Monday, April 14, 2008

The Hammer of Justice Crushes You

Fury can be a big part of metal, especially when we get into the NWOBHM/thrash era and all the dudes who were too hairy and loved pyro too much to be in a hardcore band injected solos and double-kicks into an HC format. Most pre-South of Heaven Slayer stuff is rooted hyper stiff in hardcore, or at least the Earth A.D. vision of it, except that they go between yelling about war and all that and making sweet devil voices, whereas hardcore, and punk in general, loses wikked heaviness points for refusing to engage one of metal's most important subjects: Satan. Perhaps to reconcile props to the Lord of Lies with Suicidal/DKs-style intensity, thrash generally redirects the punk's political anger towards a set of more general authority figures while still leaving room to throw goats. So while intense initial bands (D.R.I., M.D.C., whatevs) funnel all of their rage at specific political figures like Reagan or Robert Bork (who probably doesn't have a song written about him but should, hopefully about how weird his head looks), metal bands opt instead to bitch about authority in general.

It's like there's a big Kramer vs. Kramer cusody battle going on in which thrash's parents, the pro-evil, frequently slothful Dustin Hoffman/Black Sabbath and the uptight, speedier Meryl Streep/Bad Brains, duke it out for who gets to visit their pimply kids the most. I've never seen K vs K but I assume that it ends with a no-holds-barred firepit throwdown between the leads that ends with Hoffman totally reverting to Straw Dogs form and going after Streep with an antique bear trap. No matter who wins, the child is still all sulky and shit and writes rocking tunes about how pissed off they are and how everyone sucks all the time forever. Sabbath is never really mad about anything, and even in their darkest stages writing about how drugs are suddenly real bad ("Snowblind", "Megalomania") instead of the fuckin' best thing since God died on the toilet("Sweet Leaf", "Faeries Wear Boots"), Ozzy just sounds more hurt and confused than anything else. When he famously yells "you bastards!" on "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath," dude's just venting, swinging wildly at whatever moves with his fringed jacket on the whole time.

But if Ozzy wasn't concerned with supernatural miscellany and being awesome for a living, he'd totally recognize that the government is lame (and kind of does on "War Pigs," although in Sabbath parlance, the association of generals with black masses and evil shit is probably positive). One, they hate long hair, which, as Saint Vitus retardedly puts it, is stupid weak. Two, they're biased towards old people. statistically the least metal people ever created. It's always those bastards who win the lottery, obviously a set-up by "Uncle SCam".

But the most damning piece of evidence comes in late 1970s arcade games licensed by the likes of Aerosmith (ew) and Journey (awesome, and way heavier than one thinks) in which governments in not-too-distant dystopias illegalize rock & roll. True, rocking the whole "if rock & roll is outlawed then only outlaws" reduction is an undeniably badass prospect, but the future gov'ts imprison righteous dudes in their cyber-prisons or whatever and you need scarved men who call THEMSELVES "the glitter twins" to rescue you. While King/Hanneman etc. might have kind of dug the idea of going to jail and being able to freely display their Nazi "flair" without having to constantly dodge media accusations that they're clearly caveman rednecks, I can't imagine Dave Lombardo being overly jazzed about getting locked up and Araya wouldn't last a week in the joint. DJ Qualls would have a better shot at making it out of D-Block for Christmas's sake.
Metal has got to do its part to keep its completely unprepared members from getting booked for their thundering riffs and thus must stand in direct opposition to an overwhelmingly far-reaching power structure, usually represented by the villains in Twisted Sister videos. As long as Dave Mustaine isn't leading it, the revolution will thus be METALLIZED.

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