It’s a hard thing to do, but sometimes you have to admit when you’re wrong. This is one of those occasions. I would like to retract last week’s bitchfit about Baltimore shows. I wasn’t fucking around about having turned the corner into being old and curmudgeonly. But it was unveiled this week that Bmore is the only city on Eyehategod’s upcoming spring tour to catch them with Negative Approach. Sorry, y’all; us crab-ridden Bodymoreans win this round. I’d say this about makes up for Soundstage having Rotting Christ go on at 8:00.
I think this victory calls for a true #tbt to the less cynical times. Like when you’re at that age when you’re on the cusp of full-on Lisbon sister, but you’re still in the glorious stage of life where if your brush of your sole responsibility of getting a good grade in pre-algebra to do nothing but eat Doritos and masturbate there are virtually zero repercussions. That’s right, we’re talking junior high. Yano, the formative years. And girl, let me tell you, I was stumbling around trying to get in formation alright. I done walked around in a pair of knock-off DCs from Payless and some of them printed cotton-spandex blend babydoll tops thinking I was too hot to trot. But sadly it wasn’t just some questionable fashion choices I made. I also had some very curious musical tastes. Don’t get me wrong – there are still some albums I bought when I was 12 that I still burn the fuck up. I’m not a complete fair weather fan. But I would be lying if I said I haven’t gotten caught up in some pretty scary trends along the way.
Just for the lawlz, I thought it mind be fun to delve back into my favorite music videos of my pre-teen years – the good, the bad, and the emo tears. Just to pain the picture, I was in middle school from 2005-2008; an age knee-deep in nu-metal and scene kids. YouTube was just starting to be a thing and if you’re really a trill bitch, you remember having to settle for that censored-ass AOL Music. It was a frightening time for your hair dresser who had to put their professional integrity before indulging your full side-bang fantasy, and a great time for your pedo neighbor who suddenly had the entire sixth grade class at his fingertips via Myspace. The best of times and worst of times they were, indeed. Let’s do it!
Alesana – Ambrosia
On Frail Wings of Vanity & Wax (2007)
Holy Christ on a cracker, those outfits. If you’re an OG 16 & Pregnant fan you know that the black on black with the red tie was the outfit of choice of soon-to-be dads at shot gun weddings all across Indiana in 2008. It apparently also got the fangirls moist enough to warrant featuring it x6 in your video. It’s funny how adopting the emo aesthetic was supposed to be such a stark display of nonconformity. This also makes me wonder how dated Jeffrey Campbell booties and kimonos and matte lips that vaguely resemble clenched assholes will look in a few years. I’m hoping for the best.
I guess the song is still pretty catchy and would be fun to rage to again for old time’s sake if the KG was flowing. Although I’m not sure what hormones they must have been shooting up to be able to sing that high. If I’m remembering correctly, I was sorely disappointed when I went to high school and actually had to read all the ancient myth that Alesana’s songs are inspired by. Shit’s like trying to sit down and read the dictionary from cover to cover. It’s kind of like how I understand that Iron Maiden was crucially significant to music history and widely inspirational, but that doesn’t mean I necessarily want to sit down and listen to their whole discography. So I guess that’s one thing I can agree with my 13-year-old self about – someone bring the public schools into the goddamn twenty-first century.
Final Verdict: Peripheral vision obstruction/10
System of a Down – BYOB
Ohhhh yassssss, honey. I used to be able to hear those boots marching in the beginning from a mile away. I could probably write a whole article on SOAD. I still whip them out late at night sometimes and get too excited and I start to wheeze and have to sit down. Going back to the beginning, I remember I had this weird urge to flip on the TV one day when I was in fifth grade and saw this video and the rest is pretty much history in terms of me liking metal, which is why I never really have it in me to completely shit all over MTV. That and Barbara Evans.
I can see why SOAD appealed to my public school-going self. Why do they always send the poor? Home truths, man. Every day at lunch I’d watch these recruiters trying to target these disenfranchised kids. Shit’s weak. Christ, this is all a very intense reminder that the W Bush era was real and not just a bad dream. Well, I guess if we regress a bit in this next election that just means it’s time for a SOAD reunion. But god please no more Scars on Broadway. Oh girl, let me tell you something – I used to live for that chick at 2:16. You see my mom would never let me wear one of those distressed denim miniskirts to open gym night unless it was like 100 degrees outside so I had to very insecurely settle for jeans. But then I’d watch this and see her moving like that’s the look to be working and it would make me feel a little better. Oh my god, I miss not having real problems.
Final Verdict: Inhaler/10
Korn – Twisted Transistor
See You on the Other Side (2005)
Oh wow, I used to have the attention span to sit through something over seven minutes long. That is remarkable. I also first saw this video on MTV when I was like 11 and I thought it was the funniest fucking thing. Someone please add this to the “I’m in middle school and don’t know what real entertainment is” starter pack. This video was also a source of confusion for me because it made me think the members of Korn were actually black until my sister finally hit me with a “bitch u dumb”. I didn’t really know what I was looking at but what I did know was that I liked it. I still don’t really know what I’m looking at but now I’m not really sure how I feel about it. Did they just decide one day that they were tired of doing lame performance videos with wind machines and html-grade digital effects and this is what they came up with instead? Well, I guess there’s no use really questioning it, because it’s here now and we can’t give it back.
But he dad jokes at the end, doe. “Fieldy won the first gold medal in Extreme Projectile Vomiting at the Xgames with a record 12 meter hurl.” I don’t even know how to begin unpacking that. Is “hurl” supposed to be a pun? Why did they make extreme projectile vomiting a proper noun? See, you get old and nothing is satisfactory anymore. Oh god, the joking use of gay-voice at 5:40…damn, if anyone pulled that now…fuck. OH GIRRRRRRLLLLL, THAT “WE ALL BLACK WHEN THE LIGHTS GO OUT” AT THE VERY END. I totally forgot I used to say that over and over again until my sister wanted to slap me upside the head. God bless. Welp, that was an interesting ride. At the end of the day, I’m just glad I was in the 10% of Korn fans that didn’t wind up a Juggalo. I ain’t about to front, though; I’d still cuts me off a piece of that Munky.
Final Verdict: Why/10
Flyleaf – So Sick
Another MTV discovery. I thought this was the sickest thing ever when I first saw it. It’s not often you see a chick who looks like me fronting a band, and dang it Bobby, us Grudge-looking ladies gotta stick together, even if her clean vocals are breathier when you’re trying so hard to finish when he eatin the puss but it’s just never going to happen ever. I’d be lying if I said that the opening riff didn’t still excite something in me. But at the same time, my relationship with Flyleaf was never really the same after learning that they’re a Christian band. I mean it’s great that Lacey used the support of her church to get off drugs or whatever, but I just had trouble resonating with it, mostly because everyone at the church I had to go to was an asshole. Ironically, I wanted to wear my Flyleaf shirt there one day and my mom made me change because it looked too satanic.
I think that’s what’s confusing about abrasive religious music. The Christians kind of listen to it because it’s Christian and the metal kids kind of listen to it because it’s hard, but in the end no one is completely satisfied. I guess that’s why they just do shitty radio rock now. Equally confusing is the line “my tongue dances behind my lips for you” in their other big song from the day, All Around Me. Like, really? Jesus has you feeling that type of way? Okay, I guess. Another source of gripe: they have that song Cassie about the girl that was allegedly shot at Columbine for saying she believed in god…even though it was never confirmed that that actually happened. You know what was confirmed? The gunman shooting Isaiah Shoels for being black. But I guess he doesn’t get a song and a movie, does he? Anyway, what I think did appeal to me about Flyleaf was the scene at 2:07 when the dude is destroying the clay sculpture. I had the most fucked up, 40-student art class in the eighth grade with this weirdo ass teacher that used to talk about breaking up fights between the cokehead teens in his neighborhood, so it was a way of vicariously taking out my aggression. Maybe my real issue with Baltimore should be the schools that took 14 years of my life I can’t get back.
Final Verdict: Jeebus/10
Paramore – Misery Business
Oh god, right in the feels. My first “boyfriend” in eighth grade had a hoodie with that “riot!” logo all over it. There’s nothing like a going back to high school video…that, uh, never gets old. I’ve always wondered why it looks like there’s so much time to just idly stand around in front of your locker in these things. I remember it being more about getting the fuck to your next class on time because if not that’s considered insubordination and grounds for the school resource officer to strip search you. Growing up post-9/11 in the school to prison pipeline is so much fun!!!1!!1 Well, apparently this is the scene kid Ramen-fueled utopia where your biggest threat is the school tramp. Again, this is another reminder that there was once a world before things like Tumblr and #endslutshaming. “Once a whore you’re nothing more. I’m sorry, that’ll never change.” Not only do they rhyme change with change in the previous line, but also what the actual fuck. Remember kids, when Hayley Williams wipes her enemy’s makeup off with a towel she’s letting you know that she’s morally superior to you because she doesn’t wear dark lipstick. Her six shades of orange hair really enforces this platform of embracing natural beauty. There are literally three chords in this song.
Final Verdict: Yous a slore/10
My Chemical Romance – Helena
Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge (2004)
Ah, some more all black with red tie ensembles. Oh child, and that choreographed dancing. I remember one time one of my best scene kid kandi friends missed a couple of days of school and I texted her to see if she was okay. She promised me she didn’t have the xXxbUbOnIc pLaGuExXx, and I promised her that if she did and she died I would throw her a kick ass Helena-style funeral, and I’m pretty sure she busted a nut about it. And you know what? Fuck that shit. Because you get older and your fiends actually start dying under terrible circumstances and it’s not like this shit at all. As much as I want still like this video aesthetically, I just can’t do it anymore without pangs of guilt and hypocrisy. Damn it, if there are any little emo kids reading this (I know I’ve seen y’all loitering outside the DMV before, so I know you’re still out there), just know that there is nothing fucking romantic about death. When you die you rot in the ground and everyone’s sad and if you’re really unlikely your soul gets stuck doing some more loitering. On a lighter note, does it bother anyone else that that one chick takes forever getting off the stairs at 3:11? Shit ruins the feng shui. Oh, and terrible song. I really just want to go get in bed with ten pounds of Taco Bell cinna-twists and sleep for fourteen hours and forget that all of this happened.
Final Verdict: Your family has to pay the funeral home extra to paint a smokey eye on you/10
Well friends, there you have it. I think we just need one last ode to the mid-2000’s. Take it away, Bev ’n’ Bob: