Friday 5: Hipster-Proof Metal Bands
Happy Friday, MetalSucks reader! Welcome to MetalSucks Friday 5, our awesome series that appears every Friday (duh) on MetalSucks (duhh) and involves the quantity of five (duhhh).
Here’s how it works: A list of best/worst/weirdest/whatever five somethings is posted by one of your beloved MetalSucks contributors or by one of our buds (like you?). Then you, our cherished reader, checks it out, has a chuckle, then chimes in with a list of the same. No sweat, just whatever springs to mind, k? (Just like that movie about those losers working at a Chicago record store!) After all, it’s Friday — the day dedicated by the gods to mindless, fun time-wasting. Today let’s huddle around our jams that will never be loved by irony-bots!
Five Hipster-Proof Metal Bands
Sammy O’Hagar, MetalSucks contributor
Hipsters* find metal fascinating, but often for condescending reasons. To that end, there’s no better metal litmus test than Pantera. They’re too heavy, too boneheaded, too right-brained, and too earnest to appeal to the irony-first crowd. Hipsters have been known to appreciate Sabbath, Maiden, Priest, and even Slayer. But something as warts-and-all like Pantera falls flat. And that’s fine; to each their own. But if you want to tell the difference between a metalhead and a Real Estate fan who thinks metal is interesting, Pantera is the key.
Hipsters love black metal. They can appreciate it from both a noise music and outsider art angle. (Not to mention they love how fucking goofy it is.) But this is limited to Transylvanian Hunger, maybe some early Mayhem, and possibly Immortal (again, fucking goofy). Emperor is too dorky to be cool while having too much confidence to be the butt of a joke. Plus it’s pretty hard to chortle at IX Equilibrium.
Hipsters also love doom metal. However, it’s limited to skinny guys trying to make surly fat guy music. Not that their attempts don’t often yield great results, but real down ‘n’ dirty NOLA doom metal doesn’t click with them. Crowbar might be the Beatles of fat guy metal. Their decades-long career hasn’t taken image, coolness or trends into account. It doesn’t take much to write some decent downtuned riffs, but there’s more than nice amps to making bone-deep doom metal.
Hipsters love Rush. Tool is Rush for goth kids. Hipsters hate goth kids. Therefore, by the transitive property, hipsters hate Tool.
Nobel Prize, please.
558. Cannibal Corpse and bands who sound like Cannibal Corpse
Basically, if you’ve missed the point, hipsters hate things that are made without a knowing wink but also aren’t bad enough to laugh at. So, death metal is where you lose them. Sure, maybe a few will check out mysterious types like Portal, Dead Congregation, or even Gorguts, but when it comes to the rest, they’ll turn up their noses. There’s no tether back to post-punk, noise, or the first 5 Black Sabbath records. At its most unpretentious, metal is more off-putting than silly. Cannibal Corpse’s burly, all-neck approach leads them to waters that make them uncomfortable. When the hipsters wade out, we jump right in, head first.
*Hipsters may or may not be an abstract concept instead of actual people who exist