Monday, March 10, 2008

Robb Flynn's Disease—Pathology


As we have stated here at Metal Inquisition before, Robb Flynn's disease is a very serious condition which plagues the metal world today. We will try to explain R.F.D. (as we will refer to it hereafter in this post) for the benefit and edification of our readers.

R.F.D. (named after Robb Flynn, previously of the band Vio-Lence, now of Machine Head) usually strikes aging, out of step metal fossils. The disease usually hits hardest when the victim was originally (and only slightly) known for being in one band which is no longer around, and more than likely played a style that has fallen out of favor with today's audiences. Though most of those who suffer from this disease are musicians who are broke and desperate, some partial mutations of the disease have also struck somewhat successful musicians such as Kerry King and Scott Ian.


Individuals dealing with the disease will take on certain characteristics best suited for 15 year old ravers in Kansas, in a pathetic, last ditch effort to remain somewhat relevant and "with it". Often seen as a crucial part of any last ditch effort in the musical arena, R.F.D. is often seen by those who suffer from it as a new lease on life. Think of it as the metal equivalent of automotive oil that is especially formulated for high millage cars.

Individuals who are suffering from R.F.D. will most often exhibit at least two of the following symptoms.

1. Individual gets facial piercings way too late in life (see Robb Flynn, and Dave Chavarri of Ill Niño)

2. Grows dreadlocks (see Max Cavalera)

3. Is seen wearing oversized pants (see Chris Banes wearing JNCOs, and Kerry King's oversized orange camo pants)

4. Grows "wacky" facial hair, most often a goatee which can be dyed, braided, parted or grown into dreadlocks (a fantastic double whammy)

5. Accessorizes already terrible, ill fitting attire with items such as chain wallets, goggles (this includes unusual sunglasses ala Kerry King) and the like.

6. Individual will shave his head, seemingly attempting to emulate a young, hip look...but in reality does so to hide his balding.

Note that these symptoms are often accompanied (though not always) by a propensity towards playing third rate nu metal, with slightly hip-hop influenced drum beats (see Soulfly, Machine Head).


Dave Chavarri of Ill Niño (Previously from Gothic Slam)

Scott Ian of Anthrax

Kerry King of Slayer

Max Cavalera of Cavalera Conspiracy and Soulfly
(formerly of Sepultura)

Chris Barnes
(formerly of Cannibal Corpse, now of Six Feet Deep)

In closing, I should mention briefly that the world of metal is not alone in facing issues such as R.F.D. Oh no. The world of hip-hop has faced a somewhat similar scourge, which I refer to as "Funky Headhunter Syndrome", named after MC Hammer's 1994 album in which he sadly threw his hat into the gangsta' rap ring. The hat was quickly thereafter picked up from said ring, and thrown back at him. The album was chock full of Dr. Dre style production, and MC Hammer suddenly began wearing prison garb (ala NWA). I don't want to dwell on this subject (this is METAL Inquisition after all) but I'd like to share this graphic with you to illustrate this last point, and to let our readers know that we are NOT alone in this battle.


  1. alternate title: A Taxonomy of Douchbaggery

  2. you know, there's a SIGNIFICANT difference between RFD and FHS. Think about it, if you remain 'true to your roots' in metal, you can still look "cool". take jeff hanneman as an example: he's fat, but no RFD, right? BUT what if hip-hop peeps still wore cross-colors? no way THAT can be cool. why? as much as hip-hop "embraces" their old-school roots, they are VERY ashamed of flat tops, tight pants, cowboy boots (see the furious five circa 1984) and MC hammer pants.

    "Think of it as the metal equivalent of automotive oil that is especially formulated for high millage cars."

    that maybe the funniest line ever written on M.I.

  3. there is a difference, absolutely...hence my referring to it as a related illness...but certainly different. they are similar in the sense that its an aging fossil trying to stay current by looking like the young folks. by the way, and this is way way way off topic musically speaking, but salt n' pepa did the same thing. they put out a record that sounded just like TLC, and they dressed like them. by passing that knkowledge on i have just become the most un-metal human being on earth.

  4. Dave Chavarri looks like a muppet in that photo.

  5. excellent work, dr. lucho! there have been great advances in the study and understanding of robb flynn's disease, but much work still needs to be done if we ever hope to conquer it!

  6. lord knows Scott Ian has made more of a career out of being a frequent celebrity guest on VH1 then he ever did peddling third-rate thrash with Anthrax

  7. How did Phil Anselmo not make the example list?

  8. I place the blame on 25 ta Life, Life of Agony and VOD for pioneering the fashion and sound that those guys ripped off.

    "River Runs Red" still gets me going every single time though.

  9. recognizing early symptoms is crucial:

    kansas rave


    p.s. anselmo totally deserves a place on the list.

  10. First of all, if you ever met Robb Flynn you wouldn't have a bad word to say about the mother fucker.

    Second, the fact that you are even commenting on peoples' looks or clothes is the least metal thing in this thread - period.


  11. now that i think about it, i actually DID meet robb flynn once at Great Northern mall in cleveland. that was the same mall where i met todd and raybeez from Warzone with Chubby fresh from one life crew. what a rock and roll mall.

  12. I laughed uproariously at this post. Good shit.

    On an editing note; Barnes' band is Six Feet Under, not Six Feet Deep.


    Derek from Seattle

  13. You know, I like Robb Flynn!
    He's a cool dude!
    Also if he was past it like you say he is, I'd want him as my dad not as my sex slave.
    And I think that the album that machine head released when they started to really embrace their new direction (Burning Red) Is pretty epic.
    I also think it's a tad sad that you create a whole webpage dedicated to slagging people off just because they changed a bit and you didn't like it.
    That'd be like inventing a disease called your mums getting past it disease just because she's started baking her own bread instead of buying it and now has an ipod despite being a technophobe buts thinks its trendy.
    Seriously like, if a band spilts up, thats like getting made redundant, you're saying that musicians arn't allowed to apply for a second job and still be successful, which is a pretty ignorant way to look upon it. If you were a proper musician you'd see how stupid this whole analyisis is.

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  15. Seriously? Robb Flynn is a damn good musician even after Vio-Lence. Machine Head is fuckin awesome, you are mislead. all that shit dissing Scott Ian and the rest of the other guys is fucked up. if you 'really' liked them before they "changed" as you'd like to put it, then you wouldn't be judging them now. Your two-faced

  16. You limp dick motherfucker,who the fuck give you the right to comment on these people?Who the fuck are you,what the fuck have you accomplished in your shitty life?At least these people have made some good music so go back watching your parents fuck,that's the closest you'll ever get to getting laid.Oh,and by the way having a blog dosen't give any power at all bitch.If you hide behind the screen throwing big words you're not a bigger man.Suck it.

  17. All of these people are great musicians who you are just bashing on the style of because that's all you think you got on them. It is painfully obvious that you are a butt hurt douche who's ex probably liked these musicians.

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