If I may date this article, Halloween is just around the corner. People more fun than myself will put in actual effort into their costumes and theatrics as they prance around theme parks, parties and neighborhoods. (I myself will probably just do some hodgepodge black metal costume. Aquaman if I’m feeling frisky.)
For some bands, though, Halloween is whenever they’re in studio or on stage. For most of these bands, the ratio between Trick and Treat is not always as it should be.
Since the days of David Bowie and Alice Cooper – even earlier if you scholarly gents want to include minstrel shows and the like – a little facepaint and lipstick has helped some artists transcend to places a bare-bones bit just can’t. In most cases, the more visuals that can accompany the music, the better. It can be argued that it is best to leave the spatial interpretation of songs to the individual, but when you are dealing with something that has the depth of Insane Clown Posse, you might as well have a juggalo-painted rock with which to ground your intellectual merits. Lesser chance to hurting everyone’s brains more than you already have.
This stylistic overcompensation has been anything but a miracle for music. It is understandable that not everyone will have the finesse of the New York Dolls or even KISS, but it seems like most of the (grand)children of bands like these have forgotten the pretty/scary faces of their forefathers. I would have hoped that the peak of “style over substance” came and went with the 80’s and its hair, but history seems to be repeating itself like a bad makeover session. Or perhaps the second wind has already passed. Maybe bands like Brokencyde and Blood On the Dance Floor are just the few, scattered remnants of a beauty parlor that’s already gone out of business. Bands like Eighteen Visions and Bleeding Through seem to have cleaned up their act a bit (or, at the least, their faces) and have streamlined their look since the days when touting a niche like Fashioncore didn’t make you look like (as much of) an idiot.
Giving yourself a little touch of eyeliner – or whatever the kids like putting on their faces these days – can help you and your act be all the more alluring. Putting on some bright and shiny (or sharp and scary) costume can definitely help you stand out like a hungover black metal musician or Justice League member wandering around the bus station on November 1. While the image may stick with you for a little while, it always helps to have an actual story (or rather song) to go with it. The perfectly crafted song will immortalize your image better than any cosmetic can, and will show the world that you are more than just a pretty face.
Stay tuned for Part 2 soon.