Hair Metal Happy Hour




I want to talk about four sub-genres. I don’t know if they’re widely accepted as sub-genres or have official names, but I’m giving them names now. Two of them I love, one of them I like (eh, sometimes), and one of them I absolutely cannot stand. They are sleaze metal, sleaze punk, nu-glam metal, and guitar rock, respectively.

Sleaze metal is a throwback to ‘80s glam, except it wants to be taken seriously. Therefore, it integrates aspects of thrash and some punk, and nobody wears make-up. Bands that fall into this category include Hardcore Superstar and the Michael Monroe Band. It’s hard, it’s fast, and usually a little melodic.

Sleaze punk is almost exactly the same, except it integrates more aspects of punk and garage rock. Bands like Hellacopters and Backyard Babies fall into this category, because they’re not quite metal, but they’re not quite punk. They’re the sleazy in-between. And Nicke Andersson is probably involved in it somehow.

Nu-Glam is basically the same as it was in the ‘80s, except the guys are younger and the songs are less misogynistic and twee. Crashdiet, Crazy Lixx, and Sister can be counted among these bands. The hair is just as big, but there’s a certain Scandinavian coldness to it. The spelling remains idiotic.

Guitar rock is just twangy, AC/DC-wannabe mediocre. It wants to be metal, but it’s just too pop-y. It’s basically one step above radio rock. Bands like Airbourne, The Last Vegas, and Charm City Devils are such examples. They are not bad if we use the broadest application of the word “bad” in music. They’re just woefully forgettable. Which I actually consider worse than bad. I mean, as much as I bleach my mind, I can’t forget Lulu because it was so bad (right on cue in my brain, “Small-TOWN grrrrrl.”), but after listening to an entire album by Airbourne, I couldn’t hum a one bar of any song if my life depended on it. AC/DC already exists to make repetitive rock n’ roll that everyone can enjoy. I don’t need any more of those bands. I can’t stand their mediocrity. Stop it.

The point of all this? I have no idea how to classify the band Dynazty. Help me. Nicke Borg from Backyard Babies contributes a song to their new album, they have a stupid/stupidly spelled name, and their music twangs along like Swedish Angus Young. Plus, the lead singer sounds like Eric Martin of Mr. Big and I don’t know how I feel about that. Their new album, Sultans of Sin, is out February 29.

I’m leaning toward nu-glam, yes?


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