Why So Serious? Or…What’s So Fucking Funny?

Andy Boyle

You know what’s really sad? The end of “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan,” when Spock dies.

Sure, Shatner is overacting as usual when he says that Spock’s soul is the “most human” he’s ever encountered, but it’s a real tear-jerker. I was up late watching that movie last night, and as usual, it’ll take me a couple of days to get out all of the memorable quotes before I have to watch it again in a couple months.

You know what else makes me sad? Bands who try to be funny all the time. I don’t mean having a humorous song here and there, or cutting up on stage or in video footage. Anthrax, among other bands, were always known for their occasional silliness, and that never bothered me. Because they still played serious metal the rest of the time.

I’m talking about bands who never play a song that isn’t in some way a joke or a farce. I have a sense of humor. And I love to rock. But I just don’t think they go together. Like eating Cheetos and watching porn.

I think that my big problem with bands of this nature can be broken down into two main points. First of all, I see this as a gimmick. And bands with a gimmick (whatever that gimmick may be; chick singer, masks, etc.) usually seem to me like they’re trying to overcompensate for something else that they lack; namely, musical talent. If you can’t play well, then maybe you should try a different style of music. Or just not play music.

Secondly, I think that it detracts from what’s really important: the music.

I have a hard time taking a band seriously if it seems like all they’re really in it for is a good laugh. And I think that non-metal fans will have an even harder time finding something worth their appreciation in songs about farts or memorable lines from Arnold Schwarzenegger movies. Not that I think my mom or dad would really be interested in hearing about Satan, or people being ripped to pieces, but I could at least get them to listen and appreciate the talent on display if they aren’t distracted by ridiculous nonsensical lyrics.

In the end, this is just my opinion. But I hope that there are some people out there that agree with me.

If you like music for music’s sake, or songs with a real message, that’s awesome. If you like to giggle along to your metal, that’s fine too. We just don’t see eye to eye. That being said, if anyone were to ever incorporate Khan’s dying words into a song, then I would worship them. “From Hell’s heart, I stab at thee. For hate’s sake, I spit my last breath at thee.”

Nope. Just kidding. You’d still have to learn to play your instrument.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader.
About Andy Boyle

Andy Boyle hails from St. Paul, Minnesota, and was GSA's personal pick from our recent writer search. He is a chef, father/stepfather, and self-professed "serious music fan." Andy has been listening to heavy metal for over 20 years. Long Live Rock and Roll!