Jan 232011

I expect people from outside the world of extreme metal are massively confused by the way we talk and write about the music we like. Pretend for a minute that you’re not part of this metallic world we inhabit and think about how you’d react to hearing people describe music as “brutal”, “bludgeoning”, “sick”, “putrid”, “vicious”, “morbid”, “frigid”, “pummeling”, “evil”, or “skull-cleaving”. Or reading a review that describes vocals as “acid-drenched” or “bestial”, or raves about music that “guts you like a fish” or makes you want to “bang your head”.

If you were a square, these adjectives and metaphors would sound like condemnation, when instead they’re meant as high praise. In what other musical genre do fans praise their music with terms like these? The answer is — nowhere else.

Of course, there’s a reason why metalheads rave about extreme metal in terms that (figuratively) signify bodily injury or illness, demonic possession, or mental decimation. In our humble opinion, it’s because those terms are linguistically accurate. The words capture what we feel and what we imagine — and sometimes what we do — when we listen to the music, even when there’s a melodic core to the songs (as there often is, even though many non-metalheads would never be able to hear the melody).

Maybe that answer just begs the question, or suggests a new one: Why do we like music that evokes these kinds of feelings and images? That’s an old subject, one that comes up whenever most of us try to explain to a non-metalhead why we like this music (eg, the kind of music we cover at NCS). But we’re not sure we’ve ever directly invited a discussion about the topic here at NCS. So on this Sunday morning, that’s what we’d like to hear — your thoughts about why we like music that’s best described in the kind of terms quoted above — and we’ve got a newly uploaded video that sets the mood quite nicely while you muster your thoughts. (more after the jump . . .)

The video shows the Swedish death-metal band Evocation playing live at the Summer Breeze festival in 2009. It was professionally filmed with multiple cameras from multiple angles. Evocation just uploaded the video a couple weeks ago, and we just saw it two days ago. Not sure why it took so long to appear, but we’re glad it did.

The song is appropriate to today’s topic for a couple of reasons. First, the song is called “Razored to the Bone” (the last track on the band’s 2008 album Dead Calm Chaos). Now, that’s a cool title, and it kinda metaphorically captures what the music does to you, but while a title like that attracts us, it would probably repel many non-metalheads.

Second, there’s the music itself. Here are the words we’d use to describe it for readers like you (would this make any sense to non-metalheads, and if it did, would they interpret this as a positive recommendation, and how would they feel about being called a motherfucker by the vocalist?):

It pulls the cord on a gassed-up, old-school Swedeath chainsaw and starts to grind and cut and smoke with an infectious rhythm and a meaty dose of double-bass, and then — just when you think the song is over — it re-starts with a backed-down slab of down-tuned melodic doom. Both fast and slow, the song is prime headbang material. Check it out, and don’t forget to leave us a comment!

For more info about Evocation if you’re new to he band, check out our MISCELLANY comments on their new album here.

  34 Responses to “RAZORED TO THE BONE”

  1. This is a particularly interesting issue, and one that I’ve thought about many times. Bearing in mind that I don’t have a degree in psychology or a related field, I’ll try to explain my take on this situation.

    I can’t tell you exactly why I like metal, but I can simultaneously tell you exactly why I like metal. I don’t know why I’m attracted to aggressive music, but I know that it’s the only kind of music that I really enjoy. From sludge riffs to blast beats to thrashy guitar leads, I really like music that warrants head banging (And for this matter – why do I enjoy head banging? Many of my non-metal friends have asked why that act is enjoyable as opposed to simply sitting alert and paying attention to the music. Personally, head banging enhances my experience). Here’s the point though: I don’t know why metal and hardcore make me feel good (and good is intentionally left vague here because I use different genres to enhance different types of emotions); all I know is that it’s the only music I’ve ever wanted to explore. Did that make sense?

    To clarify, I’m not sure what led me to metal in the first place (whether it was intrinsically in my “nature” or it was “nurtured” based on experiences I had in my life or some combination of both). But, I can tell you that I have discovered that it does invoke pleasurable emotions in me and that’s what keeps me coming back for more.

    • It sounds like you got into aggressive music almost immediately, while other people (like me) followed a more winding path. But the common factor seems to be the emotional effect it produces — and the physical effect (head banging, which both enhances the experience and is a result of it). I still have trouble explaining/describing that emotional effect to my non-metalhead friends, and it’s really different emotional effects: bands like Evocation, Burzum, older Bury Your Dead, In Flames, Eluveitie, Opeth, Neurosis, and Mastodon each produce a different feeling — though they all make me want to headbang.

      • Yes, the immersion to metal happened quite quickly, especially since I was in middle school at the advent of Napster, so I missed (for better or worse) almost the entire tape trading culture (The technology by which we acquire our music is also another issue entirely). After getting sick of what was played on the radio, I quickly began to download other heavy music based on friends’ recommendations, and then could skim through other user’s libraries, assuming they had similar tastes. By 7th or 8th grade, I was really digging Cannibal Corpse and Bolt Thrower, which is a pretty quick switch to death metal. The sad part was that I skipped over the good thrash going on, and I really like some of that stuff now.

        Additionally, on the topic of non-metalheads just not “getting it,” I’d like to compare our relative thoughts of heaviness. The last time I drove myself and my friends (none of them were into heavy music) they all groaned when I turned the key and unleashed The Acacia Strain on them. They asked if I had anything softer and I said “Sure I do.” So I put in an Every Time I Die record – New Junk Aesthetic. I love this record, it’s great hard rock and, to me, is easily not as heavy as The Acacia Strain, especially because there are even clean vocals(!). When they heard it, they all said “Dan, this is the same, can we just listen to the radio?” To us metalheads, the difference between deathcore and hard rock/metalcore couldn’t be more disparate, but to them, it’s just more distorted guitars and screaming – hopeless. Since the idea of listening to the radio is about as appealing as masturbating with sandpaper, we enjoyed the sounds of silence.

        • Hah! This proves the point perfectly: An inability to distinguish Every Time I Die from The Acacia Strain. It’s all just “noise”. I still stupidly try to pick more “accessible” metal to play for friends who aren’t already into this music, and it almost never works. Sometimes I get polite but condescending comments, accompanied by the kind of pitying look I see people give Down’s syndrome kids. Other times, I just get flamed.

        • Well, I got to experience tape trading and the benefits of Napster and its knockoffs (I started using Morpheus, my roommate at the time used Audiogalaxy), and it worked with both forms. If a friend had a few albums you liked, chances are they might have other stuff that you hadn’t heard of that you’d like. Same thing with strangers online, but with the added benefit of finding demos, bootlegs and other obscurities.

          And yeah, it takes a while to find the differences between the labels/sub-genres and such, but even after listening to metal for over 20 years, some stuff is still hard to differentiate. I don’t think calling it all metal works, while on the other extreme, there are too many labels being tossed around. Sometimes a band is simply death metal, not extreme blackened progressive folk metal.

          Metalheads aren’t idiots; we know that being under one banner doesn’t mean band A is going to sound like band B does, whereas in most other genres, it is a bit harder to tell the difference between most of the pop tarts or alt-rock bands or hip-hop artists or whatever – although there’s probably a degree out outsider syndrome at play that we see with non-metalheads when exposed to our chosen music.

          • Your points are well taken, and I agree with you, especially about labeling a band. I didn’t mean to just toss out genres and categorize bands, but what I meant to illustrate was my friends’ lack of understanding of appreciating heavy music in general. Different bands elicit radically different emotions for me (which is also why I personally tend to group them into activity based groups, though I recognize this may not be common nor desirable). The most powerful example for me is probably melodeath, which can create incredibly beautiful soundscapes, but I ultimately agree with Islander: “many non-metalheads would never be able to hear the melody.”

  2. That we can latch onto such terminology and walk away with a positive impression does make one wonder. None of these are particularly descriptive, but they can convey a sense of satisfaction and approval of a band, song or album. To those for whom metal (in any form) is foreign, these words mean nothing, but for fans, they are words we’ve become accustomed to. We know what they mean in regards to our music. Other genres have their own buzz words, as do other forms of entertainment.

    True, some things may get tossed around a bit too frequently and can lose their impact, while those of us who talk at length about bands or albums tend to have certain words or phrases that are commonly used – maybe even to the point of becoming a bit of a crutch. I admit it – some things I say over and over, but I wouldn’t say that’s necessarily a bad thing.

    Personally, if I read a comment somewher saying that a certain album is sick, that tells me next to nothing. I’d rather have something with a bit more depth to it, but I also realize, understand and accept that some aren’t going to put much effort into telling me why said album is sick. I think among metalheads, there’s a bit of a leap of faith with certain material, putting one’s trust into the words of a certain writer, blog, website or what have you.

    As to why I like this kind of stuff, it’s hard to say.

    While a lot of my early musical tastes were influenced by my mom, things took a huge leap forward when I was exposed to more than her record collection or what I could hear on the radio or see on MTV when I could sneak in an hour or two at my grandmother’s. I don’t know what it is about …And Justice For All, but that set me down the path of metal, one that I gladly explored. I started off by getting every album I could from Metallica, Megadeth and Anthrax to start off with and went from there. Sepultura was probably my first real taste of metal approaching the outer extremes, with both Beneath The Remains and Arise bought without hearing anything from either album. And I wasn’t disappointed. At the same time, I also started to explore other areas, stepping into the world of progressive metal with the likes of Queenryche and Dream Theater, both bands offering something a bit more detailed and intelligent. Again, I wasn’t disappointed. I would lend my tapes to classmates and borrow from others and was able to experience more of what was out there. Metal was nearing its peak, but I had gotten into some of the stuff that wasn’t usually played on MTV or the radio and was moving away from the pop and rap, both of which had started to become stale to me – and I wasn’t alone in that feeling.

    After my mom died (18 years ago as of tomorrow, actually), things changed a bit. But my new classmates were still a good source of discovering new tunes, which is how I got into the likes of Carcass, Napalm Death and Entombed, the heaviest stuff I had heard that I liked. Listening to the college radio station helped a lot too, giving me a glimpse into more music that was normally outside of the reach of myself and my classmates. This is where I got my first taste of bands like Cradle Of Filth, Amorphis, Opeth and Edge Of Sanity, among others. When I went to Germany, I was able to explore more of this stuff in depth. When I returned, I took a detour and started to explore power and progressive metal, in part because of the music tastes of those I hung out with in and around college.

    In the years that have passed, I’ve stuck to these paths. Not everything I’ve heard, I’ve liked. But that’s alright. In embracing more than one style of metal, as opposed to focusing mostly on one area, I’ve found that my listening habits tend to be like extended mood swings. At times, I want vocals that I can barely make out, sometimes I want the weird stuff, sometimes I want flash, sometimes I want the complicated stuff, sometimes I want it all. My current listening is power and prog heavy, but there are days when I feel the need to put those albums away and listen to something that can topple small children and cause head trauma at sufficient volume.

    But I suppose none of that really answers the question you’ve posed.

    To be honest (the brutal kind, just for you), I don’t really know. I don’t want to dissect and analyze my musical choices. I think there’s a danger in digging too deep in certain things; it ruins the experience. At most, I will say that I like metal because I can appreciate how it all comes together and the music tends to be more intricate and detailed than that found in other genres. Plus, having song structure helps. Sure, progressive metal may wander, but it’s not a clusterfuck. I suppose that’s why I don’t care much for grind and its variants.

    I could say the same for jazz, but I haven’t really listened to enough of it to really pass judgment – I simply haven’t liked much of what I’ve heard and while certain bands or styles are fine being an acquired taste, but for something broader, that doesn’t work. Either you like it or you don’t. I have respect for jazz, but not a like for it. The same goes for blues. Just not really my thing, although I have heard more blues music that I’ve liked than jazz. Rap is another creature altogether, having gone through phases over the yeras. Some of the stuff out now under the banner (or of hip-hop) doesn’t sound all that bad to me. It seems to have gotten through most of its pubescent stage (which for metal would probably be 80’s hair/glam) and has matured a great deal. Still not something I’m likely to explore on my own, but at least it’s now something I can tolerate again and not have an overwhelming urge to block out the sounds.

    But for every advance, there are also individuals and bands that drag things down. I won’t name any names, out of mercy for the guilty.

    • Thanks for putting so much into this comment. I have multiple reactions to what you wrote, so I’ll post a few replies. Your last point about jazz is something I’ve thought about before. I think certain kinds of jazz and certain kinds of extreme metal — eg, Atheist, Cynic, Pestilence, Meshuggah — have some things in common: the music is intricate, technical, and improvisational sounding. But I really like all those bands I just mentioned, I’ve never been able to get into jazz (even guitar-driven jazz fusion), and I’m not sure why. As you say, jazz seems to be something that you either like or don’t, but the same thing could be said about aggressive metal.

    • My introduction to music also came from listening to my mom’s albums. She was a classically trained pianist and played as a soloist with a symphony orchestra, but at home, when she played albums, she played other music more often than classical. It was a very diverse collection, but in the “pop” genre, it was mainly lots of 60s music. No metal, of course, but I still think her albums made me more open to new experiences than I would have been if I hadn’t grown up around them.

    • Lots of those short-hand reference words I quoted in the post are handy. They’re almost like a code when people talk together. Some are more descriptive than others (you’re right that “sick” doesn’t tell you much of anything, other than the fact that the person using the word really likes the music), but at least if people try to write about music, they need to come up with more or better words if they’re going to succeed in giving readers a good idea of what the music is like, while avoiding cliches. I’ve found out how difficult that is. It’s a constant challenge.

    • “In embracing more than one style of metal, as opposed to focusing mostly on one area, I’ve found that my listening habits tend to be like extended mood swings”: That reminds me of the guest post that Dan wrote for us a while back (“Music to xxxxx By”). Different kinds of metal suit different moods or activities — or generate different moods. Maybe you want the music to change your mood, to pick you up if you’re down, or help you get to a certain place in your mind. If you don’t really get into metal, you don’t realize how incredibly diverse it is. That’s another thing non-metalheads just do not get. They lump everything together and brand all of it in the same way (usually with a negative word).

      • Well, I don’t know if that’s the case with me. I typically don’t have any set music I do certain stuff to. I tend to stick to the music already present in the games I play, I don’t work out so there’s no need for a playlist for that and when I’m at work, I don’t always have the iPod with me, and when I do, it’s just a sampling of what can be found in larger amounts on my computer. It’s surprising how litle 2 GB of music really is these days when you have a collection that can probably take up most of a new hard drive these days if it’s all ripped or copied over from CD/DVD backup; I’ve been meaning to get something with more capacity, but getting a (mostly) new computer and working on expanding my software and content has made me put that off for a while longer.

        I go through streaks where I want my death metal, some where I listen to prog, some where I want the cheese of power (and certain progressive metal), sometimes I get nostalgic and break out some hair metal or 80’s/90’s thrash, while other times I wander away from metal completely. But most of the time, it’s a mix of all of the above. A lot of times, I’m not too far away from prog – I surround what I’m working on with similar bands or previous efforts by the band(s) I’m focusing on, That’s just how I choose to go about writing. But I usually have to take a day or two away from all of that to avoid overloading myself so I can try to retain focus when I get back to those albums.

        Even if I don’t really pick stuff for the things I do day to day, I suppose I could find trends based on my overall mood when I deviate from my usual unhappy place. On my “good” days, maybe some of the music I’m listening to would reflect that, just as my craptacular days might do with other bands/songs. That would be something worth studying – not my personal picks, mind you, but a study into listening patterns by people who know that kind of stuff.

        It’s a no-brainer that there is a correlation between art, music, literature and such (no, I don’t think it’s all art, but that’s a matter for another time) and a person’s mood and/or environment. I’m not going to pretend otherwise, but I also think it’s dangeroud to jump to too many coclusions about the relationship between a person’s musical tastes and their actions. If we were to do that, I’d be fucked, since there are so many strikes against me becaue of things I do, don’t do and the did’s and did not’s of the past.

        • Since I got serious about this blog, I spend most of my time listening to new music whenever I can, so I’m not matching up particular bands or musical styles with particular activities either. In a way, that’s been a drawback to doing this, because I don’t have much time to listen to old favorites. When I do, though, it’s usually not connected to any particular activity. Usually, it’s because something new I’ve been listening to triggers a memory of another band or another song, or it’s mood-oriented (either I want to get into a certain mood or I want something that fits the mood I’m already in).

  3. My first steps into the darkness of metal came as a seven year old in 1982 by way of KISS, specifically Destroyer and Gene Simmons’ solo album. I felt naturally drawn to it, of course I had only heard some old rock in small amounts and country in large amounts before then. The guitar tone just seemed to make me feel good and coupled with the imagery KISS used I was hooked.

    Of course I slowly branched into AC/DC, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Ozzy, Black Sabbath ……..and you know, ’till now. I always enjoyed the imagery that these early explored artists used nearly as much as the music. Again it seemed like a natural draw.

    Along the way I’ve come to appreciate other forms of music and better tolerate those that I can’t necessarily appreciate. I’ve also come to appreciate nearly every form of metal and like ElvisShotJFK said (better than I could’ve) my listening habits are like extended mood swings. Rarely do those moods swing outside of metal or at least hard rock, but when they do they pass back to some form of metal or other quickly enough and usually with a refreshed appreciation for the aggression, darkness, brutality, technicality and all that we love about our metal.

    So I’m going to say that we metal-heads are naturals. People either get it or they don’t. It may take more to awaken the metal monster in some than in others but I think it just isn’t there in some and the rest of us couldn’t get rid of it if we wanted to.

    • Your last point is a provocative idea, related to the question we asked in the post, but also different. Is it true that metal-heads are “naturals” — we “get” the music (and it “gets” us), and we can’t let go of it — while other people will never like it or even understand the appeal? I hadn’t really thought about that question before, but I think I agree with you that the answer is Yes, as long as you factor in that some metalheads (like me) didn’t “get” the music immediately. But once you’re there, you’re really there and there’s no turning back.

  4. I sought out heavy music from early on. I remember being a kid and listening to
    Ride the Lightning and thinking “Oh no, this is way too much,” then turning right back around and listening to it again immediately. Then I remember being stunned when I relized that not everyone else loved Metallica. That was when I first realized that I was gonna like heavy shit for a long road to come.

    The easiest way that I can explain it is energy. The music makes me want to fuck shit up!

    • Like we said when we started this site, that’s the key for us, or at least for me: the super-high energy. And that’s what’s missing from other music. Even hard rock just bores me. I was into punk before I came to metal, for basically the same reason — the energy. But aggressive metal upped the ante, and now I don’t even listen to my old punk albums much any more.

  5. To be honest I have no idea why I just liked that, but I’m sure I fuckin’ did! I’ve asked myself the same sort of questions before. I used to think I liked Metal because of its musical complexity and sophistication, but I’ve realized lately that that’s only part of the reason.

    The second thing is that I like honest music. Not money making crap. That one’s obvious though.

    The third thing is that I just don’t like pussy music. Shit’s gotta be loud and serious. Can’t take most soft stuff serious, a few exceptions made of course. I’m not made of powdered sugar. I need fuckin’ real men’s music. I need that as much as I don’t need to wear fuckin’ Prada underwear or bloody moisturizer for my face. I don’t do that sort of crap, no matter how many times they throw those “What men want” commercials at me. It’s my way to say fuck you to a society in which commerce tries to make bitches out of men and that tries to make everything profitable.

    • Sorry for the delayed response — I was moisturizing when your comment came in. And then I had a nail appointment.

      I agree that honesty and a “fuck you” attitude go hand-in-hand with high energy (the “loud and serious” part) as the qualities that to me are most attractive about aggressive metal. That’s not to say that there aren’t metal bands out there who are almost as commercial as the crap that dominates iTunes and radio and MySpace, and so on. But the vast majority know the best they’re likely to do is make gas money for tours and money for gear — basically enough to keep making music for a bit longer, and they do it anyway.

  6. Like everyone else, I’ve thought about why I like metal and find it hard to give a concise answer. I’m a late comer to metal, really just started listening in earnest over the past two years or so. I also guess that I am one of your older readers. I will turn 50 (ouch) later this year.
    First, a hopefully brief history. When I was in high school, in the 70’s, I listened to disco and R&B, like everyone I hung around with. As the years went by, my musical tastes were constantly changing. I always appreciated heavier bands like AC/DC, Led Zeppelin, Guns & Roses, but I was never really into it.
    About two years ago, I was bored with indie rock, finding it soulless. I kept reading about Opeth and decided to have a listen. Around the same time, I had major orthopedic surgery and spent many hours sitting in a chair, sweating and in pain, listening to Blackwater Park, over and over. It was cathartic and helped me relax and make it through. Ever since about 85% of my music purchases have been metal related. I find almost all my music by reading blogs, including yours.
    My work is stressful and listening to metal both fires me up and relaxes me. When my employees and family ask why I play it, my response is: “They scream so I don’t have to.”

    • “They scream so I don’t have to.”

      Great line. And probably true for a lot of people.

    • What an awesome story, and one I can relate to since I didn’t get into metal until pretty late in my life-so-far either. “Soulless” is the right word for lots of indie rock, although in my case the appropriateness of that word didn’t dawn on me until I got into metal — and now when I look back, that’s a significant part of why I got bored with it (and all sorts of other music I used to listen to). “Lifeless” and “gutless” are other words I now think are appropriate for a lot of popular music, at least by comparison to metal.

      “They scream so I don’t have to”: +++1 That captures the cathartic element of metal, which is again something that’s missing from lots of music I’ve now thrown over the side in my own listening. Except sometimes it’s even better when you scream, too. 🙂

    • “They scream so I don’t have to.”

      Add me to the list. Awesome.

  7. There’s a lot of great stuff written here already, and I don’t really have to time to read everything that everyone has already posted, so my apologizes if I end up being repetitious.

    Like many others here, I came to metal (specifically death metal and grindcore) through a very long and winding path. I grew up on a farm where we pretty much only listened to farm radio (not for the music, but for the markets), so the only music I was ever really exposed to until I was a teenager was old big band crap (Lawrence Welks, anyone?) and some country (both good and bad)…….but when I was about 13 we got some records from my grandma’s old tenants from the 80s. This was my first foray into music that wasn’t pure hick. From there my friends introduced me to punk and I got into hard rock and a bit of rap, but I never really explored the darker heavier elements. When I finally started listening to metal, it was mostly just traditional and power metal, but a bit of pushing from a dickish co-worker got me set on the straight path. (I saw him again after about 4 years, and sincerely thanked him for giving me that push. He congratulated me on my Suffocation t-shirt.)

    To cut things short, I still listen to everything I used to like in high school, and some newer non-metal as well. (If you’re interested in trying out some country music with a punk/metal edge, look up Hank III.) But about 80% of my music is death metal or grindcore….

    But why do I like aggressive, angry, “demons are raping other demon’s in my ears” music?

    Because it still makes me feeling like rocking out.

    The fact that after five years of death metal (starting with Amon Amarth and Children of Bodom style melodeath), listening to Wormrot or Cerebral Bore is still as energizing as my daily gallon of coffee. It’s a goddamn rush. Nothing like skateboarding at 100kmp (like some people) or getting into a ring with a guy much bigger than you and getting knocked the fuck out. But it still pacifies that little voice in me asking why I have such a boring job and why the most exciting thing I did this week was watch a new TV show.

    Extreme metal reminds me that I’m still alive, even when I feel completely pointless and dead.

    Which is pretty fucking awesome!

    • “Extreme metal reminds me that I’m still alive, even when I feel completely pointless and dead.” Add that to the list of great lines from the comments to this post.

      I never would have guessed you grew up on a farm. I didn’t, but: My grandmother lived on a small working cattle ranch in central Texas, and my brother and I spent a lot of time there during the summers when we were much younger, dropping gallons of sweat on various odd jobs. My grandmother also played piano in a squaredance band. I still have a soft spot for traditional country music (not what’s currently called country), particularly the faster, fiddle-driven dance music. Same goes for Cajun dance music (my father and his family were from bayou country in Louisiana). I suppose it was an early turn-on to high-energy music, albeit the non-electrified kind.

      • Shit, this brought to mind an event I haven’t thought about in a while. Might as well share. My grandmother could be casually brutal in the way that many ranchers and farmers can be. She carried a rifle in her truck and used it to kill whatever she thought needed killing on the ranch, often straight from the driver’s side window of the truck — rattlesnakes, deer, armadillo. One time my brother and I were in the pick-up with her, but the rifle wasn’t, and we came across an armadillo in the middle of a rocky ranch road. My grandmother didn’t like armadillos — they dug holes that my grandmother thought were perilous to the cows. She grabbed a clawhammer from the glove compartment and told my brother (then in his early teens) to kill the armadillo. My brother obediently took the hammer, ran down the armadillo (they’re faster than you might think but nearly blind), and beat it to death. He felt miserable about that, though he never let my grandmother know. He and I both came to be pretty vehement opponents of violence and cruelty to animals. I prefer to get my brutality from music these days.

        • My father did all the killing. I just had to help/watch.
          I still have no remorse for animals. I think I just blocked it out.
          Also, when you raise a baby to an adult and then eat it, and repeat the process year after year, you learn not to get attached.
          It’s strange, because, while I don’t ENJOY brutality to animals, I have strong distaste for it either.
          Hunting doesn’t bother me at all (though I never go because it’s so boring).

          But my sister is super squeamish–she rarely had to actually help with the more gruesome parts of farm life.
          And she watched a shit ton of Disney movies.

          Though watching a mama pig eat her stillborn baby is kinda fucked up….

          • And I love all the great gross out stories I now get to tell people! Hahahaha!

            I’m so mature.

          • I think if my brother and I had actually grown up on that ranch, we would have become immunized too. We were more like quasi-city-boys who were regularly pressed into servitude. Oh, and despite my tender-heartedness for animals, I still don’t like snakes. Snakes may be metal, but I had too many close calls with too many really nasty ones to admire them very much. I’m not crazy about scorpions or red wasps either.

      • Yah, I get that alot: “YOU’RE from a farm??” I maintain that I am the way I am today, because of that goddamn place. Isolation and butchering animals does strange things to a person. Okay, I may be exaggerating a bit, but there you go.

        About the country music. There’s country music and there’s shit that comes from Nashville. I prefer the angrier outlaw country (obviously), but there’s some other, slower country I can get into. I just hate pop music.

        But yah, I can totally see the link from fast country to fast metal. (That wasn’t sarcastic, in case it sounded like it was.) I think outlaw country, punk, and extreme metal are all based on a similar ethos of: fuck you. Which is probably why they all appeal to me. Even (good) rap has that ethos.

        And watching rednecks dance, one realizes quickly realizes how much better moshing is!

        • Uh huh. I didn’t say I liked the dancing, just the music. Moshing is definitely better.

          • I know…it’s just a terrible image that will never leave my mind.

            Worse than all the tentacle sex and dead pigs I’ve ever seen combined.


            Blubber shouldn’t move like that!!!!

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