Black Collar Workers



band vanThere are too many fucking metal tours happening in the U.S. right now. Whether this is a result of the decline of record sales is impossible to measure given the absence of a control group, but it’d be hard to argue that’s not at least a factor; lacking revenue from royalties, bands are having to go out on the road in order to make any money. The result is a complete oversaturation of the tour marketplace, and the result of that is that bands are right back where they left off, their audience spread too thin amongst too many shows.

Case in point, we’re right in the middle of 10 straight days of metal shows here in NYC. Several of these days have two or even three shows from which to choose:

  • Thur, Nov. 12: Periphery, The Binary Code, Empyreon -also- Machine Head, Mutiny Within
  • Fri, Nov 13: Krallice, Liturgy, etc. -also- Hung, Ikillya, Devil to Pay -also- The Austerity Program etc
  • Sat, Nov 14: Skeletonwitch / Black Anvil -also- Metallica, Lamb of God
  • Sun, Nov 15: Shrinebuilder / Rwake, Liturgy -also- Metallica, Lamb of God
  • Mon, Nov 16: Aphonia, The Binary Code, Brock Murdock -also- The Jesus Lizard
  • Tue, Nov 17: Valient Thorr, Red Fang -also- The Jesus Lizard -als0- Dark Castle, Wetnurse, The Atlas Moth
  • Wed, Nov 18: Javelina, Black Tusk, Batillus
  • Thur, Nov 19: Cave In, Trap Them, Narrows
  • Fri, Nov 20: Baroness, Earthless

Not even halfway through this mess and I’m fucking beat.

Given NYC sees a larger number of shows than most cities, but most of these shows are part of national tours and I can’t imagine other cities both large and small aren’t seeing the same effects. And really, how is anyone supposed to be interested in all of that? It’s my fucking job to go to shows — literally — and I can’t handle it all. I’d imagine that the average metal fan would choose just 1 or 2 when confronted with such a list of choice, even when money isn’t a factor (which it surely is most of the time).

This can’t be good for the bands on these tours… but I don’t see any other option. Bands gotta tour to make money, but too many bands on tour means the pie is split into that many more pieces. It’s a Catch 22. What’s a band to do?

What’s the situation like in your city? How often do you go to shows?


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