tisdag 10 april 2012

The Christian infiltration of extreme metal

Don't get me wrong. The tag line might be problematic in its formulation, and I recognize its implications.

Christianity has never been a big supporter of folk music, jazz, blues, rock 'n' roll, and later on hard rock. But the shapers of these genres were often raised from Christian societies, and some of the cultural baggage were transferred into the music.

When extreme metal developed during the late 80's, it often adopted the stylistic approach of agitation, and many times lyrical ideas from Christian theology, such as the concept of Satan, Hell, demons, sin etcetera. Bands like Bathory, Mayhem, Morbid Angel, Slayer and Venom all used these kind of visual and lyrical concepts for provocation and resentment of modern society and also to explore the individual stand points.

For Black metal bands the anti-Christian themes were explicitly devoted to in a lyrical sense and in the imagery of the artists. It raised the religious question in extreme metal and took a stand against the Christian religion and its dominance over the morals and society.
It also showed great resentment against the latter development of Trash and Death metal, with the cleaner productions, more focus on technicality, commercialising the artists and the fading principals behind the Death metal, which was originally to be aggressive, with heavy sound, raw and antagonising. That was one of the key points as to why many Death metal bands started developing their musical ideas and lyrics into Black metal instead. The ones who merely jumped the band-wagon is not worth mentioning here.
Black metal has become a safe haven from Christian culture-infiltration. At the same time, without Christianity and the society it has created, Black metal would loose a lot of its reason to exist. The antagonism between these two cultures is at the center of Black Metal, just like Communism wouldn't exist without the historical serfdom of feudalism or the economic injustice of liberalism. So, one might say that this is an interdependent relation.
If Christian religion ceased to exist, or Black metal developed into something else, then their relation is altered. Black metal has always been about development, just like any extreme metal, and we've all ready seen some progress in this scene. But what will happen when the core of its existence is questioned?
Over the last fifteen years there's been several announcements of reborn Christians in other metal and hard rock scenes, artists which formerly didn't give a flying fuck about Christian norms, but now, all of a sudden, are father figures of high morals and family values. I mean, what the fuck? Where is it going to end?

In the 80's we had these hacks in Stryper and Mortification. But nowadays they're growing in bigger numbers.

As I Lie Dying, one of the most disgusting knuckle-dragging, tribal tattoo macho metal band ever to be seen, is Christian.

Norma Jean has infiltrated the hardcore scene with their religious filth.

In the pop punk scene Rise Against has established themselves a name. Well... the scene is worthless, even without the Christians it sucks donkey balls big time. Fucking fratboy crap.

In the post-hardcore scene you have talentless tools like Blindside, Callisto, trying to brainwash the hip teenagers.

In the Death metal scene you have The Devil Wears Prada. One of fucking worst band name ever to be conceived. To quote Thom Yorke: "When I am king, you will be first against the wall".

Creed, one of the most boring fucking attempts to be musically creative, is another of these powerless tools in the service of the Christian machine. The band started out just when the original grunge scene had faded, and copied some of that ideas into a Christian theme, at the same time doing videos appealing to teenage women.

Extol and King's X is another of these mediocre musicians with mediocre goals that infiltrate the progressive/experimental rock scene.

Nowadays it's widely accepted that Tom Araya is a Christian. So, obviously his journey of "officially debarking" from Christianity were no longer than the thin line of mere provocation (as with the rest of their "anti-Christian" themes).

Ralph Santolla claims he's a Catholic, and were allowed to play in Deicide for several years. What the fuck?

Dave Mustaine announced several years ago that he was a reborn Christian, and has since then become the biggest turd on the planet. His public appearance will do him no good however, and I seriously doubt his contribution to the Christian infiltration in metal scenes to be any productive. His views on ethnicity, the sexes and sexuality has summarised his diminishing intellect, so far.

And nowadays we have "Unblack metal" bands that explicitly incorporate Christian religion in the music. Bands like Antestor, Crimson Moonlight, Drottnar, Frost Like Ashes, Lengsel and Slechtvalk.

The question now is: Since Black metal was created as an alternative to Christianity, how will these new Christian bands affect the development of the BM scene? Will it be swallowed up in the culture of pure commercialism and mediocrity? Or have we all ready passed that bar?