Editorials

WHAT’S WITH ALL THE HYPE OVER CHRISTIAN MISTRESS?

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Christian Mistress

Lots of people seem really stoked on Christian Mistress. I’ve listened to their new album Possession and I think it’s pretty good. Retro NWOBHM is all the rage these days, and these guys (and gal) do a fine job at it — good riffs, good songs, all around pretty solid.

But it never ceases to amaze me how the hipster propaganda machine works, taking ordinary to decent bands and revving them up into a dizzying whirlwind of hype.

Take a band like White Wizzard with equally good songs and a very similar sound, and watch them strike out again and again (part of that may have to do with their nutso mastermind, sure). Take a band like Holy Grail, with better songs, better players and tighter production than Christian Mistress, and watch them struggle to get any media attention. Then look at Christian Mistress — whose production is just gruff enough, whose flannels fit the part, and put them on hipster-approved indie metal label Relapse Records — and watch as left-of-center metal media absolutely fawn over them. Hilarious! Maybe it’s all about horny, dirty metal dudes getting excited about female singer Christine Davis — I think she’s a good singer (actually really good, and unique, too) — but lettuce be cereal, dudes LOVE girl-fronted metal bands just because. Christian Mistress are like the Lacuna Coil of the hipster world; lead singer’s got a great voice, but if it weren’t for the Cute Factor dudes would give a lot less fucks.

I guess it just goes to show how much image and marketing play a role in a band’s success, even when those bands are on credible independent labels and traffic in the so-called underground. Ghost, anyone?

Anyhoo, like I said up top, Christian Mistress are by no means bad… they’re actually quite good… it’s just like, come on, bands like this have been around for years and no one in the indie metal world has paid any attention until now. NPR is streaming the song “Black to Gold” from their new album Possession, out February 28th via Relapse, so make sure you check that out before chiming in with an opinion below. Maybe I’m totally off-base; I haven’t seen them live yet, after all.

-VN

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