Nu Metal - A Controversial Subject


Written by: iaberis
Published: 20.10.2006





Every traditional metalhead seems to hate this new kind of metal… But why so much hate? Is it the use of turntables that reminds us of this lousy "Hip-Hop" music and the "Rap" life style? Is it the remembrance of Linkin Park and "the fucked-up childhood lyric concept" as a member of the Metal Storm on-line community once said?

Well, whatever the reason may be, let's have a look on the genre's definition in wikipedia:
Nu metal (also called new metal, aggro metal, man-rock or nü metal using the traditional heavy metal umlaut) is a musical genre that has origins in the mid 1990s. It typically fuses influences from the grunge and alternative metal of the early 1990s with hip hop, electronic music and other metal genres, most often thrash metal and groove metal.

If you look around, you'll see that every living organism is evolving. That's the difference between something living and something dead. A dead thing can't develop or show some progress. Same thing happens in metal; metal was born almost 40 years ago and has changed into many forms and sub-genres. Power, Gothic, Death, Thrash are all some forms of this wonderful thing called evolution. Same thing is Nu Metal, we couldn't expect that something as powerful as metal, would stay untouched by today's life style and way of living. So this new genre is an evidence that Metal is not dead, as many believe. Although many people deny it, Nu Metal is a part of Metal. But let's have a look on how this genre appeared.

Somewhere in the beginning of 1990, bands playing alternative rock/metal and other metal-influenced music started creating they're own kind of music that was not part of any particular metal sub-genre. Bands like Alice In Chains, Primus, Rage Against The Machine, Faith No More, Tool, Body Count (with the rapper Ice-T on vocals) or even Nirvana influenced this movement and gave the fuse to other bands to follow their steps and get in this new metal-influenced style. There's a whole list on wikipedia about the bands that play or influenced the nu-metal movement, at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Nu_metal_musical_groups.


So, it seems that Nu Metal is a mix of metal and rap/hip-hop, two unlike kinds of music with two different ways of life. Something like that naturally caused many reactions and controversies by both sides. Although it brought metal closer to rap fans, many hardcore fans didn't accept it, believing it's something that degrades metal and it's lower in quality of lyrics and music. I had the same opinion about bands like Slipknot or Korn till a friend of mine, showed me tablatures of what these bands play and I was amazed. Although it seemed to me that they play standard riffs with low quality lyrics and worthless screams, now I have a different idea about them and this kind of music in general. Although I hate rap and hip-hop, I'm beginning to get use to the idea of turntables in metal too. And in the end, the sound still remains metal and hardcore.

But is it really that bad to use instruments and borrow elements from other music styles? Music is evolving all the time and metal follows this evolution. We can't listen to the 80's style for ever and misjudge anything new. New artists with new ideas in the metal scene deserve a chance and some respect too. We can't stick with a particular metal style forever. If we chose this way, there will be a period in the future that old metalheads will be placed aside, listening to old, nearly ancient bands and to a few new bands trying to copy their music. Think for example Metallica and how they changed their music in their latest album, St. Anger, to access the young people and a wider audience.

Personally, I'm not a fan of new metal or any of the bands mentioned above and I don't judge music by the instruments or the vocals they use. I don't have preconceptions about any kind of music and I generally listen to everything that sounds good to my ears… I don't listen to rap of course, but that's another thing. But I do judge music with my own standards and I don't reject any band or kind of music, because some people just don't like it. That shows a lack of strong personality… Make your own choices and don't listen to every single-minded person that tells you what to listen to! Remember Rage Against The Machine and their "Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me!" lyric!

Closing this, I'm not saying to all of you to "stop listening to your favorite metal style," but just give a chance to the new bands and the new metal styles, called Nu Metal or whatever name they want to give it. Who knows what the future holds for the metal scene… RnB Metal? Beat/Dance Metal? Pop Metal? If so, what's your choice? Follow your times or stick to the old guys?






 


Guest article disclaimer:
This is a guest article, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.


Comments

Comments: 150   Visited by: 280 users
04.11.2006 - 14:50
Valentin B
Iconoclast
a nice article, it should help people stop trying to be troo and labelling everything else as "untroo"
But the article is a bit short so it's a bit inconclusive

who is the band in the bottom right corner btw?
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04.11.2006 - 15:22
AnGina--
Dark Phoenix
KoRn.
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04.11.2006 - 16:52
Skald
Account deleted
Let me get this straight:
You actually believe Nu Metal is hated so much, because it incorporates elements that weren't present in the metal music before and metalheads don't like fresh ideas being brought to the genre?

I'd have to ask why no one's bashing bands like Korpiklaani or Cruachan then. Folk Metal is as new as Nu Metal and it also incorporates elements which are pretty much fresh to the metal music. And don't tell me metal and folk communities are anywhere near same.

Now I enjoy music like metal (heavy, power, viking, folk, melodeath, gothic, doom, glam), rock (hard, soft, alternative, modern, folk), traditional (folk, neofolk, darkfolk, shanties), classical, some darkwave and some blues. So I do believe I keep myself open to various forms of music. Likewise, I did check out several nu metal bands. And you know what? The more chances I gave to such bands, the more I disliked the genre. I really won't help it that it annoys my ears even more than raw black metal.
But I won't say that this makes me hate Nu Metal. It's just another form of music that I don't enjoy. No reason to hate it.
But you know what really pisses me off? Seeing all those articles, purpose of which is to convince people to accept Nu Metal. The way I see it, you promote this form of music just because it's labeled as metal. Quite frankly, I don't see this as being opened to new forms of music, but listening to something just because it's "metal".

Anyway, the idea of metal was to reject the modern lifestyle. That's what metal community was built upon. If we are to accept metal being influenced by today's life style, then we can just as well say bye bye to metal counter culture. In truth, I really can see that happening. Even on these boards it seems to be a common idea to label those who reject mainstream world as "narrow minded".
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04.11.2006 - 17:44
Opium Magnet
Account deleted
I myslef don't appreciate something which is watered down, simplified and just plainly crucified version of a music that was once made to express a sense of rejection and detachment from a modern lifestyle, rather than embrace and modify it in some way, as Skald described it.

Besides, what is the one main intention behind this kind of "accessible" equivalent anyway? MONEY! and plenty of it.

Music should not be money-focused/driven, it should be focused on a well-thought, intentional message it provides the listener with and for them to understand it. Music I like (not just metal) does just that.
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05.11.2006 - 08:53
PrettyMao
So, some guy that comes off as being closed minded about rap is telling me I should open my mind and listen to Nu Metal..... yeah, that's rich!

From what I gather the author is not a fan of Nu Metal, but instead wrote the article about how one shouldn't judge music, but at the same time judges people that don't like Nu Metal as narrow-minded and lacking a strong personality.... Good way to make your point... keep up the good work!
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05.11.2006 - 13:47
iaberis
Advice Troll
Written by PrettyMao on 05.11.2006 at 08:53

So, some guy that comes off as being closed minded about rap is telling me I should open my mind and listen to Nu Metal..... yeah, that's rich!

From what I gather the author is not a fan of Nu Metal, but instead wrote the article about how one shouldn't judge music, but at the same time judges people that don't like Nu Metal as narrow-minded and lacking a strong personality.... Good way to make your point... keep up the good work!


Thanks mate! I'm doing my best!
1) As I said, I'm not fan of this genre but I don't reject it either.
2) I'm not telling anyone to sit down and listen to it

I'm just trying to understand why people hate Nu-Metal without even giving it as chance. I've seen other sites that ban every band that is close to Nu from their database. And all that for the reasons mentioned above. I've seen people saying "I hate Nu-Metal" just because they heard that saying from another guy!

My effort here is to make people see this new genre under another perspective...
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05.11.2006 - 14:12
X-FrEaK
Korn is my favorite band, although, nowadays i barely listen to them, anyway...nu metal has some great bands like disturbed, static-x, slipknot(if you want to call them nu metal), system of a down...in spite of not hearing those bands in a long time i can say that i prefer nu metal to metalcore...right now, im hearing Trivium's Ascendancy...this sucks so much...
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05.11.2006 - 16:00
ThunderAxe1989
Irreligious
If Nu-Metal is a part of Metal then howcome Nu-Metallers have never heard of actual Metal bands outside of the Thrash genre

If Nu-Metal was Metal then wouldn't they be a part of this Metal circle in which Metallians are aware of the existance of Metal bands event hat they don't like?!?
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05.11.2006 - 17:29
Skald
Account deleted
Written by iaberis on 05.11.2006 at 13:47

I've seen other sites that ban every band that is close to Nu from their database. And all that for the reasons mentioned above. I've seen people saying "I hate Nu-Metal" just because they heard that saying from another guy!
Are you sure? I thought they ban bands that go under Nu Metal and xCore, because such bands belong to rock/punk, rather than metal. Opinion I follow myself.
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05.11.2006 - 17:32
iaberis
Advice Troll
All the nu-metalers I know, are aware of the older-legendary bands... even if they don't like them...
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Bitch! Please
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05.11.2006 - 17:43
iaberis
Advice Troll
Written by Guest on 05.11.2006 at 17:29

Are you sure? I thought they ban bands that go under Nu Metal and xCore, because such bands belong to rock/punk, rather than metal. Opinion I follow myself.


I've seen bands like Slipknot, KoRn or even Rammstein being banned in M.A., because they're far from everything traditional. That's not healthy for a site that likes to call itself an Encyclopaedia of Metal...
I've noticed this situation in other similar sites too. I'd tell names, but I don't want to make an advertisement for them! It wouldn't be fair for MS
And at this point I want to congratulate MS, because it doesn't discriminate music bands like that. Although most Nu-Metal bands are inactive, at least their featured. And from what I saw, System of a Down, were added recently. Another great act of responsibility and maturity.
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05.11.2006 - 18:46
Skald
Account deleted
Written by iaberis on 05.11.2006 at 17:43

Written by Guest on 05.11.2006 at 17:29

Are you sure? I thought they ban bands that go under Nu Metal and xCore, because such bands belong to rock/punk, rather than metal. Opinion I follow myself.

I've seen bands like Slipknot, KoRn or even Rammstein being banned in M.A., because they're far from everything traditional. That's not healthy for a site that likes to call itself an Encyclopaedia of Metal...
Why do I have to repeat myself? Are you sure that's why they banned such bands? Can you provide me with any link that supports this? Because as far as I know, their policy is to keep bands which sound more like rock/punk, less like metal away from their archives. From the same reason you won't find Led Zeppelin there. Please read their rules before accusing them of immaturity or whatever else you'll come up with.
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06.11.2006 - 00:23
iaberis
Advice Troll
Written by Guest on 05.11.2006 at 18:46

Why do I have to repeat myself? Are you sure that's why they banned such bands? Can you provide me with any link that supports this? Because as far as I know, their policy is to keep bands which sound more like rock/punk, less like metal away from their archives. From the same reason you won't find Led Zeppelin there. Please read their rules before accusing them of immaturity or whatever else you'll come up with.


Before accusing me, that I accuse without any proof, have a look on the wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metal_Archives were the following is stated
"Bands that are associated with the nu metal or mallcore labels are completely forbidden and have been since the website started."
If ignoring bands for the reasons I mentioned isn't immaturity, then what is it? [This article is about Nu-Metal, I don't care about the malcore bands]
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Bitch! Please
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06.11.2006 - 00:53
Skald
Account deleted
Oh for crying out loud!
http://www.metal-archives.com/guidelines.php
Read the goddamn rules of their site. They have a good reason for forbidding such bands and they explain it rather well.

But anyway, I took a look at this wiki article and oh the surprise...
You say Metal-Archives forbids Nu Metal bands because they aren't traditional enough? Quote from wiki:
"The site runners have standards which exclude some bands that are considered by some sites (such as VH1, Allmusic and others) as founding and definitive heavy metal acts, such as Led Zeppelin and Blue Cheer; the website's runners consider these acts as simply hard rock, despite their influence and history. However, there are some websites specialising in rock and metal music that, like Encyclopaedia Metallum, also exclude Led Zeppelin or just mention Led Zeppelin as "hard rock""
So apparently Led Zeppelin aren't traditional enough too! Mighty odd, I would say.

Or, the site owners actually state truth when they say that they only accept bands which are more metal than rock/punk.
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06.11.2006 - 01:08
iaberis
Advice Troll
And according to this, Rammstein or Slipknot or KoRn are not metal enough? And who are they to judge who's metal or not?
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Bitch! Please
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06.11.2006 - 05:49
Bitch Boy
XD
Written by iaberis on 05.11.2006 at 17:43
And from what I saw, System of a Down, were added recently. Another great act of responsibility and maturity.


System of a Down hasn't been added dude. By the way, I don't like them, but I think that if Deftones and Static X are featured, and have less than 20 fans, I think it would be fair to open SOAD, Korn and Slipknot profiles too. If MS features metalcore, grindcore and hard-rock bands, I don't know why these 3 bands which have lots of fans can't be featured.
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06.11.2006 - 07:54
Skald
Account deleted
Written by iaberis on 06.11.2006 at 01:08

And according to this, Rammstein or Slipknot or KoRn are not metal enough? And who are they to judge who's metal or not?
I personally don't consider those bands metal.
And can't you read or something?

"None of us here think we're a supreme authority on all things heavy metal. However, since someone has to draw a line somewhere - after all, if we accepted just about anything it wouldn't be the Encyclopaedia Metallum anymore - we'll have to be the one to decide whether or not your submission is valid."

If you don't like it how they run things, make your own website. But if you're going to whine about how they run things without even reading their site rules - guess who's looking immature now.
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06.11.2006 - 12:01
iaberis
Advice Troll
@Bitvh Boy: S.O.A.D. and Slipknot are added but remain inactive
@Skald: You keep reminding me that I haven't read their rules. I inform you that I did and they only say that it's their decision not to add those bands, without further explanation. Maybe you should have a look there too
And about opening my own site... Why not? But MS complies with all my needs, so I'm not in a hurry to open it soon
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Bitch! Please
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06.11.2006 - 12:40
Skald
Account deleted
You asked
"And who are they to judge who's metal or not?"
While they do state that they don't consider themselves the supreme authority on all things metal. But they need to draw the line somewhere.
Shows how well you've read their rules.

And their rejection of Nu Metal only shows that they care more about the sound than the titles. At least I cannot spot in this article even the tiniest mention of why such bands should be considered metal. They sound more like hard rock or punk than metal to me.

And about me not reading their rules: they do not accept core bands unless they're more metal than core. Since Nu Metal falls under core (at least in their opinion), it goes under this rule. Not enough explanation for you? It is damn clear for me.

And Metal Storm doesn't seem to have an "only metal bands" policy, so it's hardly a good comparison for MA.
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06.11.2006 - 12:57
Promonex
Cathemeral
Written by ThunderAxe1989 on 05.11.2006 at 16:00

If Nu-Metal is a part of Metal then howcome Nu-Metallers have never heard of actual Metal bands outside of the Thrash genre

If Nu-Metal was Metal then wouldn't they be a part of this Metal circle in which Metallians are aware of the existance of Metal bands event hat they don't like?!?

You point at the cultural difference, not at the musical difference. While both styles might be metal music-wise, they have different cultures. Metallians, no matter whether power, heavy, gothic, death, black, prefer black clothes and love to mosh at concerts. Many Nu Metal and Metalcore fans rather follow the baggy pants and basecap style and rather indulge in slam-dancing than in moshing. That's a huge cultural gap that results in "tr00" metallians not accepting nu metallians into their circle and rightly so as both groups don't share the same ideologies. This does not mean that bands like SOAD, Trivium or Chimaira aren't metal, but rather that the target group of those bands is not the traditional metal scene. So cultural-wise being much closer to Metalcore and Hardcore, it is obvious that many Nu Metal fans will be more familiar with Hatebreed than with Exodus.
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All life begins with Nu and ends with Nu... This is the truth! This is my belief! ...At least for now.
- The Mystery of Life, Vol. 841 Ch. 26
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06.11.2006 - 13:04
iaberis
Advice Troll
@Skald: Calm down dude! That's your opinion and it is repsected! Every man has his own opinions about metal. To you they are punk... to me they're metal...
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Bitch! Please
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06.11.2006 - 19:17
Skald
Account deleted
Now you get it. It's just your opinion. And does your opinion allow you to accuse MA of immaturity for having opinion different from yours?
Or state that metalheads who reject Nu Metal from list of metal genres have weak personality?
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06.11.2006 - 20:45
iaberis
Advice Troll
1) My opinion about this site remains the same.
2)I didn't say all metalheads who reject Nu-Metal have a weak personality. That's a false generalization. I said people who reject it because they heard others rejecting it have weak personality. Don't misjudge my sayings
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Bitch! Please
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06.11.2006 - 21:01
Skald
Account deleted
Yeah, too bad you cannot support your opinion about the site. It's really mature to bash another website like that, isn't it?
As for second answer, make yourself more clear then.
Because through the main part of your article you talk about how people reject Nu Metal because it isn't traditional enough and then out of a sudden you refer to people who conform to what others tell them to listen to.
My interpretation of this is that you say people stick with traditional metal because it is more accepted than Nu Metal.

Oh and I forgot to say this: Wake up, Metallica wanted to reach wider audience just to get more money. Personally I prefer the new hard rock Metallica over the old thrash metal, but that won't blur my perception of what they're doing.

I think I'll conclude on this. There's no point in carrying this on any further.
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06.11.2006 - 21:18
iaberis
Advice Troll
I can't do more than agree with this last post...
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Bitch! Please
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06.11.2006 - 21:33
Sunioj
Since iaberis wanted opinions, thus I shall give....
I went through nu metal before extreme metal, and it was fun for awhile until I expanded my mind. But I think that disliking nu metal isnt a matter of evolution or taking elements from other genres to create a differrent style, its about taste. Now that I listen to much more technical music, whenever I listen to something else, I feel the need to compare them musically.

Its a bad elitist habit, but I do that with every band and whilst comparing nu metal to more extreme metal I leave the scene laughing at the nu metal band. Not to mention, I find most nu metal bands preying on their fans with trends like anti war lyrics to reach liberal crowds, plus the endless corporate whoring makes me loose interest in any MTV band.

Thank you.
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06.11.2006 - 22:13
PrettyMao
Written by Promonex on 06.11.2006 at 12:57

You point at the cultural difference, not at the musical difference. While both styles might be metal music-wise, they have different cultures. Metallians, no matter whether power, heavy, gothic, death, black, prefer black clothes and love to mosh at concerts. Many Nu Metal and Metalcore fans rather follow the baggy pants and basecap style and rather indulge in slam-dancing than in moshing. That's a huge cultural gap that results in "tr00" metallians not accepting nu metallians into their circle and rightly so as both groups don't share the same ideologies. This does not mean that bands like SOAD, Trivium or Chimaira aren't metal, but rather that the target group of those bands is not the traditional metal scene. So cultural-wise being much closer to Metalcore and Hardcore, it is obvious that many Nu Metal fans will be more familiar with Hatebreed than with Exodus.


Earlier I responded with a quick comment; although I had a bit more to add. However, it seems Promo has made my point for me...

Basically, metal is all about image... The Nu Metal image (culture) is very different from the image of your traditional metal scenes. A lot of Nu Metal has that MTV feel to it, and appeals to the backwards hats and baggy pants crowd (as Promo has already mentioned in this thread)... This style is probably seen as more conformist with mainstream culture than the traditional metal styles. And as we all know, being part of mainstream culture is not considered very "metal."

The issue of liking or disliking Nu Metal doesn't really focus on the music, but on the image... An image which I don't see myself associating with... That being said, I will say that I am not a person that always judges the image of a band to make up my mind about which bands I like... The music is very important to me, and I always take that as my number one consideration when listening to a band... the image of a band may come into play when I am listening to them... but not always. After all, how can I listen to Rhapsody (of Fire) when their whole discography sounds like some giant, lame D&D adventure (I assume they are using the 3rd Edition rules)...


Anyways, I will quit rambling on here as I have forgotten what my point was... wait... Oh yeah, I don't like MTV.....


Also, what's wrong with rap? I love old school rap...


**editted various typos and misspellings
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The Mao loves you all!!!

**KISS**KISS**
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06.11.2006 - 23:01
ThunderAxe1989
Irreligious
@Promonex: Very insightful , seriosuly, how true.
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07.11.2006 - 14:23
bns
Account deleted
yeah... nice article....

the only think i understood is
u say a bunch of people close mind cause they listen old stuff and they have "no eyes" to see the real modern attitude (?) of metal scene..

btw u judge those people... (Cause u think u are the clever "progressive" metalhead) but why u judge yourself telling about u dont listen rap music or sth like that... or even most nu metal...
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07.11.2006 - 22:33
Bitch Boy
XD
Written by iaberis on 06.11.2006 at 12:01
@Bitvh Boy: S.O.A.D. and Slipknot are added but remain inactive


Well, that's what I was talking about. Korn, SOAD, Slipknot and other bands' profiles are inactive, then, they aren't "featured bands", they're invisible bands. But I think that the staff should open those profiles.
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