Heck are – and soon will have been – a special band. A band that made rock and roll exciting and dangerous. Seeing them live was like dancing along the edge of a cliff in the rain. There was always the chance they could slip, but while they balanced there, it was the most thrilling thing in the world.
If the last 24 hours has made anything clear, it’s that a generation of rock and metal fans still hold Linkin Park in their hearts. The music may have veered wildly off course in the last few years, but their brand of arena rock, rap and nu metal inspired a million kids into a passion for everything heavy. A huge part of which is because of the voice of Chester Bennington.
Rather than using pictures of Gene ugly mug I’m going to fill this post with music from young bands that represent the rock scene that is apparently dying.
In what may be the least of his crimes but perhaps the one that sums him up the best, Gene Simmons has attempted to trademark the Devil’s Horns. Yes, you read that right, he wants control over the hand gesture thrown by a million heavy metal fans and adopted as a central part of our culture. Why? Because in his twisted little mind he believes he invented it. Even if you ignore the falsehood of that in light of the claims of Ronnie James Dio and pictures of Coven doing it in 1967 six years before KISS formed, this is still the act of a puckered old arsehole and should be the final nail in the idea that we should care about Gene Simmons.
I’d love to know how many bands I’ve declared to be my favourite. From my early years when I couldn’t imagine not loving My Chemical Romance or Fall Out Boy to the fiery passion that Nirvana still raises in me. I fall in love with a different band on a near weekly basis, and the truth is I don’t have a favourite. I have a family of albums and songs that surround me and which make my life better. However, I’m going to go out on a limb and say that I haven’t been introduced to a band in the last ten years that mean more to me than letlive.
If 2016 has been a great year for film, it has been a spectacular one for music. Every week seemed to bring another incredible album from musicians both old and new. It also made putting this list together even harder than it normally is but somehow I managed. As usual, it is purely opinion, and you are welcome to tell me I’m wrong but don’t expect me to care.
This week the sad news came out that TeamRock had gone into administration and in doing so was taking down Metal Hammer, Classic Rock and Prog Magazine. 73 people lost their jobs just a week before Christmas, and the rock and metal community lost the only mainstream magazines that still truly catered to that demographic. Basically, it was a colossal fuck up.
With 2016 being the year the planet officially decided to start taking the piss there is no better time than now for a bunch of politically astute rock bands to make a name for themselves. They are out there too. Whether it’s letlive, Gojira, Against Me or even Enter Shikari there are bands out there that have something to say. The problem is they don’t have the platform to say it on. The editor of Kerrang is too busy complaining on Twitter about how these bands don’t exist, and the rest aren’t that much better. Enter Wakrat.
I can count on one hand the bands that mean more to me than Metallica. Which is hardly rare, if you were to ask a hundred heavy metal fans they would probably say the same. In fact, ask a thousand, they’ll still be up there. And yet recent years haven’t been too kind to ‘Tallica. The whole Lulu debacle came after two average at best and downright bad at worst albums. While ‘Lords of Summer’ and some sloppy live shows didn’t exactly set the bar high for what was to come in the future. That was until they dropped ‘Moth Into Flame’.
Metallica, Slayer, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Green Day and the list could go on. What do all those bands have in common?
- They have had a visible impact on the history of rock music.
- They have gone on way past their sell by date.
Think of it like this, what if Metallica had called it a day after Load and Reload? What if the Chilli Peppers had checked out after Californication? Would Slayer be looked on differently if they’d gone before they got old and how would the punk world view Green Day if they had hung up their guitars before they tried to become U2? If these bands had done those things, how much bigger would their legends be?