Monday 8 April 2013

Matthew Simpson- Musings on a Scene

So, I’ve just returned from the UK-based Resistanz Industrial festival, and thought I’d share some musings on some eye-opening moments I experienced up in the frozen wastes of Sheffield. Firstly, I must say that everything I write is my own opinion; I speak freely and uninfluenced (something of a blessing in this scene, or so I’m led to believe).

There were two shows that people talked about the most this weekend. The first was iVardensphere, a ‘tribal industrial’ band I’d heard of, but never listened to. Their show was an absolutely primal experience, speaking to the crowd on a level that music is truly meant to do. There wasn’t so much fist pumping as there was shining eyes and deep expressions.

The second was the popular artist, Celldweller. I don’t really need to write much about Klayton and his work, as it’s widely listened to. What is of most interest to me, and hopefully my reader, is that that, to me, these two acts were the least ‘industrial’ of the weekend. This got me thinking; what are we looking for in a scene when an idea from outside the scene is seemingly more popular? Why do we go to the same clubs and the same shows if what we are looking for is lying outside of these places?

It’s a bit of an odd question, really. On the one hand, I’d say because it’s where we are all most comfortable; all the people we know like to hang out in the same clubs, like similar bands, and so it’s easier. Conversely, I get the feeling that many feel that they are not especially welcome outside of our little stompy bubble, and this leads me to share another experience I had in Sheffield. On the Friday night, the venue holds a mainstream night, with slight alt influences. Speaking to some of the regulars, many of whom had never heard of industrial, they all agreed that we added a real atmosphere, and that ‘this was the best night they’d had there’. This got me thinking; are we really unwelcome at all? No, I don’t think we are. I think we’re strange and quirky, but ultimately we do all have a lot of fun and we know how to enjoy ourselves. I think that if our little bubble (to use my past analogy) opened up a bit, or we dared to go outside of it for a while, we’d find that both us and the people we’d never normally get a chance to meet would find it an enjoyable experience. It’d do leaps and bounds for our closed-up stereotype, and give us a chance to experience what we crave but cannot have inside the scene.

So next time you want to go out, maybe try a different club with your friends. Roll the dice. Go and watch that band you want to see, regardless of what ‘scene’ they’re a part of. Roll the dice. Wear those clothes, regardless of if they’re ‘gothy’ or not. Roll the dice.

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