I’ve not been listening to Rock/Metal Music for as long as most on these forums, nor do I probably know as much about the genre as most either. But since I discovered one particular band I’ve never looked back in terms of my preferred choice of music.
Pre 1998 I listened to alot of Britpop, guitar bands like Blur, Oasis and the Stone Roses, and sometimes dabbled in hip hop with groups like the Wu-Tang Clan and the Beastie Boys. Metal music was a whole other world as far as I was concerned at the time. But mainly thanks to the Internet (old Napster we miss thee) I was able to broaden my horizons considerably, and best of all at no cost to myself! So I began listening to alot of music some of my friends had been talking about for so long that I simply didn’t touch because of my sheltered choice of music. That meant branching into Metal music.
Of course Metal is nothing new to the music industry and certainly wasn’t back in 1998. The great original Metal bands such as Black Sabbath and Iron Maiden has brought it to the fore, and a much more aggressive style had become more popular at this time also, bands such as Pantera, Slayer and Metallica (much earlier) had perhaps over-shadowed the old-guard into the latter years of the 90’s.
But out of the post-grunge era of the early 90’s, a new form of Metal Music was gaining momentum, later to be known as ‘Nu-Metal’. Nu-Metal perhaps forms the core of the majority of current Metal bands, if not straying from the root of the genre itself, but none do it better than the original Nu-Metal band, the grand-daddies of the Nu-Metal movement. I have 3 words for you…..
ARE YOU READY!
Much more of a declaration of war against the slower paced Grunge movement that threatened to kill Metal music, than a question in itself. 5 men with dreams to change the face of Rock music as we knew it broke out of Bakersfield, California with a message that defied you not to take notice. Brian, James, Fieldy, David and Jon formed the irrepressible KoRn.
I personally owe my taste in music to this band. No band did I feel a greater sentiment to in my teenage years than KoRn. “I Can see, I Can see, I’m going Blind”, it was so appropriate to what had happened to me musically, I was listening to the “in” choice of music but when I began listening to KoRn and other such bands I turned a blind eye to everything I knew regarding music. The song ‘Blind’ ironically opened my eyes up to everything that I had missed.
We all listen to our preferred Metal bands today but do we give any thought to how they came about? How there is even still an Industry for them to be part of? I’m not saying that KoRn are responsible for every Metal-touting band on the planet today but I’m sure there are alot, and KoRn certainly played there part in ensuring there is still an audience for these bands to reach out to. When I got to see KoRn live in 2001 in the Untouchables tour it vindicated everything I’d ever believed about this band. The whole ‘Fuck you’ attitude, the aggression in those Ibanez 7 strings and the tortured growl of Jon Davis’ vocals, everything was right, a real live performance.
Sadly with the recent departure of Brian ‘Head’ Welch leaves the band’s future in the balance and I only hope to god they will continue to innovate the industry for years to come. But if not, thank you KoRn for opening my eyes to so many more possibilities. Let’s just say I’m no longer a “Freak on A Leash”