Let's put aside the fact that you probably know every word to "The End" by Linkin Park and let’s also pretend that you can't name at least 3 Limp Bizkit songs and let’s take a look at what Nu Metal is and why it’s a thing.
I was fortunate enough to be cognizant during the late 90's and early 2000's when rap and metal made a love baby and formed this sub-genre that is a skid-mark on the underwear of the music industry. I was also fortunate enough to be eating a slice of pizza outside of a Limp Bizkit show in 2013 when it ended and found that white beaters and jean shorts are still being sold at your local Walmart for affordable prices. I also don't understand how Limp Bizkit can get away with 30 dollar tickets still and also sell out a place like the varsity theater. Anyways. Hybrid Theory by Linkin Park was the first burned CD I ever got. Yeah, that’s right, a burned cd. And don’t think for a second I wasn't afraid every time Chester would start yelling but for some reason it was cool to be afraid of it. I went down a dark path of AC/DC fandom after that, but I eventually went back to the heavy stuff. I like to call that part of my life “middle school.”
I am also (un)fortunate enough to see this Nu Metal trend coming back into fashion. Yeah Deftones made it cool to like Nu Metal and for some reason people really like the first Korn record but will call out people at shows that wear a Motley Crüe t-shirt, like they are any better. Nu Metal is heavy music for people that don’t really like heavy music. It’s the sub-genre that is socially liked by hardcore kids, emo kids, and hip hop heads alike. Next time you are at a social function, play “One Step Closer” off Linkin Park's album Hybrid Theory and watch the millennial kids sing along like they are in 5th grade again.
Cheap riffs and chain wallets and JNCO jeans.
We live in a weird time where its 'cool' to ironically like something just for laughs but then eventually actually like it and will probably end up going to "The Gathering" because, "Dude, that would be hilarious." Don't worry, I am just as guilty of this (just play some Alice in Chains song next time you see me).
So the year is 2015 and its cool to like Metallica again and its cool to like Nine Inch Nails and its cool to like Korn and its cool to like Marilyn Manson, but its even cooler to be in a band that plays riffs like Rage Against the Machine and sings like 311 - looking at you Turnstile. And it’s also cool to play riffs like Rammstein and do your best to rip off Pantera - looking at you Harm’s Way.
I sure as heck don’t know what cool is anymore. Maybe I’ll just go back to listening to Armor for Sleep and Thursday. Or maybe cool is whatever you want it to be. Maybe Limp Bizkit is cool, and maybe so is a riff from Pantera's Vulgar Display of Power, and what if it’s okay to hang with your friends and occasionally belt out a Linkin Park track.
But nah, it’s probably not that cool.
by Andy Wilcox