Saturday, May 29, 2004

Folk Is Not Hippie Music Any More

Here are some interesting Net articles on the connections between "neo-folk", gothic, dark wave and industrial subcultures, and their connections to extreme right-wing. Nazis were known for their interest for pagan mysticism and anything "völkisch". Rock'n'roll is based on black (African-American) musical styles of rhythm'n'blues, blues and jazz; therefore it's not suitable listening for any self-respecting racial bigot. But of course, it would not be justified to claim that being a fan of any musical style or interest in ancient mythologies or paganism would make anyone a fascist sympathizer or racist; just some interesting facts telling something about the dark undercurrents of the culture we're living in.,3605,839755,00.html

The punk-rockers such as Siouxsie Sue and early industrial music-makers such as Throbbing Gristle used the emblems of Nazism purely for their shock value, but the ambivalence there was subsequently lost on some people. The Who's drummer Keith Moon loved to dress in a Nazi uniform, David Bowie is claimed to have given a Nazi salute to his fans (this was during his muddled 70s cocaine period) but probably both of these artists would have been shot or sent to concentration camps in the 1930s and 40s Germany: real totalitarian ideologies do not tolerate any free-thinking, mischievous non-conformists. Which is what these youth subcultures are basically all about. Another paradox of democracy is that you're free to disagree with those very ideas of democracy, equality and tolerance as much as you will and form your own opinion (even as misguided from the point of majority that would be) -- it would not be the case in an actual totalitarian state.