Joe Kotarba on ‘Enter Sandman’ #sssi #music

I just played Metallica’s “Enter Sandman” performed on Craig Ferguson’s. Late Late Show Thursday.  I missed the original broadcast–way past my bedtime.  But, the video I caught on Spin.com was marvelous.

The song still gives me chills.  I have always thought of ES as a critical point in the history of metal:  meaningful and scary, not just loud and forceful. For better or worse, it was all over MTV.  It makes me feel like a 12 years old boy feel must feel: on the edge of adolescence with all its threatening yet exciting realities.  Was ES in 1992 the height or the beginning of the end of metal as we have come to know and love it.  Come on, SI bangers, talk to me…

Joe Kotarba        

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About Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction - Blog

The Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction (SSSI) is an international professional organization of scholars interested in the study of a wide range of social issues with an emphasis on identity, everyday practice, and language.
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One Response to Joe Kotarba on ‘Enter Sandman’ #sssi #music

  1. Hey Joe, great post! I agree. I think that this era (late 80s/early 90s) was an important time for metal music generally in terms of both landmark albums and transitions. One need only to consider the output of “The Big Four” (Metallica noted above; Megadeth; Anthrax, and; Slayer).

    Megadeth released Countdown to Extinction (1992) featuring its classic lineup (oh Marty Friedman how we miss you!). Some fantastic and very technical guitar work on this album thanks largely to Mr. Friedman. The lyrics and political undertones are also great and eerily foreshadowing (e.g. Foreclosure of a Dream immediately comes to mind). All this before Dave Mustaine went total “Ted Nugent” on us all (see Mustaine at the following link discussing his view that Obama staged the Aurora shootings in Colorado to pass a gun ban a political shift toward what Mustaine calls a “Nazi America”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b5sHO7fWSio)

    Anthrax dumped longtime vocalist Joey Belladonna (now back with the band) in 1992 after their outstanding album Persistence of Time in 1990 (the best of the Belladonna era in my opinion). John Bush joined the band shortly thereafter providing a new vocal approach of less hair metal and more grit, that we might surmise allowed the band to stay relevant in an era that shifted toward a more aggressive vocal approach that started to dominate mainstream metal (e.g. Pantera’s Far Beyond Driven still remains the heaviest album to ever reach #1 on the Billboard 100 in 1994). The Sound of White Noise (1993) was the first album to feature John Bush on vocals and the last album to feature longtime lead guitarist Dan Spitz who is now a Master Watchmaker among other things (you can see his diplomas and certificates here: http://danspitz.com/watchmaking-credentials/). The Sound of White Noise also arguably featured the first actual Anthrax “ballad” song (Black Lodge) something that Anthrax had previously poked fun at (e.g., NFB on Attack of the Killer B’s in 1991).

    In 1990, Slayer released Seasons in the Abyss an album that completed their trifecta of thrash metal masterpieces (Reign in Blood in 1986 and South of Heaven in 1988 the other two). This was the last album at the time to feature the classic Slayer lineup (with “the godfather of double bass” himself Dave Lombardo – although Mr. Lombardo would later return again between 2006-2013).

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