Friday, February 01, 2008

Hipster Metal



Yeah, that thing. The trend of the last year or so in which hip magazines and Websites cover certain heavy metal bands they deem chic and cool. Some of its first subjects were progressives like Sunn O))), Boris and Mastodon. As frustrating as it was to see a Website cover and equate Mastodon and the Hold Steady together, it was understandable because well, Mastodon's really fucking good. It makes perfect sense for someone to worship both at the alters of Mastodon and Radiohead.

In fact, the only coverage that was truly dumbfounding was that of Southern Lord and Relapse bands. There is nothing remotely accessible about Sunn O))), which is why it has always been the underground of the underground. So why the coverage? Why the mentions in Spin, Rolling Stone and Pitchfork? The hipster metal fad has always been inevitable. There' always been something bewitching (sorry) by the darkly esoteric nature of heavy metal in general. By nature, metal deals with mysterious and unnatural subjects, which are both entertaining and contemplative.

So maybe the "hipster metal" fad should be of no surprise. Even Shins fans must find metal alluring for at least a little while. Doesn't that guy from the Mountain Goats write for Decibel? Today in a write up on the new Disfear record, Pitchfork referenced Tragedy, Kylesa and Victims. They just couldn't help it, though. No one can disregard D-beat and Sabbath riffs. That's the point! The difference is that next year when we're still here, they'll have moved on to something new. Just please don't let it be disco-punk again.

1 comment:

broseph said...

i know how you feel. but i actually have gotten in touch with the guy who writes the "show no mercy" column over at pitchfork, and he seems like a genuinely good guy.

the truth is, most of the "hipster metal" writers at those large music sites are legit. they are just only into french black metal bands and southern lord drone. it's alright. they don't discriminate against other tastes.

brandon (the pitchfork guy) gave me the heads up about the new hate eternal album well before it was released. and he doesn't really dig death metal at all, it seems.