Mar 232010

This weekend I spent a little time catching up with other metal blogs I like. If I weren’t so fucking wordy in my own writing, I’d have more time to read on a daily basis and wouldn’t fall behind. Anyway, there’s one post I wish I hadn’t read. It was Justin Norton‘s feature on the “Top 10 Most Overused Words in Metal Journalism” at Invisible Oranges. It made me cringe. Here’s how it started:

“Writing about metal is a lot like covering sports. Dozens of releases drop week after week like games stack up during a season. Just like sports writers try to find ways to make a touchdown pass sound like a major event, it’s tough to find a novel description for the umpteenth grindcore or black metal album. So the same words and phrases show up again and again.  Trust me, I’ve used them all.”

And then he proceeded to catalogue the 10 worst offenders — the overused, cliched words that metal writers litter in their album reviews like Big Mac wrappers on the sidewalk. You know, our oldest friends — the words we use constantly here at NCS, particularly No. 9. We can’t bear to include the painful descriptions that followed each word in Justin’s post, but here’s the list:

1. Brutal
2. (Enter genre) and add a y (e.g., progg-y, doom-y)
3. Epic
4. Blackened
5. Melodic
6. Majestic
7. Any adjective hinting at bodily harm (e.g., pummeling, bruising, scorching)
8. Full-length
9. Fucking
10. Lots of adverbs (e.g., kick-ass)

(Groan. . .) Kind of hits the mark, doesn’t it? But is there another side to this story? Shit, we hope so. (By the way, “shit” wasn’t on the list, so I feel safe in using that word.) For example, if I had to write a whole review without being allowed to use the word “fucking,” I’m afraid I’d have some kind of seizure. (more after the jump . . .) Continue reading »