But hey! Don't beat yourself up about this, so you maybe immediately picture a man when you think of music professionals or serious fans or experts, you know it's not really the case, particularly when it comes to experts and hardcore fans (we're talking genre enthusiasts, not 1 Direction fans, not to be snobby but to be particular) - there are loads of women and girls who could out mixtape any guy with a DJ night and a CD burner.
"When Dying Fetus, a death metal act not exactly known for catering to female tastes, recently came to New York City, the Gramercy Theatre was - shock of shocks - populated with plenty of beautiful ladies. As a frequenter of such concerts for over a dozen years, I couldnât believe my eyes. Death metal events are known to beâ¦how do I put thisâ¦'vaginally-challenged.'" ha-ha he said vaginally.
Death metal gigs aren't just overflowing with people who are vaginally-adequate but hot people who are vaginally-adequate and Fixell wants to know why? How did they get in here? Are they lost?
Setting aside the fact a vagina does not necessarily make you a woman comments such as this are a great way to intimidate women away from this space. Even though he appreciates the pulling potential Fixell makes it very clear that there is a male possessiveness over the music scene, particularly anything regarded even faintly as underground.
metal gigs are overflowing with people who are vaginally-adequate... and Fixell wants to know why? How did they get in here? Are they lost?
Give Fixell credit, he is thorough. Attending a Pig Destroyer gig he once again cast his eye around for girls: "Once again, my experience-based assumptions were wrong, as neither chaos nor sausage were in excessive abundance at the door. Within a minute of entering the club, I met Sarabeth and Noa, two cute women who were also quick to support my hypothesis: 'Oh, I definitely think the [girl-to-guy] ratio is evening out,' said Noa."
Pig Destroyer bassist John Jarvis informed Fixell that he: "never saw so many beautiful women before...side boob seemed to be a popular theme." Instead of wondering if some mass make-over had taken place teen movie style 'why, Snakebite Jill, you're beautiful!' Fixell and others note that the mosh pit has become a more accessible space, when riot grrrls yelled'girls to the front!' people laughed and men complained. Now "Punk rock seems to now tolerate a much more supportive vibe. In fact, I twice witnessed Pig Destroyer vocalist J. R. Hayes ask the crowd to give the front row some breathing room, a request which would have been mocked in most hardcore rooms of the '80s and '90s."
This is a pretty sensible analysis. Most people - male or female - can recall a mosh situation in which they have been hurt. Being a small woman I have experienced more than my fair share of cuts, bruises and 'does this tooth feel loose to you?' mosh injuries and concerns. Getting to the front has become easier - more importantly getting out of the mosh pit has become easier than it was 10 or so years ago. I'll happily vouch for that.
It's this patronising little nugget of speculation that gets my goatwhore: "The internet has helped demystify extreme music, making it more accessible and less intimidating. A girl can watch clips from a Napalm Death concert and see that it's not so scary after all, which makes her much more likely to attend."
It couldn't be that the internet has made a lot more music more accessible - meaning more people, meaning more girls can listen to a wider range of genres. Yawn, are we still talking about this? There's hot girls to pull at metal gigs now! How 'bout some tips on how to get your grindcore on? Well Fixell suggests you dress well but within reason, no "chiffon sweaters" (an impossibility but a warning's a warning), bring a mate so you don't look like a "head-bobbing lurker" who reads articles on a site on which the most popular article is a how to on kissing girls on the cheek without seeming creepy.
Most importantly remember these are girls! Metal or no. So bring an extra pair of ear plugs: "Offering them to a lady is a great icebreaker, and she'll appreciate your thoughtfulness. Protecting your ears doesn't make you less of a man - it demonstrates your caring, paternal instincts. (WARNING: May cause imminent pregnancy.)" I know I immaculately conceive whenever a stranger with ulterior motives offers me ear plugs. Or goggles (at the pool! There are ladies there!). Or sun cream (at the beach! There are ladies there!).
I hope anyone sincerely reading the blog for some tips will take the advice Noa gave to Fixell, who then tacked it on at the very end: "Don't assume that [any girl] is there because a guy dragged her there by the hair...Assume that she's into the music. Talk to her like you would talk to any other fan."