I am still getting used to the fact that when I think of something I haven’t heard in ages, that I can just type it into YouTube and there it is…. Unless it’s not on YouTube, in which case, it probably never existed in the first place.
I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before, but my two older brothers very early on in life imbued me with the music they had at their fingertips from a very early age (no matter how appropriate or inappropriate) . I am only now realizing the full scope of how their musical influences have made me who I am today. Their most obvious influence is for sure the metal side of things. I think I listened to an inordinate amount of death metal for an 11 year old girl, but I connected with that music from an early age and perhaps it felt good to let go of some aggression.
My brother, Ryan, took me to see Crisis when I was about … 14 or so…? (I’m not sure exactly… I’m sure I was still in high school). Crisis was (is?) fronted by Karyn Crisis-this tiny, beautiful, dred-locked-maned, powerhouse. Her voice goes dramatically from melodic singing to growling/shrieking/ terror in milliseconds. Their songs and album art are dark and disturbing, all the things you’d expect from a death metal band. The show was amazing and loud and awesome. Those first shows as a young teenager were so exciting! I remember being terrified to say hello to her after her set, but when I did she was warm and welcoming.
The most important lesson from this time in my life was that “bad-assery” and “male” are not mutually exclusive; a lesson that has been reinforcing itself ever since. The disproportionate amount of men in certain genre’s of music and as a result, certain assumptions about women’s and men’s creative abilities is a theme for another post…
I’ve since departed from metal, I suppose, in the sense that I have no idea what is new, or good these days… Did I ever? Who knows….I’m still listening to stuff from the 90’s and early 2000’s. I don’t have the desire to listen to metal all the time every day ( I don’t really want to listen to anything all day every day….except maybe that new Justin Timberlake album, but we’ll get to him on another post…) but I do love to, every now and again, blast some good metal in my ears. It helps you let go, helps you deal and makes you feel temporarily invincible.
** On a side note regarding blasting loud metal in my ears for YEARS-
I have been telling everyone in my life for years that I have awful hearing. At a Melvins concert once back in 2003 or so (?… I can’t seem to remember when anything happened…) I damaged my left ear pretty bad by standing in front of the bass amp and being too cool to stuff something in my ears. My left ear was muted for a few days afterwards… Anywho, flash forward to now… I’m always missing things, hearing them wrong, not hearing things my partner does, etc. So I had a hearing test done for an ear issue I’m having an it turns out I HAVE EXCEPTIONAL HEARING. Not just passable, EXCEPTIONAL. I was floored. Turns out, my brain is just constantly preoccupied and not concentrating hard enough AND a little extremely loud music never hurt anyone (Just kidding! Please protect your ears!! Losing your hearing ain’t no joke…)