Man, the end of the year lists really take it out of me. Around November and December I usually scramble to catch up on all the Metal releases I may have missed over the course of the year. What usually happens after that is I get completely overloaded on Metal and need to take a break for a while. While I would say that I’m indeed a “metalhead”, I certainly don’t listen to Metal all of the time (cry “poseur!” if you want…I don’t give a fuuuuuck). This time around my downtime from Metal has found me listening to brooding post-punk and electronic music. Ahhh, yes…the sounds of existential disillusionment and industrial decay. Soooo relaxing.
In the summer of 2004, I vividly remember driving around
listening to “From Wisdom to Hate” by Gorguts and “Miss Machine” by
Dillinger Escape Plan, but I’m fairly certain no other blast beats or guitar acrobatics graced my
car speakers during that summer. By the time I got settled into my freshman dorm room that fall, I
was only listening to Metal when I went to the gym (to this day, I can’t not listen to Metal while working out).
In fact, I ended up going years without listening to Metal. I listened to very little Metal from the summer of 2004 until the winter of 2007. Strangely enough, that period constitutes 7/8 of my university career. I guess I was trying to “find myself” with whiny indie rock or whatever. In the winter of 2007, I specifically remember there being a blizzard and school was canceled. I thought to myself, “There is no music that better embodies the scene I see outside than the mighty Blizzard Beasts themselves…IMMORTAL!” I then proceeded to play “At The Heart of Winter” at a mind-altering volume. It was then and there that I returned to the left hand path.
I remember our friend and fellow Malicious Intent conspirator, The Commissar of Doom, once said that as much as he strays away from Metal, he always finds himself returning. I’ve known very few Metalheads who have ever completely left the Unholy Church of Metal. Usually, we come running back in full viking garb and bloody axe in hand anxiously yelling, “Where is it?!?! Where is Valhalla!??” That’s when the feeble, skeletal hand weakly points to our Manowar records and we return triumphant.