This is another posting about some of the music that has been on the playlist recently.
I finally had a chance to watch the Metallica concert film Through the Never. (Streaming right now on Netflix) I have to note that in a way it reminded me of the movie version of Pink Floyd’s The Wall. I have seen something here. There is something go with this. However, do not expect for me to explain with “precise clarity”. That sounds like a bad thing. However, for me it is a good thing. I like rewatching things to gather the “clues” I might have missed. In this movie, there is the real life concert of the band performing. At the same time there is a fictional narrative of a young road crew member sent to take a can gas to a truck that is broken down. This young man finds himself caught in a showdown between what appears to “anarchists” and the police. I am not going to try to explain it any more than that. I have even done web searches trying to piece together without obtaining any “satisfaction”.
Metallica is one of those bands that invoke a “Love/Hate” relationship. This is especially true amongst their own fans. They have had their “Highs” and “Lows”. What I find interesting about them (besides the music) is their willingness to attempt things that appear to “be outside their own scope or grasp”. Example, The S/M live album where they were able to balance their music while performing with a symphony orchestra. Or their cover of a Bob Segar song that almost makes it one of their own in a sense. I like seeing how people evolve in how and what they create. I just realized I have been listening to them since I “discovered” them around 1983/84 when I first heard them on a local college radio station. College radio stations in the early 80’s really used to play about anything back then. Then the College Radio Format changed to in the wake of the Alternative Music break out of early 90’s. I do like some of the music but what this did was to let loose “the douche bag music hipster”. You know. The guy playing a band only hand full of people know about and he wants you to hear them to expand “their horizon”. And once they achieve some popularity he goes and “shits” on them because of that popularity. Heavy Metal was peaking then so those stations had to get away from it. Ironic. The stations set up on college campus to “break the rules of format” had to then go establish their own. Was it a good thing? 20 years later it seems to be getting worse on the campuses. And I am not talking about the tuition prices.
Every now and then you hear something unsuspected. And it works.
A Thing that should not be. And yet, there it is.
Heavy Metal is the genre of music in which the articles proclaiming its “death” are always being written. And yet it is one the more “enduring” forms of music around. This is music that one must seek out. It does not get handed to you by the “radio”.
In my younger days, the local paper had the music sales report in the Friday edition. I would see the top list. And when I saw Metal band in there such Iron Maiden it meant something. Mainstream radio and MTV may be ignoring it buy out there were people who were not about to let that stop them. And there were sales numbers to prove it.
Black Sabbath is clearly the big part of the foundation of what is Metal music. When I was growing up this band was the clear “whipping post” for people who feared their music. I wish I could go back in a time machine and announce, “In the future, Ozzy is going to be better known for a time as a “TV Dad” and when it happened. The Earth DOES NOT BLOW UP. The guy you should have feared is the one running through the airport in Hertz car rental commercials. No one saw that coming.”
I like this song from the Masters of Reality album
In a genre, that gets criticized for making its listeners supposed to “turn off their minds and be subservient.” And they have the lines, “Is you mind so small? That you have to follow the pack where ever they roam.”
Or when the original members (minus drummer Bill Ward) reunited a couple of years for the album13. And with the placement of “?” at the end of Sigmund Freud’s declaration took that question for a modern day.
Not just Sabbath but many Metal bands the music takes on ideas what is “damnation” and where does “salvation” take place. And where does the line between the two. This probably why organized religion every now and then gets the masses “frenzied” over this music. Besides the louder the music the easier it is to grab attention. The reason is that if any group is going to discuss (or in this case sing) about these ideas then it had better go “though them”. In other words, “This is OUR territory. SO STAY OUT OF IT.”
I just want to say. I know there is “Extreme” content within this genre. Please do not ask about the Norwegians. Although the Botswanas’ are peaking an interest for me. Most of it is not for me. I just find it so “over the top” that it almost borders on being a “parody” of itself. And for me a lot of it really does not “distinguish” itself as being any different from one to the next. Plus, I believe in “free speech” to the point where “shut the fuck up” is not a phrase that I use when it comes to those I disagree with. I just change the station and move on.
There are two types of people I feel pity for when it comes to music. The one who’s taste never “evolves” and is stuck in only one genre. I really feel sad, for the other type who “gave up their music collection” in order to achieve admission into adulthood. Which more times than not meant the wife hated the music and they have kids. However, I do believe there is a time and place for everything. Blasting Motorhead at naptime will cause trouble.
This is the opening to album Angel of Retribution featuring that “Banshee Wail” of Rob Halford. And the dueling lead guitars made the sound of the Judas Priest distinct.
When it comes to live music I feel there is a difference between a “performance” and being able to “perform”. The first being able to lip synch and dance. The second being able to play. Iron Maiden’s members are now in their late 50’s, early 60’s and still going. This clip is how they start a show. I cannot see Justin being able to do this in 30 years.
I never know why this band got labeled as “dumb”. Their references to mythological and historical references made me want to read and research them. I had to start with the 1979 edition of the encyclopedia set my parents had. Here I am a teenager in the 80’s and had “older” information as a starting point. I cannot explain to a teenager today how much finding information was complete “manual labor”. A trip to the library, the card catalog and walking up and down aisles to find out the book had been checked out by someone else. Another “point of contention” teachers who discredited what I was reading based on the source that got me interested in reading to begin with. Once again, teachers are another group that hates outsiders moving in on their territory. “We shall be the only ones to dispense knowledge based on our approved reading list.”
I also wanted to say that I saw many in high school who did indeed act like Beavis and Butthead. It was a stereotype that was embarrassing. I never knew why they had to ingest a lot drugs and alcohol before a concert to the point they forgot what happened at the concert. I had a paper route then and made about $30/ week. And that $15-20 ticket was half my pay. There was no way I was “incoherent” for the concert. I also had to sleep on the sidewalk to be able to buy the ticket. I was not going to waste that effort either.
I like the latest Mastodon album Once More ‘Round the Sun. I like the music video for the single High Road.
The narrative of the video shows that music like this will always be drawn towards by the “awkward”.
Soundgarden’s album Superunkown is the one get all the attention because it is there biggest selling one. However, the one that really does it for me is the previous one Badmotorfinger. This is the song that is resonating with me a bit more now.
Do you ever find yourself in a room of people who know well? Or you used to know well? And you realize that time has a “disproportionate” in distance amongst those you find there. The “historical timeline” has taken a turn that may not be coming back.
This song from Tool in a way relates to the message of the previous Soundgarden song. It is found on the Lateralus album.
I think the title relates to something I am currently in the midst of sifting through. “I know the pieces fit”. But the reality is they no longer “fit” like they did. Things have definitely shifted. They are being “reassembled” into a new configuration. It is hard to say. But. If the only thing holding your relationship (whether it is a person, place or thing) is because of having a “history” then it is most likely for the most part over with.
One of the things that happens where I live in Western New York region is I get music from Canadian radio stations. Canada has a rule that their radio stations must have 60% of the music performed by Canadian artists. So I get a lot of rock bands from the region on the playlist. Many of those bands play the Buffalo region to decent side crowds. But here is the part that drives me nuts. The local Buffalo stations do not play most of that music at all. Exception being Rush. However, when you go to the concert those same radio stations will plaster the venue with advertisement that they are sponsoring the concert. This is the latest song from The Headstones.
I find it healthy to play music that has to be turn up a bit. It also clears the room. And that lets you know who your real “allies” are. People who are willing to listen to this music are the ones who are more “open-minded”. And just more “willing”.
Love/hate is all the same. In the end, it is a “zero sum” game between the two. And this is the song for it.
And then there are the times when I just listening to the music to either get refocused or to decompress. People usually tell me that I am a “bad mood” when I am doing this. It is usually the ones who never take the time to understand anyways. So why waste time trying to convince them otherwise.
Henry Rollins may have retired for the most part from playing music. However, it still has many spots in my playlist. It still works for me. And I like the Taxi Driver reference in this final video.