“A while ago, in my attempt to boycott jews in all aspects of my life, I went through my music collection, especially classical music to free it from jewish musicians and conductors...The idea for this thread came about in my struggle to “dehebify” my cultural life.” - User "Vapors" on the StormFront forum
"I Listen To Everything" – Timmy Hefner, Chaos In Tejas founder
Perhaps the only thing more sad than imagining the utter pointless difficulty of a white power enthusiast poking through their classical record collections for every telltale “Schwartz” and “Spiegelman” is the hopelessness of such an undertaking. The war is over, and the side with the eugenics and the blood doctrines and the cloak and dagger paganism lost. The exchange of ideas across the supposed divisions of language, class and culture gets easier with every vowel-deficient (but incredibly powerful) app and tech innovation. As an opposing argument, you will hear from hate groups that the internet is an excellent tool to recruit new members, and they are half correct. To recruit minds, maybe, but to keep them...not so much. The internet is far too thick with that stuff meant to unwind obeisance and ignorance – call it real, no bullshit crowd-sourced criticism, or just call it happy dissonance. The world is more broad and unfeeling to our biases than we've previously believed.
This is a black metal blog – let's talk black metal. Spawned in the conceived in the late eighties/crystalized in the early nineties as a cold, personal, insiders-only take on death metal that to this day has a stench of racism and dickish inclusiveness both, the genre nonetheless has birthed takes on the aesthetic in places as far-flung as Japan, the Ukraine, Jamaica, Austin, Texas and even North fucking Korea. Unsurprisingly, the bleached lo-fi aesthetic, unrestrained growls, and clever manipulations of melody and dissonance has resulted in a worldwide but selective following for black metal, and, as of right now, the genre is subject to an amount of internal criticism much more rabid than any degree of outsider interest. We've yet to see a black metal band sell out, but with the bending of the genre's rules by newer bands like Brooklyn's Liturgy, it's easy to see where so-called purists would balk.
The infighting between kvlt oldtimers and newbies is worth mentioning here because it presents a curious take on Old vs. New. With each New Yorker blurb and documentary the supposedly isolated world of black metal is picked at, exposed, and experimented with by hordes of (mostly) young people as far from the scene's birth in Norway as geographically possible (too bad there's no life on the moon – black, cold, and mysterious, our orbiting satellite would be the perfect spot for writing a black metal opus. If it had oxygen). And while larger outsider interest is typically seen as the death knell for cool shit, the expansive interest in black metal has helped make the genre better, first by infusing it with a myriad of other musical styles, and secondly by informing the principal, universal themes of the disenfranchised – frustration, despair, creativity – with a geographical flair. Taiwanese black metal band Chtonic combines black metal aesthetics with a location-specific musical traditionalism – their songs frequently include the Er-hu, not exactly an obvious metal choice – that you're not likely to find anywhere outside of one of those broad based and kind of exhausting cultural festivals.
That's the seeming black metal paradox – it brings people together through exclusion. Not all of that exclusion is racially or religiously motivated, as with Burzum, but much is related to aesthetics or is variable to taste. For example, Christian blasphemy is metal's old hat at this point, but there's a certain sort of metal-inclined fan whose stomach will still turn at the sight of, say, this:
The good news? There's room for both in black metal, for the hard liners and new voices. Those fans who twitch at so-called “post-black metal/shoegaze,” well, they don't have to listen to it. And the same goes for fans of newer, more melodic material who don't find a lot to love in early Mayhem. Black metal is, as implied in in namesake, made of strong stuff. We should be able to move on from the Kerrang!-style frantic “journalism” that surrounds the genre and take it for what it is in its ever-unfolding permutations.