Jul 052010

Against my better judgment and most of my principles, two days ago I watched the video of the “Big Four” performing on stage together in Sofia, Bulgaria on June 22. In fairness to me, it’s not like I searched for it. I was just scrolling through the latest drivel on Blabbermouth, looking for the occasional item of interest that does occasionally lurk within the drivel, and there it was. All I had to do was click the “play” button.

Still, I paused.   A long time.   For one thing, although I still like Slayer (and “like” is about all the enthusiasm I can muster), Metallica, Megadeth, and Anthrax have no current relevance to me. The fact that they broke major ground once upon a time doesn’t mean it makes sense for me to listen to their music today, when there are so many other bands I’d rather hear. For another thing, I wasn’t a slobbering fan of most of those bands even when they were current.

And for a final thing, I’ve just grown sick to death of reading about this whole “Big Four” tour. For purposes of this NCS blog, I feel compelled to keep up with current events in metaldom, but to hunt for things that really do interest me, I’ve had to pass through a fecal waterfall of interviews, press releases, and blogger babble about this fucking tour. Enough already!

And for a final, final thing, I knew if I watched the damn video I’d have to see Dave Mustaine.

But I watched it anyway. And as jaded as I am about these bands and this tour, I did get a mild thrill out of seeing all four of them on stage playing together. Certainly not because of the music, because “Am I Evil?” is a forgettable song, and no one in this performance went out of their way to turn it into something better.

That was two days ago. And then yesterday came, and I saw a transcription of an interview Dave Mustaine gave on July 1 in Vienna, and I was vividly reminded all over again why that guy makes me wanna projectile vomit and why I should have passed right over that video without pressing play.    (unfortunately, there’s more after the jump . . .) Continue reading »

Mar 182010

Recently, a friend of ours who regularly visits this site gently criticized us for almost never posting a negative album review. He wondered if we’d ever heard an extreme metal album we didn’t like.

The answer to that question is “Fuck, yes!” We just (usually) choose not to spend our limited time verbally peeing all over hard-working bands because their music doesn’t favorably impress us or because their dreams exceed their talent. We get more satisfaction from supporting bands we think are deserving and from suggesting music we think our readers might find worth their time.

Maybe that’s a bad decision. Maybe we should spend more time warning people off craptastic metal. After all, that is what music critics generally do — they praise the good and they criticize the bad.

Except we’re not really music critics. We’re just a bunch of goof-offs who happen to really love extreme metal. We write about it because we dig it, and so it just comes naturally to talk about what rules instead of what sucks. Besides, you can find lots of sites whose writers just can’t wait to tell you what sucks.

There have been times when we’ve had misgivings about this, when we think our credibility could be enhanced by mixing in more scathing commentary along with the panting adulation.

We’re certainly capable of it, but so far we’ve chosen to reserve our invective for select company — not for the struggling bands who are doing their best to create new music because they love it (even if it’s bad), but for the the self-important, the self-indulgent, the overly dramatic. In a word, for the Axl Rose‘s of the metal music world. (more after the jump, if you’ve got the stomach for it . . .) Continue reading »