Aug 15

LIMP BIZKIT – “Rollin’ (Air Raid Vehicle)”

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#889, 27th January 2001

Bizkit “Take my advice,” says Fred Durst on “My Generation”, “you don’t want to step into a big pile of shit.” Wise words. But shit comes in many forms. The spoor of Durst, the self-styled chocolate starfish, the anus, is compacted nuggets of resentment, pinched out rabbit-style in single form, delivered with a constipated grunt or haemorrhoidal yelp. Wes Borland, in skullpaint and bodystocking a guitar-FX Eno to Durst’s reverse Ferry, takes a contrasting approach, conjuring torrents of colonic sludge, shitrush splatter effects and bowl-cracking divebombs. In the parade of number ones, between a career-building film star and a girl group’s last-chance classicism, “Rollin’ (Air Raid Vehicle)” is more than a surprise, it’s a dirty protest. Back up, tell me what you’re gonna do now! Grit my teeth, reach for the imodium.

They’re an easy target. How bad is it really? “Rollin’” is one of the worse Limp Bizkit singles, because it moves away from their standard M.O. of reflexive bitterness, anger at a world that isn’t giving them what they want. They were good, I grant them, at packaging that up into noisy, hooky, usefully unspecific grievance bombs. “Nookie” – if ever a word signalled how old an intended audience was, that’s the one – is as targeted as they get. Otherwise they’re sticking up a finger to nothing, forever on the edge of a violent tantrum whose stakes we never know. Is that what being a 14 year old boy feels like? Sometimes. Often enough to win them an audience. Early adolescence – Durst was 29, but this doesn’t feel like grown-ups’ music to me – often means being promised a world and told, by your parents, your peers, your body, “not quite yet”. There will always be a market for catharsis: Limp Bizkit was one iteration. And it wasn’t just boys who responded – nu-metal in general had a mixed audience it never got credit for and barely respected, enough that fellow travellers Linkin Park could be derided as a “boy band”.

Durst strikes me as a goon though, a jock on the make, his self-pity dredged from nowhere deeper than his own reserves of entitled impatience. “Rollin’” finds Limp Bizkit in unusual, celebratory mode, on top of the world, not finding sullen fault with it. This is a grisly development: it means that on the verses Durst drops his low growl and raps in a higher voice, hatefully quavering and quacking. It’s an infuriating sound, and Borland’s music – an aggressive, inventive soup of riffs and lunges – deserves a lot better. But any music would. A gollumish peak arrives when he chides the haters: “you need some better beats and, uh, better rhymes”. It’s all in that “uh”, a condescending little chuckle from a man whose rhymes would shame a Five single. Hearing it, though Fred Durst is older than I am, the generation gap yawns in front of me; I become a retired Colonel spluttering over his port. The gall of the man! The effrontery!

It’s a ridiculous reaction, just what Fred would have wanted – he picked the name of the band to actively repel the curious, and paid a radio station to play their debut single a nerve-straining fifty times in a row. Trolling, button-pushing, and us-v-them posturing were apt games for a man whose records were such a sulky churn. Durst played them remorselessly, even after the wretched depths of Woodstock ‘99, when his band became the soundtrack for a weekend of searing heat, price-gouging, arson and ultimately rape. Were Bizkit to blame? No – start with the negligent organisers. But Durst’s asinine on-stage commentary – “Don’t let anybody get hurt. But I don’t think you should mellow out.” – exposed the limits of catharsis, “letting out the energy”, as he put it. Energy is cool and all, unless you’re in its way.

No shit stuck to Durst, or at least the people whose dollars mattered didn’t think he was a prick, even if the matter was settled for anyone else. The band carried on as before, spun the notoriety into “Rollin’” and “My Generation”, and the Chocolate Starfish And The Hot-Dog Flavoured Water album, their sales peak. “Rollin’” was a brag, a cry of triumph, for the ladies and the fellas and the people who don’t give a fuck. In Bizkitland, not giving a fuck was the highest known virtue. And yes, part of me wants not to give a fuck, to meet “Rollin’” on its own terms. Someone once played it at Club Popular – the trollish esprit du Durst manifest in the DJ booth. It was horrific, and hilarious, and the best way to hear it, as Borland’s propulsive hippo-rock drowned out Fred’s mewling.

So you can find contexts where “Rollin’” works, where its dump of noise and half-competent rapping is a vulgar virtue. Maybe the number ones list is one of those. But mostly it’s a painful chore, and that’s squarely because of the very dreadful Fred Durst. He’s the law of unintended consequences made flesh, the point where a bunch of 1990s ideas – House of Pain’s frat-hop, Rage Against The Machine’s spluttered fury, Kurt Cobain’s self-loathing, Black Francis’ screams and yelps, Beavis and Butthead’s wit – are driven first to their grim conclusion, then right over a cliff.



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  1. 31
    Andrew Farrell on 11 Aug 2015 #

    #23 and yet, despite this co-incidence, no-one has asked “what did Fred Durst know?”

    Ever. On any subject.

  2. 32
    Ronnie on 11 Aug 2015 #

    While I have no love for Durst, I remember a heartbreaking quote from him around this era, the height of their fame — how he expected fame to cure all his problems but every day he woke up fatter, balder and more beset by anxiety.

    Their cover of “Behind Blue Eyes” makes perfect sense in retrospect.

  3. 33
    AMZ1981 on 11 Aug 2015 #

    In his piece on Candle In The Wind 97 Tom made the point that our first question with every number one should be, `why this?`. And in the case of Rollin’ I’m struggling to answer that question. The new year can be the chart silly season but Rollin’ was on an already available album and the previous single had only got to number fifteen. I can only assume that it picked up a following in clubs but the same could have been true of a lot of other tracks. It’s already been noted that Rollin’ was a two weeker and held on with only a modestly decreased sale.

    Fast forward to 2015 and I still here this one in my local rock club now so it has endured. I’d rather have Fred Durst than Jennifer Lopez any day of the week, although I find Rollin’ quite hard to defend. It’s worth noting that in America Limp Bizkit had no significant hit single; this got to number 65 and was their biggest hit although their albums did much better.

    Looking back now it seems that at the turn of the century rock music split into two categories; nu metal and pop punk. A bit like science fiction and fantasy in bookshops, they’re not quite the same thing but tend to get lumped in together and many fans enjoy both. Nu metal was the cartoonish descendant of thrash metal and was a short lived genre although it arguably evolved into what we now call screamcore. As for pop punk it had already scored a near miss with All The Small Things and would survive being parodied in a record that in most normal circumstances (a phrase I’ll be using a lot over the next few entries just to warn you) we would be discussing two entries along. Fast forward a few years and American Idiot by Green Day would prove one of the most influential rock albums of the early 2000s. I can only think of two bunnies (both interestingly somewhere between nu metal and pop punk) one in 2003 and one in 2006.

    To further muddy the waters, in this country the post Britpop crowd turned their nose up at nu metal/ pop punk and chose to laud the likes of Keane and Starsailor (music for bedwetters as Alan McGee once said with a certain amount of justification). And yet with hindsight there were some punkier bands in the Britpop vanguard (Placebo, Skunk Anansie, Ash – whose commercial peak was still to come) and these arguably fed into the nu metal/ pop punk scene.

    I’ve laboured this because for many kids in 2015 the highlight of their summer holiday is to camp in a field and watch pop punk/ rap metal bands play. Harrogate’s free nightclub has an upstairs room that plays rock music, it’s always packed out and all too often I feel like a dirty old man in there. In garages all around the country groups of teenage boys can be found with guitars making an almighty racket. Guitar based music still seems a big thing.

    And yet the charts tell a different story, albeit with the odd exception (All Time Low proved to have a big enough fanbase to send their latest album to number one this year, even if it dropped out of the top twenty the following week). Mulling over it, I think it might be because the scene is very fragmented; I struggle to keep up with all the bands that are out there; so maybe a split fanbase means that despite a healthy scene no one band hits big.

  4. 34
    Tom on 11 Aug 2015 #

    #33 I think this is a very interesting question – pop-punk (and its harder or gothier variants) is still a big sound, but it’s not even a case of not getting to #1, the bands can’t even break the Top 40. I suspect this is an artefact of a chart system that tracks sales, and Spotify, but not YouTube, but you’re right that fragmentation is probably an issue too.

  5. 35
    AMZ1981 on 11 Aug 2015 #

    #34 also rock music remains very much an album genre and albums are cheaper now than they were a generation ago. If the Itunes revolution had never happened I think we’d still have the culture of first singles from albums scoring highly with a string of diminishing returns to follow (this has of course hit the old guard as well, not just the new wave).

    Of course this was not apparent during the fortnight when Rollin’ ruled the roost so it will be interesting to look closely at what bubbles under as the decade goes on.

  6. 36
    23 Daves on 11 Aug 2015 #

    I’ve just had a quick skim through the Limp Bizkit Wikipedia discography page to see if my memory of the band’s rapid fall from popularity is accurate, and it seems to be (bearing in mind the caveat made in comment #33 about scene fragmentation). My memory was that the last reasonable bit of airplay and exposure they got was their cover of The Who’s “Behind Blue Eyes” in 2003, which is not only accurate, but devastatingly so – after that point, they never scored another UK Top 75 entry. From number one to nowhere in a few years.

    I also note that “Rollin'” picked up a BPI Gold disc for sales of 400,000+, which takes it far beyond being a winter fanbase-orientated number one. It clearly had legs (though some of those sales may have been nostalgic ones picked up through iTunes in the years hence, but I’d be surprised if that totals up to much).

    I always feel as if Nu-metal and punk-pop were the first stirrings of a huge generation gap I’d experienced, things I was too old for and not supposed to get, which was probably a subconscious factor in me finding them infuriating then but being able to brush them aside now. Nobody enjoys it the first time they’re made to feel old. I’ve met a few fans of Korn or Green Day who are my age, but never anyone who would admit to ever having owned a Limp Bizkit, Kid Rock, or Slipknot LP. I’m sure they exist, I’ve just never met them, and I have friends with very broad music tastes. At the time, the overwhelming attitude among my peers was “Who is buying this sh*t?”.

  7. 37
    Jonathan on 11 Aug 2015 #

    I feel better about this now than I did as a teenager — Limp Bizkit was my little brother’s music, and I found them accordingly noxious and childish. (My brother also liked Korn and Eminem, through which he found Ice Cube and Dr Dre; there was much more crossover among this crowd at the time than it’s comfortable to remember, and Eminem particularly seems in some ways to endure today as an artefact of the cultural space occupied then by nu-metal rather than as someone connected to what’s happening in hip-hop.) Listening to it today though, I can’t find that visceral disgust: Borland’s guitar is as quantized as a Cheiron production, which I mean as a positive, and Fred Durst is an almost-marvellous absurdity: he begins by rhyming “right here” with “right here” before telling us, “uh,” we should get some better rhymes. “Move in, move out” and “rollin’ rollin’ rollin'” are hooks too dumb to shout along to and too catchy not to. And yet, listening back to it, by the two-thirds mark, I’m worn out and I want Fred to stop yapping at me. When we did one of their quickly forgotten comeback singles at the Jukebox (http://www.thesinglesjukebox.com/?p=7629) , Rebecca Gowns linked us to this Reddit AMA Durst did, and it’s worth reading; Durst seems both self-aware and yet still like someone you wouldn’t like to spend any time around in real life: http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/1iry4g/i_am_fred_durst_of_limp_bizkitask_me_anything/

  8. 38
    Steve Mannion on 11 Aug 2015 #

    Craptastic is the word. The heaviest sounding #1 since ‘Breathe’ perhaps and not much to match it since…this is where the 00s compression/loudness war starts to really make its presence felt – nu-metal designed for the post-Napster age as interest in high fidelity temporarily dwindled as listening shifted more towards hastily downloaded mp3s of dubious bitrate and laptops unable to demonstrate a production’s dynamic range effectively. But once you get past the spoken “Alriiight pardner…” bit it’s one of my favourite hyped up hit intros of the time.

  9. 39
    Ed on 11 Aug 2015 #

    Unfair to lump Kid Rock in with this lot, I think: there was an exuberance and a joie de vivre about him that made him a very different proposition from the Bizkit, Korn, et al.

    And while the line in American Bad-Ass about “I like Johnny Cash and Grandmaster Flash” may strike you as boring snoring canon-obeisance, it shows his heart is in the right place.

    Having a multi-racial band with a woman drummer helped him evade the ghetto of teenage white-boy petulance that the other bands never really tried to escape.

    His return as a mock-classic rocker with All Summer Long has been pretty good fun, too.

    As regards the benefit gigs for Mitt Romney, though, I will make no excuses…. :).

  10. 40
    JoeWiz on 11 Aug 2015 #

    This is the nadir for me. The absolute bottom of the barrel. As someone who’d grown up in the Britpop saturated 90’s this vile, self important bilge spelt everything out in neon letters that this was THE END.
    There’s nothing in this song that appeals to me, it’s all so boring, so tired, so crass. There’s not a modicum of subtlety or intelligence. Which of course, is exactly why it appealed to some people. And who am I to argue with them?
    Durst of course appeared on the cover of the final Melody Maker. How did we get here?

  11. 41
    Tom on 11 Aug 2015 #

    #39 I agree that KR has a little more to him than some of the others, a better schtick at any rate, and I had a fair bit of time for “Cowboy”. Though – to my and perhaps everyone’s astonishment – the last song you mention is bunnied!

    My favourite nu-metal song is – from memory – Linkin Park’s “Faint”, because it reminds me of a very well known bunny by an act I’ve already been very generous to here.

  12. 42
    The Muppet on 11 Aug 2015 #

    There were a few people who took Durst seriously and wore the same backwards peaked cap as him but most weren’t really like that. A lot of people who were into Limp Bizkit weren’t really massively into Rock in general. I knew people who were manly into rap who had the album and some who liked Coldplay/Travis etc. There were others who really liked Linkin Park who would usually listen to pop/r&b/dance. That’s probably the main difference between then and now. Rocks core audience hasn’t changed much nobody outside that seems to care.

  13. 43
    The Muppet on 11 Aug 2015 #

    This is almost certainly the only time that a song was been used as the entrance music for a pro wrestler who No.1 in the charts. This was the Undertakers music at the time having used American Bad Ass for a few months in 2000. The then still WWF leapt on the nu-metal bandwagon pretty heavily in late 2000 and stayed on it long after everybody else.

  14. 44
    Ed on 11 Aug 2015 #

    @41 Whoops! I had no idea All Summer Long was a bunny violation. Apologies to all.

    I thought it was so unlikely, I didn’t bother to check. An interesting case to consider once Tom gets there.

  15. 45
    Cumbrian on 11 Aug 2015 #

    The best Limp Bizkit track is, imo, Break Stuff. The bend in the riff on the chorus is inspiring and unsettling, an aural cue that there is something dark driving Durst’s rapping into almost repetitive incoherence. People have identified Wes Borland already, to the point where it’s already cliche in this thread to say he’s good or important; the thing that drives the band towards listenability. But he is. He’s better than this band. So good, he left them in the end. He’s back in the fold now. Everyone has to pay the bills somehow.

    It’s telling, I think, that even in the drawings on the cover of this single, Durst is playing Anger, who knows what the other blank faced characters are thinking but Borland’s drawing has a definite look etched on his face. Off to the side, he is playing Sadness. And as the latest Pixar film shows, Sadness is actually really fucking important.

    In answer to the question of “why this?”: I exited a tent at the Leeds Festival in 2000, after watching Clinic play a set and headed over the prow of a hill towards the main stage where I saw one of the most remarkable sights I’ve seen at a gig – a mosh pit, must have been 10k big, bouncing like mad in the sunshine, to Limp Bizkit in the middle of the afternoon. This would have been the tail end of the Significant Other tour probably. Limp Bizkit connected with people. Commenters are asking questions about who was buying this. Maybe not the people you knew but, as ever with metal and as mentioned in one of the Manics threads, those in provincial towns with no connection to an ethnically diverse music culture will find an expression of their feelings. Maybe you weren’t there. I was. I didn’t like it much but there wasn’t a whole lot else going on in those towns club-wise. It was this, hardcore dance for those with a bit of edge, chart dance for the masses or stay at home. I listened to Peel and opted out, with the exception of the mash up scene whilst I was away at uni. So options were limited and running through some of the other new entries supplied in the run down posts earlier in this thread, the alternatives in the specific weeks in question were hardly stand outs either. So, that’s my answer, this lot connected with people you don’t know and don’t think about much, in sufficient number that they were able to colonise the top of the tree with some ropey old track because the alternatives were not there to challenge effectively.

    There’s an obvious comparison with contemporary British politics there.

    I cannot fathom the praise being given to Linkin Park here – I guess this is how people felt when I suggested Semisonic weren’t terrible in the Deep Blue Something thread. LP are terrible now, were terrible then and have never risen above that level at any point in between, as far as I can hear.

    Ed’s right about Kid Rock. Multi-gender, multi-ethnic backing band that rocked hard as fuck and anyone whose key line (before being bunnied) was “get in the pit and try to love someone” is operating on a different plane to Fred Durst.

  16. 46
    flahr on 11 Aug 2015 #

    #45 “Commenters are asking questions about who was buying this. Maybe not the people you knew but, as ever with metal and as mentioned in one of the Manics threads, those in provincial towns with no connection to an ethnically diverse music culture will find an expression of their feelings.

    I can confirm that the Limp Bizkit/Linkin Park axis were pretty big (a couple of years after this!) at the comprehensive secondary I went to in provincial, ethnically homogenous south Inner London.

  17. 47
    Doctor Casino on 11 Aug 2015 #

    I do agree that Kid Rock struck a different note and was generally more fun-loving than Bizkit – but he sold a lot of records to, in my experience, a lot of the same people, and again, there’s Durst in the “Bawitdaba” video! Part of the success of Devil Without A Cause was, I think, his instinctive inclusion of some notes of despair or worked-over frustration in these party songs; there’s a few ways you can read “I ain’t no G, I’m just a regular failure / I ain’t straight outta Compton, I’m straight out the trailer,” but one of them takes us straight into 8 Mile territory.

    Actually, Eminem might be a useful Rosetta Stone for making sense of Durst’s success, with the alternation between cartoony and seething that probably appealed to a lot of angry, frustrated kids who saw wit and sarcasm as their rapiers. The more intellectually-minded of these people, in my experience, got into Ayn Rand and became far more unpleasant than those who found a pit of people willing to love them. (Somehow, this reminds me that I want to defend Papa Roach, who were preposterous from my point of view but who clearly struck an actual emotive chord with broken-home anthems like “Last Resort” and, er, “Broken Home” – I suspect many of their fans found brotherhood in that band, though it wasn’t for me.) Anyway, though, there’s at least one tic here that I think HAS to be from Eminem: Durst back-talking himself with dubbed-in, slightly nasal interjections. “And, uh, get some better rhymes (D’oh!)” The “rollin’, rollin’, rollin’, rollin'” calls forth other then-contemporary hip-hop trends, the Ruff Ryders, etc. – no surprise DMX is on the remix and that they pitch the “rollin” a little lower and gruffer.

    Maybe the one other thing to be noted is the subtitle (or subtitles, counting said remix) – “Air Raid Vehicle” and “Urban Assault Vehicle” are both highly suggestive of “Sports Utility Vehicle,” and indeed I remember my dad, who must have got it from somewhere, using “Urban Assault Vehicle” to denigrate this increasingly popular type of car. They had been getting bigger and more menacing and tank-like; “urban assault vehicle” obviously stresses the military qualities of the things, and also draws forth Bill Murray’s “Stripes.” I don’t know how successful these cars were in Britain but their outsized strutting is a good fit for Bizkit: those complaining about gas-guzzling behemoths would be just another set of uptight wimps to troll. Awright, pardner.

  18. 48
    Cumbrian on 11 Aug 2015 #

    #46: I guess I was asking for that. But we really have rehashed the appeal of non-trendy music in provincial towns on a number of threads, so forgive me for using the shorthand to answer the question.

  19. 49
    Steve Mannion on 11 Aug 2015 #

    At the risk of defending Durst I find the idea Kid Rock was a level above laughable – his sexism seemed just as blatant if not more so going by multiple lyrical examples.

    Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington also managed to be even more whiny-annoying than Durst without any of the relative swag. I quite liked that one about ‘nobody ever listening to him waaah’ though.

    #45 I actually witnessed that LB performance at Leeds 2000 too…from a reasonable distance back however.

  20. 50
    Doctor Casino on 11 Aug 2015 #

    Oh, and incidentally – while Crazy Town did not trouble the charts again after “Butterfly,” their lead singer, “Shifty Shellshock,” would take the vocals on Oakenfold’s “Starry Eyed Surprise,” which struggled in the US but hit #6 in the UK. It sounds nothing at all like Bizkit but, as I just learned, it samples “Everybody’s Talkin,'” muffled and conditioned into a laid-back groove. The main lick on “Butterfly,” though, is indeed very Borland.

  21. 51
    thefatgit on 11 Aug 2015 #

    I feel a bit guilty for laying into Durst after reading Jonathan’s Reddit link. He seems like a decent enough guy on that thread, maybe a younger version of me (obvs, no strawberries were abused in my backstory).

    Kid Rock: mixed feelings really. He won’t be showing up to any Democrat conventions anytime soon. As an entertainer, he’s a mixture of David Lee Roth in full camp excess and Axl Rose with added self-awareness. More on him at a later date.

    Linkin Park: Seen them live twice!! Post-Hybrid Theory, they came dangerously close to becoming Muse.

  22. 52
    AMZ1981 on 11 Aug 2015 #

    #45 I’d actually forgotten that I invested in a copy of Hybrid Theory by Linkin Park in 2001 having liked a lot of the singles (Crawling especially) so maybe nu metal didn’t pass under my radar as much as I thought. To be fair 2001 was something of a watershed year for me with loads of great albums; REM’s Reveal, Dylan’s Love And Theft, Elton’s Songs From The West Coast, Ryan Adams’ Gold and at a less celebrated level Aynsley Lister’s Everything I Need and the late Matthew Jay’s Draw (all records I love to this day) – perhaps it’s unsurprising that I didn’t get around to buying Bleed American by Jimmy Eat World until this year!

  23. 53
    flahr on 11 Aug 2015 #

    #48 – sorry, I didn’t mean to jump down your throat! I of course agree with your main point, that “this lot connected with people you don’t know and don’t think about much”, it’s just because I happened to be a boring tween and not a Trendy Clubgoing Twenty-Something these were, in fact, people I did know, and by and large they were pretty ordinary teenagers who went to school and got buses and felt pissed off occasionally and did German homework and liked other rap and rock and pop and were, really, quite staggeringly dull, all told.

    Music for preteens is either the essence of poptimism (Aqua, Adam & the Ants, er, something else beginning with A hopefully) or the lumpen r*ck*st end of the world, isn’t it?

    More on that in 2006 of course :D

    EDIT: “Okay well thanks for that but do you actually have a point here Frederic” yes hang on here it is

    MY POINT: Fred Durst gets a #1 hit when he raps in a high voice because he’s appealing primarily to people whose voices have not yet broken.

  24. 54
    Andrew Farrell on 11 Aug 2015 #

    I’m just going to drop “nu-metal in general had a mixed audience it never got credit for and barely respected” in here and head down the pub.

  25. 55
    23 Daves on 11 Aug 2015 #

    #40 I’d be tempted to criticise it on that basis as well, but I’m finding myself wondering why. A lot of brilliant rock and pop music is dumb and lacking in subtlety. I love a lot of sixties garage rock and seventies glam, and a lot of those tracks are bone-headed and lack intelligence.

    So why did I find Limp Bizkit (and nu metal in general) so annoying? One reason, I suppose, is the fact they represented a new generation gap opening up which felt very awkward, as referenced above. Another is that their songs were often messy and rushed sounding, didn’t contain hooks I could cling on to even in my drunkest moments. But more than that, I suppose the nineties were the last time that rock groups could do or say something reasonably intelligent and innovative and score hits – and not just in a couple of rogue cases, either. The nu-metal sounds seemed like a very simplistic and negative wave washing those ideas away. It wasn’t as straightforward as that, obviously, but I always had this feeling (probably bullshit and coloured by all kinds of fogeyish prejudices) that the “alternative” on offer in the early noughties was dumber and more nihilistic than what came before, and that was very much a bad thing. Which is probably what a lot of hippies thought about the Sex Pistols.

    #46 I can verify that nu-metal was big in London as well. You could visibly see it growing in popularity in places like Southsea and Farnborough, though (both places I lived in during the very late nineties) long before its commercial apex, whereas I don’t know if that would be as true in the capital. Certainly a small town gig promoter told me that the punk-pop and metal gigs were the big teenage tickets in the late nineties, the real money spinners, and at the time the acts booked were often ones I wrongly thought were no-hopers (The Crocketts always did well on the club circuit on the south coast, apparently).

  26. 56
    Cumbrian on 11 Aug 2015 #

    #45: I think it’s more than fair to say Eminem is the link to all of this stuff. He’s in the video for Break Stuff (as are Dre, Snoop, the lead singer from Korn the name of whom escapes me and Flea from RHCP), he guests for a verse on Fuck Off from Devil Without A Cause, Kid Rock pitches up in Eminem’s Berzerk video many years in the future, the lead singer from Linkin Park looks like he modelled his image on Slim Shady, etc. The link between Limp Bizkit and, for want of a better expression, “credible” rap always perplexed me a bit. Isn’t there a Limp Bizkit track with members of Wu Tang on it? I guess Eminem fans might well be occupying an busily overlapping area of some sort of Venn Diagram as a result.

    #50: That main lick to Butterfly doesn’t sound very Borland to me. It sounds more like John Frusciante. Indeed, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if it were a sample.

    #52: Agree with some of those. Ryan Adams in particular. Link here to Limp Bizkit being the World Trade Center – with New York, New York’s video being filmed 4 days prior to an event I guess we’re probably going to get to in the fullness of time and whose final shot is the towers, on top of which Limp Bizkit perform in this video. Ryan now doing a full album cover of Taylor Swift’s 1989 – though he did the same thing to The Strokes’ debut and I don’t think that ever saw light of day, so I am not holding my breath waiting on a Tom Petty/Smiths-lite versions of Style or whatever.

    53: It’s OK. No harm, no foul. The band beginning with A that I thought of was actually, erm, A – who would have fallen in the second part of your split there, with Nothing being the big release about this sort of time, from memory.

  27. 57
    flahr on 11 Aug 2015 #

    Right, no, wait, I think I have an actual point this time. What I was trying above very ineffectually to get across is:

    I think it’s a mistake to think of this one as subcultural in a way that, say, 2006 bunny or maybe even Blink-182 if it had got to the top could be thought of as subcultural: it may be metal but I don’t think you can point to a particular Bizkithead ‘group’ in the way that you can metalheads. (The slash in rap/rock is doing a lot of work!) Sure, very few fifty-year-old women will have bought this, but very few fifteen-year-old boys will have bought “My Heart Will Go On” and that doesn’t make that subculture either. So what I think I mean is I think the comments have been sort of treating this as a record where probing deeply into the question of “who is buying this?” is the key that will unlock everything, whereas I think any insight beyond “young preadolescent boys*” is probably both unnecessary and a little false.

    *and girls as #54 says, although I don’t have personal experience of that – it is more age that is the dividing line here (with music, isn’t it always?)

    I will probably change my mind again on what I was actually trying to say but I won’t leave another comment when that happens…!

  28. 58
    lmm on 11 Aug 2015 #

    LP have dropped some rather weak albums lately but they started with two good ones and followed with two great ones. Minutes to Midnight in particular is fantastic – American Idiot may have equalled its ambition but it doesn’t have half the range. My dad grumbled that they were trying to be U2, but in my book they bear that comparison.

    And for a band everyone’s heard of and plenty liked, they seemed remarkably ignored by the critics – as much as I suspect every fan of every band feels that way.

  29. 59
    flahr on 11 Aug 2015 #

    I would certainly agree that A Thousand Suns is great, although I’m aware that its vaguely look-we’re-Radiohead stylings make it not entirely representative of their output (I’ve not actually heard anything else by them except “Crawling” – if only THAT had been #1 instead of this!).

  30. 60
    Steve Mannion on 11 Aug 2015 #

    #50 #56 The ‘Butterfly’ hook is indeed an RHCP sample (from ‘Pretty Little Dirty’).

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