Why 2014 Was One Of The Worst Years For Music

Huzzah, hooray! Its the end of another year. We've all had some ups and we've all had some downs this 2014. Hell, for most it was said to be the worst year they ever had. Countless Reviewers and Critics are saying it was the worst year for Video Games, while others are claiming it was the best for Movies. And that is great for Movies because most have been wish-washy the last few years, especially when it comes to Horror Movies. However, Direnotes does not reside within those two realms. My specialty, as if I'm some professional or something (yeah right), is Music - more specifically Metal. Though, with this article I'm pulling out of my comfort zone. This is why I feel that 2014 Was One Of The Worst Years For Music.

So, great albums came and went this year for sure. Epic, expensive, and yet fantastic releases such as BEHEMOTH's 'The Satanist' and whatever MASTODON was doing came about to lift our expectations to unreasonable heights. The bar was literally raised on the auditory medium when it came to some of 2014's musical outputs - even in Pop with the advent of some actually talented new superstars such as MEGHAN TRAINOR coming about. All of this is fantastic news, its all great and more for the fans. So, pick up those CD's and Vinyl's - do your thing. But, my god, why did all of this need to become so political?
Fear thy waste-line! 

It stands that people love to whine on the internet but nowadays people tend to turn to the internet, so rife with countless people looking to start a fight for fun, for the main opinions. It seems that with every release came a major stur that often made no sense or was reaching so far that it was almost pathetic at time. Whereas lyrics and visual content used to have little surprises or inside jokes hidden for years, eventually dismissed as harmless in most cases (i.e. OINGO BOINGO's 'Little Girls'), this year every little thing was hideously torn apart by the masses in order to find even the slightest hint of controversy possible.

It seemed like in 2014 almost every song that made it out to a significant mass of people had some startling side-truth, bias, racial, or sexist claims attached to it. I could sit here listing the songs that somehow garnered a complete media breakdown over a simple line - such as 'All About That Bass' with 'You can tell them skinny bitches that' which somehow spread mass hysteria and controversy that it was somehow against the whole of people which kept their weight under 200 pounds. Yet, bands like EMMURE seem to be able to say and do whatever they want without any consequence (then again, maybe nobody really cares about EMMURE anymore). Somehow, songs like NICKI MINAJ's 'Anaconda' also slipped from media attention despite the fact that they were massively popular and mostly featured lyrics glorifying relationships based on drug use - where was the article on that?

So scary.
My lord, the amount of time I've spent dissecting BABYMETAL is both bewildering and completely embarrassing. My thoughts on the matter, however, have come to a simple 'Eh'. It's not any surprise that Japanese people have played metal just as long as we have. I actually used to follow quite a bit of Japanese Metal (DIR EN GREY, X JAPAN, UNsRAW, OZ, etc) and it sort of got me on the track to writing music. The presence of younger women singing happily to generic riffs isn't anything new at all, its been done for ages now. However, somehow people seem to acknowledge to success of Amuse, Inc's corporate manufactured band BABYMETAL as some sort of immense threat. Funnier even is the fact that this fear bled somewhat into mainstream media - all because three girls are front-runners in a performance act that happens to feature metal.

It is with great sadness I must say, at the peak of BABYMETAL's supposed notoriety, the universal reaction made me greatly ashamed to say I was affiliated with the metal-scene in any way. You had grown men literally panicking on Youtube over the advent of this band, people on social media were crying out, more people ended up liking it (just because it was different) then expected so, of course, this meant that metal was utterly ruined. Sadly, most of these fools were so stuck on their views of the genre to realize that bands like this have been around a long time - including in North America.

It took me sometime to even discover what 'Metalgate' was and to my horror, it was just the work of sexist, misogynistic, racist. The backlash, of course, was handled with the grace of a 6 year-old who got called a 'poopyhead.'
probably one of the world's most successful trolls to date. The tactic was to brand numerous things -media, bands, fans, etc- with offensive keywords such as:

The reason I refer to this as 'Everything-gate' is that the word gate was thrown around for nearly everything - there was a Gamergate, Punkgate, Popgate, and all were equally stupid. If the whole thing had stopped at a few whining fans and articles it would have been fine - but no. Instead, people began to thrust Metalgate into a ironic notion and parody the whole thing, effectively kick-starting the whole affair for those who came late to the party -i.e. Direnotes. The entire affair should have been left alone and rot because, just as with BABYMETAL, articles and claims like this have been always been around. You would think as a collective whole, people would have realized this by now.

Music was good in 2014 but the drama, the forced controversy, the fan backlash however was not. Sadly, the result of this widespread drama, which lasted months at a time, resulted in so many great reviewers and artists shying away from Social Media and even writing in some cases. Though scandal and whatnot has become somewhat of a 'norm' in today's society, it is going too far when its beginning to weight down those who are part of it - no matter how small that part may be. Racism, sexist, feminism, little girls singing to metal, people hating on what you love - its all been there from the beginning but when the dramatics of it all become the main focus of Music over the Music itself then there needs to be a change.