking part in your true, traditional culture.


Interzone / Horrible local band - Gortuary
« on: May 27, 2008, 01:19:52 PM »

This band frustrates me. They're among a handful of local bands who are gaining (relatively) widespread recognition, and yet they've failed to make death metal at all. Apparently they've only been exposed to Cannibal Corpse and the like, especially judging by lyrical themes and (lack of) musicality.

The riffs go off onto random tangents, and don't really tie into one another. It's a mishmash of disconnected ideas, like they're frantically trying to include every riff they come up with into one song with no serious thought put into bridging those riffs. I'd basically say that it's actually just fuzzy noise and thumping, and not so much music.

I can't say much about the lyrics other than looking at the song titles. They're totally Cannibal Corpse-like and clichéd almost beyond rational sense. Like they're part of the never-ending contest to see who can come up with the most grotesque lyrics by generally recombining stuff that's already been written.

Audiofile / Melvins
« on: April 27, 2008, 10:28:30 PM »
Melvins: Rapidshare, Blogspot, Megaupload


They had the right idea with some songs and their Black Sabbath emulation, but they soon fell victim to the hipster paradigm that surrounded them in metropolitan Washington state.

Melvins - 26 Songs
(1986/2003, Mediafire)

Melvins - Ozma
(1989, Mediafire)

Interzone / last.fm sucks; here's a better alternative
« on: April 27, 2008, 11:26:44 AM »
Last.fm's fault is that it is socially-oriented (despite that you cannot socialize on a computer) as opposed to being musically-oriented.

Pandora, on the other hand, is the inverse of last.fm, and it's not so much for finding people who listen to the same music as you as it is for finding more music similar to what you listen to.


Interzone / Alternative education
« on: November 05, 2007, 06:17:28 PM »
What are the metal forum's experiences with alternative education, like homeschooling? I'm curious as to whether or not this is any better than public institutionalized schooling.

My story is that I'm pushing my parents to have me homeschooled for the remainder of this school year. In March of next year, I'll be able to take a proficiency exam (which, when passed, functions as the equivalent of a high school diploma) and begin college about a year earlier than the flock of sheep back at school. Obviously I'll have to take community college for two years before I can transfer to a university or some place, but CLEP exams will make short work of that.

I'm currently in 11th grade, and I've attended public schools from the beginning. I can safely say that school coursework is irrelevant to my interests, boring, and repetitive. I see it as something that  mysterious state education officials who have never met me think I should learn so I can fit their standards. I've decided the best solution is to educate myself according to my own standards and take the relevant courses when I can begin college.

Metal / Maudlin of the Well
« on: September 18, 2007, 07:23:34 PM »
A friend of mine recommended Maudlin of the Well to me, so I downloaded their discography and listened to a few of the songs so far, and they're pretty fucking awesome, to say the least. I usually don't listen to this kind of music though.

Some warnings:

Clean singing and some of the lyrics will likely turn off VBER KVLT METVL FANS. Though they do use harsh vocals when the occasion calls for it.

As far as I can tell, they use mostly acoustic instruments like double bass and trumpet, and the electric guitar and drums are almost more of an accompaniment in certain song segments, and is somewhat similar to songs by Opeth, so if you think that's boring shit, chances are this band is as well. They are definitely closer to classical music than metal though they do have their 'headbanging' riff moments.

On the whole, the music is composed fairly well, and the music gives you an otherworldly sense of some sort.

I think their strong point is that they contrast the harsh metal segments, which could represent life's more abrasive or exciting times, with acoustic segments, which can represent more peaceful, and even duller times.

Any thoughts on them, if you've listened to them?

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