Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Oh Limp Bizkit. . .

I just found this oddly nostalgic and thought-provoking article by Jonah Weiner on Slate magazine: "Was Limp Bizkit Really That Bad?"


Darling Fred, has it really been that long? I remember when you first hit it big! I was in seventh grade. "Re-Arranged" was my favorite song. Lo! the glory and the indignation. And I still remember when I first heard "Rollin' (Urban Assault Vehicle)" on the radio! But maturity surprised us, coming over the mountains with a shower of rain; we stopped in the pizzeria, and went on in sunlight, onto Hometown Main Street and drank screwdrivers, and talked for an hour. Oh my God Rob Zombie is sooooo hawt did you see him on the Rolling Stone cover he is way more badass than Marilyn Manson.

I remember 9/11 too (I was 15) when they said irony was finally dead. . . Well, that was an overstatement, it just went on hiatus for a few months, but what, I wonder is the difference between irony and guilty pleasure? According to Weiner:
It's overly generous to argue that Durst is in on the joke, exactly; when he threatens to wield a chainsaw against trash-talkers on "Break Stuff," or names a song "Break Stuff" in the first place, he probably doesn't intend to exaggerate white-male angst till it becomes satire. But in his quest to attract as many young, surly suburban fans as he can, Durst clearly enjoys hamming up his role to the point of grotesquerie—and that might amount to the same thing.
I guess it's kind of like the Twilight series: brainless entertainment that nevertheless, on some collectively visceral level, just speaks to the feelings of millions of angsty teens and is ultimately more about sheer emotional appeal than actual art. As the UK Times put it, Twilight captures "perfectly the teenage feeling of sexual tension and alienation." Same thing with Limp Bizkit. They had their moment in the adolescent sun; today, they are that braindead band you liked in high school and still enjoy in a weirdly wistful way. Oh to be young again!


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