Washington Think Tank: Does Artistic Intent Matter?

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Greetings and welcome back to another edition of Washington Think Tank. 2015 is winding down. The flow of great releases is tapering into a tiny trickle. Half of you have had your top ten choices picked out since August. Therefore, in the spirit of reflection, let’s each take a look back at some of our favorite releases this year and ask ourselves some pressing questions.

Today’s Question: Does Artistic Intent Matter?

Several times this year I’ve found myself voicing more favorable reviews for albums than I initially expected after spending time with them and trying to decipher the intent behind their creations. The most recent example would be Dragged into Sunlight/Gnaw Their TonguesN. V. While I already quite enjoyed the music, it was eventually the entire artistic endeavor, the interpretation of an earlier work in a modern context, that really sold me. My belief that the band successfully fulfilled the conceit for which the album was created elevated its merit in my eyes.

It wasn’t N. V. that really brought this question to mind, though. Members of the Facebook group have likely seen Tyree post about the new album Typhonian Wormholes: Indecipherable Anti-Structural Formulae by Tetragrammacide. If you click play on this album, you’ll immediately see that the artists were aiming to achieve a very specific aesthetic.

Let’s be real here. This album sounds like hot garbage. The drumming is sloppy. The vocals are nearly inaudible. The riffs sound like they’re being strangled to death, and the entire thing was very likely recorded inside a cardboard box.

But that’s the point. It’s supposed to sound like a mess because it’s supposed to be an expression of utter chaos. Elements seem to drift in and out of range like extradimensional horrors temporarily phasing into the corporeal plane. The whole thing congeals and sublimates and cycles between forms in a way that constantly leaves you wondering what’s next. It’s challenging, but if we’re being honest, it’s also kind of terrible.

I like it though, as do Tyree and Stockhausen. I’m certain that part of my attachment to the music is because I see a realization of a very distinct vision; this isn’t the sort of sheepish necro-production common in extreme metal that’s often done simply to blend in with contemporaries. This is a deliberate exercise in anti-art.

But I get why someone would hate it. Musically, it’s a mess, and I totally understand why our brothers in blog Angry Metal Guy gave the album a 0/5 rating. Based purely on its merits and not its artistic intent, I can see why someone would find no value here.

But is that the way we should consume music? Should we consume in a vacuum, or should we strive to understood the context of a work? I’m not sure, but I do know that examining intent can be a double-edged sword. There are some albums that cannot be saved by their scope and vision because the music so widely missed the mark. St. Anger is probably the most famous example I can produce, but you likely have other contenders in mind. Just as realizing a vision can save a piece of music from its own flaws, failing to encompass that spirit can also damn it by those same flaws.

Admittedly, there’s probably a bit of ego-stroking going on with something like Typhonian Wormholes: Indecipherable Anti-Structural Formulae. Perhaps I only like it because I want to like it because I know it’s different. Perhaps my own desire to be challenged by music has outweighed my taste in this example. Perhaps I’m not alone, though.

What do you think? Does artistic intent matter for how you view an album? Sound off in the comments below.

P.S. Do you have an idea for Think Tank? Send it to toiletovhell@gmail.com! I’d love to collaborate.

Don’t know what the Washington Think Tank is? This is a periodic column where your former President poses a pressing question and allows the top minds at the Toilet ov Hell to investigate his query.

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  • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

    Stating the obvious: art will always be subjective. On another note, released 29 years ago today…….
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h37V7cKIry8

    • Eliza

      Awesome record!

    • ┼yree

      Damn. Yesterday was Storm and now this. Badass.

      • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

        Yeah, no shit dude!

    • KJM, Shake Zula

      Saw this tour. They opened for Possessed. Good times.

      • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

        Oh, you SON OF A BITCH! Now you went and did it. That must have been fucking SICK! Dark Angel and Possessed in their prime. FUCK!

        • KJM, Shake Zula

          Not only that, but I was accompanied by two friends who just happened to be the best looking women at the show. Alas I was not “involved” with either of them, but it was still a nice bonus.

          • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

            Damn dude, it just keeps getting better.

          • KJM, Shake Zula

            At least 1/2 the crowd jumped up on stage during the last song. One dude ran from one end of the stage to the other chugging a beer before diving off. Nobody got hurt. No equipment got damaged. Glorious.

          • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

            Wow. And do you remember what song it was? And we’re talking Possessed, right?

          • KJM, Shake Zula

            I don’t remember the song but yes, it was the last song of the night from Possessed.

          • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

            I’ll just assume it was Holy Hell.

      • Janitor Jim Duggan

        I met someone once whose nephew was Larry from Possessed and later Primus.

  • ┼yree

    Haha! Yeah, that Tetragrammacide EP is 25 minutes of no fucks given audial terror that will certainly not be understood by many and understood by very very few. Total support for Tetragrammacide and what they are trying to achieve, which is just pure chaos like you said.

    Angry Metal Guy heard the wrath of some of us in his comment section. Haha!

    • ┼yree

      Oh and a little fun fact, the drummer is Jon Engman of Brodequin. I was in communication with the other guy from Tetragrammacide on Facebook and he said that the drumming is 666% natural. Seemed like a really cool dude and really appreciative.

    • ┼yree

      Another thing too. After I saw Nyogthaeblisz live at Hells Headbash I went and bought their compilation album which sounds like utter shit. It was really strange to me at the time because I felt that Nyogthaeblisz was one of if not the strongest live band at Hells Headbash. It was sort of a bummer listening to the studio stuff because it was WAY worse then their live sound. Then I kept listening and trying to dissect the harshness, rawness, and noise of the studio recording and realized that this was what they where actually going for. The studio recordings are meant to be painful both physically and mentally and the rawness and white noise adds to that. I’d imagine Tetragrammacide would be the same way live. I bet they would crush other bands live but their true artistic intent is the studio craft which is supposed to sound like utter shit and I love them for that.

      • RJA

        Since you’ve been on the Nyothaeblisz train I went and listened to that compilation, and indeed it is a very rough first listen!

        • ┼yree

          It really is. Try the split with Goatpenis. Hehe!

          This is my favorite material from them. New album is finished and sent to Hells Headbangers by the way! I’m super stoked for it. Hopefully new Hellvetron and Nexul follows.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cyptTqOVspU

      • Lacertilian

        Yeah, I couldn’t handle it.

    • Janitor Jim Duggan

      I agree with the Angry Metal Guy about his review. I personally cannot tolerate that album. They may be better live as you said below but I tried listening to it and got 1 minute in. To me it’s just noise masquerading as music

      • ┼yree

        Understandable, like I said. It certainly will not be understood by many and understood by very very few

        • Janitor Jim Duggan

          I agree.

    • RepostedAvengedSevenfoldFan2

      They is the solitary Rock/Metal/Hardcore band that have made artistic songs…they can make slow songs as good as the rockkksss!! and their melody are various… For art! cool!

      -FailedMusician, March 8

      • KJM, Shake Zula

        “FailedMusician”

        http://i.imgur.com/jZvxb.gif

        • I want to understand… but I just cannot figure it out. Damn

          • KJM, Shake Zula

            Just a play on someone stating an absolute musical opinion and then saying they’re a “failed musician”.

          • durp

        • CyberneticOrganism
          • tigeraid

            Oh, my Clara….

        • tigeraid

          Oh, my Clara…

          • KJM, Shake Zula

            Indeed.

      • ┼yree

        Ok. I still dig the band though.

  • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

    I don’t think I could enjoy art just based of the artistic integrity and vision brought to life, yet I do find myself thinking that it’s more than just futile to even attempt to appreciate/review an album like that Tertagrammacide like any other, because it’d be trying to enjoy it as something else than what it is.

    I find it more than futile, I find it goddamn arrogant.

    • RepostedAvengedSevenfoldFan2

      I need to think deeply about this while staring out to sea.

      -Dylan Ramos, 1 month ago

    • Dubs

      I’m glad you edited your comment. I was left a bit confused by it previously. I like your argument that you should start with some concept of what you want to achieve beforehand, if I understand your comment correctly.

      • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

        Yeah, although I understand it can be difficult if you are new to the “piece” or the artist.

  • Janitor Jim Duggan

    I believe that artistic intent is a double edged sword. If you try too hard to make art instead of music you can end up with something shitty. Look at the sequel to Mindcrime. That tried too hard to be an artistic rock opera and it bombed. On the other hand if you don’t try too hard you may succeed with your intent. Tommy by The Who turned out to be a very ambitious artistic statement which succeeded wildly. Too often artists try to create art instead of music and they end up sound pretentious.

    • tigeraid

      Indeed, and can’t it be said that sometimes, keeping your shit basic, and honest, and what-you-see-is-what-you-get, is in itself quality in art? Not a year goes by that we don’t all (mostly) agree on a killer album or two that sounds like “good ol’ fashioned thrash” or “good ol’ fashioned death metal” instead of trying to break the mould?

  • Shrimp in a Pizza Box

    In my opinion, there is a right way to do terrible and a wrong way to do terrible. You could record something in a disemboweled elephant corpse and make it sound good, but you really need to put your mind to it, you can’t just do that because it’s kvlt or trve or something. Or sometimes you just do terrible because you smoked so much crack Illud Divinum Insanus actually sounded like a good idea at the time.

    • Janitor Jim Duggan

      This is the same opinion I share. If you try too hard to be grim and kvlt you will seem pretentious in my book. Trying to sound like the aural equivalent of evil is pretentious and annoying to me.

    • Dave Vincent’s Perm

      Illud David Vincent is worse than nazi David Vincent

  • BEARD-SPLITTER

    “Art for arts sake” does not a good album make. For it to be truly art, from a musical standpoint, i would argue that it should have both artistic integrity and be intrinsically good.

    Sidenote: it does t appear they have shipped my copy of N.V. yet.

  • Eliza

    I don’t think that the artist’s intention should be too important, regardless of whether the end result is good or not. The actual quality is what matters most to me. I would search for the artist intention only is something baffles me to the point where I can’t comprehend said something.

  • KJM, Shake Zula

    This reminds me of what happens when someone tries to intentionally make a cult movie. I don’t think you can consciously try to make a movie like Rocky Horror Picture Show. It either happens or it doesn’t. Same thing applies here imo.

    • Janitor Jim Duggan

      You speak the truth. Look at Birdemic 2. The first one is a cult classic. The second one just sucks. Same with Sharknado.

  • Salvador Dalí Lama

    I think artistic intent is a selective thing for the listener from artist to artist. I’d rather listen to something that has been mixed like total ass, but holds character and purpose in the music, and in that mix, versus something given a great mix, but the music runs is sterile and void of emotion (i.e. Foo Fighters, current Mastodon). But there are people, given the choice, that would rather listen to something like Trivium versus something like Tetragammacide, because that expression of chaos doesn’t fit their taste, or emote with them, or they just don’t want to deal with expression in that raw form. It’s people who need milk and sugar to drink coffee instead of drinking it black; some people can’t handle the raw thing.

    Exhibit A: Ephel Duath’s last album: It’s mixed great, but that’s not the point of my stance. Ephel Duath put together an incredible album, but the one thing I hear people complain about constantly is Karyn Crisis’ vocals, and how grating they are. While that may be, I take them as intentional artistic intent. Here you have these songs that are like pillars of crystalline darkness, and then you have this ragged shriek to contrast them and almost be like a narration of what is taking place in the music. It allows the complex music to translate into human form due to Karyn’s emotions and vocal style, even if it does come off as nails-on-a-chalkboard to some.

    Exhibit B:

    http://wiki.lpassociation.com/images/3/3e/Xzibit.jpg

    • Dubs

      Re: Ephel Duath. I know that that was the intent, but it’s still a tough sell for me. I can appreciate the album for what it is, but it’s still harder for me to listen to than Tetragrammacide, actually. Great example, though.

    • tigeraid

      Yo dawg, we…. Ah never mind. This is a high art thread.

  • RepostedAvengedSevenfoldFan2

    The beautiful thing about Brokencyde’s art is that their lyrics are open to interpretation.

    -That One | Posted on Feb 8th, 2011

    • Janitor Jim Duggan

      Goddamnit. I despise Brokencyde. Also their lyrics are very specifically about sex drugs and partying.

      • Dubs

        Have you never listened to rock and roll?

        • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

          Is this the real?

          • Dubs

            ???

          • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

            A real Dr.Dubian, Disqus won’t load. But judging by the comments below, ’tis.

          • Dubs

            I am the real deal. That Tony Horton shtick only had so much juice, and Jeb is never going to be elected.

          • ┼yree

            What is even going on in your avatar?

          • Dubs

            Dub in the club.

          • ┼yree

            You are a maniac on the floor I hear.

          • Janitor Jim Duggan

            Is this just fantasy? Caught in a landslide no escape from reality?

        • Janitor Jim Duggan

          I have. This isn’t rock though, it’s sceney weeny music.

          • RepostedAvengedSevenfoldFan2

            Here are the tabs

            E|0000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000

            -Tony Vane, 1 week ago

          • Janitor Jim Duggan

            Are you sure those aren’t Emmure tabs?

          • ┼yree
          • Janitor Jim Duggan

            I love what I do.

          • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

            Fuck, I still can’t believe this is a real song.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HwaroatABu4

          • ┼yree

            OH I’M SORRY…. I THOUGH THIS WAS MERICA!?!?

          • King Shit of Fuck Mountain

            FUKKING CLASSIK!

          • Dave Vincent’s Perm

            Someone told me that all death metal is just 1 and 0 on the tab so I showed him the tab to Winds of Creation.

          • Óðinn
          • Janitor Jim Duggan

            Now this is rock.

      • ┼yree

        You really are the best Troll out there.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iBktYJsJq-E

  • Count_Breznak

    Art can still be utter shite.

  • frozengoatsheadupanunsarse

    I think figuring context and intention and all that stuff can be super fun in music, but whether the music on its own is enjoyable is all that really “matters”.

    I’m enjoying this Tetragrammacide quite a bit even though I didn’t think I was in a black noise mood. Not so conducive to aesthetic debate though.

  • RJA

    “I only like it because I want to like it because I know it’s different. Perhaps my own desire to be challenged by music has outweighed my taste in this example. ”
    I ask myself this all the time – “am I just a pretentious fuck” and then I think “maybe I am, but I really don’t care”

  • I think we touched base on this a bit the other day…As long as you enjoy the work of an artist, whether they are a new artist to you or a artist you have been fans of for awhile, as long as you enjoy the art (i.e music) then it should not matter if you understand the true intend context or not.

    Bubbles could write an album about space weed and as long as the riffs were good… I think I could dig it.

    http://i.imgur.com/bl5UsjX.jpg

  • Scrimm

    It matters a wholelot to me.

    • SCRIMM m/m/

    • frozengoatsheadupanunsarse

      What would you say to finding out, say, that your death metal album of the year was actually a concept album about breakfast cereal?

      • 1.) I would ask you if you were being completely cereal.
        2.) Then I would try to find out myselfs.

      • Scrimm

        I’m down

        • frozengoatsheadupanunsarse

          Awesome!

      • KJM, Shake Zula

        I want a Doom Metal album about Count Chocula.

        • frozengoatsheadupanunsarse

          And now so do I!

        • ┼yree

          I know someone else who would too. *coughs Janitor Jim Duggan under my voice*

        • CyberneticOrganism

          Cunt Chocula

        • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

          I’m sure Dopethrone or Electric Wizard could at least give us half a record about Count Chocula.

        • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

          Or Sleep. DRRROOOP OOUT OF LIFFFFE WITH SPOOOOON INNN HAAAND! FOLLOOOW THE MILK TO THE CHOCOLATE FILLLED LAAND!

          • KJM, Shake Zula

            Ha! Perfect!

          • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

            I thought you might enjoy that one. I can probably think of a dozen more, but i don’t want to bombard you.

          • KJM, Shake Zula

            As long as it’s funny I don’t care.

          • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

            I’ll get back to you…

          • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

            I rewrote Dopesmoker.
            Choculaeater.

            Drop out of life with spoon in hand
            Follow the milk toward the chocolate filled Land

            I vant to eat your – cereal
            I vant to eat your – cereal

            Millsmen roll out across the dying dawn
            Sacred Cereal Holy Marshmallow
            Milk poors down on to the chocolate shapes
            Children migrate down the steps to kitchen
            Milkmen unearth the creed of chocolatian
            Procession of the Milk-Priests to cross the bowls
            Dessert Legion Milk-Breakfast is complete
            Marshmallows retied on to backs of beasts
            Arise arise arise – The eater of the Count Chocula
            Milkan River flows on evermore
            Take in bowls of Chocula’s cereal haze
            They feel so fed and filled through our days
            Chocolate caravan emerge from cereal bowl
            Childling inserts to chalice the brown cereal
            Groundation soul finds trust upon chocolate shape
            Assembled children rises chocolate-filled bowl
            Raise up Count’s Holy Cereal
            Set down on young years of the milk now feeds
            Cereal of chocula fall in the upturned mouths
            Onward chocolate prepare new spoon

            Milk-Priests Countsmen chant the right
            Judgement soon come to breakfast time
            Brown chocolatesmen serve rightful king
            Count Chocula caravan carries

            The chocolate milk flowed up toward rim
            Flight of the Chocolatian to seek the Mallow
            Rides out believer with the bowl afilled
            Chocolatenaut escapes earth to choculate

            Dining-Room is church temple of the new cereal breed
            Chants Loud-Milked priest down on to the freedom count
            Chocolate offering redeems – completes nutrition breakfast
            Caravans’ nutrition breakfast
            The caravan holds to General Mills- Now drinks believer !
            The Milk of the Count Chocula

            Drop out of life with spoon in hand
            Follow the milk toward the chocolate filled land
            Drop out of life with spoon in hand
            Follow-the-Count-Choculan

          • KJM, Shake Zula

            Ah, ok. gimme a few minutes…

          • KJM, Shake Zula

            I hope Matt Pike doesn’t prefer Boo-Berry. ^_^

            (slow clap) Perfect!

          • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

            Pike and the gang seem like chocolate fellows to me. Though an argument could be made for Fruit Brute.

        • more beer

          I had a friend in the 80`s who had a side project band. One of the songs was Count Chocula is the Anti Christ.

    • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

      Well put.

  • ┼yree

    I usually just like what I like and listen to it.

    • ┼yree

      Which is mostly shit.

      • KJM, Shake Zula

        “I don’t know anything about art but I know what I like.”

        – Anon(I think)

        • ┼yree

          Exactly. Good fucking point!

    • Dagon

      I usually just like who I like and date them.

      • Dagon

        Most of whom are shit.

        • ┼yree

          Well, that’s better then what I’m doing a least.

          • Dagon

            I was just joking. I’m not actually dating anyone.

            But my neighbors think I’m fucking my roomate by now.

  • Intent is difficult to gauge. Probably a little easier to identify with bands that are doing concept albums. The bands that go out of their way to sound shitty can sometimes bring out a certain ugliness. The Tetragrammacide legit sounds awful as in it’s poorly executed in what it’s trying to achieve. As a listener I cannot derive any enjoyment from it.

  • BEARD-SPLITTER
  • 365chaosriddendays
  • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

    I think artistic intent will only take me so far. I have to like the music as well. Take top 40 artists as an example. Their intent is to make a top 40 song, and they do that, their intent has been fulfilled. But I still dont like it. Now if there is a band that rips and has an excellent artistic intent that I can agree with/understand, then it takes the album/artist to a whole new level for me.

  • Waynecro

    That’s a very interesting and thought-provoking topic. Although I appreciate Tetragrammacide’s intent and successful execution of concept, it’s not an album I’ll listen to very often. I can’t imagine playing it in the gym, for example. To me, it’s more art than entertainment. It’s like a fucked-up painting: I can appreciate the artist’s message, intent, and concept, but I don’t want to hang it on my wall or look at it very often. Certainly there’s nothing wrong with that, but a viewer’s/listener’s enjoyment can take a hit when an artist focuses heavily on intent.

    It reminds me a little of Aristotle’s scale of virtues and vices. For example, the excess of anger is irascibility, its mean is patience, and its deficiency is lack of spirit. Ideally, a person would maintain the mean. Music seems to exist on a scale with pure art on one side and pure entertainment on the other. Many musicians want to create music that strikes a happy balance between the two extremes: They want to make music that satisfies their artistic intent while providing some listeners with entertainment. Some musicians seem to focus more on intent (and produce music that is easy to appreciate but hard to listen to), and some musicians seem to make music purely to entertain listeners. Of course, I’m not saying that there’s a right or wrong here. I just happen to favor music that falls somewhere between pure art and pure entertainment.

    • Dubs

      I think maybe we’ve touched on the entertainment/art scale here a few times, and I’ll take the stance that although we often deride pop music, I don’t think there’s anything inherently wrong in being entertaining. I tend to lean more towards the pure art side of the spectrum in metal, but that isn’t a rule.

      • Waynecro

        I really appreciate super artsy/experimental stuff in metal, but I’m much more likely to listen to music I enjoy than to music I merely appreciate. Listening to music is such a cathartic thing for me. Sometimes I need music to help me get by, not to challenge me for an hour. That’s not to say that some of my favorite jams don’t lean more toward pure art.

        • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

          You make excellent points sir, I enjoy reading them.

          • Waynecro

            Thanks, dude. I’m glad I was able to achieve some amount of coherence. I’ll probably think of something better to say later, when it’s too late to be of any value. Some days, thinking hurts.

          • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

            I feel you, its always easier to say something better after having thought about it for a day or so. I run into that problem all the time. But this was good.

          • Waynecro

            For sure. Plus, I think today’s meetings turned a large percentage of my brain into useless mush.

          • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

            I hate meetings.

          • Waynecro

            Even over Skype, most of them are insufferable.

          • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

            No doubt.

          • Dubs

            I try to circle back to my more recent articles periodically to see if anything new pops up, so if you have a thought, I might see it.

          • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

            That’s cool. Good to know.

            And knowing is half the battle.

  • Nine Inch Males

    It matters. Personal tastes and preferences are so transient. Even something as simple as skipping a meal could make the difference between liking an album or hating it. On the larger scale, being in love or feeling like a failure in life can certainly do the same. So when you strip away subjective and temporary variables, all you’re left with is the intent and execution. Of course, it’s impossible to be truly objective, but a listener should at least be able to step back and recognize this myopic subjectivity before firmly deciding on a stance. If you don’t like something, investigate the artist’s intent and listen again. It might take years before the artist’s intent aligns with your preferences as a listener, and maybe it never happens. But that doesn’t mean the artist failed.

    Relevant anecdote: I study with a relatively famous guitar professor (relatively famous meaning a legend in the niche field of classical guitar, totally unknown to anyone else). He has a reputation for producing many competition winning guitarists, and has for 40 years. When students first start their lessons with him, they are often taken aback by how little he actually instructs. Most teachers will guide a student on specific phrasings and musical ideas, as well as specific technical advice. This teacher, however, will literally just say “play it cleaner.” The more you work with him, however, the more you realize that he simply does his best to remove himself from the equation. All higher level musicians will have their own ideas about what they intend to express. All he does is try to understand that unique intent and let it shine through as clear as possible.

    • Boss the “Inspectah” Ross

      This was an excellent write up. Tha k you sir.

    • Dubs

      Thanks for this answer!

  • tigeraid

    I would love to be very intellectual and high-minded about the whole thing, but what it really boils down to is: if it sounds like shit, I can’t listen to it. And that’s an entirely subjective thing–It has to hook me. In PARTICULAR for me, that means vocals, being a guy who used to do (half-assed) vocals himself. And riffage too, of course. After ALL of that, after it’s hooked me and I’ve banged my head and I’ve growled out the main chorus line, THEN I’ll say “okay, so what’s this shit about.” I’ll read the lyrics, I’ll get a feel for themes and what the artist is trying to say. If at THAT point it’s brilliant and transcendent, then that music goes from “fun shit” to “holy fuck this good.” The really good shit keeps me coming back for more, the “fun shit” is something to have on in the background or to just rock out to now and then.

    TL;DR I can’t listen to something like Tetragrammacide and take it seriously because I can’t get past the sound FIRST.

  • A Chili Dog In Each Nostril

    Depends on what the overall intent is. I’ve interviewed many a band back in the day that try to come off as evil on album, only to be laid back, funny and friendly when you talk to them (Ghaal definitely comes to mind). Music tends to have that effect, in bringing out sides of people that they normally don’t have, hence the ‘integrity’ part. People could argue that Metallica sold out with ‘Load’, but I think it was them wanting to do their own thing, and they had to know they’d lose a lot of their fan base by not not putting out another Black Album. Artistic integrity pretty much comes down to what you want to do versus what people want, which is especially hard if you have to do it for a living.