Thursday, 31 January 2013

Mysterious Traffic

One of the things interesting to me about my blog that no one reads is what does on occasion draw traffic here.

Misogyny and death metal
How to make guitar harmonies like Death
Allan Holdsworth Death Metal
Sean Reinert, Gay
Chuck Schuldiner AIDS

What is more, just this morning (January 31, 2013) on checking my traffic stats I noticed a large volume of traffic to my site directed from Facebook. As readers will know, I retired from Facebook some time ago. Even when I was using that site the traffic to this blog from my Facebook page was negligible. So why the sudden increase? Who knows? However, the particular entry that has been drawing increased numbers is my Death Metal and Misogyny entry. I'm quite happy that people are viewing my blog but if only they would leave comments as to why, I could be happier.

It is humbling to know that it is not my writing on comics or just about anything else that brings people here. The constant draw card aside from google image searches is obviously death metal. I need to start thinking about what else I can create, can link to the genre. Perhaps this site will become a repository, a Lovecraftian multidimensional shrine to mortis ferrum. Frankly if that is the case, I have no qualms about moving in this direction. What is a writer with no readers?

I have noticed throughout the time I have kept this blog that my own voice is one of the few critical and reflexive voices within death metal, a critic and a fan. I have strived for a serious analytical tone yet tried to balance it with a fans perspective. I have employed theory to crystallize certain conceptual relationships yet I am not interested in typical theoretical analyses of the music that I love.

Academic encounters with death metal (and heavy metal music) tend to occur from within a sociological or literary, cultural studies analytical framework. The drawback of these methodologies is that they are frequently interested. What I do here is certainly not disinterested and I have never attempted objectivity. The interested-ness of academic approaches forces analysis into a paradigm of peer-reviewed publishing, conference papers and book chapters designed to demonstrate the usefulness of certain theoretical and analytical methodologies. My aim has never been to legitimize death metal in an academic sense. Rather, it has been to create a space where it can be analysed, discussed and appreciated on a level beyond like/dislike, where its conceptual nuances and history can be unpacked from the perspective of a listener and fan without fear or favour.

So where to now?

After my recent declaration regarding moving towards seeking permission to online use of copyright images from owners and creators I have found myself in increasing contact with the individuals responsible for creating these products. Even though they are all a world away this is a very rewarding experience as an artist and a fan. Before this digital age and the collapse of the creative arts market I would never have had such expectations. But now, I am starting to see the importance of person-to-person online networking. Building a web of connections has become transparent, with a little hard work and genuine commitment it is possible to create an ecosystem of creativity that exists parallel to and independent of mainstream, commercial practices. I can create independent, new knowledge about others, in collaboration with them.

So here is another declaration: the overriding theme of this blog will henceforth be death metal. I will still write about other topics as they interest me but the overall tone will move to a fuller engagement with the subject that brings people here. Stay tuned for big things ahead.

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