I grew up with MaximumRockNRoll. Whilst far too often wallowing in identity politic nihilism, it was a priceless resource for alt.culture in the pre-internet stone age. It kept many of us sane, providing endless resources to other folks like us cruelly separated by the tyranny of distance. The premier issue was July 1982 – which makes us scumfucs that remember pushing 50 and beyond. The age that we used to hate with a fearsome passion.
Central to MRR’s appeal was knowing you were not alone. That there were others on the planet that held the same contempt for what passed as pop culture of the time. For me personally, rock bottom was reached here, also in 1982 – ABC and Look of Love [masochists can click here]. I cannot articulate the despair that was evoked by this nothingness that was everywhere – every music teevee show, every commercial radio channel, every shopping mall, pub and club. Noxious, spotty teenagers pumping dimes in jukeboxes playing the same non-music, bubblegum garbage everywhere. There was no escape. But there was MRR – and it was a lifeline.
The most wonderful feature of MRR, and similar zines such as Metal Forces for the headbangers, was the personals section where folks would post real addresses for correspondence and, most importantly, cassette tape trading of music – very much the Napster of its day.
Most folks are familiar with Napster and how it was destroyed. The main driving force behind this stupidity was Metallica. And the biggest loudmouth was Lars Ulrich. In fact the pavement that was laid for all of today’s piracy hysteria from the MafIAA is Metallica’s direct legacy – a fact that should be remembered before even wasting a dime on a Metallica song on a jukebox.
Ulrich, of all people, should appreciate the importance of cultural exchange. It was after all what launched Metallica from LA’s underground metal scene and created the monster that has made him stinking rich. He should also be aware that MRR and its sister zines were also critical liberalising forces in general. Yet he consciously fucked this social environment for no other reason than greed. Ulrich, how the fuck do you think kids in Pakistan and Iran get music that is prohibited? Huh? Stealing is their only option. And this music sharing that you hate because it deprives you of nothing is an important link for social change in the muslim world, just as MRR was in challenging the derangements of Ronald Reagan. You fucking helped destroy this you shit-head.
Here are a couple of vids showing the depth of Ulrich’s hypocrisy. Evidently, piracy is OK as long as Ulrich is doing the stealing. Vids snatched from the highly recommended Metal Evolution series (even Daisy would approve of this series) –