Interview: Funeste

funestetriomphe

1. How did Funeste come into being?

Yannis: Well me and Léo met through my work. As a tattoo artist I get to know people rather quickly since we spend long hours together. We realized that we had a lot in common, especially music. Our passion toward the raw and the bleak immediately spawned an interest for us two to collaborate musically. We started Léo playing drums and me on guitar duty and started to incorporate other members as we progressed. But eventually the project died of its own. A couple of years later we were still involved in musical projects together. While I was mixing a common project Léo threw at me the idea to start a black metal project. At the time I was overloaded with family and work but, the idea stuck in my head and we gave the project a go. And thus Funeste was born. From there things started to moved rather quickly. After writing a couple of songs I already had test visuals for the mood of the project. But it was just for fun since we didn’t have plans to release anything serious. But the more we listened to the tracks and the more people gave us feedback on it, we realized that we had something special. So we decided to release the Ep as a demo since it wasn’t mixed at all. And then it exploded, people started to respond very positively to it and it hasn’t stopped since.

2. Funeste plays a style of black metal which although firmly standing on a modern conception of the genre also does a very good job at keeping a smooth continuity in the music through paying attention to the consistency of material. How conscious a decision is this? Do you think a choice in style matters a lot?

Yannis: Like you said although I enjoy the traditional aspect of any genre, I think it has to move forward. To me heavy metal has always been about being extreme and subversive. Personally I think these two things can only be quantized by the era we live in and what was done before. So yes I think our style of black metal is a more modern interpretation of the genre. That said I don’t think what we do is especially new.

As far as the consistency of the material goes, I think we don’t think to much about it. I personally hate music that is too linear and safe. Even super technical band can get boring if there’s no contrast in their music. So in terms of mood I think we’re pretty consistent but, sonically wise I like I’m not so sure. I don’t want us to be coined to a specific genre, that’s why we change things a lot from song to song. Most of this is pretty much done on intuition.

Lastly, the choice of style was important at first to give us a foundation to work on, and draw inspiration from it. But like punk, black metal is more an ideology than a specific sound. It’s music that is very emotionally driven and that wants to leave the listeners scarred In every way possible. At least that’s my interpretation of it. So based on that frame of mind, I think we thrive to use all our influences to emphasize those intentions which creates a black metal with a richer spectrum of nuances.

3. In that same vein, do you think that musical genres have inherent powers or strengths and that they can be especially useful at channeling specific messages?

Yannis: I think so. I always found Black metal very introspective in nature. Delving into the roots of the honest and darkest human emotions, this music can be vessel to all sorts of messages. To me it’s one of the few styles were a musician can expose self-hatred, awe and fear of the world, spirituality to its fullest. Although this music is most of the time executed to be a hard listening experience, i think it is a very positive outlet for the musician and the listener because the themes in black metal are very universal and in the end, it is very easy for people to relate to it.

Léo: I agree with Yannis and think it can go even further than that. Music that touches me is music that was made by someone feeling any kind of emotion, positive or negative, and transcripts these emotions through sound. Or at least this is how I make music. And link with the previous question, this is not constrained to any music genre. Some black metals songs can be transmit hope or relief, and pop songs can be depressing. Anyway, I guess this is why we like having vocals that melt into the instrumental part. Funeste is all about hearing a dark gloomy violent overall sound, and relating to melodic lines in any way that fits with your mind when you hear it. It could destroy your mood or strengthen it depending on who you are and what you

4. Would you care naming your main influences in metal?

Yannis: Oh this could be long hahaha! Well I know it’s not metal but, I grew up listening to King Crimson and Genesis and I think that at that era was the metal of their time. Intense, intricate and creative. When it comes to metal I started with the basic, Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath then in my teens got a NuMetal phase but I was always looking for darker more punishing music. At the time I was living in the suburbs of Montreal and the only place I could dig for music was Archambault, a big record store like HMV. So I would spend days there listening to anything with a cool album cover. That’s where I discovered Cradle of Filth, Dimmu Borgir, Immortal, Darkthrone. These we’re my first contacts with extreme music. Than when I moved to Montreal thing’s got better hehehe. I had more friends into extreme music, listening to death metal like Deicide and Cannibal Corpse, Macabre, Converge, Katatonia, My dying bride, Dark Tranquility. And then the internet started blooming. Oh the glory! Like most kids my age It was a revelation. And it really allowed me to find music that was tailored to my standards.

But to answer your question more specifically, the metal bands that really influenced me to carve the music I do with Funeste would be bands like Weakling, Twilight, Leviathan, Converge, Brutal truth, Cryptopsy, My dying bride, Buried at Sea, Gaza, Deathspell Omega, The body, Abandon. I also draw inspiration from any genre, weather its Massive Attack’s Mezzanine, all the discography from Songs ; Ohia, Van der Graff Generator or the classical music of Alfred Schnittke. Listening only to metal makes really narrow minded records I find.

Léo: Appart from the bands that Yannis cited as direct influence for Funeste, we both listened to many genres which (I hope) gives us some diversity when we compose. My father has a pretty big vinyl collection, and I listened to literally every kind of music that he could find. Later on I developed my own tastes and started to listen to slipknot like many people, which quickly got me interested in more extreme metal bands such as vader, amon amarth, cannibal corpse, gorgoroth, and a lot of punk-hardcore and crust bands like converge, black breath, defdump, etc. There are so many bands that make awesome music that I kind of feel bad to name only a few of them, but I love listening to any band that makes me feel some emotion. Although, music playing with darker emotions will get to me more easily.

5. What about influences outside metal? What about outside music, perhaps in literature or cinema?

Yannis: I guess I answered parts of that question in the last question. For the music we create I focus more on reality. I watch a lot of documentaries on war, poverty and other bleak subjects. Lots of true crime shows. But mostly, what inspires me the most is my own personal experience. I’ve been dealing with Generalized Anxiety disorder for a good while now. Living constantly with feelings of dread generates a lot of anger, which in the end make for good heavy metal hehehe!

Léo: Well, I like making music by myself, so I guess I’m mostly inspired by what goes on through my mind when I let it slide alongside with the music. But what you live everyday is an inspiration. If you have a bad day have a beer and you will most likely write fucking angry music. As long as it concerns me, I like watching movies a lot and taking pictures. I think I’m always writing music with a graphical environment in my mind, but I couldn’t really tell, as my composing process is mainly based on letting everything go, get in my personal bubble and plug my guitar.

6. What is your composition process? Would you care detailing it and commenting on what you believe are its strengths and weaknesses?

Yannis: We’re only two in this project and tough we live in the same city we don’t jam together. I think of us more like a two headed one man project than an actual band. The way it goes is we both compose riffs and we send them to each other, than we build unto them. And then we trim the extra fat, the stuff we don’t want or like. Then I add the bass and the lyrics and vocals. I think it’s a great way to work. We can create on our own time that way we don’t have to go through the hassle of make everyone’s schedules fit. And there’s no downside because we’re always calling each other for input and we meet for beers on a regular basis.

7. Does Funeste have a goal, a message or an intention? Does the music attempt to transmit something in particular or is music “just music”? I am not referring to music in service of an ideology, necessarily, but as music as a communicator of aspects of our condition as human beings.

Yannis: For me it’s a way relieving myself of a lot of anger and frustrations towards that I’ve been repressing for a long time. I guess my main goal is to make music that I enjoy while keeping metal relevant and as far away from the cartoonish travesty it can become. I try to write lyrics that are close to my heart. I know I should be signing about nature, satan or the fact that I wanna go back to our old Viking ways with my iPhone in one hand and my credit card in the other but , this is just not me and its not part of my heritage. I’m a city boy and always been. And the city is a very demanding and stressful place, where the well-off cohabitates with the homeless. With anxiety and depression on the rise, people losing their religion and values and replacing it with careers and selfies. This is all very bleak to me and pushes me to create music that reflects that. Also all the lyrics are written in French which was really important to me. Here in Montreal, the French Canadian underground is not very strong. Very few band writes their music in French. They’d rather write everything in English because there’s a better chance for them to ”make it” in the music business. I think we shouldn’t be ashamed of our heritage and we should promote the hell out of it, even to places that don’t speak french. If the music is good there will be ears all over the globe that want’s to listen to it.

Léo: We started Funeste with no specific goal other than make music and “evacuate” some energy through that. Also, we didn’t expect the attention we get now at all, so we don’t have specific goals related to that. But if people listen to Funeste and enjoy it in any way this we are very thankful. And we will continue making music in the same mindset.

8. Do you have a vision for the future of the band in terms of its growth?

Yannis: Create new music, grow as a musician, meet people. I’d like for us to do splits in the future as well. I still don’t know what our next release is gonna be. Another Ep? LP? who knows. One thing is for sure we’re writing new music as we speak, and it should see the light of day in the next 6 months or so. Eventually I think we’d like to get a proper line up to do live shows but this is still in discussion at the moment.

11. Is Le Triomphe du Charnier Funeste’s first release or is there anything else fans of the band should check out?

Yannis: The Ep is our first outing. Me and Léo also play in a Electro Post-Rockish band called St-Petersbourg. Our new ep that I personally mixed, is coming out this summer. Other that’s pretty much it on my side.

12. What would be the best way in which the audience can get into contact with Funeste?

Through our email: funestemtl@gmail.com

Facebook: https: www.facebook.com/funestemtl

Black element Production: blackelementproductions@gmail.com

13. Is there anything in particular you would like to let the metal world know about the band? Is there any particular reason why the audience should keep an eye on Funeste?

Yannis: Well, if you like bleak, unforgiving black metal, give us a try. There’s a good chance you’re gonna enjoy our EP. And keep in mind, the next song are gonna continue pushing our own boundaries to create music more and more punishing.

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65 thoughts on “Interview: Funeste”

  1. Exfoliate the Bliss says:

    “the metal bands that really influenced me […] would be bands like Weakling, Twilight, Leviathan, Converge, Brutal truth, Cryptopsy, My dying bride, Buried at Sea, Gaza, Deathspell Omega, The body, Abandon.”

    I like that he lists mainly bands panned by deathmetal.org.

    1. There is little music out there that is 100% bereft of good ideas. An artist can distill the good from the bad and channel it into their own creation. Varg listened to The Cure and middle-of-the-road Teutonic speed metal, and yet made legendary music.

      1. An artist can distill the good from the bad and channel it into their own creation.

        This is true, but note that they’re repurposing it. A riff taken from a hard rock album, with its rhythm and key changed, can be the basis for a better album, but the end products as wholes do not resemble each other at all.

      1. which is what stops them from improving. Deathspell Omega is AIDS for black metal.

        1. Viranesir says:

          theres a fundamental difference between old and recent shit DsO.

          1. Definitely. Old was a bland imitation of Under a Funeral Moon, and recent is complete bullshit.
            But what is your opinion?

            1. Viranesir says:

              I personally think old was really good music, in my humble opinion, way better than anything that Darkthrone ever did. May be based upon the latter bands template, but in my opinion way better. In the end of the day, when I come home and want to listen to a really good music “in vein od old-Darkthrone”, I prefer listening to DsO’s first albums rather than Darkthrones. Everything is an imitation of another thing, and that one thing is getting almost exclusive influence from another thing (or in other words copying) does not really put me off, what matters is the end product for me and for my personal taste, their end product was not “bland”.

              1. It would be interesting to see you explain in a full article how and why (Exactly) early Deathspell Omega is “better than anything Darkthrone ever did”.
                Personally, it seems like a misappreciation of Darkthrone’s best output.

                PS. Not everything is an imitation or copying of something else. Everything takes references and inspiration, but the best music is itself in its very center, something early Deathspell Omega lacked, IMO.

                1. Viranesir says:

                  “It would be interesting to see you explain in a full article how and why (Exactly) early Deathspell Omega is “better than anything Darkthrone ever did”.”

                  I listen to early Deathspell, and I listen to Darkthrone one sounds better than the other for me.

                  There, that is my essay.

                  Note: Misappreciation? Do you really think you know what I like better than I do? You might feel that I lack the quality to appreciate early Darkthrone, and I would have to say I feel the same way for you about early DsO. But then again, I have not lived your life, nor have you lived mine so it makes sense that our personal preferences vary.

                  “Not everything is an imitation or copying of something else.” I believe that everything takes something that already exists and manipulates it into something that we as humans describe as “new”. The variety in which the “creator”s go about in this process is what determines for our small minds if something is unique or not. In my opinion:)

                  Everything takes references and inspiration, but the best music is itself in its very center, something early Deathspell Omega lacked, IMO. Yeah wether what one describes as “best music” is present in a work of art is their own opinion.

                  1. Ara says:

                    There is s sense of humility to your posts that indicate maturity when discussing what you like that doesn’t present your opinion as fact. It would be nice to see more of that around here.

                    1. There is a sense of ignorance where one confuses “opinion” with things that are more than a matter of opinion when you discuss everything. It would be nice to not see more of this around here.

                    2. Ara says:

                      Let me explain to you how to have a passionate discussion without coming off as a total asshole. When you want to make a blanket claim like “DsO is utter garbage” if you want to appear as mature as well as educated in what you are saying, all you have to do is place a simple qualifier like “I think that” right before your claim. What this does is make it so that when you state your opinion, you are making a claim about the work and only the work, in that you have arrived there based on your own perspective. By not saying so, you are stating that it is an unarguable fact that DsO is utter garbage, and if you can’t arrive at this conclusion, you as a listener are a total idiot who lacks the special capacity to arrive at a logical conclusion. You are running a site that invites free thought so it is important to not speak in absolutes. Be passionate, please do, but don’t be an asshole.

                    3. The reason why DsO is garbage has been explained in plain terms. That you lack understanding is another matter.
                      If you think McDonald’s hamburger is gourmet food, you are a, in fact, a total idiot, although that TOO is related to “taste”.

                    4. If you think McDonald’s hamburger is gourmet food, you are a, in fact, a total idiot, although that TOO is related to “taste”.

                      Good point. The argument we are in here is: is black metal gourmet food, or just “food” a broad category in which junk food also is a participant?

                    5. When you want to make a blanket claim like “DsO is utter garbage” if you want to appear as mature as well as educated in what you are saying, all you have to do is place a simple qualifier like “I think that” right before your claim.

                      I have to disagree here, on two grounds. First, that is entirely aesthetic and does not disguise the message at all, which is a subtle way of claiming your audience are idiots who need condescending to. Second, “I think that” is inherent to all arguments, but the difference is that an argument made by a mature person has reason behind it and logical rigor. It must both correspond to reality and to the seemingly a priori rules of logic. I might also add that David has published within the last two weeks or so several articles which touch on this topic, and if he has abundant spare time, he might quote them here. Or you could, or I could.

                    6. Ara says:

                      What are the plain terms you are citing? Can you cite them without relating them to what black metal should be?

                      I never even stated that I like DsO. In fact, I feel they don’t connect with me as a listener because their recent material is too abstract and mood-based for me and their early output is not interesting enough for my tastes. So I guess I don’t like the band, but that’s as far as I’ll go- I may appreciate the classic efforts of the black metal genre but DsO being somehow related to black metal hasn’t offended me to the point where I’ll say they are total garbage. They seem to be successful at creating a unique vibe, but it just isn’t for me.

                    7. Yes, if they are cited with respect to METAL at all.
                      Moreover even if they are just related to Western tonal music, and that is followed to its logical conclusions, then we can hear DsO as complete garbage.

                      Everything has a context, in the context DsO choose for themselves, they are just atmospheric posers with little organizational skills. You cannot just create a “new space” out of nowhere just because it pleases you. Not because it is against some rule, but because you cannot escape the paradigm that you are implicitly using unless you are either lucky or you really know what you are doing. They do not escape the paradigm, they just twist it to nonsense.

                      This was touched on here: http://www.deathmetal.org/article/chalice-of-blood-helig-helig-helig/
                      But judging from the number of times I’ve shared it with you, you were either not paying attention or you didnt understand, because no justification in reply ever came.

                    8. Frankly, I think Ara just gets a kick out of being the rebel kid who “thinks”. And the basis of your “original thinking”, you have admited, are NOT READING OR PAYING ATTENTION TO WHAT OTHER THINKERS OF PHILOSOPHERS SAY. That’s a condemnation of close mindedness and ignorance disguised as “freedom and openness”.

                    9. That’s a condemnation of close mindedness and ignorance disguised as “freedom and openness”.

                      This accurately describes most of our critics and how most people in this society behave.

                      Maybe we can break free from it, here… a pocket of sanity in an otherwise turgid flow of excremental randomness called the interNEET.

                    10. Everything has a context, in the context DsO choose for themselves, they are just atmospheric posers with little organizational skills.

                      The latter part is where my thinking on this band lies. I would compare them to Satyricon and Ulver: good aesthetic ideas, disorganized underlying thinking, thus they become exercises in disguising the mundane as the exotic.

                    11. I feel they don’t connect with me as a listener because their recent material is too abstract and mood-based for me and their early output is not interesting enough for my tastes.

                      Good synopsis. That sounds like zero interest in hearing them again, which is equivalent to calling them garbage. “Total garbage” is just the binary determination of someone looking to see what should be in his CD collection and what should not. At some point, a decision must be made.

                    12. Ara says:

                      You’re incredible. You really are. What other thinkers or philosophers have said is theory. You can utilize it to filter what you enjoy, but backing your own insecurities with the thoughts of philosophers to twist your opinions into facts is not how to rationally argue a point. I have read what you’ve posted. It’s not uninteresting, but it’s also not gospel. There is not a single unified way to determine the validity of art. There is simply not. There are those that see intent in a Pollack painting and there are those that think it’s ridiculous. I don’t post here to be contrarian. I post when I can see logic being twisted with subjective backing and filtered through a firehose of assholery towards anyone who doesn’t see your perspective. I will continue to post here when I am interested in the subject at hand, but I won’t decide to silence myself because you have determined that by reading the thoughts of other men that you are more qualified to determine the validity of art than I am. We all have been disenfranchised with the state of metal for over a decade at least. I understand your frustration and I understand you lashing out at artists you don’t like. But you don’t hold all the answers, and claiming ownership of the material of everything you digest by saying they are objectively devoid of any merit is not fair to the artist or the readers here that may want to draw their own conclusions. As someone who tries to appear educated and continually tells people to research things before they can form an opinion on something, you have clearly missed the boat in knowing that you too have much to learn about the human experience before you can speak in absolutes.

                    13. There are those that see intent in a Pollack painting and there are those that think it’s ridiculous.

                      This is a difficult argument, because there are those who see the art and intent in serial killing. Perhaps we should worry less about policing categories, including the all-inclusive equality one, and focus more on whether the intent aims at something relevant, useful, profound, beautiful, insightful, etc. One of the original methods of this was to separate the intent of commercial bands (reproduce known successes in new aesthetic) versus underground bands (state something poignant or profound from outsider perspective).

                      I’m not sure who this is in reply to, however…

                    14. Ara says:

                      What’s especially frustrating about our bickering is that if we were to meet at a show, chances are we would have a beer and you would in no way talk to me like you do here. We would discuss metal and you would talk as if your perspective is as valid as mine. Because there is no way your candor is acceptable on a social level, and you would mellow out. The difference is, if you were to speak to me in absolutes in person, I would say the exact same responses to you.

                    15. What’s especially frustrating about our bickering is that if we were to meet at a show, chances are we would have a beer and you would in no way talk to me like you do here.

                      I think this is a really good point: internet discourse is generally acriminous and ungentlemanlike. I would prefer that this be reversed. We have a selective group here; perhaps we should behave like it. Imagine yourselves in my living room, with a freshly lit pipe and a snifter of brandy, while wearing English evening wear from the 1800s (last known period of Western civilization). How would we all comport ourselves then?

                      Quite.

                    16. Viranesir says:

                      I think that the fundamental difference between Ara and most members of society is the fact that he truly does not see himself above others. Which he is not, no matter how educated or opinionated he is, he will die one day and the trve bm albums in his vinyl shelf will not save him from it. He just knows what he likes and is fine with it. In other words, he does not speak of “the things that he is not sure of” as facts, which is anything outside his own feelings when experiencing things. This is what I feel when I experience the things he say through my own mind, I might be wrong, but I strongly feel that I might be right. I am not saying talking about what I feel when I experience things and coming to unprovable conclusions on what makes them good or bad should not exist, I am just saying, I have long come to a point where I no longer buy them as facts no matter how many philosophers or theorists are cited, they are in the end of the day all opinions. If it were otherwise, then why isn’t there an ultimate music album that was best for everybody and it would be better than everything else and everybody would only listen to that album when they needed music. These discussions are sad in a metal site because it reminds me of the times I was arguing with my mother when she thought metal was utter shit and that it was just baseless noise, and thought she knew how music should be.

                    17. In other words, he does not speak of “the things that he is not sure of” as facts, which is anything outside his own feelings when experiencing things.

                      That is a social defense, and nothing more.

                      We all assert some fact. You are asserting as fact that this is a superior approach.

                    18. If it were otherwise, then why isn’t there an ultimate music album that was best for everybody and it would be better than everything else and everybody would only listen to that album when they needed music.

                      This presupposes that people are able to equally perceive. If that were true, everyone would be a neurosurgeon. Perceptive ability is ranked which is why we select our best thinkers and rely on their opinions. I do it all the time in history, philosophy, politics, and art; I read Nietzsche not because he is a better writer, but because he is more accurate than others.

                      Some would have you believe that life is entirely subjective, or in other words, that all opinions/analyses are equally valid. And yet, all data contradicts that thought. It is very un-PC for me to think this and yet, I am at heart a scientist: there is data in favor of this viewpoint, and none in contradiction of it, only emotional and social responses.

                    19. Viranesir says:

                      “That is a social defense, and nothing more. We all assert some fact. You are asserting as fact that this is a superior approach.” I am sorry to hear that you interpreted what I said as me trying to assert a fact. I am really glad that we are in the realm of approach now. Brett, I really like DMU because of the subject matter it handles, especially about feminism, historical studies on metal and freedom of speech. That is all that we talked about on our interview here as well. I personally think that Ara’s approach is superior, but I do not assert it as a fact, I say I personally think that Ara’s pragmatic approach is more fruitful because at the core of it is an inarguable subjectivity to the point he is making. I do not think me or ara are the ones getting defensive when replying.

                    20. I am sorry to hear that you interpreted what I said as me trying to assert a fact.

                      There is no other intelligible interpretation. You can claim you are asserting a personal opinion, but that is an act, and factual in nature. To pretend otherwise is complete idiocy and I would not suspect you of it.

                      I say I personally think that Ara’s pragmatic approach is more fruitful because at the core of it is an inarguable subjectivity to the point he is making.

                      Increasingly, I have come to believe subjectivity is a dodge and nothing more. It is a way of agreeing to not agree and depending on what is popular to determine which is right, which gets you metalcore. At that point, we might as well declare Justin Bieber metal and Beethoven incompetent.

                      I do not think me or ara are the ones getting defensive when replying.

                      The term “defense” in this context is separate from the term “defensive.”

                    21. One more addition here:

                      Some people would like to believe you cannot say, “I recognize quality in this band, but aesthetically, see no need for it in my listening rotation.” There are bands and releases I recognize as quality but have no interest in listening to for other, perhaps personal reasons at this point, such as Immolation or Metallica. That does not change the quality assessment. Similarly there are some bands I enjoy which are objectively of lesser value.

                    22. Ara says:

                      Whoa there- the way I approach things isn’t dependent on popularity to form a mass opinion to declare things to be what they are and to by proxy declare un-things to be things. It’s just a matter of being considerate while remaining passionate and acknowledging that the human condition makes it impossible to accurately declare the validity of something without bias. It is a way for me to avoid the trappings of solipsism which I know you can agree is a fallacy. If I decide that my view on things in my mind is absolute truth, it invalidates all other perspectives. If I were to say something like, “Burzum is lousy because I think Varg’s arrangements are garbage,” there would be hell to pay here. If I presented a line of logic with careful regard to what I have deemed to be successful templates for musical construction to make such a claim, would it be fact? If so, to only me? Facts can’t be facts to one person, so the answer to both is no.

                      I will concede something major here, however. You say that the compromise of ideals results in metalcore, and I can see your point in a way. I had a kneejerk reaction to people calling Ara metalcore and not death metal. I can see after doing a lot of thinking in the subject and listening to a lot of classic stuff that maybe I was wrong in calling it death metal and staunchly maintaining that stance. This is because as I grew into my personal tastes I had things marketed to me as death metal when maybe they weren’t. If Cryptopsy goes from None So Vile to Whisper Supremacy, my 16 year old brain at the time figures it’s still death metal because it was produced by a death metal band and marketed as death metal. It is clear that The Unspoken King is a universe away from either record and wasn’t even marketed as death metal, so you can’t fool everyone for too long, but there is a danger in heading that way. Maybe Ara isn’t death metal and maybe a majority of what I understood to be so hasn’t been. This is a product of maturing and knowing that you don’t have the answers and that you are willing to learn. I still like everything I have continued to like and I will write music as I feel inspired to do so, but I may be more wary now of what things should be considered. I still disagree about what metalcore is, and view it as an actual genre rather than a catch-all, and I don’t feel aligned with it in the slightest. And to me, content still supercedes the title it accrues and I can still find merit in all styles.

                      Also, Virenesir, you are very correct in your synopsis of how I view myself.

                    23. It’s just a matter of being considerate while remaining passionate and acknowledging that the human condition makes it impossible to accurately declare the validity of something without bias.

                      There are many things to unpack in this, and the first is to look at terms. Where did “validity” come in? That is a binary judgment; quality is a ranking with both vertical and horizontal properties. The two collide.

                      Second, “considerate” and “passionate” strike me as out of place here. The question is accuracy.

                      So let us look at this:

                      impossible to accurately [assess the quality] of something without bias.

                      My first question is whether this actually means:

                      impossible to accurately [assess the quality] of something.

                      and

                      impossible to accurately [assess the quality] of something [because of] bias.

                      I would remind us all that bias is also not a binary. It exists in degrees, and as far as I can tell, has been suppressed by some. Further the question is what bias exists with a new release? Genre? — but even releases in genres which are theoretically positively viewed by this site get the treatment. Origin? — we review bands from all over the world. Cover art? — probably not with a digital promo.

                      If I decide that my view on things in my mind is absolute truth, it invalidates all other perspectives

                      This seems a bit extreme to me. “Absolute truth” is either a redundancy or the term “absolute” is being used to front-load the idea of the application of that truth. Either way: why not the working hypothesis principle? “The truth is X, unless new data arrives which contradicts existing presumptions.”

                      If I presented a line of logic with careful regard to what I have deemed to be successful templates for musical construction to make such a claim, would it be fact? If so, to only me? Facts can’t be facts to one person, so the answer to both is no.

                      This confuses interpretation of a fact with the existence of the fact. Keeping in mind the sage’s advice “There are no facts, only interpretations” we should unpack this as well.

                      If I presented a line of logic with careful regard to what I have deemed to be successful templates for musical construction to make such a claim, would it be fact?

                      The broader question is: is it fact? Whether you recognize or not recognize it, it exists out there. This is the principle that lets us say that it is aerodynamic lift that makes airplanes fly instead of angry gods.

                      Facts can’t be facts to one person, so the answer to both is no.

                      And here is the populist fallacy: it can only be fact if enough people recognize it. Fact can be fact with zero people recognizing it.

                      Two guys walk through a forest. Neither knows there is a landmine in the clearing. And yet, as one finds out, it is fact. KABOOM!

                      I still like everything I have continued to like and I will write music as I feel inspired to do so

                      One thing in light of the above: no one here is telling you not to like something. “Like” is the most generic term possible, a kind of catch-all. There are bands I like that cannot be objectively defended. I still like them. However, in absence of reason to do so, I generally do not promote them to others and would not do so on a logical basis.

                      And to me, content still supercedes the title it accrues and I can still find merit in all styles.

                      Content supersedes genre, in other words. I do not think this has been challenged, except for pointing out the obvious, which is that genre conventions can constrain expression of content. For example, if I decide to make poetry using only verbs, it is fairly limited. Similarly, a genre which emphasizes chaotic content will make it impossible to make a coherent statement.

                      I will concede something major here, however. You say that the compromise of ideals results in metalcore, and I can see your point in a way. I had a kneejerk reaction to people calling Ara metalcore and not death metal. I can see after doing a lot of thinking in the subject and listening to a lot of classic stuff that maybe I was wrong in calling it death metal and staunchly maintaining that stance. This is because as I grew into my personal tastes I had things marketed to me as death metal when maybe they weren’t. If Cryptopsy goes from None So Vile to Whisper Supremacy, my 16 year old brain at the time figures it’s still death metal because it was produced by a death metal band and marketed as death metal. It is clear that The Unspoken King is a universe away from either record and wasn’t even marketed as death metal, so you can’t fool everyone for too long, but there is a danger in heading that way. Maybe Ara isn’t death metal and maybe a majority of what I understood to be so hasn’t been.

                      That is interesting: the negative influence of marketing in destroying genre boundaries. I think there are some writings to that effect around here also.

                      My question would be, however, does it matter? If someone took metalcore and injected coherence into it, would it still be metalcore? But even more importantly… would it be improved? It could be that some genre differences are differing degrees of complexity, which does not mean “lots of stuff” so much as it means well-integrated stuff in a logical hierarchy, much as how Mozart is more complex than Mendelssohn but Mendelssohn more intricate and varied.

                      In other words, if you took a genre that was failing and kept improving quality control through the methods of art, would it eventually arrive at quality anyway, but since it in the process broke some of the perceived “rules” of the genre, it might not then still be part of the genre, but would it matter?

                    24. Ara says:

                      “Metalcore” can’t be saved because its basic principles fashion its entire existence as a product written to appease an audience rather than provide an emotional catharsis for the artist. Metalcore, although being a kind of elastic genre in ways, all utilizes a few basic ideas regardless of its styles within the umbrella:

                      -verses which either are composed of either the “Swedish melodic tonality” or the driving rhythm of two-step hardcore danceable style which are penned to elicit saccharine hook-driven relatability in the former and a call to group activity in the place of individual expression in the latter

                      -flourishes of feigned virtuosity to keep up a guise of extremism throughout fooled audiences despite relatively pedestrian techniques

                      -relatable lyrics about life experience that rarely go further than high school dramatics

                      -“breakdowns” which cement the expression as a pandering for crowd control over the voice of the artist.

                      There is no artistic voice among the genre’s participants because metalcore is a grocery list of audience appeasement in the guise of a song. So no, the genre can’t be saved, because if a band were to take aspects of the sound and move into a direction that comes from actualartistic expression, it wouldn’t be metalcore anymore, but something else. We will never see it, because the sycophantic nature of vary basics of metalcore make the genre what it is.

                      As for your “facts” paradigm, I’m still not calling for a census to declare what is fact. “Fact” to me isn’t what most people in the room dictate to be such, but what will exist in principle outside of human interaction or understanding.

                      I want to unpack more of this but the formatting for this argument is getting difficult for me to respond to visually. But this is a good conversation, lacking venom, and why I come to this site.

                    25. “Metalcore” can’t be saved because its basic principles fashion its entire existence as a product written to appease an audience rather than provide an emotional catharsis for the artist.

                      These were roughly my conclusions as well. Art derives meaning from continuity, not interruption, and too much theoretical surface translates into nothing beneath the surface and at the center. This is not unique to metalcore, but many genres are prone to it, as well as most bands that make me wish to hide my ears behind walls of sonic insulation.

                      But this is a good conversation, lacking venom, and why I come to this site.

                      And your contributions are a living part of it, and I at least — and most likely those others who work on and read here as well — always look forward to reading them.

                    26. Viranesir says:

                      Brett, I think we are complete opposites in our approach, which of course is a good thing. I value what is going on here as a constructive conflict. I do not believe in elitism, I believe in individualism. Not that I do not think that those two things are inseparable and there are no absolutes, but being as extreme as me and you, we will keep on clashing quite heavily because I am on one end of the spectrum whilst you are on the other. From what I gather, elitism and election is your main way of dealing with life. It has been how the world has been progressing so far so you should be really happy at what it brought us to. If that is the case, you needn’t worry, no one will take it from you and there is tons of people to take over your approach if something does happen to you. You are trying to represent a rebellious byproduct of such system, yet you preach the word of its essence and in essence, you might influence its progress only by influencing another rebellion against this new “polished, better, prettier, perfect” capital you are striving to create. You are a constructer, I am a deconstructer so maybe it makes sense that you are running the academic side of things while I run a record label and make music. This is nothing new of course, but good to see that within the same subculture or whatever you’d like to call it, there is this happening rather than one side (a subculture) being the theory one side (another subculture) being the practice.

                      Please, if you disagree or agree, let me know. Looking forward to your response. But you must know that “to say this is idiocy” and statements like that are not really the reason I am replying, I am more interested in what you actually have to say. Maybe you do not care if you alienate me, it is fine, but I value what is going on here and I appreciate maturity (though only in somewhat mature discussions not the lyrics of Viranesir albums:)).

                      Personal note: man, the responses are stuck on the right side of the body of the page and its really hard to read, is it the same for every system or is it just me? I tried opening it from Mozilla as well and its the same.

                    27. From what I gather, elitism and election is your main way of dealing with life. It has been how the world has been progressing so far so you should be really happy at what it brought us to.

                      I completely disagree.

                      First, my main method of dealing with life is nihilism and analysis, which is superior to “deconstruction” which relies on a human perspective.

                      Second, the dominant tendency of our time and the centuries before it is in fact individualism, which was the point of The EnlightenmentTM.

                      This is nothing new of course, but good to see that within the same subculture or whatever you’d like to call it, there is this happening rather than one side (a subculture) being the theory one side (another subculture) being the practice.

                      I would consider this a false dichotomy as well. Nothing in what I say contradicts practice; in fact, the best (by either musical or populist notions) artists in the field agree with and practice what I advocate.

                    28. Viranesir says:

                      Well, in my opinion this argument is very interesting and I’d really like to continue it as what is being said in between the lines of responses from both side, I think there is very interesting things to be observed. I think that David and Brett have a similar approach and Ara and I have a similar approach (duh) that are conflicting ways to build a valuable thing. Both necessary for each other to co exist, and possibly the future works to prosper. They are both extreme ways, with shortcomings and contradictions, I quite like the fact that both parties are really interested in investing. They needn’t cancel or destroy each other, I think it is essential that both schools of thought co-exist for valuable outcomes. I would really like to continue this by quoting the responses, but it is truly aggravating reading the responses right now when they are on the right side of the screen.

                      I will do it now, since I am taking time off work, broke up with my partner recently and this is a good pastime, but please do something about it because makes it so hard to response imho. Going back up the responses and coming back down to the box.

                      “First, my main method of dealing with life is nihilism and analysis, which is superior to “deconstruction” which relies on a human perspective.”

                      What do you mean by Nihilism? from what I concur it is the belief that all values are baseless and that nothing can be known or communicated. Let me know if this is how you would put it as well before I continue.

                      Analysis is the breaking down and study of the elements or structure of something. Let me know if you concur.

                      When you say superior, do you then mean your preferred choice of approach (like: choosing a mace over a longsword) or superior as in elitist authoritarianism (like: guys make better films than girls, so many males made better films, hence guys are superior artists and better if only guys make films kind of superior?) or something else, really would like to know what you mean by superior.

                      What do you mean “relies on human perspective”? I would just really like to know what you meant by that.

                      “I would consider this a false dichotomy as well. Nothing in what I say contradicts practice; in fact, the best (by either musical or populist notions) artists in the field agree with and practice what I advocate.”

                      Nothing I say contradicts practice, contradicts what practice? From what you say, “improvisation” is totally unacceptable in art.

                      the best (by either musical or populist notions): what do you mean best? Explain best. best for the elite? or best for the majority? or best for your own tastes (the individual)?

                      “Advocate” you use the term advocate, but in the end of the day, you depend on people to either concur or contradict with your advocacy, or you wouldn’t be saying it in the first place. Maybe your approach in the end too “relies on human perspective”. This interaction between you and people will always be. I use the term “Representation” but I too rely on people to either concur or contradict. I do not deny the fact that I rely on human perspective, not only to make them accept my goal, but also to see if my goal can be improved with their input, hence I use the term “representation” rather than “advocation” for them to keep putting in without feeling alienated.

                      A very important point, I do NOT mean you shouldn’t use advocate or any authoritarian statements like that, I am just saying that I am okay with you using advocate, I use something else, I just made that analysis for us to see how we both are and improve our goals. I just thought that this “advocate” business was a good example to make my point. You must really understand that I am totally okay with your approach, and that we are basically making similar points using different methods. Both methods are necessary for valuable work in my opinion, and that we can learn from each other as well.

                      “Difficult problems like music quality that are lazily shoved into the subjective classification provide this space based on status quo inclusive construction of truth, not reality.”

                      Man, the thing that makes good music in my opinion is passion and feelings. I do feel that structure can push it further, but your purely formalistic approach (correct me if Im wrong) in my opinion is essentially a bridge from emotions and netherworlds to this reality, not the other way around. So completely denying spirituality and just relying on factuality will provide technical death metal nothing else in my opinion. It is like a computer composing music rather than a human when we deny the value of subjectivity.

                      “Difficult problems like music quality that are lazily shoved into the subjective classification provide this space based on status quo inclusive construction of truth, not reality.”

                      Music quality is not a problem for me, because I know what I like and there is really good shit out there. Lazily shoved into subjective classification? I am not trying to classify anything, while I do believe that analysis is a very fruitful aspect to art, I do not believe that it should be rated above what really matters, the enjoyment and free interpretation. Closing doors as to classifying things is not fruitful in my opinion.

                      The sensation I get from eating a bigmac can make me very happy because it might make me subconsciously remember the time my mother took me to McDonalds with my crush on primary school and that beautiful day. The sensation I get from eating gourmet food might make me feel sick because I was raped by a chef whose hands smell like gourmet food or as he shoved mussels up my ass I smelled it. I exist as you do. This does not devalue the fact that there is such a thing as beauty, analysis and theory, but in the end of the day, it depends on the subject it comes in contact with. I understand that most people didn’t get “raped by chefs” and that there is a collective consciousness which gives us the ability to trace the possible outcomes of things. I am saying you guys are the tracers of the possible outcomes while likes of me and Ara are the experimenters (rapist chefs and moms taking kids to mcdonalds).

                    29. I think that David and Brett have a similar approach and Ara and I have a similar approach (duh) that are conflicting ways to build a valuable thing.

                      David and I are realists: we question whether something is true according to the rules external to us.

                      You and Ara are individualists: you question whether something is true according to the rules internal to you.

                      (Individualism extends to groups, and individualists generally decide things in groups by consensus, rather than deference to reality).

                  2. The gravest mistake here is confusing appreciation with the simple “i like”. Your individualist and human feelings only based view of music, called extreme subjectivism, is only one of many takes on this issue. It is popular because it reduces a difficult problem to irrelevance and allows everyone to feel validated. There are clues beyond individual human feel-good preference, but learning itself is a painful process which makes you question what you held dear only yesterday. People prefer to feel equal, right and acknowledged just because they exist. Difficult problems like music quality that are lazily shoved into the subjective classification provide this space based on status quo inclusive construction of truth, not reality.

                    1. Ara says:

                      I just can’t wrap my head around assigning strict values to art. To me it’s like pressing square shapes into a round hole. If you say a piece is disorganized and I say it’s organized, where does this truth lie? If humanity is wiped out in a nuclear fallout, how is the genius of a Burzum record collecting dust on a shelf determined? I understand quantitative value and I understand productive value, like the construction of a house. Do you feel a song is like a house? That almost makes sense, but there is only one way to assess the structural integrity of a house and a song can be experienced in many ways and wasn’t created with the intent of someone utilizing it in one way- a house isn’t built as catharsis for the builder. Artistic value can be discussed but given divergence of opinions of the strength of composition, not whether one likes it, how is value assessed? A common theme is consistent message where all parts say the same thing and what is deemed as clutter is removed- but what if the contrast of themes is the message? What if a short movie of an idyllic picnic shared among a family ends in a car mowing them down out of nowhere? Does the shift in tone make the piece artistically invalid? What if the abrupt change in mood is the message of the piece- that life is unpredictable and what you hold dear can be taken away at any moment? If that is the message, is that disorganized? Or is the issue that you don’t “like” the organization?

                    2. “I just can’t wrap my head around assigning strict values to art. To me it’s like pressing square shapes into a round hole. If you say a piece is disorganized and I say it’s organized, where does this truth lie? ”

                      Pointers and references have been given once and again. But your response has been one of denial rather than dialogue and an intent to learn. In fact, you explicitely stated that you’d rather not read or take anyone else’s or any philosopher’s ideas seriously for fear of distorting or dilluting your own perception.
                      I say this is a defense that does not lend itself to any learning, just entrenching in one idea.

                      Ever since we first had an encounter, my vision has changed, I’ve learned new things, I’ve come to understand some things better, left some unnecessary approaches behind and continued on as a result of not stagnating. What have you done? Your posture seems to be the same subjectivist nonsense that relegates everything to “whatever, man, we don’t know anything, cannot assign values” as dogma.

                      The point is that nothing is dogma, and this is true for science itself too. But that there are pointers towards what is real and what is not. Music organization is not part of a “reality” that exists outside human experience because music was created by humans for the benefit of humans. I have no intention of wasting my time explaining what has been explained once and again and what has been referenced to you and you have refused to even consider. You refuse knowledge in a blind belief that your experience is disconnected from everyone else’s. You are human and I am human, there is only so much variation possible in the experiences we may perceive. The biggest differences exist in the rationalization of these.

                      You say you are humble because you accept subjectivity. I say this is cowardice and ignorance. Refusing to accept a common reality behind different experiences is not only a denial of reality itself but a way of enabling a false validation of the self.

                      What would be humble is you actually trying to learn from the discussions on the topic that have been going on for centuries and in different cultures and times.

                      Stop hiding behind your “rights” as an individual to express individuality for its own sake. Face reality.

                    3. Your posture seems to be the same subjectivist nonsense that relegates everything to “whatever, man, we don’t know anything, cannot assign values” as dogma.

                      As his other message indicates, I think he may not be a pure subjectivist/universalist/individualist (an ironic acronym is therein formed).

                      He may be balanced between the two, sussing out (1) the fact that only one of the two can be right and (2) which one he feels applies not only to the genres he listens to, but his own art and aspirations.

                      Over time, this may work itself out.

                      I remember these debates from 1990-1993 on USENET. Many of those folks came around to a realist position, recognizing that validity as a yardstick is a substitute for truth-assessment and thus is an entirely social proposition based on consensus by other individualists.

                    4. If you say a piece is disorganized and I say it’s organized, where does this truth lie?

                      Might help to view these as degree values. Burzum’s first album is 96% organized, Belus is 34% organized, Hlidskjalf is 110% organized.

                    5. Ara says:

                      More on a song being like a house- if a house is not structurally sound, you can visually see it collapse, but the “collapse” of a song is more dependent on whether or not its construction resonates with a particular listener. Themes and message are more obscure than beams and mortar.

                    6. Ara says:

                      Haha how is your approach to me different? It’s exactly the same- you are right, I am wrong, and you say it like an asshole. You can explain what your heroes have said until you’re blue in the face and I still will have the right to disagree because I don’t see your stance as absolute truth. I see it as technique and opinion presented as a means for the people speaking to assign value. I know you want to hold your opinion steadfast, because your world will collapse if you allow the perspectives of others to debate what you have deemed to be successful art. it is as though you need this truth of yours to validate your studies and tastes because you cannot handle the idea that something you have seemingly come to a personal conclusion with can be challenged. Are you worried that the time you put into reading others’ works to mine for lines of reason to validate your stance will be wasted if someone like me or others in your peer group don’t agree? What are you afraid of? My life won’t end if others feel that the records I think are amazingly constructed are disorganized, artless garbage.

                      You are so bitter and so entitled. It really sucks to debate with you.

                    7. There is no debate here. My debate with you ended months ago when you said “I choose not to listen to anyone or learn from any other philosophers”.

                      I don’t debate with you because I choose not waste my time in someone who already proclaimed the pointlessness of the debate.

                    8. My debate with you ended months ago when you said “I choose not to listen to anyone or learn from any other philosophers”.

                      He may be saying (only) that he must learn things for himself, and cannot accept them as fact from another source. That is consistent with the internal direction of universalists.

                    9. I did not consider it this way, but am willing to from now on. Perhaps I will read his future posts.
                      I just remember he rejected the links and references, choosing not to explore them.
                      Of course it is not a matter of accepting them as fact just because, but you must first study them and meditate on them before being able to decide. My impression back then was that he was not willing to do so.

                    10. It’s exactly the same- you are right, I am wrong, and you say it like an asshole.

                      One successful strategy here is to accept his premise as valid for the purpose the debate, and then question whether all of the ingredients of his conclusion are in fact confirmed by reality. This will be more successful than arguing for validation — itself meaning decision to consider it true, rather than agreement that this is in fact true — by individualism/consensus. Consensus is merely how individualists form agreement; if most people think something is true, they argue that it is true, because they must do this in order to preserve the individualism of others.

                    11. Ara says:

                      is that exactly what I said? Or is that misinterpreted? Do you really think I intend to not listen to anyone? What I probably said was that I have come to a point where I realize how I judge art, and another perspective on how to do so is something I can acknowledge but not necessarily adopt as my own way of thinking because I have studied art for a long time and I have come to an understanding as to how I can realize its strengths and weaknesses. If I were to tell you that another philosopher had a means to qualify a Big Mac in a way that you hadn’t before, despite your knowledge that it isn’t really food and a product that you can’t back for reasons related to lowest-common-denominator population quelling, would you decide that you should adopt it as your template because I said so?

                      You are approaching this as if you have secret knowledge that is universal to understanding art, and that you’ve arrived there from study that will enlighten yourself over the masses, when what probably has happened is that you found a philosophy that validates how you think long after you decided how to do so and since it is yours it is the only passable way of thinking, which is silly because there is clearly a counterpoint or multiple ones to your perspective. You also said that you weren’t going to consider the opinions valid of anything who sees the strengths in DsO because they are essentially artistically bankrupt and anyone who views them in a positive light cannot have a perspective worth hearing. That is exceptionally shitty to say.

                      If there is no debate with me, why do you continually post after me to browbeat me, tell me the truth is there while at the same time tell me you don’t have time to explain it?

                      I can acknowledge that you have a different ideology than me, and I can coexist with yours even though I think it is an inconsiderate philosophy that sells short both art and potential audiences (not because I think all people are essentially equal or because what you like dictates quality, but because you yourself, no matter how studied, cannot make blanket claims due to the insufficiencies of the human mind), but I have a huge problem with your attitude, and given your role here now it makes me not want to support this site, which is a shame because the content here is very important and not found elsewhere.

                    12. If I were to tell you that another philosopher had a means to qualify a Big Mac in a way that you hadn’t before, despite your knowledge that it isn’t really food and a product that you can’t back for reasons related to lowest-common-denominator population quelling, would you decide that you should adopt it as your template because I said so?

                      Strict technical answer: you would compare reasoning.

                      You are approaching this as if you have secret knowledge that is universal to understanding art, and that you’ve arrived there from study that will enlighten yourself over the masses, when what probably has happened is that you found a philosophy that validates how you think long after you decided how to do so and since it is yours it is the only passable way of thinking, which is silly because there is clearly a counterpoint or multiple ones to your perspective.

                      What if this were a misconception? That is, that he actually behaves this way.

                      To someone from your ideology, which we might call individualism or universal validity, to behave in such a way would convey a personal attitude of superiority.

                      Speaking as someone not from an ideology, a/k/a a realist, I do not see any such attitude implied. Realists believe only the real is true and see everything else as irrelevant. This is why the language is so dismissive; when I need a socket wrench, bringing me a latte stirrer is irrelevant.

                      Having seen this argument a number of times, I wonder if this is not the origin of the conflict. I also wonder if assuming society should have a role in loco parentis and as arbiter of happiness can inculcate people into a belief pattern that would suggest such an outlook.

                      Now the brutal thing is this: by your ideology, his outlook must be included in the category of valid entries; by his, any ideology which is not correct/real/accurate cannot be. That is not intolerance but a vast difference in perspective!

                      Realists are the most open-minded people I know. They have three meta-categories: yes, no, and “insufficient data.” If you go up to a realist and talk about God, UFOs or quality Lakeland tobacco, he will probably say that there is insufficient data, akin to saying “I have never seen or heard of one, so, maybe.” But if you approach him with a proposition that can be refuted, by test (positivism), fact, or logical fact, he will destroy it. That is how they are: they sort the world between coherence and incoherence and reject the latter with extreme prejudice. This may help understand that his viewpoint is not personally haughty, or supercilious, or even pretentious, but merely a consequence of his realist outlook on life, music, art and …the occult.

                      Hope you stick around, as I and others enjoy your commentary. This site has always been a lightning rod for controversy and internet chaos and I hope it never stops!

                    13. Brett: Thank you. Yes.

                      Ara: no, if anything I’ve “unvalidated” myself through the years. Always looking for weaknesses in my concept and gradually finding in the works and thoughts of artists and philosophers hints and clues and piecing them together. I am guilty of being lazy, though, and creating excuses to validate my laziness, but only that :p

                      If I looked for validation, I would have never started to listen to death metal. And after that, I would have never started to listen to black metal. I would have never gone from being a fanatical protestant to a moderate one to a cynical atheist to a mystic (realists in disguise, if you study them and understand what they’re all about under the esoteric hocus pocus verbiage — verbiage that has a purpose and a well-founded reason to be, but that’s another conversation).

                    14. I have studied art for a long time and I have come to an understanding as to how I can realize its strengths and weaknesses.

                      This seems like an entirely intelligent approach to me.

                      I think David uses the same approach.

                      The difference is that a realist is willing to draw “objective” conclusions from it, where a universalist/individualist believes those conclusions are “subjective.”

                      Am I right?

                    15. Viranesir says:

                      Ara, I personally think that it is good that both schools of though exist and somehow co-exist for future benefit of art. When they try to challenge each other, in my opinion spawns creative destruction. Having spent most of my lifetime in academia, and writing and grading essays on art, it is no surprise to me the tone of the academic side of things (DMU) have been the way it is. Look at all the critics and theorists in the world that are so involved with art, yet have a very slight clue about the creative process. Just watch Birdman if you haven’t, and the critic scene there, it sums up everything. Just look at someone like Roger Ebert and how he talked about Brown Bunny by Gallo, and how it effected the re-edit of the film. I am not saying what theorists put forth is useless (I was surprised to read Deleuze and Susan Sontag and see theorists who don’t actually make art be open minded), it also stresses me (used to stress me way more back in the day) that the tone most of the theorists and critics is of a “how can you argue with what I say when I cement my argument with citations from my library? I’ve spent my life reading all that shit to forgive myself for not ‘daring to actually make art and stand behind it’.” kind of attitude. They are also extremely cynical about the present, yet do nothing about the “illness” that they claim to cancer the world of art and they are fanatical as well of certain artists (that they can “understand”) and they like to live in a bubble. You are very right in your points about their fear, they are very afraid… I have seen numerous theorists with a good attitude, I have seen accomplished artists with an elitist attitude from the four countries that I have lived long term in two each sides of the atlantic ocean, and I have been involved with art since I was 8 years old when I started a conservatory for painting and moved from that to electroacoustics in high school to filmmaking in university forth. I always was the creative one, and will always be and I know what it is like to be involved in the creative process. Since I told my dad I will not run his gang in turkey and that I wanted to make art all my life, he pulled his financial help and since then I make all my living (quite a cheap one, at most I get 500 pounds a month) by art and collaborating with other artists as well. When I finish my doctorate of liberal arts and get a steady position in one of the universities I am affiliated with, things will get better I hope. Being creative as I am, I know that there is more to things, there is more to life than one side of the coin, and acknowledging the fact that we need both sides of the coin is the only truth that I ever come up with in my short life with the limited time and spaces that I have been in. I am grateful for all the turmoils and fights, but I know one thing, Brett and David are passionate and extreme. Their attitude might come of assholish, which I think it is in a way, but it is really nothing compared to what I have seen in my time, especially in people who’ve been teaching in schools more than 20 years that never made any art. What I want to say is that, this fight will never end, it simply never will. But this is a fight that flourishes art, and both sides contribute great things to art in my opinion. If my experience is of any value to you, food for thought is for stopping wishing for them to change anything about their attitude and keep contributing in a passionate way, fight for your right, be sure to keep being considerate (which I think you are very) and focusing on the most important thing, which is ART. I don’t mean this in a make works of fine art sense, I am sure you know that you are an artist!

                    16. Again, I find the theorist/artist distinction to be silly. Look for example to William S. Burroughs, Thomas Pynchon, or Michel Houellebecq. Most theorists are idiots, but so are most artists.

                      If you want to enhance art, make it about relevant things to (1) the process of human mental maturation and (2) applying that to the group, especially in your era. This is what drove Burzum, Mayhem, Darkthrone, Immortal, etc. and a lack of it is why nowadays black metal is douchebag.

                    17. The gravest mistake here is confusing appreciation with the simple “i like”.

                      I concur. “I like” has little in common with “I assess.”

                    18. Ara says:

                      Reading the bit about how realists separate things into 3 categories, I’m not saying I’m a realist or individualist or whatever, but I’m chalking up the art debate to “insufficient data” because I think the human condition is too flawed to accurately deduce info about something intangible. I don’t know about being an individualist because clearly skills separate people into classes of effective groups. My realism is acknowledging that answers to intangible questions are impossible and left to theory to get close to an understanding about ourselves in lieu of the topic at hand.

                    19. For me, that is leaving the question to a YES or NO question when in fact it is a matter of tendencies and probabilities. Patterns we can distinguish.
                      Do you actually think anyone KNOWS how the universe was created? No. There are clues here and there, indications. The same is with music. And to know how to evaluate it, we must look at its nature, human nature and the contexts in which the system it follows was created and developed.
                      There are clues, we are not standing in a pitch black room. And the clues are not “subjective”.

                      Their values, though, are dependent on the context. By themselves, they cannot be determined to be good or bad, positive or negative, providing motion or otherwise. But the values of elements together with their context that make them determinate are not relative anymore but are universally positive or negative. This is where our assessment comes in.

                    20. Do you actually think anyone KNOWS how the universe was created? No. There are clues here and there, indications. The same is with music.

                      This is a good metaphor, and it is one reason that I encourage people to see truth in degrees: we are all approximating knowledge of a reality that is out there independent of us, and whose consequences we face if we get it too much wrong. Maybe it’s a 72% threshold. But since we face consequences, we need to work toward getting it right, instead of refusing the question. This is a “strong realist” view and will probably come across as fascistic to most of you.

          2. Deathspell Omega – Infernal Battles (2000)
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IZxpEb_mIuQ

            I listened until the glam rock riff showed up at a minute and a half.

            1. Viranesir says:

              I don’t particularly enjoy those breaks in their music as well, but the rest of it keeps a very strong grip on me. I especially like this song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Af12ZLjfPLQ

  2. Nicholas says:

    David, thank you for asking the most important questions.

    1. Don´t mention it. The important thing is what you guys have to say. We are just a medium, a filter and we appreciate the latent potential in the band.

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