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Thread: Is a counterculture still possible?

  1. #76
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    one could argue that metal is by ethos much closer to de facto nihilism

    unrepentant longhairs making unrepentant ugly power chord noise, fuck everything

    the edges always get sanded off, but at the beginning point

    Blue Cheer ca. Vincebus Eruptum, Hellhammer, Slayer ca. Show No Mercy, early death metal (a young Glen Benton: "death metal is freedom"), etc

    unlike punk the trap there is technical proficiency

    tho as Lemmy predicted, once the punks learned to play their instruments they more or less did start playing metal, so the snake eats itself (which is fuckin' metal, bro)

  2. #77
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    there's something the continuing resonance of "punk"

    an adjective to affix to literally any concept or noun to imply some kind of edge

    which speaks, among other things, to its cooptability

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  4. #78
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    whereas metal is inherently and intrinsically, uncool

    and thus more inherently resistant to cooptation

    to bring it back around to the idea of subculture and counterculture

  5. #79
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    I guess my point is that I see punk the artistic movement as more describing the contemporary condition of nihilism rather than nihilistic in itself. They weren't conveying cynicism and apathy because they thought it was cool. It was more confrontational, sticking the ethos in yr face as inevitable product of the times. Or ultimately, maybe framing cynicism and apathy as cool is a critique of the times as well.

    Sorta like how post-modernists are called that for describing the post-modern condition rather than bringing it about or celebrating it. Acknowledging it is the only way to break free from its chains.

  6. #80
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    No music can be nihilist in its essence. It is a paradoxical statement.

    Perhaps something like HNW comes close.

  7. #81
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    What's so important about rave is it doesn't set itself up as counter. It's not in opposition. It merely finds something vastly better. It wins an ecstasy for itself. This is really the key. Without a spiritual accomplishment, without an actual transcendence, you can't get past the eternal tug of war.

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  9. #82
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    Without that you just create a rival power bloc struggling for control.

  10. #83
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    It's not the have nots seeking to turn the tables. It's not resentiment. So Jesus why shouldi join your gang. I offer you eternal life. O well ok now you're talking.

  11. #84
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    Yeah i get that. You could say it's less about going for something with aesthetics that resists cooptation / commodificaiton and more about going for something on a higher plane where it doesn't really matter if it's coopted because it transcends the whole thing.

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  13. #85
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    the only widespread anti-governmental movement with serious elan these days is climate youths and they're running with a higher sorta meta narrative tied into it.

  14. #86
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    Right. I mean I think form and content are identical and the aesthetics will be there in any case though, by necessity

  15. #87
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    which begs the question, is it a counter culture, people are yearning for, or is it a new religion? Something to grant them higher purpose than what life under capitalism offers.

  16. #88
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    The movie 'The Comedy' by Roy Alverson explores this thing where a group of hipsters have all but given up on finding an alternative path and are living out this shamelessly nihilistic life fucking about in Williamsburg. A state of depressive hedonia, to quote k-punk.

  17. #89
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    "Today that beautiful countercultural idea, endorsed now by everyone from the surviving Beats to shampoo manufacturers, is more the official doctrine of corporate America than it is a program of resistance. What we understand as "dissent" does not subvert, does not challenge, does not even question the cultural faiths of Western business. What David Rieff wrote of the revolutionary pretensions of multiculturalism is equally true of the countercultural idea: "The more one reads in academic multiculturalist journals and in business publications, and the more one contrasts the speeches of CEOs and the speeches of noted multiculturalist academics, the more one is struck by the similarities in the way they view the world." What's happened is not co-optation or appropriation, but a simple and direct confluence of interest.

    The problem with cultural dissent in America isn't that it's been co-opted, absorbed, or ripped-off. Of course it's been all of these things. But it has proven so hopelessly susceptible to such assaults for the same reason it has become so harmless in the first place, so toothless even before Mr. Geffen's boys discover it angsting away in some bar in Lawrence, Kansas: It is no longer any different from the official culture it's supposed to be subverting. The basic impulses of the countercultural idea, as descended from the holy Beats, are about as threatening to the new breed of antinomian businessmen as Anthony Robbins, selling success & how to achieve it on a late-night infomercial."

    http://movies2.nytimes.com/books/fir...k-dissent.html

  18. #90
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    One of the interesting things about the rave movement is that it wasn't absorbed and commodified. It was given the great Honour of the state mobilising against it and criminalising it. That shows just how uniquely potent it was.

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