.Editorial - Chicks in the Pit
Metal Reviews

Release year: 0
Reviewed by Kayla

Last April I found myself standing in line outside the Palladium in Worchester, Massachusetts, waiting to be let inside so that I could partake of the privilege of having my senses pummeled into oblivion by Morbid Angel. I’d arrived over an hour before the doors were scheduled to open; I’m one of those crazy people who absolutely must have a spot up front. There were barely a dozen people in front of me in line, and nearly all of them looked almost identical to me; long hair, black boots, t-shirts emblazoned with illegible band logos. At one point, one of my comrades-in-line glanced back at me, and began staring intently at my chest. After a few moments, he asked if the particular illegible logo on my shirt belonged to Obituary. I corrected him; it was Bloodbath’s.

What’s remarkable about this simple exchange isn’t the words that were said, or the actions that preceded them. What’s remarkable about this exchange is the fact that I didn’t wallop him across the face for staring at that particular bit of my anatomy, as is the usual end result of a random guy staring at a girl’s chest. In over two decades of life (and one of having anything worth staring at), this is the one and only circumstance I’ve come across in which the staring male came away with no acrimony. As with most anything else, in the metal world, the social rules change when it comes to chicks. For that matter, I can’t really think of another situation where it would be at all acceptable to have five or six guys pressing against me, either, except when we’re all throwing the horns and howling like madmen at the stage in front of us. Well, I can, but it involves a great lot of nudity, and it’s not the sort of place I would be anyway.

Of course, one of the reasons the rules change when a girl puts on a metal shirt is the simple fact that there aren’t a whole lot of girls with Bloodbath shirts in their wardrobes. At that particular Morbid Angel show, I think the audience was around 95% male; even at the most equally balanced shows I’ve been to, I’d still estimate the audience being three-quarters male. As with any society, the majority’s rules hold sway, and little niceties of mainstream society sometimes get stripped away. When you’re crushed up against the stage or holding onto the railing for dear life, you can’t really complain if the guy next to you (who’s also holding on for dear life) manages to get his hands where polite society says he shouldn’t. This isn’t polite society, after all.

I have to admit, however, I do invite such treatment. I dress no differently than most male metalheads; same cut of shirt, same style of clothing. I set myself up to be treated as they would treat anyone else; in short, I tell them to ignore my anatomy and any rules that are supposed to go with it. I’m in the minority even among my fellow metal females, however. Most preserve a sense of femininity in their appearance; some dress no differently than your average girl, so that you wouldn’t even guess at their taste in music. And then there are the ones who dress to accentuate the anatomy that I downplay, for all that we both shrug off the rules of polite society. While the chicks like me fade into androgyny, these girls want everyone to know exactly how female they are. In other words, they’re the ones up in the balcony, perfectly willing to answer any calls for tits that might arise. Unfortunately for them, it is no longer 1984, and they are not attending a Motley Crue show. And if they are attending a Motley Crue show, I would strongly recommend getting the hepatitis vaccine first.

In my ever-humble opinion, these girls are missing something. Well, besides a certain amount of respect – in yet another line for a show, a couple of girls wearing far more bare skin than clothing walked by, only to be called whores once they were out of earshot. By setting themselves apart from the metal masses, by calling attention to the fact that they do, in fact, have a pair of tits, they miss out on a huge part of going to any show. It might be a cheesy idea, but there’s a real brotherhood that’s forged when you’re on the floor, crushed up against your fellow metalheads. It might only last as long as there’s a band in front of you, but for those few hours, you’re all bound together by a common passion. When you act as if that passion isn’t why you’re there, you’re left on the outside, and no matter how loud the cheers are when you lift your shirt, you’ll never share in that experience.

Of course, there are times when being absolutely, visibly female can be loads of fun. During the warmer months, it’s one of my simple pleasures to have my car windows down and my music up, most likely death metal, folk metal, or over-the-top power metal. If the latter, my fellow motorists get a double earful as I do my best to warble along with the likes of Joachim Cans of HammerFall or Daniel Heiman in his stint with Lost Horizon. The real fun comes when a macho man with their windows down stops next to me at a red light, and feels his masculinity threatened by this chick and her Devil’s music. On more than one occasion, I’ve had men gun their engines and race me through the intersection once the light turns green, as if to prove conclusively that their penises are indeed larger than my own (in fact, they certainly are).

The path of the metalhead is a strange one to walk when you’re female; it can be disconcerting to have the social rules you’ve lived by all your life suddenly change, and trying to hold on to your accustomed role can yield mixed results. For the most part, though, metal chicks are just the same as our male brethren. Slightly crazy – as the very long lines I’ve stood in outside the Palladium in December and Jaxx (in northern Virginia) in January can attest – and united by that craziness and love for our music.

Killing Songs :
Kayla quoted
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.Editorial - Metal N Media reviewed by Ben and quoted
.Editorial - The Curious Case Of Udo reviewed by Ben and quoted
.Editorial - Music Album DLC reviewed by Ben and quoted
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