For the not-quite so dedicated among us, Blabbermouth, run by Roadrunner Records but otherwise unaffiliated in terms of content, is basically the Reuters of all things metal and rock. I never, ever believe one rumor unless it’s made it to the first page of Blabbermouth. I have examples of stories making it there before the news breaks on the band’s official website, even. Blabbermouth is where all press releases go to…circulate rumors on upcoming releases, upcoming tours, ongoing tours, tour mishaps, reviews, interviews and so on and so forth. It’s everything you think you need to know, not a few things you sorta wish you didn’t, and on several occasions, a source of total hilarity, intentional and otherwise.
Back from the dead, there’s a big stink at what I’ve come to call The Daily Snark. A stink that says a few things, not just about the originator, but also about the two-way street between bands and fans, between news and news-worthy and the running commentary of metalheads who have a soapbox for the opinions that had nowhere to go but other metalheads for so long.
Snark, I’ll have you know, is good. It shows initiative, it shows attitude, it shows that you care, even if it means you care by attacking someone else’s Primeval Forces in no uncertain terms. We all have opinions in this online age, and they all stink.
Enter stinkaroo of the day, Evan Seinfeld of Biohazard.
Never mind that musically, Biohazard just ain’t – my brand of poison, not even if they are from Brooklyn.
Never mind that despite touring in 2009, they haven’t released new material since 2005. Never mind that Evan Seinfeld until recently had a sideline career as an adult film star with his now-ex wife, has participated in a few reality TV shows and in general seems to be doing quite well in marketing Evan Seinfeld for at least one other reason than being the bass player in Biohazard, that reason being he has one thing in common with half the human race, give or take a few.
No, his main pet peeve is attacking the users and commentators of Blabbermouth for being – in no particular order, gay keyboard ninjas who are symptomatic of ‘everything wrong with metal today’.
Interpret that as you please. It gives me infinite pleasure to twist it in the general direction of –
‘You are metalheads, you are our fans, you buy our tickets and CDs (if we’re lucky) and you should henceforward SHUT THE FUCK UP, because we Gods of Metal have better things to do than give a damn about your opinions. (Make porn flicks, for instance) In the unlikely event that you refuse to be silenced, you shall be branded as gay, armchair critical keyboard ninjas without lives because you dare to voice any brand of critical faculty I don’t happen to agree with.’
So – Blabbermouth is lame, gay etc. etc. He never reads it. In that case, how does he happen to know about it?
For so many years, metal was a genre without a voice, a genre regarded as somehow inferior, primitive, intellectually degrading and demeaning. Never mind that not all metalheads are stupid, never mind the clichés of long hair, tattoos, all-black blablabla. In the pre-Net days of metal, information was passed on through newsletters, zines and my all-time favorite Info Central – The Record Store.
Remember those? Where you could while away an afternoon in congenial company and maybe make a few new discoveries, too? Practice your social skills and armchair critic tendencies on your fellow metalheads, doing the exact same thing?
Maybe not. I must be feeling my age.
But now, we have – the Net. Now, we have no shortage of non-stop, no-holds-barred barrages of (dis)information, metal forums, Facebook, Nonelouder, MySpace, metal e-zines and fan sites and.
And. And. And the one-stop Reuters of metaldom – Blabbermouth, telling us everything by constantly updated press release, and not only that – we get to comment on them, too – all wrapped up in a handy, one-stop destination for snark, for info, for edification, for entertainment, for education on anything and everything metal, which makes it to Blabbermouth because – there still are bands and frontmen and bass players, even, who need that kind of exposure to generate that kind of buzz that will make fans former and future aware of the new album, the new tour, the latest, greatest, most grating…metal.
Which is – correct me if I’m mistaken – still about the music, right?
Right, guys? And what with free speech (I use that term advisedly) and the right to comment on interviewed dudes like Evan Seinfeld, who is doing precisely what we’re doing, except he’s Evan Effing Seinfeld, with a right to his opinion – and in his opinion, we’re not, because we’re not – Evan Seinfeld.
We’re just the anonymous, useless, idiot schmos who buy the albums, who go to concerts, who get the t-shirts, who…
The ones who justify the existence of the likes of Evan Seinfeld, in other words.
Metalheads of the world – fuck what he thinks! Be as snarky and as snide and opinionated as you please, because you have a voice, you have an opinion and it matters that you do, it matters because Blabbermouth wouldn’t be Blabbermouth without it.
That, my fellow metalheads, is everything that is right in metal today!