The Boston Phoenix recently did an article on "Crunkcore" - yours truly was actually interviewed for the piece and a few of my quotes made it into the final article. I've posted the full question/answer portion below. I thought that it would be worth sharing all my thoughts on the topic ... enjoy!
When did bands such as Brokencyde, Millionaires, and other scrunk acts first appear on your radar? Did they first crop up on Absolutepunk through a messageboard, or was it a pushy PR person, or was it something else?
I'm a pretty active member of our forums - and I believe the first time I heard anyone mention these bands was through a post in one of the forums. I believe it started with an "omg what is this?" sort of thread. It's the kind of scenario where you think there's a hidden camera on you. You have a flash of "this can't be real" -- and then the dread sets in as you start to realize that this "music" exists.
What was your first impression of these acts?
That someone tossed a stray cat out a window while doing 80 on the freeway - and recorded it over a Fischer-Price "my first keyboard" beat.
Scrunk acts, particularly Brokencyde, have been the focus of a lot of anger on the Absolutepunk message boards? When was the last time you've seen this much mass-hatred on the boards?
When discussing genocide, torture, and the devil. There hasn't been a level of backlash like this toward one act in the 10 years I've been doing this. They're just that bad and they epitomize everything that music (and human beings) should not be.
I've had a bit of trouble finding, well, any positive words from Absolutepunk members on the message boards. Simply put, are there any, or do you think those who have a secret liking for the band merely keep it secret for fear of backlash on the site?
There is nothing an objective music listener can say about what these acts do that is positive. There is not one ounce of discernible talent in anything they do. People on our site always talk about their "guilty pleasure" bands ... usually this is a pop artist or cheesy song. People don't have an issue admitting to what they like (and explaining why). However, these bands can't fall into that category. What's the best thing you can say about them? I like the way they make my ears bleed? I was looking for that one band that sounded like audible cancer? I mean come on.
A lot of the hatred expressed towards "crunkcore" tends to be, rather blind, or rather, expressed in a blind manner without any explanation as to why people dislike the music other than "it sucks." Have there been any really bright comments on the boards for disliking these acts, or is it just blindly one-sided?
I've seen plenty of well thought out discussions about why the music has not positive qualities. These discussions happened more toward the beginning of the "trend" when people were just learning about them . At this point I think all of that has happened - and people would rather vent at their frustration than tell people what they already know. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out why people hate bad music.
A few Absolutepunk members have pointed out that the news posts on Brokencyde are rather negatively opinionated. It seems as though most of the other news stories you post on the main page are rather straightforward updates on punk acts. Why do you make a, let's say, exception when it comes to posting news about Brokencyde?
A variety of reasons. One: it gets a response. I'll openly admit I get a kick out of watching people tear this stuff apart a few hundred times. It's a good outlet for the frustration I feel for its very existence. It makes me feel good about our readers knowing they haven't fallen for this garbage. Second: I think it's important to get the word out there with what's happening with these bands - and that the animosity can be used for good. Maybe a kid that saw their myspace page and thought he liked a song reads one of those posts - checks the comments - and sees all the hatred. Maybe he sees the light and sees people talking about all the bands that are making honest music and checks them out. Maybe record labels (in this scene) see the immense hatred and stop signing this shit.
Why do you think acts like Brokencyde, Millionaires, Attack Attack, Breathe Carolina, and many similar acts have been chosen to perform at Warped Tour this year? What do you think about that?
Because in a trying economic situation -- people throw hail mary passes out of desperation. The only logical reason I can think of is that it is monetary in nature. You can try and sugar coat it or spin it any way you want ... but in the end, it's easiest to follow the money. Which is ironic in a way - because I have seen many people say they aren't going to Warped this year because of these acts. A quick search on Twitter reveals that people are pelting them with bottles and garbage during their set. I think Warped Tour has been great in the past for introducing new bands to a large group of people. And that they've gone out on a limb and brought in "different" genres/bands in the past to try and diversify. However, I think there is a big, big difference between what they have done in the past -- and the inclusion of these "bands."