Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Retroview: Forced Entry

Two Sacred Reich shirts in the same picture?! Isn't there some kind of law against that?

I grew up in Snohomish County, Washington- about 25 miles north of Seattle. Seattle is a pretty happening town now, with lots of bands, artists, cultural events, and industry icons like Microsoft, Amazon, Starbucks, Boeing and Nintendo headquartered there, but back in the 80s and early, pre-Nirvana 90s, it was different. Back then, it was mostly weird, isolated rednecks that marched to the beat of their own drum. Bands like The Accused, Dumt, Date Rape, and *cough* Bigtop did their own thing and generally attracted almost no national attention. Forced Entry were no exception: they played a pretty unique brand of thrash that wasn't really like anything else out there, and aside from a small cult following, nobody ever really gave a fuck. To atone for my earlier Crazytown post, though, here is a look back at the mighty Forced Entry, my favorite band in 7th grade!

Thrashing The Helpless Down demo / Uncertain Future LP (1987/1989)
Forced Entry started off as a very good, but not super noteworthy thrash band. They were definitely on the heavier end of things, especially for 1989- I'd say they were one notch below Solstice / Demolition Hammer / Malevolent Creation-style "death metal." I put it in quotes because, as Lucho Metales and I often talk about, it really is death metal in name only when you compare it to Suffocation, Internal Bleeding, Pyrexia, and so forth. I'm lumping the demo in with this album because they're mostly the same songs (maybe even the same recordings? I don't remember).

This album is totally good, and you should definitely pick it up if you get the chance, it's just not as mindblowing as their second one! There's nothing wrong with it at all, but it's pretty fun to go down the thrash metal checklist and tick off items one by one:
  • Oil painting on the cover, although they probably couldn't afford Repka so they got their buddy from Edmonds Community College to whip something up
  • Lyrics about toxic waste and mutants:
    Stagnant earth, chemical wastes
    Chaos ruling, it never waits
    Mutant cells, join as one
    Lethal minds spell destruction
  • Picture of themselves looking like they just woke up from a coma, complete with puffy high tops (see above)
7/10 bloody axes

As Above, So Below
Now this is a masterpiece of technical, progressive thrash! Imagine the precision and brutality of Dark Angel with the angular, progressive touches of maybe Cynic or something and you have an idea of what to expect. Although it is impossible without access to the Nocturnus time machine, it almost sounds like they were listening to a lot of Oppressor's "Agony," because the riffs are more than a little bit similar. You might remember the song "Macrocosm Microcosm," which got a fair amount of airplay on Headbanger's Ball, but that song is by far the weakest part of this album. The rest are full of technical, cock-smashing brutality like the lead track, "Bone Crackin' Fever":

The majority of the songs are long, twisting epics with tons of weird syncopation and meandering riffs (in a good way), but they do keep it very real with another thrash staple, the goofy party song. In fact, this album includes not one but two goofy party songs: "How I Spent My Summer Vacation," which is about bongs, administering cunnilingus, urinating on oneself, and other trappings of being a white trash metalhead. The chorus is "Get fucked up!"

The other one is "We're Dicks," which is a song that articulates their anti-authoritarian, individualistic philosophy and highlights their belief in personal freedom. I'll warn you right now that the language is a bit coarse, but if you can handle that, the song is simply splendid.

With an album this awesome, the cover art isn't really critical, but it's a nice bonus that this is a pretty sharp design, all things considered. The composition is a bit static because it's symmetrical, but the use of color is remarkably vibrant for a thrash record in 1991, and I really like the illustration style on the hands.

10/10 bloody axes

The Shore (1995)
Hey, nobody bats 1.000, right? Even the best bands fall short sometimes, and unfortunately Forced Entry is no exception. This isn't bad, but like Uncertain Future, it just isn't that awesome in comparison to As Above, So Below. Like a lot of thrash bands, they tried to slow things down and did a little of the groove metal thing, and nobody wanted that to happen. Leave that to Pantera, the masters of power groove. Forced Entry did it pretty well, all things considered, but it's just not what you came for, you know? I give them a pass on this EP because it doesn't suck, but I wouldn't encourage you to seek it out (and it's really hard to find).

5/10 bloody axes

Monday, December 29, 2008

Where are they now: Danny Spitz (with a little Nicko McBrain thrown in for good measure)

Check out Danny's eyes, he's looking in 27 different directions at the same time.

Known the world-over for our hard-hitting research and investigative reports, Metal Inquisition once again steps up to deliver the goods. This time we are looking into one of our favorite figures in the world of metal. I'm referring, of course, to the leading 5'1", cross-eyed watchmaker in the greater Boca Raton area: Danny Spitz.

We've reported before about Danny's business ventures, but decided to take a closer look at his life, and accomplishments away from the world of metal. What did we find? Some watches, some Maiden and a whole lot of baby Jesus.

Who's that tiny man behind the big desk? Is that one of Santa's elves hard at work in the workshop?

After years of playing with Anthrax, Danny was kicked out due to "a severe disinterest in playing guitar." After that time, Danny decided to cut his ties to music, going as far as ripping out all stereos from has cars. This is according to his website, but to be fair he probably did so because a cassette of Attack Of The Killer B's was probably stuck in there. Can you blame the guy? I'd rip out my car stereo too. He also gave away most of his guitars to Hard Rock Cafes all over the world. Damn! If any reader has seen his Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Jackson flying-v while munching on a delicious cheeseburger in a Hard Rock Cafe in a Caribbean island, please let me know on the double! I dream of being in the presence of that sweet axe!

I dream of looking at that amazing fretboard while I dine on a fine cheeseburger.

It was at that time that Danny went on to pursue his life-long dream of learning how to replace watch bands, and batteries. Perhaps one day he was walking by a Dakota Watch Company stand at the mall, and he thought to himself "I really want to change batteries and watchbands, just like that teenager. By god, I will pursue this dream!". Danny got a bunch of degrees in Switzerland from schools no one has ever heard of, and he's now licensed to change the batteries in my Casio calculator watch.

Danny on graduation day in Switzerland. Is that Lars Ulrich to his right? Does this mean that Lars also knows how to change my watch battery? If it is Lars, he's actually the tallest person in a picture for once!

Danny now owns his own repair shop in Boca Raton, and has attempted to launch his own watch company. It was at his Boca Raton shop that he reconnected with Nicko McBrain from Iron Maiden, who went in to get a strap on his watch replaced or something. This is where things get more interesting, at least for me. Nicko and Danny started making music in Danny's studio after meeting up at the shop. Aside for their shared love of music, watches, and living in Florida (who knew Boca Raton was the preferred retirement spot for aging rockers?), they are both really into Jesus. Big time. You see, Danny was born Jewish, but converted to Messianic Judaism, which really has nothing to do with Judaism. They believe in good ol' JC, and are similar to Jews For Jesus. As a matter of fact, once you convert to Messianic Judaism, Israel will refuse to give you citizenship. But enough about that. Turns out, Nicko is also way into the Lord. He converted upon setting foot inside Spanish River Church, a Boca Raton mega-church, after his wife begged him to go. Once inside the church, he began to cry uncontrollably, according to him.

Nice to see that Nicko has already started to wear the standard-issue David Koresh glasses. Nothing accents a pug-face like his like those shop safety glasses do. Nice job Nicko.

So it makes sense that these two started to play music. Though there is no word from Anthrax about Danny's possible attempts to convert them, Nicko says the following about Iron Maiden:

"I can't say to you that I'm trying to convert all these guys in my band to be Christians. I'm leading them on my route, and if they choose to follow what God's plan is in the Bible, that's up to them. I say to them all, you know, look, in my belief, at the moment, if you turn to your saviour Jesus Christ, I'll have eternal life in Heaven with you!"

Anyway the band they started, called 7x70 (a biblical refereence), also featudred Vanilla Ice (no joke), and Dave Ellefson from Megadeth, though Dave never actually played with them. No material was ever released. It's sad that the world missed out on the amazing music that such a brain trust would surely put together. Can you imagine? I picture it starting out with the bass line from Peace Sells. After that, the drums from Run To the Hills start up (yes, I know Clive Burr played that song originally) and then some sweet leads kick in courtesy of Danny. Once it all gets going, Vanilla Ice starts rapping over the whole thing. Can you say "amazing"?

Danny is currently doing another band with members from Accept and King Diamond, who are no doubt born again christians of some sort as well. Danny actually unveiled his plans for this band at the Cornerstone Festival. In his site he wrote:

I do feel (as I did in the past) that I have created an entirely new sound never heard by the human ear before.

"As I did in the past"? Is he talking about his solo in "Indians", because I would have to agree. That shit was blazin'! Anyway, Danny is now married to a woman named Candi. Who he said this about:

Not to confuse all you horny men out there that might think I have found the love of my life by her looks, big boobs, and fine butt alone... but Candi is the most kind-hearted, giving, and devoted partner I have ever had the pleasure of touching. She is a gift from the Lord and has an extensive education uinder her blonde belt.

Uh...okay. Candi is the daughter of a lesbian singer from Tampa, who primaraly sings Judy Garland showtunes. This is her site. They have twins together, who act in Volkswagen commercials (the latest ones for the minivan which star Brooke Shields) and were also in the Batman movie. If you are way into babies, you can read a whole interview about them here. Move over Olsen twins! Mini-Daddy needs to cash in after being fired from Anthrax!

Oh my! Look at that facial hair! Do I detect a mild case of Robb Flynn's disease? Also, those are so amazingly sculpted eyebrows.

After typing all this down, I'm both tired and depressed. I'm gonna' go listen to Among The Living while I take a nap.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Metal Inquisition wishes all of you a Heavy Christmas

In the words of 220 Volt, we wish you a heavy Christmas. From all of us, to all of you.

We hope baby Jesus brings you all the gifts you asked for. In the case of our beloved Metal Inquisition receptionist Dorothy, that meant a case of Bud Light. Don't drink it all at once Dorothy!

Dorothy, our hard working administrative assistant and receptionist. When you call our 1-800 number, this is the lovely lady that will greet you at the other end of the line.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

The Worst Album Covers of 2008

I don't know about the whole world, but this cover is certainly setting my brain on fire. What an eyesore. I know a lot of people hate Dave Mustaine, but how can you not respect the guy? Even after being kicked out Metallica and crying in Some Kind of Monster he will not give up. He just keeps on toiling in obscurity hoping that someday his shitty, second tier thrash band will get their due and he will become a hero to millions and everyone will know that he riffs faster than everyone else. Dave Mustaine is the embodiement of the American dream. One that shattered into a million pieces decades ago.

Yeah, I get it. The drummer and guitarists are SO good! It doesn't matter that their music is boring as fuck, just listen to their skillz! The guitarists are so original and earth-shattering that their guitars have 7 strings instead of 6! That's 3 more guitar strings than Max Cavalera has on his guitar! That extra string really helps them write the SICKEST most wicked crazy squiggly wiggly guitar solos and chugga chugga riffs. And the drummer!!!! I could go on for days about how he plays the CRAZIEST time signatures!! Like I can't even figure out what's going on when I listen to him play because he's THAT CRAZY!!! Is that in 3/23 or 6/76ths???? I CAN'T FIGURE IT OUT BECAUSE IT'S TOO HARD!!!! And just like how their music is beyond human comprehension so is their album cover. Is that a chubby bald dude with a little paunch meditating covered in blood? And is that THREE arms I spy??? Dude's got some pretty big areolas. And what is OBZEN??? It's like a word from outer space!

I chose to post this Origin cover, but I could just have easily posted any number of album covers by brutal death metal bands because they're all the same fucking thing. Some bullshit looking hyperstylized monster/machine hybrid. This shit is so lame and played out. It looks sterile and lifeless, which is exactly what all these bands sound like. Not brutal!

I'm a hetersexual male and I love Judas Priest. I'm all for gay rights and I think Rob Halford co-opting gay leather-daddy culture and reclaiming it for metal was a brilliant move, but is there anything sadder than an old wrinkly leather daddy? You had your time, Rob. Don't ruin your legacy by trying to make a couple extra bucks. It ain't worth it. I haven't listened to this album, but I'm sure it sucks. Spooky prophecies and a disembodied head floating in space? Where's the leather and spikes, at least?

Are you fucking kidding me?? A band really used this as their album cover? What the fuck!? I've never even heard this band, but I guarantee they're wacky thrash. The band members are probably in their early to mid 20s and wear tight jeans, hightop sneakers, and denim vests covered in band patches and pins. Well, guess what? Dark Angel called from 1986 and they want their schtick back because you are a fucking embarassment to metal. A plague that should be wiped off the face of the earth. Paul Baloff is spinning in his grave. When will it end?

Full disclosure: I really like DragonForce. Yeah, I know that makes me a huge homo and a poseur and whatever else, but I don't care. These dudes fucking shred and are so over-the-top ridiculous I can't help but love them. But even I can't condone this album cover. Somone has been watching too much Ghost in the Machine or something. This album cover might actually have worked if it was a picture of a real chick decked out from some cosplay convention.

Why does Exciter even still exist in 2008? It's like telling everyone you know that you just bought the COOLEST rotary phone ever!! Will metal dinosaurs ever learn? These clowns must be gluttons for punishment. This the dumbest album cover I've ever seen and what could have been an acceptable album title for a bunch of 20 somethings in a thrash band 20 years ago is now beyond sad coming from a bunch of washed up 40 year old accountants. This cover really is an embarassment because Exciter is responsible for some of the greatest and most unforgetable cover art in the history of thrash metal.

Sorry Glen, but Pungent Stench did it better 17 years ago. And your new album sucks. You put out a killer comback album before this that no one saw coming. You should have quit while you were ahead, but you got cocky and you thought you could it again. You were wrong.

I don't even know where to begin with this one. Everything is wrong and horrible and I'm getting physically angry just looking at this piece of shit. Who even listens to this band anymore? I guess if you're really that stupid, then you deserve this.

Is it too much to ask for even a little effort from black metal bands? A 6 year old could have made this cover in art class with a pair of scissors, some construction paper, and a glue stick. Warmasters? I sure as fuck wouldn't want this chode fighting on my side if I had to go to war.

Hahahahaha... okay, at least this one is kind of funny. Of course it still sucks, but at least I'm not filled with rage when I look at it.

A woman in a futuristic spandex suit gliding through the air with some weird shit coming out of her back. I like Alex P. Keaton's hoverboard better. I haven't listened to Soilet Green since I was in high school, but if this cover is any indication my guess is they sound like teen bop now.

Never ones to shy away from shocking imagery, Cradle of Filth have always embraced controversy. They're bound to stir up quite a controversy with this piece of shit cover. Nothing like computer generated blasphemous religious imagery. Keep on pushing the boundaries of good taste, guys.

I don't know anything about this band. I don't remember how I came across this album cover, but I thought I should include it in my list because when you name your band Wykked Wytch it's like you're inviting the entire world to make fun of you mercilessly.

We've already covered this one in detail, but no list of the worst album covers of 2008 would be complete without it. A coffin surrounded by fingerprints? I don't even care to guess anymore. At least they got Pushead to do the art for that piece of shit St. Anger.

Uhhhh... okay. Why not just go to the library and look up "concentration camps" in the Encyclopedia Britannica then photocopy whatever pictures they have and use that instead of having someone waste their time, money, and effort to pain this piece of shit.

This is another one I thought I should include because it's just so fucking dumb that I can't help but laugh when I look at it. My guess is that they were going for some real menacing underwater creature, but instead they got Jimmy the friendly octopus. Look at his little mouth in the middle, it looks like he's cracking a smile.

I'm kind of torn about this one because it could easily be the worst/best album cover of 2008. To be on the safe though I'm going to go ahead and include it on this list. I know Yngwie shreds hard, but to insinuate that he shreds SO hard that he makes his guitar neck catch fire is a bit hard to believe. Much respect for showing off the hairy chest and gold chain, but when did Yngwie start looking like Steven Segal? Dude even wears kimonos now.

This is one of those covers that makes me want to reach into my computer screen and punch it square in the fucking face. I hate everything about it, just like the Ugly Kid Joe.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Retroview: Crazytown discography

Many of us look back on the late 90s with a mixture of horror, disgust, and amusement. After all, those are the years that brought us Lincoln Park, Korn, Limp Bizkit, Kid Rock, and legions of other bands that combined the most annoying and ignorant aspects of white trash and poor black people. By now, most readers of Metal Inquisition will already know where I'm headed with this- I love all those bands! The late 90s were SWEET! They produced Mandy Moore, Christina Augilera, Blink-182 and Jordan Knight's comeback song, all of which are still totally great. But maybe the very best of late 90s douche rock was Crazytown, and it's time that Metal Inquisition gave them their due!

But first, on the future of the media business...
If you read gay, shitty magazines like Wired, they will tell you that physical media are dead. They'll say that nobody buys CDs anymore, that digital distribution is the future. They couldn't be more wrong. I am listening to pirated Guttural Secrete MP3s as I type this, but when it comes to bands you really love, you want to own the physical artifact. I definitely love Crazytown, so before I wrote this, I hopped on eBay and picked up the entire CxT discography, for a grand total of 74 cents. I know what you're thinking: I got ripped off! But not so fast: both CxT albums were 1 cent each, although I had to pay 72 cents for Shifty's solo album. I'm not sure what makes that one worth 36 times more than the other two put together, but valuation of physical assets is kind of a black art that I don't totally understand, so I was OK with paying top dollar to get these albums that mean so much to me.

The Gift of Game (1999)
The cover of this album has some hottie on it sucking on a lollipop, I guess because they want you to imagine her performing oral sex, and that makes you think about her having a penis in her mouth instead of a lollipop. I have a hard time getting aroused by her, though, because she combines every awful 90s trend into a single image: tribal tattoos, excessive piercings, Betty Page hair, arched eyebrows, and I'm guessing she's wearing Mudd jeans, even if you can't see them. In any case, you probably only know the hit single "Butterfly," but actually this record is packed with sick jams from top to bottom.

My favorite song is "Darkside," which showed the world that Crazytown was versatile, going from tender ballads like "Butterfly" to uptempo rockers like this song. In case you thought CxT didn't know anything about rock, Shifty's lyrics in "Darkside" namecheck the Circle Jerks, Bad Brains, Sex Pistols and all kinds of other ill shit:
Nasty na na, ha, ha
Darkside marijuana.
Fueled of the drama.
Drifting on the darkside.
I’m the black eye bomber.
Do what I do on a darkside
Raising hell, out the shell.
Of fantasies I never tell.
Dispersin’ untamed perversion.
My bad brain’s working,
Circle jerking, rocking riddles,
Sex pistol, sexperts
Acting uncivil.
Damn, son!! That shit got me almost as excited as when I saw Mark McGrath wearing a Circle Jerks shirt in Sugar Ray's video for "Answer The Phone." If that wasn't enough for you, click here for a really good live version of "Darkside."

The album closes with "B-Boy 2000," which is an awesome rap/rock thingamajig featuring KRS-ONE (famous for declaring that the "li-bary" is "where they bury the lies!"). I really like the song, but there is one part I wish they would have changed. I know Shifty isn't strong in terms of quantitative methods (I mean, if he even has a GED I'd be pretty amazed), but when he drops the line "Destroying MCs with my vocal algebra," I wish that he would have said something like "vocal differential equations" or even just "verbal Lagrangian relaxation." It just sucks because I don't think he realizes that a reasonably smart 7th grader should have a pretty good handle on algebra, you know? On the other hand, I think even his staunchest critics would be quite impressed if he could, for example, uncover arbitrage opportunities with simply his lyrics!

Darkhorse (2000)
This is the album that helped me realize that I was a douchebag. More specifically, I saw that I started out as an ironic douchebag that just listened to CxT for a joke, but had become an honest-to-god, authentic douchebag that seriously liked them. I remember the moment as though it was yesterday. I was lifting weights, and the song "Skulls and Stars" from this album came on my iPod, and I thought to myself, "Man, the lyrics to this song are really good! I can't believe I used to laugh at this band, they're seriously good." Then I thought, "Holy shit, I just flexed in the mirror while telling myself that Crazytown is a great band. What have I become?!" I'd like to think that Shifty would have been proud of me. He'd be all, "Fuck it dude, it doesn't matter what anybody thinks. People told us we were crazy for combining rock and rap, but we flipped the script on those fools. Don't even trip, fuck the haters, bro!" He's right. You can laugh at me and Shifty if you want, but just remember: they called Galileo a fool, too!

As far as the cover goes, it depicts what seems to be the same girl from their first album, only now she has a better haircut, wings, and she looks really tired. I don't get it, but I'm sure that Shifty and Epic have a hella deep explanation for every detail in the image. They always do, sort of like on Miami Ink how some self-absorbed sorostitute will come in and ask for a tattoo of a dolphin on her hip, then drone on for 20 minutes about what it symbolizes.

Split 7" with Paul Oakenfold (2003?)
After their second album, Crazytown released a three-way split 7" with Paul Oakenfold and Psycho on Ax/Ction Records featuring the single "Starry Eyed Surprise." I first heard it in a Coke commercial that they played at the theater before some movie (this is also how I discovered Forever The Sickest Kids- yay Movietunes). It is possibly the ultimate summer jam, right up there with "Steal My Sunshine."

Shifty - Happy. Love. Sick. (2004)
First, here is a review I wrote for Rolling Stone of Shifty's solo effort:
Upon initial contact with Shifty's music, I had envisioned him to be an ill-mannered and psychologically unstable man with an extremely uneducated and barbaric frame of mind, whose raps displayed nothing but ridiculous jargon, shocking sexual audacity and repulsive images of the ghetto.

However, after further analysis of his music I can deduce that he is the epitome of antidisestblishmentarianism who embodies the entire spectrum of the urban experience and struggle.

But to make things more plain and simple to the layman, I find Shifty to be the dopest, flyist, O.G. pimp hustler gangster player hardcore motherfucker living today. To be honest I'm totally and irrevocably on his dick.
Anyway, here are a couple of things I bet you didn't know about Shifty and CxT:
  • DJ AM, most known for banging Nicole Richie, was CxT's DJ on their first record (lolz @ his credibility if anybody finds out about that)
  • Shifty appeared in the film Clifford with Martin Short
Closing thoughts
I have come to terms with the fact that I seriously like Crazytown. At first I thought it would be funny to listen to them as a post-ironic bit, like "Hay guyz I like the absolute worst band on the planet, look at me!" And it is pretty funny in that context. But like I said earlier, I turned the corner, and I honestly like their music. I seriously think their first album is really catchy and fun and I am kind of mad that I never saw them live.

Not only that, but I feel like Shifty and I could definitely have a bromance after seeing him on Celebrity Rehab. He needs someone like me in his life to help him chill out and focus on what's really important. Maybe we could start doing yoga or something, then have some hella deep conversations at the juice bar afterwards, I don't know.

Monday, December 22, 2008

High School Memories

My senior picture, sans metal shirt. My mom told me to class it up and wear the bolo tie and southwestern shirt that day.

An ongoing discussion I have with my wife revolves around our high school memories. While her's are generally pleasant and memorable, mine are horrible and I try to forget them as much as I can. Much like a Vietnam vet who has flashbacks upon seeing a moving ceiling fan, I too have flashbacks whenever I even see a high school yearbook. Not really, but that story makes this post more poignant. The truth is that like most people who were into metal, school was not always fun for me (wah!, life was hard...wahhhhh!). I was a bit of an outcast, though largely by choice, now that I think about it. Like other metalheads, I didn't have the personality or looks that would have taken me to a higher level in the social pecking order, but my outcast status was mostly manufactured. I was a loser to some extent, but if I had simply chosen to listen to more popular music, and perhaps worn fewer metal shirts, I would have been a step above the kids with cerebral palsy. Those kids (CP kids) were the ones who really couldn't help themselves at all. Stupidly, I chose to wear Slayer shirts to school. I know that last sentence may be controversial in a metal forum such as this, but screw it. It's true.

In this post I will see how I would have measured up against some luminaries in the world of metal, had we attended school at the same time. In order to do research for this piece, I had to fire up the Nocturnus time machine. Normally, I don't use the time machine for just any ol' post, luckily gas prices have gone down, and we're now able to use such technology more freely. Don't complain about the fact that the pictures I'm using are not of the most obscure metal people on earth. Sorry, but high school pictures from the guys in Order From Chaos, Dorsal Atlantica and Sarcastic (they had a demo on Wild Rags) are not easy to come by.

Tom Araya

Tom was voted "class clown", which is weird, because I would have thought he'd be voted "most likely to end up looking exactly like Chief Sitting Bull." Seeing these pictures reminded me of a time at a Milwakee Metal Fest in 1993 or so when I was going to the bathroom between bands. I had a Sharpie marker in my hand for some reason, and I was playing around with it as I walked down a long hallway to get to the bathroom. The only other person in the hallway was Tom Araya. I made a left turn towards the bathroom and went by Tom. As I walked by him, he put out his hand as though to grab the marker out of my hand to sign something. Since I didn't want him to sign anything, I just walked past him and giggled as I did so. He kinda' stood there staring as I walked past.

Okay, but back to the pictures of Tom...looking at theseleads me to believe that although Tom had long hair and was perhaps into slightly heavier music than other kids, he was well liked. He would have sort of been my friend, but would have also been friends with hot girls who were smart. He would have known that hanging out with my kind would bring his stock down, and he would have been right. The mention of him being a "bench warmer" in the first picture makes me think that he at least played some sport during his high school years. Taking all this into consideration, I think Tom and I would have let each other borrow some tapes, but he would have never hung out with me outside of school. He liked metal, but was smart enough to tone it down around hot girls and cool dudes who weren't into metal. I would have been too die-hard and stubborn (and thus loserly) for his taste. He would have signed my yearbook, but would have kept his distance. Smart move.

Veredict: Friendly during school hours.

Kirk Hammett

Just look at that picture! Filipinos have all the luck...they can make money having sex with middle aged men who like boys when they are 12, or when they are 45. Man, some ethnic groups have all the luck! Looking at this picture, and those huge glasses that make Kirk look like a Greyhound bus, it's hard to imagine that this young man would one day loose his hair and grow the world's thinnest bicycle-skid mustache. Still, Kirk would have been my boy back in the day! In the 8th grade, our lunch table would have also included the kid who looked like a fish due to severe fetal alcohol syndrome, but we still would have been happy during lunch. Forever losers when it came to the opposite sex, we would have pretended that it didn't matter to us. Inside, we cried...but on the outside...everything was gravy.

Veredict: Best buds

Gene Simmons (aka Chaim Witz)

Though it's hard to pretend that I went to high school with Gene Simmons when his picture looks like it was taken during the Civil War, I will try. Gene would have creeped me the hell out in school. Insanely intense, and douchy around girls (remember that he came from a very religious Jewish family, went to an orthodox Yeshiva for a good part of his life, and then went on to coin the term "blumpkin"), Gene would not have been my cup of tea. I picture him being the guy with greasy hair and huge dandruff flakes the size of Bran Flakes. He was the guy who was prematurely grown up, acting like an adult when he was 6. Condescending as all hell, perhaps the one thing that we would have shared would have been our disgust for all things high school. My disdain for high school students came from thinking they were all idiots due to ignorance, his would have come from thinking they were all just too young. We would have talked briefly in class, but only to ask each other for an eraser. If someone like him would have died two years after graduation, I would have said "Oh, I remember that guy. He was in my Biology class."

Veredict: Class acquaintances

Ronnie James Dio (aka Ronald James Padavona)

Like with Gene Simmons, it's hard for me to pretend I could have gone to school with someone this old, but here it goes. Ronnie played tons of sports (just look under his picture), but would have been cool. In math class, we would bond about our short stature. If you look under his name, it states that his nickname was "Pigmy", a person from any human group who grows to be less than 5 feet tall. Though I'm not that short, Dio and I would have joked around, and he would have taught me to "own" my shortness. Due to his Italian heritage, we would share stories about our crazy grandparents and their inability to function with the US. Although our musical tastes would have been slightly mismatched, we still would have hung out at parties. Ronnie would have been the guy who jokingly plopped his balls down onto the overhead projector while the teacher was talking to the assistant principal by the classroom's door.

Veredict: Friendly outside of school

Paul Stanley ( aka Stanley Harvey Eisen)

Just as it was hard for me to stretch the bounds of my imagination when it came to the pictures of Gene Simmons and Dio due to the time when they were taken, it's even harder for me to do this with Paul Stanley's picture. How am I supposed to pretend I went to school with a forty year old Jewish woman with an Emo Phillips haircut? Also, it looks like his face is melting. Okay, I'll try.

We would have been friendly in Home-Ec. class. Since Paul is an elderly jewish woman, his cooking skills would have been superior to mine, but still not great. He would have nagged me to eat, plainly stating "eat, eat! you're skin and bones!" He would tell me long-winded stories about how his aunt, auntie Pearl, was taken away by "those ghouls, the Nazis". I would ask him "Paul, why do you sound like a southern black woman sometimes?" He would dismiss my questions, and continue making flavorless meals.

Veredict: Home Ec partners

Friday, December 19, 2008

Random Images

From time to time, our beloved Metal Inquisition intern will find images that he thinks would be funny to post on the blog. Though he's often wrong (like that one of Scott Ian using a Dyson vacuum cleaner), he will sometimes find near-gems that are certainly worth sharing. Here are some of his latest finds.


Perhaps the ultimate sign of my advancing age: I can no longer tell what gender people are.


The last time I decided to venture out and see live music for the first time in like a decade, a tub of goo who looked just like this ran up to my car in the parking lot and yelled out "Woooooooooh!" I just turned right back around, went home, and watched HGTV.


Imagine what it must feel like to be this guy. You think you're badass because you're selling merch for your friend's band. At a show, you meet a girl and she says: "You know who you look like?" in anticipation, you begin to think to yourself: Tom Selleck? Perhaps a young Rock Hudson? But then she says, "You look just like Tom G. Warrior". What a heart-crushing blow that would be, to be compared to a corpse from Switzerland.

At the risk of sounding like a bad Seinfeld impression, did you ever notice how metal fans tend to come in two sizes only? Dino Cazares fat, and concentration camp skinny. No in between. Lastly, do you think he got that NASA shirt because he's an actual astronaut? I guess we'll never know.


I have often made fun of juggalos for being the lowest form of human life, as well as for their aesthetic similarities to black metal fans (make-up, devastating good looks etc.) When you see this picture, however, you have to put all that aside and give this guy props. He's like a new breed of juggalo, a super-juggalo, juggalo 2.0 if you will. Looking an awful lot like a new character that Sacha Baron Cohen is working on, this dude is all "What bitch? Bring that shit on! I'll throw down right now! I don't care if I was going into the supermarket to get cream cheese, we can do this now!"

Based on his mustache and basketball shorts, you know he's not kidding. He will, in fact, fight you right then and there. Fans of the Howard Stern show may recognize the guy with facial hair in the background as Ronnie The Limo Driver.


Yet another sign of my advancing age: Wanting to punch this douchebag in the face so hard that his piercings will fall off. To think that all the work we put into the metal scene back in 1992 went to waste on this kid. Man, we fought so hard back then...and for what? So he can bleach his eyebrows while listening to Methods Of Mayhem.


At first I wanted to make fun of this awful record cover, but then I thought it about it more honestly, and I had to admit that this girl was my dream-lady back in 1988. Her outfit, that hair....godamn! She even has a dual-deck tape player/guitar! While you're making out with her, you could totally be dubbing your friend's Destruction tape! Could it get any better? One artistic/anatomic note however: how come where the two legs meet, all that happens is more leg?


For all you young kids, this is what the average female metal fan looked like in 1988. You youngsters are so spoiled these days. As gnarly as this female looks, dudes were lining up to talk to her about the new Testament album back in the day, hoping to take her back home.


Oofah! Talk about taking Robb Flynn's disease to a new all-time high. Your move Flynn.


Man, this picture is seriously unexpected. Billy Milano has finally let himself go. I knew it was only a matter of time. In case you're wondering, yes this is an actual picture of Billy Milano, not just a random picture of a gross fat dude.


Man, things sure have changed. Back in my day, no self-respecting metal fan was into sports. Today, Cincinnati Bengals fans are mixing their past times in ways that were previously unheard of. Why is she making that face you ask? She just had a bean burrito from the stand behind her, and its going through her faster than a speeding cheetah.


Have you ever seen that famous picture of the one time that Malcolm X and Martin Luther King met? It's often labeled "a meeting of the minds." This image is kinda' like that, but features two victims of advanced syphilitic brain infections. What do you think they discussed during this meeting? How to not let your bass be heard? Prostate advice? Catholic theology? We'll never know. I'm sure whatever they talked about, it was both idiotic AND annoying. These guys are real multi-taskers. (Update: As pointed out by a reader, Tom is starting to look more and more like Sitting Bull.)


Don't worry chubs, I totally get your anger. I'd be mad as hell if my mom switched out my evil candles for vanilla-scented ones.


Here we see Chris Barnes going for a stroll on a day off from touring.