With Matt sick, Abhi Ahluwahlia returns to talk about a moment Korn regret that impacted metal’s LGBTQ+ fanbase, a deathcore banger that spoke to Tom’s queer side, and put albums from Ozzy Osbourne, The Algorithm, and Spite into HCGBs’ jukebox.
The gayest straight man in metal (and Tom’s mate), Abhi Ahluwahlia, returns to Hell Bent For Metal. Matt’s unwell (get well soon), so the man who swapped writing for Metal Hammer for editorial jobs at The Times (yes, that one) is back for a show heavily focused on two of his favourite things: nu metal and deathcore.
First up, Abhi and Tom remember “All In The Family” by Korn. For anyone who’s missed it, it’s an (by Jonathan Davis’ own admission) alcohol-induced rap battle between Davis and Fred Durst (‘im out of Limp Bizkit) that includes more homophobia than your average English soccer match. (Which long-standing fans of the show or, for that matter, English soccer, will know is a lot.)
Tom and Abhi discuss why that song – not for its quality, but for its lyrical content – was particularly unhelpful to at least one gay kid who heard it at a fairly delicate stage of development. The pair discuss the impact it had on Tom in his early teens, and why it was a sign of how acceptable it was to use aggressive, sexualised homophobic language in wider society back then. They also discuss how Korn themselves have since disowned it, on multiple occasions and without being prompted – but why there’s a slight asterisk to that otherwise encouraging comment.
This week’s Camp Classic is “The Past Shall Haunt Us Both” by All Shall Perish – the now-defunct deathcore band who once had the world at their feet – from their 2011 album ‘This Is Where It Ends’, which ironically turned out to be their last album.
Tom has honed in on a fairly small section of the song as being relevant to queer experiences, rather than the whole song. But that doesn’t stop this leading to a fairly long, sensible (yes, really) conversation happening about it. It’s a discussion that takes in an experience common to many who repressed their queerness, and leads to how and why that may be a vastly less common experience in the present, let alone the future.
There are three new additions to the Hate Crew Gaybar jukebox this week. The first of which needs little introduction, as it’s ‘Patient Number 9’ by the Prince of fucking Darkness himself, Mr Ozzy Osbourne. The second is ‘Data Renaissance’ by The Algorithm, the self-described “cyberpunk” French artist who welds tech metal and electronic dance music. The third and final pick is ‘Dedication To Flesh’ by riff-spitting Californian deathcore destroyers Spite.
Listen to Hell Bent For Metal on Spotify here, listen on iTunes here, or choose one of the other ways to listen here.