Love and hate are two sides of the same coin.
I continue to obsessively seek out new music because I love it. There’s not much that can compare to finding a new record that scratches that itch, that makes you remember how much music can mean to you. When that happens, it’s a small bit of magic, and it convinces me to keep going, even when the landscape looks bleak. To that end, persistence has paid off this year, as I have collected more great new music than in any year I can remember. This has been a fantastic year for music that fits my taste, and the amount of love I have felt for music is startling.
On the other hand, I have found that while my passion for music has not waned, my feelings in the opposite direction have. Even when listening to music that is intolerable, I no longer find myself getting upset by what I’m hearing, angry that my time has been wasted by people who don’t seem to understand what music is. There was a time when being angry about hearing awful albums was routine, and it fed into the passion for the amazing releases, so it has been interesting to see only one side of the equation wither and die.
The last album I can recall having that kind of reaction to was Manowar’s “The Lord Of Steel”. Listening to that album was so painful, and such a slap in my face as a listener, that I couldn’t help but be viscerally offended by their putrid attempt at a record. I have no love for Manowar, even if we share geography, and maybe that plays a part in me hating them so much. They give me a bad name by proximity.
That album is now a couple years old, and in the time since then, I have had the opportunity to hear any number of horrible records. The amount of black and death metal that is released is staggering, and almost all of it is against the grain of what I want to listen to. And yet, as I continue to have to slog through so many of them, I don’t find myself getting upset. I don’t know if it’s that I’ve gotten older, or if I’ve resigned myself to the reality of the music scene, but negative emotions no longer seem to creep up the way they once did.
I want to be worried about that, I want to be concerned that I don’t care the way I used to, but I’m finding it hard to do that. As long as I am able to continue enjoying the great albums, I don’t see the problem in being apathetic towards the bad. It might even be a healthier alternative. So while it might seem as though music is losing it’s importance, being able to completely ignore Manowar sounds pretty good to me.