Saturday, September 30, 2006

Daily Mail v Kerrang!

Britain's biggest selling music magazine - KERRANG! - has joined the noble fight against the force oif darkness that is The Daily Mail.

The cause of this battle was a ridiculous article in the Mail recently which warned parents of 'the cult of EMO'.

Emo - for those of you that don't already know - is a genre of heavy rock/metal music which emphasises 'emotional' content in its lyrics.

My main criticism of it is that, like many musical trends, there is often more style than substance.

But the Mail's take on it far more sinister. Sarah Sands, the author, suggests that EMO encourages self-harm reporting (without any evidence):

Emos exchange competitive messages on their teenage websites about the scars on their wrists and how best to display them. Girls' secondary schools have for some time been concerned about the increase in self harm.

Even more amusingly she quotes lyrices for the song EMO kid to justify her argument.

Isn't it obvious, even to a Mail journalist, that this is a spoof?

This whole thing reminds me of those ridiculous lawsuits that were brought against Ozzy Osbourne and Judas Priest in the US which claimed that listening to their records had cause kids to kill themselves. (OK - so Ozzy isn't the greatest singer in the worls - but he's not THAT bad!!)

Anyway KERRANG! dedicated a whole article to its readers' responses to the Mail this week and the letters and emails featured made a lot more sense than anything you'd read in the Mail. In particualr they focussed on the serious issue of self-harm and how the bands they like are a positive influence on their lives.

If anyone is still wondering what 'EMO' is take a look at the video for the excellent new single from My Chemical Romance The Black Parade.

You will either like it, or you'll hate it, but we can probably all agree that it's not part of a great gobla conspiracy to destroy teenage life!

1 comment:

Tristan said...

Emo is rather bland most of the time, but it is absolutely stupid to claim it causes anything like self-harm (well, Abba may cause me to try and kill myself - but I'm much more likely to try and get the track changed or remove myself from hearing range :-p)

I think the problem is more likely to be people are unhappy and self-harming is a symptom, the music just goes with the mood... there seems to be an almost pythagorian insistance in the power of music in the reactionary press...