Washington Think Tank with W.: Does your favorite band deserve the spotlight?


Things have been too peaceful lately here in the good ol’ US of ToH. I miss the fire and the fury of campaign year, when brother is pitted against brother, dog against cat, and death metal nerds against black metal virgins. Where’s the rage? Where’s the vicious circle pit in the comments? We’re far too united in our hatred for djent, now, and I believe the toilet needs an enemy. So, barring any embarrassing Jack Bauer slip-ups I can turn into soundbites, I’m going to do what I do best and attack some unwitting civilians. Feel the fury of the Washington Think Tank.

Today’s Question: Does your favorite band deserve the spotlight?

We all know that Metalcore is terrible. Nearly every single band that was ever birthed from that liberal cesspool in New England is an absolute turd. Yet, amazingly, some of them are somehow absolutely gigantic, reaching superstar status through sheer dumb luck.

Exhibit A: Killswitch Engage

I honestly don’t think there is anything particularly noteworthy or unique about what Killswitch is doing or has ever done. Sure, Alive or Just Breathing and the End of Heartache are sometimes held in high esteem and featured some okay tracks, but they aren’t nearly as unique (or even interesting) as we’ve all been led to believe. Adam D. just ripped off At the Gates and haphazardly slapped some awful clean vocals into the choruses. Where’s the passion? Where’s the heavy? I contend that Killswitch are as big as they are due to a case of right place/right time. The fortuitous aligning of the stars enabled them to overshadow all of the other acts that ever played metalcore, which is a crying shame, because the scene spawned at least one good band.

Exhibit B: Himsa

Himsa were a fantastic ‘core band that unfortunately flew under the radar. Their final album, Summon in Thunder was an absolute tour-de-force with which I can find no fault.

  • Just the right amount of melody? Check!
  • Harmonized, Maiden-esque leads? Check!
  • Varied, unique song structures? Check!
  • Thoughtful album construction? Check!
  • And lastly and most importantly, no clean vocals? Check!

Himsa had everything you could ever want from a metalcore band, yet they sadly broke up in 2008 and faded into obscurity. With them, any creativity that was left in the subgenre trickled away into nothingness. Alas.

So this is where you come in. Which band do you think is totally undeserving of the spotlight? Which band was simply in the right place at the right time? Which band is criminally underrated? Which band should have been huge but never was? Has ol’ Dubya been drinking too much of Cheney’s cough syrup?

Sound off in the comments below.

Don’t know what the Washington Think Tank is? This is a weekly column where your former President poses a pressing question and allows the top minds at the Toilet ov Hell to investigate his query.

(Photos VIA, VIA, and VIA)

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