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No One and a Half: Metal and Open-Mindedness

by on Oct.22, 2007, under Articles, No One and a Half

Scribed by Jason Firestone.

Check it: You’re mind-blowingly metal. Metal is your middle name and might as well be your first and last as well. You bleed metal. No, seriously, molten steel actually comes out when you bleed. You wear gauntlets and combat boots to bed and you wear a codpiece while you mow your lawn. Your band’s name even has the word “metal” in it!

Anyone who doubts the metal-ness of your metal has no idea what it is to be metal because you are so metal that your very presence in public places causes everyone around you to impulsively drop everything they’re doing and do windmills with their hair, whether they have enough hair to spin or not.

There’s only one way you can possibly be anymore metal than you already are: by listening to other genres of music besides metal. Now before you whip out your pocket Satanic Bible and attempt to offer me as a sacrifice to the Great Horned One for suggesting something as blatantly sacrilegious as not listening to metal exclusively, consider this: Ozzy’s biggest influence is The Beatles. Yes, The Beatles!

It doesn’t seem so crazy when you put it into perspective, though. What would Randy Rhoads have been without studying classical guitar? What about Pantera without blues and country? Atheist without jazz? Yngwie Malmsteen without, like, five minutes of baroque? (Okay, bad example.) Nile would be another average death metal band if they didn’t incorporate Middle Eastern influences. The whole genre of thrash metal wouldn’t exist without punk. Fuck it, Cat Stevens was a big influence on Dave Mustaine. Cat Stevens. You know, the guy who did that song that’s all “Oohh, baby, baby, it’s a wild world…”

So before you cover your ears and growl in your sickest, most guttural phlegm-gargling death metal voice to drown out the old ABBA records your parents are playing, maybe you should take a listen. The future of metal depends on the inclusion of outside influences. That is,unless your idea of the future of metal is Manowar mixed with Lamb of God.

Actually, that might be kinda cool.

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