02 October 2011

Why I Choose Heavy Metal (Why Should You?)

I tried...technically! I can't say that I haven't.

I tried to listen to popular music, when at the age of 9 or 10 (I don't really remember and honestly, I try not to), I found myself collecting photos of boybands (you know, the ones that surprisingly enough have lost their other half and cry their eyes out because they are alone singing on a rainy night? Those ones!). You see, boybands where a hit in the 90s era. The thing is, though, I don't even know a song of theirs if you ask me now (it is a fact that your brain automatically blocks stressful or negative experiences).

People who know me would say that hearing is not the best of my 5 (or maybe 6?) senses. My own little research suggests this is probably attributed to several vain attempts to listen to a whole Britney Spears song instead of several years of Heavy Metal madness.

You see, even then, I kind of felt that pop (where the hell does that term come from anyway?) was not the music that "touched" my heart (probably because it's empty, shallow, and useless) and I realised that quite early in my life - thankfully long before I had my ears exploding from all the crap they had to endure and before all my brain cells had the chance to melt away, while I was trying to discover myself!

My induction to the "Heavy Metal Family" happened when my heart skipped a beat while listening to the combination of Ozzy's vocals and Iommi's musical genius on Electric Funeral. My full conversion took place while listening to AC/DC when I realised I was actually heading for heaven and not hell, as instructed...

Heavy Metal has always been misunderstood by society although it's the most genuine genre out there (not considering the blood-sucking production companies - hey, the world is not that perfect - and the odd band complex with money - yes Lars I am talking about you).

On the contrary, pop music has been reduced to vanity because of:

1. The song lyrics - a 10 yr old would come up with a better line than "umbrella, ella, ella...oh!" or "hit me baby one more time" (honestly shoot the guy that writes this crap, it's an intellectual if not a social crime damn it)
 2. The music - which is completely computerised and basically indistinctive (wait a minute, I thought music = instruments, no? Well, what do I know!)
 3. The voice - better put a cow sing since the performer only needs to move lips and other appropriate body parts
 4. The "artist" - who is made to order (too much make-up, too little clothes, few brain cells and even less synapses)

Music needs to make sense, right? Just an overview of the great musicians and performers of all time indicates that most come from the Rock n' Roll and Heavy Metal music genres (truth is in these genres if you are crap you are ripped to pieces by fans, deservingly so!). Heavy Metal artists appreciate the experience of producing something great and most of the times meaningful (I admit there are some "diamonds" out there too - the glam years produced most of these and so did the 00s).

What I am trying to say is that Heavy Metal with all its oddities (Marilyn Manson, Alice Cooper), its strange/invalid connection to the occult (Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin), its social stigma (i.e. sex, drugs, & rock n' roll), its weird phenomena (air guitar, headbanging, sign of the horns), its exceptional vocalists (RJ Dio, Rob Halford, Bruce Dickinson, Robert Plant etc), its musical geniuses (Tony Iommi, Keith Richards, Jimmy Page etc), its out-of-this-world lyricists (RJ Dio - yes again!, Lemmy Kilmister etc), its uncounted lawsuits (Twisted Sister, Judas Priest, Manson), its anthems (Stairway to Heaven, Smoke on the Water, Back in Black, Sweet Child of Mine and many more), is undoubtedly the most versatile music genre which remains strong even after 40 years, which still recruits more and more fans, a genre which, when it evolves, it does so in the most creative and amazing way possible.

Allow yourself to go to just one live gig, watch the passion and energy with which each band member delivers and the ecstasy of the crowd, and tell me then if you actually need drugs to get you that high!

Welcome to the Heavy Metal world!

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