Bruce Dickinson rules. He's the greatest singer for one of the greatest bands of all time, Iron Maiden. But recently, he unleashed some pretty charged words in an interview with the Guardian. In addition to dropping one of the most incredible quotations ever, "fame is the excrement of creativity," he also said a few harsh words about punk rock, referring to it as rubbish and saying that the lack of talent in punk was an excuse to call it performance art. He goes on to state, "Half the kids that were in punk bands were laughing at the art establishment, going: 'What a fucking bunch of tosspots. Thanks very much, give us the money, and we'll fuck off and stick it up our nose and shag birds.'"
Not totally untrue. The problem, however, lies in his words that immediately follow that thought:
"But what they'd really love to be doing is being in a heavy-metal band surrounded by porn stars."
Whoa, waitaminute. Perhaps the English icon is referring strictly to the British punk bands of the '70s and '80s, citing some sort of inside info. After all, dude's basically a rock god. However, and no disrespect meant to porn stars, but the idea that punks wish they were living decadent lives in heavy-metal bands is way off-base.
For starters, identifying yourself as a metalhead doesn't mean the same thing that it used to. As metalheads are often shy outcasts growing up, becoming extremely proficient at an instrument and knowledegable of your genre was integral to the preservation of the minuscule ego you were clinging to. Through this principle, you formed communities and bands -- excellent metal was almost guaranteed, because playing eyeball-spinning, creative and blazing-fast music was all some people had going for them.
Then in the early 2000s, some terrible things happened to the genre through the Internet: First, it exposed a bunch of cool and dark bullshit to cute little dudes who could use it to get girls. Second, it removed the mysterious and evil veil that metal had to reveal a bunch of dorks. We found out that death-metal bands didn't kill people and gothic-metal bands slept in small apartments, not graves.
Metal is no longer scary to anyone aside from your friend's religious nutjob parents -- it's something a large part of society considers to be fairly juvenile. Unless you live in rural South Carolina, no one looks at your long hair and thinks you sacrifice animals in the middle of the night.
Continue to page two.