Monday, May 07, 2007

Panic! At the Emo.

No, not Elmo, EMO!

That's right. Asymetrical hair sporting, black eyeliner wearing, Emotional hardedge music listening Emos. After the tragic suicides of teenagers Stephanie Gestier and Jodie Gater in Melbourne a few weeks ago it's all anyone seems to be talking about these days. What is Emo? Who listens to it? Why does everyone hate Emos so much anyway?

I'm afraid I'm no expert on the matter. I first came across the term about 8 or so years ago on an online message board where everyone made fun of them. I learned there that Emos were somewhere between wannabes and social lepers. I guess 8 years on that basic definition hasn't changed.

From what I understand Emo refers to Emotional hardcore or just Emotional. Where the music is kinda hardcore punkish but with a mainstream edge and their look is punk meets goth at Supre and then both go for a Boost Juice at the local Shopping Mall before heading off home to update their MySpace. Or in short; Got any blacker? I don't quite understand it and that's either because I'm way too old and cynical or because I haven't bothered to understand. I guess for me if you like a punk sensibility in your music then what's the point of listening to farking Jimmy Eat World when The Ramones are ready to rock?

An Emo may argue that they are a valid subculture and don't want to listen to the music of other already established subcultures which are associated with another era. Fair enough every generation wants a valid representation of it's members after all - I guess though when even the bands that we associate with Emo music are trying to disassociate themselves from the Emo subculture something has clearly gone wrong at headquarters. I keep reading that bands who are associated with the Emo scene keep denying they are Emo. I also keep reading the name Ian MacKaye being being associated with the Emo movement and this shocks me a bit. He's responsible for the band Fugazi and Minor Threat which I guess are more Straight Edge punk-type music rather than Emo.

This brings me to the point - is Emo something you call yourself or is Emo something that someone else calls you?

I was talking about Emo the other day with someone when it became apparent through our conversation that most all important musical genres had gone through an initial struggle to be accepted by their peers. They were ridiculed for the way they dressed, they were ridiculed for their different to the mainstream, they were blamed for the ills of society (suicide etc). I had to laugh when I though about it but in 30 years are people going to regard Emo with ..respect?

God, that would trip my mind. That would mean that I'd be one of those stick-in-the-mud old naysayers who just don't get it. I'm *gulp* un-hip.

Emo, love it or hate it?

Now here's some music that isn't Emo in the least, but I like anyway. Apparently I like being un-hip.

Golden Brown - The Stranglers

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