A storm is brewing against the BlastBeat Network and its founder, Ben Umanov of MetalSucks. While the tabloids of MetalSucks and Metal Injection have long lost journalistic credibility and have become known as little more than an obnoxious joke, they’ve in recent months made a reckless overreach that has sparked a number of vicious uprisings against them. In threatening Behemoth front man Nergal, they provoked a pre-emptive strike that saw legions of Behemoth fans come against them (in a rare move, they refrained from publishing the story). Their direct involvement de-platforming of Elegy Records and other labels has turned Elegy into a martyr and free speech icon, featured in Breitbart News and drawing the ire of many on the radical right. And now they find themselves again on the receiving end of a brutal savaging, this time from a very well known name in hard/grindcore – Todd Jones, who has performed in Nails, Terror, and the outstanding Boston-style hardcore band Knife Fight.
Todd Jones has pieced together the true nature of the BlastBeat Network and well articulated it in a long rant posted last week to the 140,000 people following the Nails Facebook page:
(The) Blast Beat Network is an advertising company which includes two-handfuls of music news/blog oriented websites (such as Metal Injection, Cvlt Nation, The Pimp Rock Palace, of course MetalSucks, etc.) in which Blast Beat Network is affiliated with. They perform a really great service where basically a business can approach Blast Beat Network, pay a fee, and have their product advertised across all the affiliated Blast Beat Network sites. Any company who wants their product advertised in the metal/hardcore/punk subgenre would be their bread and butter. Labels, booking agencies, merch companies, ticketing agencies; any company with a product that they could sell to Blast Beat Networks “viewership”, so to speak.
So Nuclear Blast Records, Metal Blade Records, Relapse Records, Season of Mist, all of your favorite online merch retailers, a large amount of metal/hardcore/punk based businesses either currently pay or has paid them in the past for ad space because their reach is really impressive and it’s easy to do.
In addition to MetalSucks, Ben Umanov co-owns Blast Beat Network.
Why does this matter?
In one hand, Ben and MetalSucks are taking money from businesses to advertise their product with Blast Beat Network, and using the other hand to turn around and undermine these releases by writing hate-pieces on artists with Metal Sucks.
Yes; you read that correctly. Labels/MGMT/Booking agencies/show promoters are unknowingly or indirectly paying Metal Sucks to write these articles about the bands whom product they are promoting.
Jones is spot on here, as he further elaborates:
We recently read about how MetalSucks planned a story alleging that Behemoth frontman Nergal had Nazi ties
To say you hold or support the values of any person you ever took a picture with…it’s not even a stretch, it’s a fucking warp. Regardless of what your ethics are, let’s look at this from a business perspective…
BEHEMOTH is obviously a huge band in the underground metal scene. You know what that means? Record labels are financially invested in a big responsible way (imagine SOMEWHERE in six-figure range). Ultimately, this type of investment is great for our world at large. Stay with me.
Why would Metal Blade (the label responsible for U.S. release of Behemoth’s newest album) want to give Blast Beat Network money when MetalSucks is going to turn around and attempt to tear down Metal Blade’s artist which they have a ton of financial responsibility with?
Furthermore…Ben Umanov also manages the deathcore act Rivers of Nihil. Rivers of Nihil is signed to Metal Blade. Being that Ben represents Rivers of Nihil, Ben is the one speaking to Metal Blade on the band’s behalf. After contacting Metal Blade to request support for Rivers of Nihil, he’s actively attempting to harm Behemoth and take money from Metal Blade. How’s that for business ethics?
Jones explains that he and his Nuclear Blast-affiliated contacts have begun boycotting the services of the Blastbeat Network. While word of mouth can oftentimes cripple a business, Jones is ultimately one step away from revealing what can ultimately defeat and destroy MetalSucks and the BlastBeat Network forever: the advertiser boycott. If people were to call the labels and companies advertising on BlastBeat and threatening to boycott their patronage, these ads would quickly be pulled and put Ben and his companies in quite a pickle. As seen from the bankruptcies of Gibson and Guitar Center, those advertising on metal/rock sites really need all that they can get. And thus some of these individuals and groups who were blatantly fucked by MetalSucks could, theoretically, counter attack in spades by summoning their fanbase to get involved.
The light of judgment eventually catches all, and the clock is ticking for Ben Umanov and Matt Goldberg. A look at the comment counts of their recent articles speaks volumes about the massive loss in interest, but the legions of transgressed metal fans may finally be far too many in number. After many years of canceling tours, ruining business, defaming characters, and destroying careers, we may finally be seeing an end to the reckless damage they’ve caused to many who already are in enough of a struggle to make ends meet. Thus is the fate will too catch all of the left wing extremists who, in the end will have to answer to the…