“Metalheads are dead; Metalheads don’t have to be your audience”

Over the weekend, Metalgate apparently became a thing.  Video games & metal teaming up to fight against social justice hipsters could be the Superman/Batman: World’s Finest of internet shit fights.  If it was real, which I have my doubts about.

Metal, Punk and Hip-hop are three of the genres of music that tend to be overly concerned with rooting out the phonies, though the difference between Metal and the other two is that the subject matter of the music is significantly less likely to reflect that concern.

I’d say more on the subject, but frankly a lot of it hits too close to home and is too personal for me to talk about at this time in my life. Though the band I was in wasn’t metal per se, we had some cross-over fans and following and were one of the most hated and controversial group of rockers in the state.  We’ve had people rush the stage and tear up our stuff, we’ve been attacked,  but we were also provocative as hell and nothing, not even recently murdered local celebrities, was off-limit.

A part of me wants to be all “Fuck, yeah, metal, sign of the horns!”, but there’s a lot of stuff in some metal I’m not as comfortable with as I used to be, and getting rid of albums with album art depicting some really bad shit happening to naked women took a surprisingly big chunk out of my collection of favorites.

As I’m no longer a musician, in the music business, or even really much of a consumer of music these days, I’m probably going to end up sitting this one out.  Mostly, I just want to know what the story is behind the geeky black kid wearing the Hvis Lyset Tar Oss Burzum T-shirt.

P.S. Also, god, years later people keep mislabeling Gallhammer as black metal.  They’re not black metal!  The fact that idiots kept calling them black metal is one of the reasons they had such a hard time.  They were a great sludge metal band, but if they kept being judged as a black metal band, well of course the band that growled instead of screamed and didn’t use tremolo at all would be considered a shitty black metal band.


13 responses to ““Metalheads are dead; Metalheads don’t have to be your audience”

  1. It’s been really hard to stay out of gamergate since the little bits I can’t help overhearing are galling.

    I keep telling myself “this too shall pass” and waiting is difficult.


    • Sorry if it’s been dominating a lot of my content lately. When it first cropped up, I was content to stay on the sidelines because it seemed pretty silly, but I kept seeing all sorts of truly egregious stuff going on, and if there’s one thing I hate, it’s media corruption. Anyway, it’s not been my intention to drag anyone into it, and it mostly only affects my web-life, as I actively avoid anything political among my gamer friends in person. Nothing ruins a D&D session like someone going on a polemic about this or that politician or policy.

      But speaking of difficult waiting, how is the transfer of the Rumors of War site going? I’ve really missed the comic and your dev posts.

      • You know, the bits I’ve picked up through your posts have been more informative than anything — it’s the parts I get filtered through my gaming group that annoy me. You state your opinions upfront and you use names, and provide links to your sources.

        It’s a lot harder to drag the truth from my players, lol. 😉

        My situation with the comic is complicated and I’m trying to sort it out. The site transfer appears to be complete and I’m testing the waters with some blog posts. I’m in a bad place because the one thing I thought would be a disruption to the comic… happened.

        I hate being right. I really, really hate being right.

        Right now it’s hard just to face the comic. The best solution in both the long and short term is probably going to be cutting the story short to “end on time” rather than trying to cover everything I planned.


      • Yeah, that’s one of the problems with something this unnecessarily complicated: it’s next to impossible to reasonably state anything about it, because anything anyone says can reasonably responded to by “but you’re leaving out ______”.

        Sorry to hear about whatever has messed up the comic 😦

        I kind of know what you mean, though. I mean, I’d like to see all of what you’d intended on having for the comic, but at the same time, as a content creator, I know how stressful the demands of content can be, especially when you’ve combined a period of distances and disasters that have gotten between you and your creation.

      • Well, I’m more hopeful for the story reaching a satisfying conclusion than when the problems began.

        At least part of the problem has been overcoming the existential paralysis of being “that guy” who makes promises and doesn’t follow through — especially when a large part of the exercise was in setting realistic goals.

        I literally failed to meet the minimum expectations I set for myself.

        So, I’m writing. Because the only way to resolve the problem of not writing is by writing.


      • This is true! I really need to force myself to do some writing, but the two projects I’m in the middle of, I’m in a very unsatisfactory space. Unsatisfactory headspace maybe?

        Really, i think that one of the best things for me would be to start playing music again. One of the nice things about my industrial band was that two or three hours of screwing around would usually result in something that could be edited down to viable album. But at the same time, I feel like if I tried to get back into music, I would either do so half-heartedly or it would have some serious negative personal and emotional backlash associated with trying to ‘get back in the game’.

      • And you know the funny, complicated thing in this:

        I want to call the last few months unambiguously terrible for my creative output but that simply isn’t the case.

        I HAVE been working — and it will probably take me weeks, to months to figure out all what I’ve actually accomplished — due in no small part to the fact that I’ve been using my blog to keep track and that hasn’t been an option.

        As miserable as I’ve been, I finished my Financial Accounting class. I finished the first draft of my game’s races document. I’ve finished and iterated on a number of the worksheets for key components of my game. I’ve done a ton of research on the history of video games and D&D.

        I also dusted off my RPG Maker project from last year and reevaluated it based on what I’ve learned over the last year.

        I mean, if I could have blogged about what-all I’ve learned about mega-dungeons and such in the last few months… I mean, I literally haven’t been able to sort it all out because I haven’t been able to blog about it. :/

        I have a lot of “sorting out” to do of all the things — and while my progress with the comic will probably scar me for the foreseeable future, I can’t call these last few months “unambiguously terrible.”

        And I mean, that only serves to make me miserable in a different way but also not totally hopeless… you know? Just… complicated. #LeSigh


      • I can kind of relate, even if it’s kind of the opposite in my case. I’ve produced a massive amount of content here on the blog, but feel like I don’t have anything substantial to show for it. And now with this stupid debacle with Onebookshelf and DriveThru, I feel weird about suddenly shifting gears and saying “By the way, you can buy my book and supplements from this website that I’ve been dumping on for being duplicitous and hypocritical, just like I’m being now!”

        But I did hand-stitch a baby Enderman!

        Congrats on finishing up your accounting class, by the way!

      • Thanks! Accounting has been an interesting journey thus far, it’s given me insight into a lot of things both terrifying and… well, terrifying.

        I think you can absolve yourself of any guilt regarding the online distribution of your book. At least you can consider yourself aware of the situation and I’m sure you can — or will — seek alternatives as circumstances allow.


      • The bothersome thing is Onebookshelf has an effective monopoly on ebook pulps as a platform where people purposefully go and browse to look for new ebook pulps. It’s like a digital magazine rack. While I am on Amazon, Amazon’s more of a cross between a pedestal and landfill full of books; if you know what you want, bam, there it is, but casual browsing isn’t really an option.

        I guess I could put it out there and just not advertise for it? My other idea is a short “Don’t buy this” product, where the second page is just “I told you not to buy this!”, and charge out the wazoo for it; that would fulfill DriveThru’s requirement that at least one of a publisher’s products have a fixed cost as opposed to “free” or “pay what you want”.

      • I don’t have any products yet and I’m anxious to see if, when, and how this thing is resolved.

        It certainly doesn’t help that no one seems to be acting like an adult. :/


  2. What exactly is #metalgate responding to? This looks like a manufactured controversy. People have been arguing about whether metal is this or that for a long time. BS.

    • Truth is, I don’t really know. It might or might not have something to do with the guy from Disturbed coming out as pro-gamergate and getting dogpiled. Mostly it seems to spring from a few editorials from people saying “metal has dealt with this shit for years, common ground, right?” But yeah, I agree that this looks to be pretty much a manufactured deal that originated on a metal blog.

      As I’ve said, there’s a ton of stuff in some metal that I’m not okay with, and even though i love a lot of metal, it’s much easier to point out to fucked up stuff in metal than in gaming.

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