E n V o L
The importance of our message, and the difference between Marilyn Manson and Tool
Let me start out being as honest as possible:
"Dead Little Mormon Girl" is probably one of the worst names I have ever heard for a song. I find it weird, and in poor taste. This has nothing to do with me being “offended” by the name, I have nothing against Mormon children dying. I’ve been known to encourage it, but usually a lot more subtle.
I want to make a broader point about the importance of a cohesive message our band is willing to put out. There is something great about EnVoL that has to do with obscuring our message so it can be open for interpretation. It seemed to work great before, so I didn’t think we would need to discuss this, but here we are. The one song the three of us wrote together has been impossible to put a name to, and the current name in use is bugging the shit out of me. “Dead Little Mormon Girl” (or “Lrig Nomrom Elttil Daed”) has been online long enough that I feel I need to let you know my feelings on the matter instead of just rolling my eyes as I have been for the past few weeks. I’m sending an email about this because I'm much better at writing my thoughts, rather than trying to convey them in vocal form.
The thing I like about EnVoL is that we’re not pushing some message, we’re not smashing people over the head with an in-yo-face attitude. Our songs have deep meanings that aren’t always noticeable on the first few listens. “Dead Little Mormon Girl” puts a forceful, sinister message right up front (And spelling it backwards is just insulting to our audience’s intelligence.) Our songs should deal in hidden messages and dead languages, hidden under layers of unique philosophy, with hints of the no EViL mentality. I feel Fade has undertones dealing with drug abuse. Cover My Face has undertones of suffocation. Absynth has undertones of a healing and metamorphosis. T&M has undertones of spirituality and rebirth. Is that necessarily exactly what those songs are about? Who cares, it’s art in the eye of the beholder to interpret however they want.
I refuse to be in a shock rock band. I do not want our message to outshine our music. I don’t wish to be a controversial band willing to whore ourselves out as some sideshow circus act, pushing the envelope of obscenity and morality. Now I’m pretty laid back as to what we are willing to try musically and lyrically(though I have issues with repeating the phrase “Rape your corpse” 3 times in one song), but when it comes to trying to promote our band and get our name out there, we have to be on the same page with this one. I cannot promote a band with songs titled “Dead Little Mormon Girl.” I know we did talk about this, but that song is still there, on our myspace page, the reverbnation page(which is connected to the facebook page), and whatever other pages you might have put this song on.
Think of it this way. Marilyn Manson was HUGE in the nineties, that band was very successful with what they done. Looking back now though, it almost seems like a joke. The dude grew tits for fuck sake. I admit I was a fan in those days, but I have since lost my respect for them because I can now see it for what it was, simple Shock Rock. Making songs to intentionally push people’s buttons, to intentionally offend the prim and proper of society. That’s exactly what Marilyn Manson was.
Now look at how Tool worked in the nineties. They were also pretty popular in the nineties, and had some disturbing songs, but never for simple shock rock value. There weren’t news stories on 60 minutes saying, “Is Tool a devil worshipping band? Are they trying to get kids to worship Satan?” Marilyn Manson was the nation’s poster boy for Satan worshippers. This all comes down to MESSAGE. It has nothing to do with the music. Listen to old Tool songs and they dealt with the same ideas as many Marilyn Manson songs, Maynard James Keenan would dress up in women’s clothes, strip on stage, or paint his body, he cried out “Satan…Satan…Satan” during one song, and their music videos can be very disturbing; But Tool was able to control their message better, and leave it open for interpretation. Tool had songs dealing with incest, rape, murder, religion, fecophilia, and drug use. But few suggested that Tool was poisoning young american minds. And Tool is still around today with a massive fan base, and still no preconceptions of what their band’s message really is. Tool didn’t have Weird Al Yankovic parody their songs, Tool never had to testify before congress about how kids react to their songs, unlike shock rockers like Twisted Sister, or Judas Priest. It all comes down to your message, don’t take it too far and get stuck with a label that won’t fit us.
Tool gave the world ideas and messages like Opiate, Undertow, Aenima, Lateralus. You go into songs with these type of names with no preconceptions because there is plenty of room for interpretation. Marilyn Manson gave us: Smells Like Children, Antichrist Superstar; there isn’t much room for interpretation there, “Pedophile who hates Christians.” Simple enough.
Now these comparisons may be silly for me to be making, we’re not Tool and we’re not Manson; but I think it’s a solid point to take into consideration. I hope you understand.
Black Hearted Navel, Lul, Poison - GREAT names, lots of room for interpretation, beautiful use of language.
Dead Little Mormon Girl?? It doesn’t matter if the lyrics explicitly state we don’t condone the harming of little mormon girls, the message has already been sent.
Please change the name.
Thanks for reading,
Basically it comes down to LABELS. Our band was caught wearing the incorrect label(we weren't labeled "punk"), and the powers that be did not want our label messing up their system. On a night full of "punk rock", our band did not fit their cookie-cutter mold well. We are not labeled as "punk rock" on our myspace page, so the other bands didn't think we were conforming enough to their pretty little labels. They have it in their heads that there is a difference between music because the label says so. Rock and roll played at any speed, or at any volume is still rock and roll to me. But the crowd mentality says otherwise and we are stuck selling an image that that will fit into your preconceived notions of what music is. I could rant longer about how the profit motive fits into all this, but I'm tired. I try to keep these rants short, cuz if they get too long then people will start to think we are an angry band, which we are not (We were bottom billing, opening up for touring acts, so we kinda expected this). We love the music we make, we have a blast playing it, and we're just trying to find the best way to share it with you. Nobody in EnVoL is expecting to become rich beyond our wildest dreams, money is not our aim. If someone knows of a kickass spot we could play a free concert at without hassle we'd be more than willing to do it. And we'll play along side any genre of music you can throw at us. Without judgement, without labels. Until our perfect world dawns we have to put a label on what we do. EnVoL is a progressive/experimental metal band. Who is willing to share a stage with us? To the bands who weren't willing to share the stage with us, I say go on and stick to your pre-defined labels, that's very punk rock of you.
Love you guys,