Friday, May 24, 2013

Metal + Diversity = Terrible

I'm getting the distinct feeling the next Megadeth album is just going to be fucking terrible. Not only did the first single sound like something that may as well have been released by a late 80s hair band, they've been throwing that word "diversity" around a lot. Listen Metal fans, when Thrash bands throw around the word "diversity" what it really means is "this album is going to be radio friendly garbage." I was hoping that "Super Collider" would be the exception and not the rule on this album, but just based on the rhetoric coming out of the band... I'm getting the exact opposite impression now. Megadeth are poised to commit career suicide for a second time. I know Dave is on a permanent quest to outdo his former band, but shouldn't that be something that one does by making better music? What revenge is there in "out sucking" them? Of course, we all know delusions of grandeur run rampant among the members of the so-called "big four of thrash." None of them can seem to come to grips with the fact (and i'm sorry ladies and gentlemen, it IS fact) that they are all good at one thing, and one thing only: Thrash Metal (in the case of Metallica... watered down Thrash). Before recording this inevitable travesty.... Dave and Co. would have done well to revisit such "classic" releases as: Stomp 442, The Sound of White Noise, Volume 8: The Threat is Real, We've Come For You All, Load, ReLoad, St. Anger, Diabolus in Musica.... and even his own works Cryptic Writings and Risk. These weak, half assed commercial hard rock offerings are what are produced when Thrash bands play at musical "diversity."

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Progressive Rock Recommendations (1970 to 1980)

At this point in time, Prog may as well be rechristened "Zombie Rock" because everyone and their grandmother's band seems to be picking its corpse for ideas these days. So, in honour of this dead, irrelevant, unpopular yet somehow incredibly alive, relevant, and popular genre.... I've decided to recommend a few of my favourites.

-"Hemispheres"-Rush (1977)

-"Selling England by the Pound"-Genesis (1973)

-"Larks' Tongues in Aspic"-King Crimson (1973)

-"Flying Teapot"-Gong (1973)

-"The Inner Mounting Flame"-Mahavishnu Orchestra (1971)

-"Relayer"-Yes (1974)

-"One Size Fits All"-Frank Zappa (1975)

-"Emerson Lake and Palmer"-ELP (1970)

-"In the Land of Grey and Pink"-Caravan (1971)

-"Masque"-Kansas (1975)

There you have it, 10 of my favourite "classic prog" albums. I know Mahavishnu Orchestra is technically jazz fusion..... but they definitely could fit in well alongside something like ELP, so I've included them on this list. I spent quite a few years immersing myself in this genre, to the point that I could probably do a separate list for Progressive Metal and "Neo Prog" as well.... which I may do at some point later. Anyway, enjoy the greasy hippie music. And I know you may be asking yourself "where's the pink floyd... did he leave them out on purpose?" Yes, yes I did.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Open Mindedness Is Overrated.

Honestly, I think I could fill a novel the size of Atlas Shrugged these days with rants about everything that is wrong with the Akerfeldt/Akesson/Mendez/Axenrot lineup of Opeth and the albums (excuse me... "observations"... how fucking pretentious) that they put out. A couple years ago, Opeth released an album called Heritage... I think I covered that in the previous entry. Two years on and...... what a surprise..... people still dislike it. Not content to live with the fact that people have differing opinions on things and that art is subjective and as such no one is going to like everything you do... Akesson and Akerfeldt have taken to that most time honoured, and vilest of metal band turned shit traditions: blaming bad music on the fans. Yes, that's right. Apparently the issue with Heritage is not that it's a boring retread of something that was done better thirty years ago, and that it sounds like the songs are just edited together out of random bits and pieces. No no no, the issue is that guys like me, guys who followed this fucking band for over a decade are "not very open minded." Someone needs to set guys like this straight on what the phrase "open-minded" means. It does not imply that one should force himself to like everything a band puts out. Which brings me to the overall theme of this article. This is not an Opeth rant, this is about metal fans. More specifically the modern metal fan. You are all a bunch of pussies. Spineless, weak kneed, limp-wristed pussies. Why do I say this? Well, because once some person accuses you of being "closed minded" you wilt like a flower in the bitter winter cold. It sickens me, absolutely sickens me when I see metal fans that fall all over themselves naming lists.... big, long lists of the "non metal" bands they listen to in an effort to impress people that are still gonna call you "closed minded" anyway simply because a couple of the genres you listen to may be called "(insert word here) metal". What the hell is wrong with all of you? I've been a metal fan my entire life. I've been accused of elitism, mocked, and endured myriad other bullshit for being a metal fan. Never once have I felt the need to apologize for it. Nor have I ever felt the need to assure people that I listen to "so much more than just metal." No person on this planet listens to one genre of music exclusively. However, if they wanted to.... how is that wrong? I just don't get it. "Open minded" simply means that you are open to entertaining new ideas or forms of expression.... it does not mean that you have to like them. Don't let people like Flo Mournier, the guys in Opeth, or their fans make you feel like you are the problem, you are not. THEY are the problem. Their egos (in the case of the musicians) and sycophantic manner (in the case of the fans) have rendered them incapable of handling counter-opinions. People like this have no place in the arts. I often find myself wondering why they become artists of any kind if they are not prepared to deal with these negative criticisms. Just stop listening to them, and grow a spine, you're making our genre look bad by wantonly trying to impress these people by attempting to conform to their flawed (read: INCORRECT) definition of "open minded."

Monday, May 6, 2013

I Have No Place in the Metal Community

     Well, dear readers..... I regret to inform you that I have to shut down this little enterprise. It has certainly been fun writing these diatribes for you the last few months, and I hope you have enjoyed reading them. Unfortunately, I have been informed by David Draiman, that pillar and arbiter of all things metal, that hatred and bitterness have no place in the metal community. Therefore, it is with a heavy heart that I announce the end of The Blank Page. I will begin the process tomorrow of converting it over to a blog specializing in videos of cute puppies, kittens, and infants. To anyone whom I may have offended, i offer a sincere and heartfelt apology. I can only hope that you all will forgive my terrible, terrible conduct.

     Yeah, right. I don't think any metal pundits are going to silence themselves because the gimp from Disturbed has an attack of conscience after a guy he insulted dies of a spider bite. You keep thinking your opinion is sent down from on high, Draiman. I'll just go on thinking you're a pretentious ass and laughing at your various idiotic diatribes and pontifications.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Golden Gods? Make Mine Atheism, Then.

Not content to look like a bunch of hipster poseur dipshits in print alone, about 5 years ago the idiots at "Revolver" decided to put on a little awards show. You see, after years of the Grammys misunderstanding their own metal category, it was time for someone to devote an entire awards ceremony to.. well.... misunderstanding metal. For those of you who have never seen it, the Golden Gods is a quite pathetic affair. Once a year, a legion of poseurs drag themselves out of their mommy's basement and cram into a theater or a nightclub somewhere in California to watch a bunch of poseurs with gigantic egos and recording contracts jerk each other off on stage. Which is a fancy way of saying that by trying to create a "metal" alternative to the Grammy Awards, Revolver have actually made the Grammy ceremony seem more metal by comparison. I'm sorry, I don't need to see a bunch of guys who spend more time on their facial hair than their music and who wouldn't know what the fuck metal was if it brutally ass raped them in a back alley with a broken glass bottle give each other little faux gold statues. They already have something like that..... it's called the Grammy for "Best Heavy Metal Performance." Seriously Revolver readers... you're pretty fucking stupid if you think Five Finger Death Punch are the least bit "metal." And Corey Taylor is not a metal vocalist in the slightest.... let alone a great one. It's, for lack of a better term, fucking Jock Rock. Seriously, the stuff this awards show pays tribute to is not metal. In fact, when I was in high school... the guys that listened to the kind of bullshit that Revolver bills as Metal used to threaten to kick my ass for listening to.... well..... metal. In fact, I always find myself wondering if the idiots that actually watch this little awards show could even name any "true" metal songs that aren't called "Walk," "Raining Blood," or "Master of Puppets." Something tells me they can't. It's the equivalent of those fucking morons you see walking around wearing Dead Kennedy's swag and can't name a single song other than "Police Truck," which they likely heard when they were playing their older brother's dusty copy of "Tony Hawk's Pro Skater." The idea of Revolver doing a metal awards show has got to be the worst idea since Al Pacino's fake Caribbean accent or nominating "Dubya" for the presidency. In all honesty, I don't give a fuck if a bunch of poseurs want to get together and play bland rap rock and pay tribute to it even though it is was played out as soon as Anthrax did that stupid song with Public Enemy, but DO NOT fucking call that shit metal. It is bland ass commercial hard rock. Nothing More, Nothing Less. Why not call your awards show "The Revolver Corporate Phallus Tickling Awards?" It would be a more accurate descriptor.