Metal Evolution (2011) s01e08 Episode Script

Nu Metal

Sam Dunn: I'm at the Nokia
Theater in Times Square in
Manhattan for the CD release of
Linkin Park's brand new record.
Sam Dunn: In the mid nineties
the new style of metal
that emerged was in
fact called nu-metal.
For me as a long time metal
fan it didn't have any of the
hallmarks that I like
about heavy metal music.
The guys didn't look like metal
guys, they had short hair,
they had baggy pants and it
didn't really sound like metal.
It seemed to take a bit of
hip-hop and a bit of
metal and a bit of electronica
and I couldn't stand it.
And so the journey
of this episode is to
try to understand whether
or not this nu-metal
even belongs in the story
of Metal Evolution.
When nu-metal emerged
in the mid nineties
it introduced a dramatically
different sound and look
to heavy metal but where
did nu-metal come from?
To get started I'm meeting
with Anthrax guitarist Scott Ian
because the first time I heard
metal mixed with hip-hop
waswhen Anthrax joined
forces with Public Enemy.
So I'm hoping Scott
will shed some light
on the roots of nu-metal.
Scott Ian: We grew up
listening to hip-hop.
In Queens and The Bronx we
were at the epicenter of that.
I was listening to rap
music since the time
I was listening to rock
music since the seventies.
So "Bring The Noise" was
our way to work together
with one of our favorite
bands on the planet.
Scott Ian: Chuck D rapping
over my guitar tone,
something I always
heard in my brain.
My rhythm tone and Chuck
D's voice were made for
each other and we made
that happen, you know,
we were able to stretch our
boundaries of heavy metal.
Scott Ian: It was so organic
we just decided let's
really (beep) put our balls on
the line and say we know a lot
of the world is not ready for
this yet but we don't give a
(beep) we're doing this for
ourselves and most of the world
at the time came
along for the ride.
Jon Weiderhorn: "Bring The
Noise" was so successful
because it didn't sacrifice on
either end of the spectrum.
It was extremely heavy
and thrashy and you had
a really purpolsive beat so
certainly Anthrax did play
a major role in bringing
hip-hop and metal together
in a mainstream way within
the metal community.
Rich Ward: They were the ones
that said metal guys don't
have to wear black jeans
and white tennis shoes,
you could wear shorts and
all of a sudden find
some kind of connection with
your inner inner city self.
Scott: People always say you
created rap rock or rap metal,
all that (beep) that started in
the nineties with Limp Bizkit
and Korn and that whole
sound or whatever, nu-metal.
I'm like man I can't take
credit or blame because I
don't believe it.
There's so many other
bands involved,
Faith No More was doing
rap, hip-hop type of stuff
since the (beep) inception
of Faith No More.
Sam: You guys were
always playing with that
kind of slightly funk
influence in the band.
Where was that coming from?
Billy Gould: I always liked funk
and R&B music myself, I mean as
a bass player it's kind of an
interesting thing to play but
what we were trying to do was
write things and do things that
would really kind of stand the
test of time always from day one
even if people didn't see
it at the time, that was always
what we tried to do and as a
bass player I've always wanted
to be forward leaning
hard on the downbeat,
traditionally speaking rock
bassists are on the backbeat.
I always thought it more
as like an extra drum
that's part of the
percussion attack.
Billy: So a lot of things
what we're doing if we're
playing these kind of weird
rhythmic patterns, I guess it is
funky because funk music is
rhythm based but we weren't
really trying to be like
a bringing funky grooves
necessarily into rock music and
I mean the only band I knew at
the time that had before
that was Led Zeppelin.
Adam Rafalovich: You look at a
lot of the bands that had a lot
of influence upon a lot of
metal artists like Led Zeppelin.
Almost all groove oriented,
same sort of tempo,
look at Black Sabbath, grooves
are just really accessible,
grooves feel really good.
So in a sense experimenting
with different forms was the
revisiting of that and that
again expands the audience,
there's more people who are
going to get into it if they can
get into a rhythmic
structure that appeals to them.
When it comes to
mixing groove and heaviness
no band struck this balance
better in the nineties than
Rage Against The Machine,
which featured the
innovative approach of Rage
guitarist Tom Morello.
Sam: When Rage was
just starting out,
where did the inspiration
come from to have
that groove rhythmic
element in the music?
Tom Morello: Yeah. What
made that early batch
of Rage songs was definitely
the chemistry of the
four musicians and we
brought out of each other.
My contribution to that
was my love of those huge
seventies hard rock riffs
through the filter of
my love of punk
rock and hip-hop.
So I started to compile
these riffs and grooves in
Rage Against The Machine
as the guitar player,
I was the DJ in the band.
That got me thinking about
the instrument in an
entirely different way.
Tom Morello: While I still
loved Randy Rhoads,
and Eddie Van Halen and Yngwie
Malmsteen and all that,
I thought there's enough of
that happening already,
I started concentrating on
the eccentricities of my
playing and all of a
sudden we started to hear
something that we
hadn't heard before.
Deena Weinstein: Rage was
actually out there as a
unique band that was
on top of the charts.
They mixed things up quite
beautifully and distinctively.
Pantera is not a bad bridge
to nu-metal either and
people who like Pantera
didn't have much
of a difficulty getting
over to nu-metal.
Pantera was one
of the most important
metal bands of the
nineties and yet they
were virtually impossible
to categorize.
Some call them thrash,
others call them groove metal.
But one thing's for sure they
introduced a style of riffing
that added a new rhythmic
dynamic to metal music.
Phil Anselmo: The late eighties
writing heavy metal songs,
a lot of bands would save
the money riff for the end
or for the middle or
whatever but we saw
that the money riff moved
people so it's like
why not make the whole
damn song the money riff.
Phil: You know, any riff
that moved the people,
it was like too infectious
not to jump into that
frockus with the people
once we started playing.
Brandon Geist: I think what
makes Pantera so great
is that they had hooks,
they had groovy instantly
humble riffs so it was finding
this fine line between
extremity and hookiness and
accessibility that very few
bands can manage to do and
Pantera were all about like we
are fans just as much as
you guys are fans you know.
That was their whole thing, they
were always partying with fans.
Terry Date: The feel of their
records was based around the
riff and they played with
a groove that none of the
metal bands were playing with,
you know they played, you know
it's like texas swing meets
thrash metal, so there's a lot
of emphasis on how the
crowd would react.
Phil: The proof's in the
pudding you know, we gigged so
much and it was all about
attitude and the bond with the
audience, you know, and that's
what was special about us.
By the early nineties
combining groove and heaviness
in metal music was well
established but still
these bands were not
called nu-metal.
So the question still remains,
when was the nu-metal sub-genre
actually born and who was
the first true nu-metal band?
Bands like Faith No More,
Rage Against The Machine
and Pantera pioneered
a groove based sound
in metal music back in the early
nineties but the first band
credited with actually creating
the nu-metal style was Korn
So I'm meeting with Korn
vocalist Jonathan Davis
to explore the bands background
and how it shaped their music.
Sam: I wanted to start
by asking you, how would you
describe Bakersfield the time
when you were growing up and how
you think that kind of fed into
the music you went on to make?
Jonathan Davis: It really
had a big impact on me
the town itself because it's
kind of barren in parts,
a lot of oil fields, farms, you
were either into
dirt bike riding or music
that was basically it.
At the time it was considered
Nashville West, there was a lot
of country music going on, Buck
Owens, Hee Haw, that kind of
stuff but the band that got
me into like metal music was
Pantera because those grooves
were undeniable, they just made
you just want to move do
something, make you get out of
your seat and rock out but I
think the biggest band was like
Faith No More, they showed
us you can do something
different in heavy music that
wasn't traditional metal.
Sam: With regards to
your vocal approach,
you're very different than
a lot of other vocalists.
Jonathan Davis: I just
was coming out with
what was coming out of
my heart 100 percent
I just opened my
mouth and sang,
I wasn't trying to
emulate anybody,
I wasn't trying to do anything,
I was just come and figure
myself out really and I kind
of fell into my own style,
it's just from all the
different kinds of
music I listen to all
meshed into one.
Sam: So were your lyrical
influences primarily
coming from a
personal place then?
Jonathan Davis: Yah coming
just straight from a
personal stand point,
stuff I had to get out.
Monte Connor: It's another
thing that just really
attracted kids to Korn was the
realness of it, they never heard
like a grown man just crying on
a record and putting his emotion
out there like that, it was
like, it was unbelievable.
Adam Rafalovich: Jonathan
Davis, he had this interesting
way kind of like whispering,
you know he would
bring his voice down
really really low.
Adam: Making you think he's
like in a mental institution,
that you're seeing inside of
his own head when he would
offer these really whispery
little discussions and
then to actually explode
would take those songs
to a whole other
emotional level.
Scott Greer: Now he was just
making music and creating
these songs and these lyrics
as therapy for himself
and so other people you know
felt that sort of connection
to the music and so
the band connected
on a mainstream level
because it was unique music
but it was also very personal.
Sam: Is there anything
else Korn did that was
new and exciting for
metal with that first record?
Monte: Korn and bands and
band of their ilk basically
took guitars and they down tuned
them to previously unheard of
levels and um, you know that's
what gives it the heavy sound,
that's what gives it this thick
heavy groovy kind of sound.
So you know the down tuning
to me would be the number one
characteristic of what
makes a band nu-metal.
Rich Ward: All of us were
d-tuning at that point,
the difference was
the introduction of
the seven string which
I call the mud tone.
It basically said that Van Halen
and Randy Rhoads were dead,
that the idea of that top
end bright aggressive thing
was over and it was the
introduction to this
Ross Robinson production
technique, no top end,
all about the low end,
all about the bump.
Ross Robinson: (imitates sound)
The way the low end hits,
you know, it moves something
else in your gut that
straight metal doesn't
really have the ability to do.
Fieldy: Nobody was doing like
lower music like that and
we wanted something heavier
and lower so I got a
five string bass because it
has a lower string on it.
Like the music would be
heavier you know lower string
but it was really weird
because I don't think Korn
has a bass player because
it's not really bass,
it's a percussion style
instrument in the band.
I did a lot of like just click
sounds of rhythms and I think
that's where I guess I
ended up developing the style.
Korn broadened the scope of
metal music by experimenting
with sounds and instrumentation
that had never been heard
in the genre but they weren't
the only California band
that stretched the boundaries
of metal in the mid nineties.
Sam: So Sacramento was
it a place where heavy music
was popular but also
hip-hop and other styles?
Chino Moreno: Yah. I
mean it was very,
it was a melting pot of all
kinds of sound you know,
we grew up kind of in a,
I guess you would call it
the hood whatever and our
early roots I think musically
come from a lot of different
places from disco to you
know being in the beginning
of new wave music.
There's so much great music
in all these genres,
why not just you know utilize
the best of whatever you like
and put it and hopefully be
able to do it so it's not
so contrived you know because
to us it was was natural.
Chino Moreno: Like we always
looked at making riffs that
you could nod your head to,
had beat and pulse to it and
that's from listening I think
to early rap music but we didn't
think about bringing in
turntables into the band to add
a hip-hop element to it,
it wasn't that at all.
It was more for
soundscapes I think.
Adam: The turntable can
introduce sounds and
an approach to sound that
the classic instruments
won't necessarily be able to
do, but at the same time
there are always
those fans of metal music
who would probably take
an axe to a turntable.
Jon Weiderhorn: The
turntable is a tricky
instrument when it
comes to heavy metal.
The Deftones were able
to use the turntable
as a real instrument
however I think gave
a new atmosphere to
some of their songs.
Deftones and Korn created a
sound that helped shatter some
of the orthodox of heavy metal
music but still nu-metal wasn't
considered a new sub-genre
until Brazilian thrash metal
legends Sepultura released their
ground breaking album "Roots"
Sam: Can you describe
where you guys were at
when you made that record?
Max Cavalera: Well one thing
Sepultura always said
to ourselves, a commitment,
was to never repeat
the same album, no
matter what happens.
We're never gonna do the same
album again and we already did a
lot of the fast stuff so we
thought what else can we do you
know to develop our sound so
we started messing around with
rhythms and it was awesome
and we're like wow this is
really cool, let's
keep this going.
Max Cavalera: We felt those
grooves, you know like
metal has a groove man that's
a great groove, when you do it
right it's killer, it's really
contagious and Roots opening
track, the song "Roots Bloody
Roots" really total killer
groove song, it's
made for festivals.
It's made for 50,000 people
jumping up and down,
that's what I still
love to play today.
It's one of my
favorite songs to play live.
Max Cavalera: So in your music
you actually do what you
believe you know, we believe
in "Roots" you know, the band
totally believe on it so
we just went on further.
Monte Connor: Max was basically
the guy that spear headed
the movement taking Sepultura
in a new metal direction so
the album "Roots" definitely
help establish the genre
right along with
Korn and Deftones.
Dez Fafara: When we heard them
do that we said ok if Sepultura
is gonna come from their roots,
you know excuse the pun,
from their roots from doing an
album like "Roots" we all said
okay nu-metal is gonna blow up.
That's why you had so
many nu-metal bands
coming out of that time.
I mean it blew up so quick that
none of us expected it, we all
had our head down and horns out
and just kind of driving through
the wind and the American
kids were ready to eat that up.
Scott Greer: Nu-metal was
engaging multiple audiences
those bands were engaging the
metal fans, they were engaging
the goth fans, you know and
there were some rap fans
brought into the fold so that
musical makeup broadened their
appeal and they tapped into all
those different fan bases.
By the late nineties
nu-metal was recognized
as a unique underground movement
that resonated with heavy
metalers as well as fans of
hip-hop and goth music but how
would nu-metal transform from
a grass roots sub-genre to a
mainstream movement that
swept across America
andthe rest of the world.
Sam: With the arrival of Limp
Bizkit in the late nineties,
the sound of nu-metal
started to shift and
bands were now getting heavy
rotation on MTV, but not
everyone in the metal community
was on board with this,
a lot of fans like myself
really didn't like what
Limp Bizkit was doing with
the sound of the music.
But given that they had this
massive mainstream impact
I'm meeting with Fred Durst
because I wanna know about
the ambitions of the band and
how they got their start.
Fred Durst: You know I was
homeless for a few years and
sort of lost and just
skateboarding and making crappy
rap demos and I just didn't
think anything was ever gonna
happen for me but I remember
hearing that Korn were coming to
town and I said this is
my shot, this is my shot.
I got to give these guys my
tape, after the show they just
walked out into the crowd
and stood there and we started
drinking some beer and hanging
and I said we can come back to
my house, you know I do tattoos,
I'll give you a free tattoo and
for some reason they
were down with going.
Jonathan Davis: You know we
were playing this place called
Milk Bar in Jacksonville and
I guess those guys frequented
that place, that was their bar,
that was their club to hang.
I remember I was playing
and I got off stage and
I met Fred and he said
he was a tattoo artist.
Fred Durst: So I tattoo on
"Head", Brian Welch's lower back
and they bust my balls to this
day because you know it says
Korn but they said it says Horn.
Jonathan Davis: He wasn't a
great tattoo artist, he kind of
like swindled his way into
tattooing, so yah his back says
Horn instead of Korn, you know
we always tease him about it.
Fred Durst: It definitely
doesn't say Horn because there's
one little piece in there that
makes it a K and not an H
and so I gave them a tape.
Fred: You know I didn't
realize how serious it
was gonna be but Fieldy
responded, he responded and he
said man I'm gonna let some
people hear this and then I get
a call from Ross Robinson and
you know to me it was like whoa
Ross produced Korn's record,
like this is unbelievable.
Sam Dunn: What was different
about that Limp Bizkit sound?
Ross Robinson: Well actually I
kind of felt there was like a
suicidal punk rock thing to it.
Ross: Fred was singing
about things like being
pissed off at his neighbor and
wanting to pee in their yard and
you know just really adolescent
things you know that made you
want to like wreck something but
obviously he went like complete
rap so it was like an extra
thing for metal basically.
Fred: Heavy metal and
hip-hop the two worlds
colliding together, I always
kind of wanted it to happen.
Even growing up I would
take rock records and a
four-track cassette recorder,
recording a rock record on
one track and then going
and rapping over it.
So when it came to Limp Bizkit I
absolutely went on a mission to
make music that was
a mixture of those.
Adam Rafalovich: According
to Limp Bizkit nu-metal was
going to be hard riffing,
very groove oriented and it
was gonna have very strict, very
specific hip-hop delivery.
Other bands had elements
of hip-hop making them
nu-metal bands but Limp Bizkit
were basically admitting
that nu-metal was
about hip-hop,
that was what appealed
to that mass audience.
Wes Borland: The hip-hop and rap
combined with you know the metal
stuff, it was like let's take
all these things that sound
violent and combine them all
together because that just does
something to you, it makes you
want to move, it makes you want
to dance in a way that metal
wasn't making happen before.
So we were
constantly experimenting.
Sam Dunn: What was your
philosophy making
turntables work in Limp Bizkit?
DJ Lethal: When they asked me
to join the band I was like,
man I don't wanna just
do regular DJ scratches
that everybody is doing you
know, my stuff had to be
musical and definitely Tom
Morello was an inspiration
as far as how he tries to make
other sounds with his guitar,
I wanted to do more rock guitar
things on the turntable.
So I ran my turntable through a
Marshall stack and I was like,
that's it! That's
it right there.
The bottom line was let's
have fun with it because
you know a lot of metal
bands were just you know,
so serious and they're always
like that and they gotta be so
dark and we're like we can
be hard and play hardcore
and play riffs and
like have fun too.
Fred: Somebody needed to come
in and start the (beep) party.
By 1998 Limp Bizkit
and the nu-metal movement
was hitting the mainstream
and the driving force
was the Family Values tour.
The first tour to be officially
marketed as a nu-metal festival.
Featuring headliners Limp Bizkit
and Korn, Family Values played
to nearly a quarter of a million
fans and nu-metal was now
overtaking glam and grunge
as metal's biggest sub-genre.
Wes Borland: This was a very
excessive time, it was like the
eighties came back for a little
while in the late nineties.
Like people are tired of seeing
small shows, they want to see
big shows now, they want to see
big stage sets, big lights and
Family Values being a huge
production made an impact,
it made a statement, this is
what's happening now, you know
it made us stand out as nu-metal
bands on a nu-metal tour.
Fred: It just kept building and
building and pretty
soon it was like we were on
our own, we could go out and
headline as Limp Bizkit.
Family Values was definitely the
match that started that fire.
Sam Dunn: To what extent
was Limp Bizkit's approach
more commercial than
Deftones or Korn?
Jon Weiderhorn: I think at first
Limp Bizkit's sound and approach
wasn't any more commercial
than Korn's, at least on
"Three Dollar Bill, Yall$"
but when they built a net to
"Significant Other" they
really made the cash grab.
You have a single like "Nookie"
which for some reason blew into
the stratosphere and was huger
than huge and in the mainstream
eye that was a sign that
nu-metal had gone supernova.
Wes Borland: Things were so
out of control by that point,
the audiences just ate it
up, they couldn't get enough.
I mean it was ridiculous.
Fred: I just remember thinking,
oh my God you know I'm
a rock star now and I'm meeting
musicians that I've always
admired and Hugh Hefner keeps
calling me to come to his house
and I'm hanging out with all
of these playmates and this is
crazy, you know I'm
gonna eat it up while I can.
I was just living you know, I
wasn't thinking too far ahead.
What's going on?
We're just shooting a video.
We're shooting a video.
We're not having it.
Get in the car.
(Police Sirens)
Crowd: Woodstock '99!
VH-1 Reporter: This is
Woodstock '99 baby whoa!
(Crowd cheering)
VH-1 Reporter: We're in
Rome, NY not far from
the original Woodstock site but
of course things are a little
different in 1999
than they were in 1969.
In July 1999 nearly
a half a million music fans
descended on the small town
of Rome in upstate New York
tocommemorate the 30th
anniversary of Woodstock.
Among the dozens of performers
over the three-day festival were
Rage Against The
Machine, Korn and Limp Bizkit.
Sam: What are your memories
of that show and what do you
think it did for this
movement of heavy music?
Fred Durst: Well they were
really pushing this movement,
hard, it was like this break out
metal festival with a few other
artists sprinkled in and
I remember getting there
and just going, oh my
God look at this place,
this is Woodstock what
an honor, how amazing.
I mean it was definitely the
highlight of rap metal music.
Jonathan Davis: Come
on Woodstock!
For us too It was crazy, I think
it was the greatest show
we ever played or are
ever gonna play.
It was amazing to play in front
of 400,000 plus people and
they all get it and be
right there with us
and feel what we're doing.
It was amazing to see people
jumping to the music and because
there were so many people,
seeing how the sound travels,
seeing the waves of people
jumping, it was just ridiculous.
Fieldy: Woodstock '99 was
unforgettable, that was a
pretty big moment, that was the
biggest moment in our career.
It was so intense, never done
anything like that before,
still haven't.
Jonathan Davis: We rocked that
place that first night and
everybody had fun but the
second night Limp Bizkit
(beep) it up for everyone,
they really did.
Announcer: You want the worst,
well you got the worst,
the one, the only, Limp Bizkit.
Wes Borland: I mean it was
wildfire, there was people
everywhere and when we
finally went up to play
it was like middle of the
day and we had like the
best slot to where the
energy would be super high,
so we just got up and
we played our show.
Fred Durst: We walked on stage
and it was that wave of people
bouncing as far as you could
see, hundreds of thousands of
people and it was the most
amazing adrenaline pumping
moment that I ever experienced
and I was so amped
and ready to rock and we
just did what we do.
Fred Durst: But I guess things
started to go bad during
you know our song "Break Stuff".
Fred Durst: You know it is
what it is, it was just me
doing my thing because
during our performance
I saw people surfing
on plywood.
That's some tight (beep)
right there, that crowd
surfing on the plywood.
I was like, that's (beep)
amazing, how cool is that,
I'm gonna go do it, so I jumped
down off the stage and I go out
in the crowd and I'm telling
them to bring the plywood over
here and they're surfing it
over and I get up on it and
I just start rocking on
the plywood you know
I'm partying with you guys,
you know, I wanna be out here
in the crowd with you,
this is amazing.
I had no idea there was
anything negative going on
at all.
You got your problems, you
got a problem with me,
you got a problem with
yourself, it's time to take
all that negative energy
and put it the (beep) out.
I don't think they understood
that I meant okay let's get rid
of all that negativity so
we can bring positive in.
That means start jumping, you
know jumping and singing, it
doesn't mean start raping
and burning the place down,
that's definitely
not what I meant.
Fred: I remember getting
off the stage and having
some policeman with my manager
come around me and say,
"Fred I think you kind of
incited a riot", they started
ripping down the buildings and
the scaffolding and that's the
plywood you were surfing on,
that wasn't from walkways going
to the restroom, they were
tearing down things and there
was people getting hurt and I
go I didn't see any of that,
everybody I saw was
having an amazing time.
Jonathan Davis: Fred with his
like, c'mon let's break stuff in
that song, him doing that, it
just sent it over the top and
that's when all
that stuff happened.
There was people hurt,
people got beat up, hit,
all this craziness, he
instigated the whole damn
I was right there watching it.
Jon Weiderhorn: It wasn't a
fun Woodstock type love fest,
it really turned violent, it
turned ugly, it was really a
dark moment in music and
instead of stopping the show
Fred Durst stoked the flames.
News Anchor: Three days of music
peace and love ended with arson
and rioting early
today at Woodstock '99.
Whatever the reasons
concertgoers began destroying
property, starting
fires and rioting.
Scatted bonfires raged out of
control for several hours as
vending stalls were looted
and light towers toppled.
Was Woodstock's '99
firery end enough
to shroud the event in regret?
Fred Durst: All I can say is
that when we were on stage our
experience was that it was the
greatest concert of all time and
I had no idea that the finger
would be pointed at me as a
guy staring a riot but I
guess you know to this day,
it's gonna be something that
Limp Bizkit (beep) up.
Tom Morello: His music kind
of started with the idea
of making powerful music
that had a message
that was about integrity
and unity and
this kind of solidarity between
band and crowd and then it
became you know a bunch of
thugs raping women in the pit
and then burning the
festival to the ground.
We popularized this genre, which
now is totally just run amuck.
I just thought man this
is, what have we done.
Monte Connor: When I think
of Woodstock I think of that
incident with Limp Bizkit and
the stuff that happened there
was kind of like the way
Altamont was you know like you
had the original Woodstock being
this amazing music festival and
Altamont being the point where
like you know, the sixties
culture jumped the shark.
Maybe that was the
turning point where things
had gotten out of hand.
Tom Morello: That music became
sort of excess in spectacle
and disrespect to audience
and peers in a way that you
saw most awful heights of
the hair metal bands.
Fred: This character Fred
Durst thing, this monster that
was created, you know it
sort of backfired on me,
there was always negativity
thrown at Limp Bizkit,
nobody really wanted us
here in the first place.
You know nobody really wanted
rap in the first place and
nobody really wanted
metal in the normal world.
So rap metal, oh (beep), now the
metal guys don't want it and the
rappers don't want the metal
so I just think that it was,
I'm just that guy I guess,
yah maybe I'm that guy.
Despite the fallout and
backlash after Woodstock '99
the nu-metal movement
didn't die and in fact
it continued to grow and it was
so pervasive that even one of
metal's biggest bands
embraced the nu-metal sound.
Sam Dunn: Tell me about
"Diabolus in Musica", what kind
of direction were you guys
going in on that record?
Kerry King: That's the one
record that I really paid not
enough attention to because
I was really bitter
about the kind of music
that was popular.
I thought it was very
frat boy stuff and
maybe that's why it was
popular, I don't know.
So "Diabolus" didn't get
as much attention from me
because you know we
didn't stay in focus.
Kevin Estrada: Slayer
were very influenced at
one point by the
power of nu-metal,
the Diabolica album was very
nu-metal, had very nu-metal
elements throughout, Kerry's
riffs changed, you know the
solos weren't as chaotic so it
was a little worrisome seeing
that Slayer gave in to that you
know, of all bands Slayer,
the kings of thrash metal were
starting to sound nu-metal.
Kevin: You know they're
playing tours with the
Deftones and they're playing
tours with Korn and they're
playing to that crowd and
I think that had a lot
to do with it, they wanted to
connect with their audience.
Phil Anselmo: It's kneeling
to what was popular you know,
remember when Kiss went
disco when we were kids.
Trying to stay up
with the times.
Kerry King: Looking back we were
just saying all right how do we
make Slayer fit into today's
society but that's probably my
least favorite record of our
history, that's our "Turbo"
After "Diabolus in
Musica", Slayer returned
to their thrash metal sound
in the early 2000's and it
seemed that the nu-metal
movement was starting to die off
but then a second wave of
bands emerged that were
labeled nu-metal but
broadened the sound
of a sub-genre and heavy
metal as a whole.
Sam: What was the
music and rock and metal
climate like at that time?
David Draiman: It was a very
unique time because we got
lumped into the category of
nu-metal but we never really had
any association with that
stylistically, we never rapped,
we never had a DJ or a
turntable or anything like that.
Bands like the
Deftones and Korn
had their hip-hop
and rap influences.
For me it was much more reggae.
Dan Donegan: I never really
worried about what the
categories were, we're metal,
we're not metal, we're not metal
enough, you know we're rock
whatever, it doesn't really
phase me, obviously we came
up at a time where this whole
nu-metal genre came up
and it was great for us,
we were able to ride the
wave of that because
so many bands were getting
snatched up at the time.
Jacoby Shaddix: The public
had like had enough of
Limp Bizkit, had enough of
(beep) Korn and it was just
like the whole wave of new bands
came through that kicked down
the door for us so it wasn't
that hard for us to just
stampede through and
sell (beep) six million
records, you know.
Nic Adler: The music industry
at that time was very hungry,
I mean the best sales in the
history of the music business
were during that time, people
were looking for bands that were
that nu-metal style
but young new and fresh.
The second wave
of nu-metal bands not only
expanded the sound of the genre,
they also pushed nu-metal to
even higher levels of commercial
success and the band that took
nu-metal to it's
commercial peak was Linkin Park.
Sam Dunn: As you know
I mean the next
big band was Linkin Park,
what was your impression
of what those guys were doing?
Jonathan Davis: They did this
really cool thing where they
incorporated melody and singing
with a rapper, so you had the
best of both worlds and they
didn't go too heavy or spooky,
it's stuff that I guess
"normal folk" could palette.
Adam Rafalovich: With Linkin
Park there wasn't the
same degree of overt
harshness in the approach,
it was a little bit softer, a
little bit, it seemed like a
little more of a gentle metal
and for that reason you know,
it had incredible
commercial viability.
Nic Adler: When they turned it
on and they were ready to go,
I don't recall a band taking
off faster than Linkin Park.
It was ten days from being this
band that I knew as a band that
played The Roxy to seeing them
on MTV and being number one.
Despite the massive success
of Linkin Park and the
second wave of nu-metal bands,
much like glam metal back
in the eighties, nu-metal's
lasting legacy seems to be the
way it deeply divided the metal
community and given that
I wasn't a fan of this
style, I'm still struggling
to understand why nu-metal
became so popular.
Sam Dunn: Linkin Park fans, can
you tell me why you like them?
Fan: Why we like Linkin Park?
Sam Dunn: Why you
like Linkin Park?
Because they're the best,
we love the rock and
the hip-hop mixed in.
They're original.
They're very original, every
album sounds completely
What I like about them is
that they've always try
to stay away from the
conventional type of music.
They don't fit into any
genre, they are their own genre.
They're Linkin Park.
Sam Dunn: How come
I didn't like it?
Fan: Laughs, I don't know.
Sam Dunn: Wrong
crowd, wrong crowd.
Fan: Everyone has their own
Sam Dunn: Looking back over all
this music that you have been a
part of, what does that
term nu-metal mean to you now?
Fred Durst: Well I don't know
how many people still use
the term but I'm extremely
proud to be part of
the nu-metal movement and
I'm proud of everything
that we have accomplished and
everything we've (beep) up.
Jonathan Davis: I felt
proud that we helped
innovate a movement,
very proud.
Who cares whatever they call it
I guess now, all I know is we're
still here and we're still
doing what we're doing
and they're gonna call us
the nu-metal godfathers for
the rest of our damn lives. So I
guess I'm gonna deal with it.
Monte Connor: It's a dirty word
today but not to the extent of
hair metal, you know like people
will turn their nose up at it
and make jokes and stuff but I
think nu-metal definitely still
has some kind of cache to
it and it is still alive,
I mean any of those bands
they're just so part of the
fabric of metal at this point
they're not called nu-metal.
Jon Weiderhorn: I think the
term nu-metal has been kind of
poisoned and it's a kind of a
shame because the types of sound
that were being presented to
audiences enabled them to open
their minds and say metal
doesn't have to be rooted in
this sort of Black Sabbath,
Metallica arc of acceptability,
you know maybe metal
doesn't have to be one thing.
Before I set
out to explore nu-metal,
I questioned whether it even
belonged in the story of heavy
metal, but I've discovered
although the term nu-metal may
be dead, many of the bands
continue to thrive and have
brought some real innovation to
metal music and so ultimately
I've realized that nu-metal has
made a much bigger contribution
to the evolution of heavy
metal than I ever imagined.
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