Saturday, 18 August 2012

Totally pointless ramblings: A message to those whose hatred only moves in one direction...

 I figured it's about time I talked a bit about the London 2012 Olympics, now that they've been over for about a week and all the hysteria regarding them is beginning to cool down. If I'm honest I really wan't so obsessed with the sports save for the odd running event and bits and bobs of other events that really just made me want to go outside, but when it came to watching the Opening and Closing ceremonies, my eyes were glued to the TV screen, save for the part where I spent the first part of the Closing Ceremony coming home from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Because of course, as the music fan that I am, these ceremonies that lots of cool stuff on offer. From the massive surprise of the first performance of the Opening Ceremony coming from folk punk troubadour Frank Turner and the sight of cartoonish punks with massive Mohawks jumping up and down to Sex Pistols' Pretty Vacant and post flame-lighting performances handled by the Arctic Monkeys (Yeah, I think they're pretty cool these days. What a difference a year makes.) and Paul McCartney to the closing ceremony's solid performances from the likes of Madness, Ray Davies and Elbow and the absolutely stellar concluding performance from The Who. Even the massively slated performance of Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here fronted by acoustic singer/songwriter star Ed Sheeran joined by Nick Mason and Mike Rutherford of Genesis was done with utmost class.

The good stuff.

 However, when comparing the two ceremonies, for me certainly, the Opening Ceremony goes down as the better. Frankly, the Closing Ceremony had a lot of moments that were, well, shit. It goes without saying that I wasn't too impressed by the appearance of the Spice Girls and to hear Liam Gallagher perform a wheezing, tired rendition of Oasis's Wonderwall with Beady Eye was just cringeworthy and painful to watch even though I really hate the guy and there was something satisfying about seeing a performance so poor. Alongside this, the entire world were basically clenching their fists in excitement when the vast amount of clips of David Bowie started to appear in anticipation for the fact that Bowie might actually perform. To have that followed only by essentially a catwalk display taking place with Bowie's Fashion playing in the background was a massive letdown and while the appearance of Brian May and Roger Taylor onstage following electrifying footage of Freddie Mercury across massive screens started off a very badass celebration of the music of Queen, things quickly turned sour when they decided that joining them for the ever-magnificent We Will Rock You would be none other than the "delightful" pop singer Jessie J, who came fresh from claiming that "It's not about the money" while riding in a 300 grand Rolls Royce to ruin We Will Rock You with every added line of "We're gonna rock you, baby!" and creating one of the worst moments in the history of music.

The bad stuff.

 But, in spite of all this dread, there was still a phenomenal amount of hatred pointed to one small factor of the ceremony, and they were hated for their performance just for the reason that they're hated in general and while there was nothing wrong with the performance, their presence alone just caused everyone to become very hating and mocking. And the easy shots people take is something that should be discussed in order to protect the ability to actually love and care about rock music and should be criticized as all that do it are pathetic. You may have worked out by now that I'm talking about the meaningless and pointless hatred pointed towards mega-selling boyband One Direction.

"Hi there rock music fans! We're One Direction, we've made songs that  everyone will forget in a few years, and we've ruined EVERYTHING! EVERYYYYTHIIIIING!"

 Now, after a statement like "rock fans criticizing One Direction is pathetic and pointless" you might be thinking something like "What's this Andy? Are you defending One Direction? Are you a fan or something?" No of course not. Having actually taken the time to go through their massive debut effort Up All Night, I find it only to be a collection of commercially produced glossy pop songs in which the performance of all five members are put into harmonies that do nothing but create a cutesy romantic element to their songs that no one that isn't looking for some kind of soppy cutesy romantic sound would ever want. (And being a child raised in the town of Blairgowrie on bleakness and disappointment, I'm not going to have such a desire any time soon.) Musically, the production is dire and there's nothing to lure me into anything beyond the overly sugary vocal performances which is obviously what's selling this album. The only thing that is relied upon musically is creating hooks and honestly, there's enough going on in the pop punk scene now to make a song being catchy an original and unique factor for a band anymore. Seriously, the only teen-friendly pop band I can handle now is All Time Low. I'm highly confident that I'm still the band's only male fan and the only person whose favourite song isn't OMG! Alex is So Hot! So hopefully, after that explanation, you can realise that One Direction aren't exactly the band that I like to listen to in between Kyuss and Electric Wizard. To me, they seem like a band that will lose all relevance at some time in the next five years and will only be loved in those years by people who loved them at the time, possibly at a trashy hen night party of some sort.

 So as you can see, I've managed to write a statement that criticizes the music of One Direction. However, judging by the kind of criticisms handed by fellow people that call themselves rock fans, I've achieved something rare on the internet and criticized the band without the use of such popular critiques as "Ugh! These guys are gaaaayyy!!" or "These fags look like girls!!!" or "I hope these wankers go and diiiieeeee." Seeing this kind of thing is just pathetic. It really brings shame to me as a massive fan of all things rock and roll to see other people with such a music taste emerge as such a bratty and immature looking individual when they're music taste is actually fairly respectable. When someone tries to make themselves look respectable and instead look pathetic, it takes their music taste down with them as well. Anyone that uses these terms to describe these groups are officially not allowed to listen to Queen, Bowie, Judas Priest, Twisted Sister, Black Veil Brides or any Japanese dance rock band of your choice.

Just you remember us the next time you complain about bands looking a bit on the feminine side.

 Honestly, there are so many cases of people criticizing pop bands like One Direction in the lamest of ways, while displaying that they aren't even trying to do anything to improve upon their own music taste and develop upon their taste in rock music. I feel sick to my guts every time I go on Youtube and see that the top comment on a Led Zeppelin videos reads along the lines of "Hi! I'm 13 and I'm sorry for what my generation has done to music." You little prick! You think you're the best and have the mot in depth taste because you listen to classic rock music! Don't you dare apologise about what this generation has done with music because this generation has done noting bad to rock music. You just haven't looked in depth enough to find the truly amazing bands that just haven't managed to get as much attention as the likes of One Direction. And if the only level of band popularity you're looking towards are bands that have major popularity today and already well-established bands from the 1960's-80's, then frankly, you're one of the reasons that our generation of music has reached a level that you may refer as bad. You like Led Zeppelin huh? That's easy! Rival Sons, The Union, The Treatment, CauldronGraveyard. Not so sorry now are you kid?

Please go on to tell the world about how there's no better album than the Mothership compilation and totally undermine our influence. We're very intrigued. And we're not playing live again.

 The worst part about the widespread hatred for easily mock-able chart toppers is the way that metal fans have adopted a manner of instantly stating metal is the best because these groups exist. I've seen the way modern metal fans go through this and it's groan-inducing. Conversations are so generic and senseless these days. Get together, state that Sepultura are better than Justin Bieber, agree, go on to state that Trivium are superior to One Direction. Yeah, that's real metal guys, real fuckin' metal. How are you meant to show that you give a shit about your taste in metal if all you do is compare your bands to musicians that effectively create a musical style the opposite. You can't display a love for your band that way. If you want to love metal and you want to love metal through and through (and I know that that is the way for lots of you) why not just fully coat your musical conversations in the most unrelenting heaviest metal. Do you need inspiration for some conversations? Try some of these: Which Meshuggah album provides us with the heaviest highlights? Who's made better riffs? Bobby Gustafson or Mille Petrozza? (Obviously adding Eric Peterson to the mix would eliminate any sort of competition.) Does the grandeur created amongst the spaciousness the music of Behemoth compare to that of Nile? What album was the biggest disappointment? Supercharger, Illud Divinum Insanus or Cold Lake? How does Varg Vikernes spend Christmas? May you never grow bored.

These people are far more worth your time than elaborating upon  how much you hate whoever topped the charts this week.

 There is one underlying problem when hatred is just pointed from rock fans towards chart music that isn't made to be enjoyed by those with a rock and roll mentality. There's an element of blindness that goes on and these people somehow just seem to refuse that there are in fact bad rock and metal bands out there. The other idiotic comment that is seen too often on Youtube is the notion that everyone that likes rock and metal should get together to take down people that like pop music, as though we all enjoy the same thing. That's ridiculous. Seriously, it's not possible to enjoy all rock music in a world in which Brokencyde and Vampires Everywhere! exist. These bands make a music built up of pure trash with no merit whatsoever. The only time Vampires Everywhere! make any riffs, you can specifically tell specific parts of which Marilyn Manson song they're ripping off and when Brokencyde perform... it sounds like the end of eternity. The fact that people are ignorant to the fact that both bands toured together but take so much hatred towards some simple pop tunes is simply worrying.

If you experience rage when you hear about  generic boybands, but don't view this tour poster as apocalyptic, you need to get your head checked, mate.

 So far I'm saying that if if you are a rock fan and you're hating pop music that should be of no relevance to you, you're kind of wasting your time and appearing pathetic. At the same time there's absolutely no reason as to why these pop artists shouldn't be of any relevance to you. The biggest One Direction fan I know is also a massive fan of Guns N' Roses, AC/DC and Nirvana and could tell you anything you need to know about the genre of pop punk, from it's classic roots and serve as the epitome of anything worth listening to in the charts. She's probably better at talking about music than I could ever be. In fact, almost everyone I knew in school came with some strong musical passion. It's no wonder I got shaped into the person I am today. Thanks for setting me up for life guys.

 But maybe, it's ingrained within you that you just like your music driven by guitars packed with distortion. I know that as I further contemplate the possibilities of wearing a Queens of the Stone Age Songs For the Deaf style tattoo for the rest of my life, I know that that's the type of music that means the most to me. I know that the world of boybands and teen popstars really don't have a place in my life, so I don't really choose to elaborate on them. And I know that I don't really have a place to talk about One Direction, because they're so far removed from the kind of music I live for that there's no possible way I can pick up any good things about them. If you're the same, then it really is true that in the case of groups and singers like these, that if you don't have anything good to say, just keep it to yourself. Sure it's fine to display some hatred towards bands in your life, but if it's just pop bands that make simple catchy songs that you're displaying a hatred for, where's the fun in that? Do you think that makes you look like a truly know-all music fan? Maybe instead of posting that One Direction look like girls and writing homophobic slurs, you could spend time looking deeper into the genre you love, finding the modern bands with the same class and style as your favourite classic bands and finding the actual bad bands that you can display a hatred for, and become someone with a much greater musical outset. There's so much close mindedness existing in modern music today towards any artists that top the charts with sweetly pop songs, that anyone wants to have a pop at them. The fact that rock fans simply state themselves to be superior by writing a large amount of passionate hatred for these acts is pathetic in it's entirety. It's the most pointless, attention seeking act I've ever seen and just makes me sad about the total lack of passion rock fans for rock music. Seriously, sort yourself out. You want a full spectrum of rock and roll that you be totally immersed within, stay the hell away from the charts.

No comments:

Post a Comment