I dunno if it’s just a weird thing about us, but Metalheads sure their weird shirt collections. Most of us anyway, anyone who doesn’t and dresses “normally” is weird.
OFFICIALLY A TRAITOR!
Thing is, I and many metal people are damn near obsessed with shirt collections. If we have a budget, about a third or more is probably going to shows and picking up a shirt there. You’re easily spending at least, at the very least, 10 bucks, provided you didn’t get food, take public transportation, or contribute to filling up a tank, and assuming that the last a show can cost is 5 bucks, free ones notwithstanding.
Where am I going with this? WE FUCKING LOVE MERCH. In the digital age, few buy CDs, and some shops running them at 18.99 new isn’t helping either, and back in the tape trading days, I can imagine not many were too eager to buy when they could get an überkvlt 6th generation copy of the latest Megadeth EP. But where we’re unwilling to shell out money to listen, we’ll pay good hard cash to wear it, and I’ll expand more on that in a later post, cos I’m getting off track here.
OFFICIALLY OFF TRACK!
1: Obituary – Cause Of Death
I haven’t heard this album, so I can’t speak for its quality, but it must be fuckin’ great if I see at least one at every Metal show I go to.
2: Iron Maiden
There’s always at least one guy in an Iron Maiden shirt or hoodie, and if no one in the audience is game, then it’s invariably someone in one of the bands playing. And if you want this effect exacerbated ten thousandfold, go to an Iron Maiden show, and try not to look silly showing up in anything but the home team’s shirts. Which brings up the next point…
3. A band that’s playing
I don’t get particularly mad or upset when this happens, and a few people is okay, but if there’s a mass gathering of people wearing a shirt of a band that’s playing that night(bonus points if they match), then it’s just a “What The French Toast?” moment. If you buy something at the merch booth and are afraid of losing it so you slip it on, that’s well and good. Hoodies don’t count, because those are snazzy. Unless the band sucks. Fuck you, Terror. Don’t kill me…
4: Led Zeppelin – Man With Lantern(?)
Led Zepp are universally loved: They’re credited with propelling Metal forward, and rock’n’roll wouldn’t be the same without ’em. But jeez Louise, does every guy over 20 have this shirt?
You get three types of guys in Pantera shirts: The chill guy over 30 who saw them many times in their heyday, the 250+ pound teenage dickhead crowd killer, or the teenage dickhead randomer. And my friend Bill. But he’s a person, not a type, so HOW DARE YOU!?
6: Your local sports team(s)
At a Massachusetts metal show, if you see someone in a Bruins jersey,
THEY WILL KILL YOU IN THE EYEBALL.
BECAUSE IT’S FUCKING SLAYER!
8: Cannibal Corpse – Butchered At Birth or Eaten Back To Life
For some Cannibal Corpse fans, other albums may as well not exist, shirtwise. Sure, there’s Tomb Of The Mutilated, but who’s man enough to wear it? Not us, because we have parents!
9: Bathory – That same ol’ goat album cover
I especially dare you to go to a Black Metal show, or any show with at least one BM band on the bill and not find someone wearing this. You will lose that game so hard your spleen will abandon ship.
Let’s play the “Spot The Shirt With A Logo Above The Rectangular Album Art With Unpronounceable In American English And Some Long Norse Quote On The Back Under A Picture Of Paganism Kinda Because I’m Not Sure What’s Going On And It May Be A Lithograph Lifted From A Historical Site But My Understanding Of Norse And Pagan Mythology Aren’t So Great So It Doesn’t Matter Much Does It?” game. You will win.
11: Metallica – Ride The Lighting or Master Of Puppets
It makes me wonder if they know that Metallica has other albums. For instance, I got the Kill ‘Em All shirt as sort of a reaction against those who only go for Death Magnetic, MoP or RtL since they’re readily available even in the huge chain stores, but then again, it has dates for a tour that went on while I was still jumping around in my dad’s testes, so what do I know?
12: TapouT or something equally douchey and “Tribal”
Goddammit I hate these so much… NEXT.
13: Cartoon Character Face
It must be a new trend from the last few years or so, but they’ve been popping up at metal shows, including the one above.
Change “Metal Show” to “Anywhere” and that’s about right.
I ran out of stuff. Byebye.