Back in the day, Taake was the black metal band you settled for because all the old bands were no longer recording great stuff and your only other option was bedroom black metal. They were not bad, but had more in common with the melodic heavy metal hybrids that combined death metal with power metal riffing and pretty melodies. That makes it weird in a time where Taake is one of the better options out there.
Taake recently made the headlines because one of their provocative stunts backfired in the new political correctness that is being enforced on us all lest we wayward sheep wander away from the fusion of big corporate power, egalitarian politics, and media zombie fear of missing out triviality culture. Antifa staged a boycott of the band for once posing with a chest swastika, like so:
Apparently this offends some people. Most likely, it was Taake’s attempt to distract from the last time they generated this much attention, which was during the days of the famous “rock out with your cock out” photo:
Somehow no one called them homosexuals, or objected to their pasty white penis privilege. By now you have figured out that this article just trolled you into viewing not one but two penises. Are you sure that you aren’t actually gay? Go on a journey of self-discovery. Don’t worry; I’ll wait. After all, I am just words on your screen.
None of this is particularly new or exciting. Antifa has been boycotting mediocre bands since the dawn of time, when they take a break from vandalism, cashing welfare checks, doing grimy heroin in dingy squats, having yeasty sex with each other without having bathed in the past month, burning down trash cans, and their all-time favorite, randomly assaulting innocent people who might look like Nazis.
A certain metal blog, obviously a self-hating one given its name, published an article entitled “The Problem with Taake Isn’t Just the Swastika Chest Paint Incident.” In it, the writer — who resembles an indie hipster limousine liberal version of Andrew Anglin, primary writer for The Daily Stormer — opines that the problem with Taake is not the chest swastika, but the Islamophobia.
Apparently the frontman for Taake likes to wear a tshirt with the Islamic crescent and star crossed out with a red international banned symbol. They also have some lyrics that talk about war against the Muslims, or at least throwing them out of Norway, and apparently this is offensive to some people.
I suggest a different idea: the problem with metal isn’t just the Taake incident, it’s that the entire genre has lost its fucking balls. This happens when you lose any purpose. Metal last had energy when the Norse black metal explosion re-wrote all the rules and fully developed the art form that Black Sabbath began tinkering with fifty years ago.
Since that time, it has lost any sense of direction. It said its piece, and now is waiting for history to catch up, and in the meantime a fleet of soyboys and neurotics have infiltrated, taken over metal journalism, guided the genre toward their taste, and basically made it an estrogenated version of its former self. Even Taake is too edgy for them.
Metal music has a philosophy, and that philosophy is worship of power and repulsion of human fear. What is powerful? Reality. Violence. Death. Satan (maybe). Terror. Forbidden symbols. Cannibalism. Necromancy. All of these things represent what humans fear, which is that there is someone more competent than they are out there who is going to force us all to be realistic for once. Or just that the world is outside of our control.
In the world of metal, no one sane spends their time mincing around and whining like a protesting hippie that someone said the wrong thing. We either agree, shrug indifferently, or give it the finger and move on. We know that words are not the problem; the total collapse of our civilization, the insanity of just about everyone, the denial and the distraction, those are problems.
We are not here to make everyone agree on some narrow dogma that will lead humanity to Utopia. We know there is no Utopia; as humans conceive it, Utopia — peace, plenty, tolerance, love, pluralism, and acceptance — is not just an illusion, it is total heat death. History is driven by war and outlined in blood. Struggle, suffering, and horror are not just an inevitable part of life, but how nature transacts growth.
That anyone is even seriously entertaining Antifa, a group of people who shit their pants for bragging rights, and worrying about hurt feelings is what is wrong with metal. Man up and get your fucking balls back. Taake said a few things that most everyone thinks at some point, and maybe they’re right. Who cares, because Taake still sucks. And so does the fake metal that “MetalSucks” accurately describes.