Thursday, September 29, 2011

Misogyny and Other Oppression in Industrial Music Videos

Image: A still from Combrichrist's "Throat Full of Glass Video" with singer Andy Laplegua standing aggressively over two crying half naked women screaming in their faces. They are in a hotel room, all three of them are light skinned, Andy has tattoos all over, one woman's hair is pink and the other's is black. 
I decided to start this blog because I don't see much else on the internet that seeks to combat sexism and patriarchy in industrial music scenes and genres. I'm a butch queer who has been listening to industrial since I was 13. I'm nearing 30. I have Skinny Puppy and COIL tattoos. I love the stuff. I live in the Eastern US and am only keeping my location to myself because I want to message to be heard in what I am saying rather than people saying "I know them, they must be right." or "I know them, they must be wrong."

Let's start with some things I really love about industrial, goth, and other dark electronic scenes I have been privileged to be a part of. First of all, I love the music. I like all kinds of genres and in spite of my dedication to "the old stuff," I really love a lot of the "new stuff" as well. (What is new and old in a 40 year time span anyways?) I love that men have much more freedom to explore gender expression. Seeing a dude in a skirt, make up, and so on is not uncommon in these scenes, and they're much less likely (though not completely unlikely) to get jumped because of it. I'd say there is not quite as much freedom for other gendered people but it does still exist moreso than more mainstream culture. I love how scenes ebb and flow and when one starts to die, another is born. I love the age variation in these genres and how teenagers listen to it as much as older adults. I love dancing by myself and going wild without criticism. I love how industrial and goth scenes are often much safer club spaces than many other music scenes. I can show up with a partner to an industrial show and be pretty confident we will not be gay bashed or stared at the entire time. I love the variety in culture and clothing. I love how many people from darker electronic music backgrounds often care about politics, animals, the Earth, and other things. I like that many (but not all) have the ability not to take themselves seriously. I could go on for a long time about what I like. But now that I can be confident the reader knows I do not intend to tear apart the scene, let's go to what I have been seeing a growing problem with lately.

Sexism. Misogyny. Violence against women. Sexual Violence. And none of these to make a statement against these things. These things are used purely for shock value, or perhaps worse- to promote the macho ideal that harming women makes you strong. I have seen these topics brought up online and fanboys will feel the need to defend their favorite bands with their lives. For instance, when DJ Pathogen wrote about a Combichrist video. I hope, that if a band you like shows up on here that you will try to set aside your love of music and think about oppression at hand. Afterall, many of these things were a surprise to me, as they come from bands that I like the sound of quite a bit. Many of the bands I list here I own albums of and listen to.

It is no secret to anyone that the majority of industrial musicians are straight, white, cis, men. Women of color like Shikhee of Android Lust, who are known for composing and performing their own music, who also become well known, are rare. This is the way many music genres are. It is a "man's world" afterall. This is not a blog to rail against men. I can think of many bands fronted by or composed of all men that are quite awesome and do not resort to images of violence towards women to sell songs and tickets. This is an entry to rail against sexism and to hopefully get a conversation started about how we can change this.

Here are some more recent examples of what I am talking about. Content warning for depictions of violence, specifically towards women, sexual assault, and other things:

Suicide Commando's "Die Motherfucker Die"

Nachtmahr's "Can You Feel the Beat?"
(analyzed in depth in a later post here)

(These are trailers for a longer video, so perhaps I am suddenly going to see a nice consensual arrangement where these women worked out a bdsm contract for blanket consent, but I doubt it.)

Combichrist's "Throat Full of Glass"

COMBICHRIST "Throat Full Of Glass" (Explicit Version) from Combichrist on Vimeo.

Andy Laplegua has blamed all responsibility for this video on the women in it. It was apparently all their idea. Uh huh. From a band with songs like "shut up and swallow" fronted by a man who wears confederate flags. Even so, we all know that women are capable of perpetuating misogyny as well. That doesn't take the responsibility off of men who are creating an entire world in video and sound based in misogyny because they found a couple of women to go along with it or come up with ideas for it. I can't say I'm surprised. (Yeah, I said I wasn't gonna talk shit but this is the only band here that really gets my briefs in a bunch. The fact that skinny puppy clears the dance floor but random-popular-EDM-music-generator Andy Laplegua in all his misogynistic glory fills it is a bit frustrating. But I digress...)

All of these videos depict the sexual and physical assault of women with no intended message that this is wrong.

Additionally, on the Gothsicles' newest album Industrialites&Magic, the song "Drunk Cuts" has mention of stabbing a "cock tease" in the chest which caught me off guard. Even a group knowing how to laugh at themselves can still manage to write songs at the expense of women (who apparently are required to fuck men when they are drunk, lest they be a "cock tease").

I wonder if men, in society's eternal quest to make them into sissies if they aren't big enough or strong enough, have resorted in these genres to showing "I'm no pussy, look how violent my videos are." Let's forget how awesome pussies are for a second and think about this. This happens all the time. Internalized patriarchy, the fear of being seen as gay, the fear of being seen as weak, and so on.

What ever happened to videos like this? (Ignoring the obvious cheese that comes from watching older videos and the fact that macho dudes look ridiculous sometimes) They manage to be gory, bizarre, aggressive, dark, without glorifying sexual assault and violence towards women...

And since I was hard on Andy earlier, I'll even add this video as an example of non-misogynistic stuff.

...and some even make statements against oppression. There are ways to show violence and make it quite obvious that what is happening is wrong. These videos do not glorify such oppression. (Content warning on the first three videos as they make statements against animal abuse and police brutality among other things, hence they have some disturbing images.)

(This video does show violence against women, but is making an obvious statement that that violence, as well as that towards other animals, is wrong).

And the next time Andy Laplegua and friends wanna sit around wearing black in a hotel room, they should try something more like this. There's plenty of (consensual) sexuality and weird shit going on there to get attention.

Granted, the above videos are from bands who are political. They probably think about these things regularly whereas bands who are apolitical may not think of this stuff. I hope they think of it more, because I think it is very obvious to people that the promotion of violence towards women doesn't help anyone, and it hurts a lot of people.

So is there a place for people like me who wish to combat oppression but still love the music? Or will we be written off as ruining everyone's fun? I hope people find this entry and join in the conversation. And if you have videos you want me to add to entries on here, please post them in the comments. I did not take the time to analyze these videos in depth because I wanted them to speak for themselves.

(Please be respectful to each other and to me in the comments. I will moderate them very loosely and will let a lot of shit slide, but if you're being outright nasty I'll probably delete your stuff. Same with spammers.)

UPDATE (10/1/11): I want to link to one of the only other people online I have see address this topic (correct me if I am wrong, I would love to read more). This article I think addresses many of the counterarguments (mostly on social networking sites) to what I have written here as they often tend to be similar. Rather than reinventing the wheel, I will link to it as it is very good. Hopefully some of the detractors who didn't read this far before defending misogynistic videos will make it to this link. Perhaps they will listen to a dude if they won't listen to me. Here is also a 101 on Rape Culture since it seems it could benefit many people (afterall the need for this 101 is part of such a culture).

UPDATE 2 (10/10/2011): Some folks have said that much of the music I mention here is "not real industrial" or whatever. That may be true, but these things are all played in industrial scenes and clubs, seen as subgenres of industrial (EBM, aggro, aggrotech, second generation industrial, future pop, industrial rock, industrial metal, coldwave, etc). While I am very aware of the many sub genres of industrial, and how many older heads like myself don't see combichrist as "real industrial", they are still part of our scenes and still must be addressed. I'd rather focus on rampant misogyny than arguing what is "real industrial" and what is not. To me, I got sick of that argument many years ago and just started enjoying music. I also encourage folks to air their grievances with this piece here so I don't have to dig through the website hits to address these. Conversations are rad.

Also, there was mention that I should have brought Throbbing Gristle into discussions of gender politics. While I agree that TG's music is relevant, it would have made this exhausting article to write much more lengthy. Perhaps I will get into this later, but it is important to note that TG is headed by a trans gender pandrogyne and anything they do is going to be completely different in meaning, perception, privilege, and effect than cis straight guys doing things. Oppression dynamics are for people who face those oppressions to exploit, not for people who perpetuate them to exploit. Queers reclaimed the word "queer", not straights. I can agree that songs like "slug bait" do have horrific narratives but this article was specifically written mostly about videos of recent bands (again, for brevity). But, I also think slug bait is so obviously disgusting and unglorified that no one is going to think those things are cool as a result. Does it reinforce misogyny? Perhaps, but that is for another article. A much much longer one.

EDIT JUNE 20, 2017: We read and discussed Cosey Fanni Tutti's autobiography and have come to the conclusion that Genesis P-Orridge is a person with a horrifically abusive history detailed up until extremely recently which makes us believe Genesis has not changed. Rather than delete this entry, we've decided to post a note instead in the interest of showing how learning and growth are good things. Now we know better. This does not mean all of TG is responsible for Gen's behavior- certainly not Cosey- but we acknowledge Gen was a person with a lot of power over others at one point in Gen's life.

I would also point to song's like Coil's (also published under Zos Kia) song "Rape." I doubt anyone can listen to this song, however abstract, and think that rape is being promoted in it. I do however think that many of the early examples of misogyny I have above do suggest a "coolness" factor of misogyny. There is a difference. I think people can have the freedom to explore and touch on horrific subjects in music without promoting them. Also, note that half (or all depending on time period) of Coil was two gay lovers (who also did the first HIV music benefit ever)- again going to have different experiences of oppression than hetero dudes. I think that TG and Coil are set far far apart from the stuff in Combichrist. This does not mean Coil or TG are untouchable. Touch them. Discuss them. At length. Like I said earlier, I listen to half or more of the bands I have gripe with here regularly. It is possible to like something and not worship it's every flaw at the same time.


  1. Very good article, and I agree with you. I do enjoy all of these bands but sometimes, when you're in the top, you want to climb even higher. It is clearly that most of them do that for exposure, which that implies earning more money. It's been like that since forever in the music industry. Sex and violence will always sell

  2. First of all, I'm happy to find this blog, as I feel that not enough is being written about this. I pretty much started boycotting Combichrist after seeing the "Throat full of glass" video and before that I already had problems with their lyrics. Shut up and swallow? Give head if you got it? I still love Icon Of Coil though, even that I dislike Andy LaPlegua.

    I think that the "dancey" wing of industrial/whatever scene is becoming extremely laddish and sleazy. Some bands think that they have to be overly macho and frankly it feels embarrassing. I have no problems with lyrics and videos about violence, but totally non-ambivalent glorification for sexual violence feels a bit too personal, as I'm a physically weak and small-sized woman.

    On the other hand, I have some issues with some of the bands you show here as positive examples. Project Pitchfork is one example - great live band, excellent songs, but I disagree with them ideologically so much that I have to skip every song that is too "preachy" for my taste (and often very naively so). I don't want gigs to be political rallies of any ideology, even of the ones that I believe in!

    For that reason, I prefer ideologically ambivalent bands like Ice Ages. I'm sure you can be deep and intelligent without spouting any ideology either. There are a lot of themes that transcend politics and theories that we adhere to.

  3. Hi Lucilla! Thanks for commenting. I think my main reasoning for using bands like pitchfork as examples was I wanted to show how people could use shock and violence and sexuality in videos in a way that was positive or at least addressed the problems with them. There are plenty of non-preachy bands out there, but i wanted to show it was possible to show things in ways that are expressive, without glorifying them as awesome like combichrist usually does. Thanks for posting!

  4. Its sad that going the "Combichrist route" seems to be the way to get enough money to make expensive videos and get huge following these days. None of my favourite bands even have videos! I like bands like (afore mentioned) Ice Ages, Decoded Feedback, Wynardtage and Aslan Faction. One interesting example about going against the grain is German aggrotech artist Painbastard (horrible name :D) who is pretty macho and aggressive but dedicates his records to his late mother and has a wonderful song called "A short moment of love" which is amazingly reflective and touching and deals with very uncommon theme in any genre of music, a dying old man regretting his wasted life.

    I think that one reason why I was so drawn to industrial/EBM/Aggrotech genres is that I'm a history student and therefore very interested about different aspects of war and conflict. These genres deal with the subjects in totally different way than mainstream. The post 9.11 world of terrorism is a good example of this. Mainstream bands did some weak protest songs about evilness of war and Tacticak Sect wrote the song "Beslan" about one of the worst terrorist attacks in Russia from the terrorist's perspective. Now, that was different!

  5. I will have to check out that ts song!

  6. Sorry for replying to this four months after the fact, but your blog was just mentioned in the Storming The Base newsletter.

    You commented that you would "rather focus on rampant misogyny than arguing what is "real industrial" and what is not," but there is an obvious pattern in the subgenre you have chosen to criticize so far, to the point that you could almost just call the blog "EBM Anti-Oppression" and avoid the "industrial" debate altogether. Is the Combichrist/Nachtmahr/Aesthetic Perfection style of aggrotech EBM the most oppressive strain of industrial music out there, or is it just what you are most familiar with? I have noticed that when people complain about misogyny in 'industrial' lately, it is very often directed at that kind of band. There are some quite extreme politically-incorrect underground power electronics projects out there, but they seem to be actually offending hardly anyone... I suppose because they get zero club play, rarely post videos, and the only people hearing them are already used to that kind of content.

  7. I consider EBM and aggro industrial genres since they share origins with industrial but it's cool if others do not see it that way. I am using industrial as a blanket for all the genres related to it in that way. I also do not only speak negatively about oppression, I speak also about those who confront it, many of whom are first or second gen industrial. But I can see how that might have been somewhat unclear when this blog first started.

    I am unaware of the misogynistic power electronics stuff but part of that could be that a lot of them I am familiar with don't have singing and thus, I don't hear the misogyny in their lyrics, and if they also don't have videos, it's hard for me to see where they are misogynistic. I am interested to know more of what you are talking about though. I used to be real into powernoise and then kinda got into other stuff and haven't been listening to it much. Any examples of the oppressive stuff? (Good and bad would be helpful).

  8. Power Electronics is the post-industrial genre based on bands like Whitehouse and Sutcliffe Jugend. It is not the same scene as powernoise. Here's one of the more 'out-there' recent examples I could turn up in a quick search (I don't follow this project and couldn't tell you what his personal motivations are)...

    S.T.A.B. Electronics - "Female":

  9. My oh my,ummm, I am not sure how to address that yet. Give me a little while hahahaha. It reminded me of a drunk manarchist whining about stuff but maybe that's what he was going for. I have heard songs that use samples like that in the beginning with a profeminist message that follows (Bikini Kill's White Boy but this is obviously not the case with this guy. I will add him to the list of things to write about but I almost feel like there's not much to analyze other than "listen to this" because I don't think anyone could question the misogyny in it whereas a lot of the other flashy videos need more explanation for some dudes.

    I have heard power electronics and powernoise used interchangeably but I see how they are different. I stand corrected.

    If you have more examples keep them coming, I will get to them in time. Maybe I will make a whole post for bands without videos and just do their songs or something. Thank you for your input and examples!

  10. Oh, I'm not saying you should be writing about power electronics instead of EBM. Write about what you know. I mainly just find it ironic that guys like S.T.A.B. Electronics or Deathkey or whoever could be actually trying to record the sickest, most oppressive, anti-social noise shit ever made... but in reality, they're never going to oppress/shock/disgust nearly as many people as some far more mainstream-palatable, dance club party version of industrial like Combi or Nachtmahr.

  11. Yeah that's a good point. i will think on it more. I think in my experience the more dangerous stuff is the less obvious stuff. If I ask anyone on the street if they like neonazis, most if not all are going to say neonazis suck, because they are obviously shitty racist homophobes who wish death and extinction upon people. Whereas if I ask people on the street how they feel about Ben Roethlisberger (rapist misogynistic football player who paid off the survivor to drop the charge and who all steelers fans worship), most people think he's great because it's not as cut and dry obvious to them that he has some problematic shit going on, and he has celebrity status, like many of the bands I write about here, which also ads to the "but they're so good at (football, making music, etc)!"

    It's easy for people to see an unpopular musician saying blatantly stupid fucked up stuff as problematic, but it's much harder to see it in a flashy video. I'd rather see billboards disappear before mainly because their negative impact is so much farther reaching. ideally I'd like to see them both go. But ask people again, what they think about white pride stormfront vs what they think about advertising and they will have a very strong opinion on the former and likely none on the latter. That's how it spreads. Without people realizing it.

  12. I'm actually kinda glad (in a way) that I'm not the only one disturbed by the Combichrist Throat of Glass video. I really thought I might've been the only one, and it was kind of depressing to be honest.
    Up until then, I'd been a huge Combichrist fan. I loved their music and I'll be honest, I even blew off a lot of the other sexist comments I heard in the song titles and such.
    Then I stumbled on this video and was really, deeply disturbed and rather pissed off. While I haven't stopped being a fan, I haven't listened to the song or even really much of their music since then.
    It really put me off of the band, and that's sad because as I said, I thought they were pretty cool before. But the whole video was just one big assault on women, atleast in my eyes, and that's pretty shitty.
    I mean, the video opens up with a woman shaking her ass around while Andy throws money at her. Dressed in black or not, she was still a stripper in the video. I'm not saying strippers are evil or anything, they're not.
    But to go as far as opening with that kind of scene was pretty fucked up. After that, the video shows two scantily clad girls with a guy and the band meeting in some sort of criminal-type deal with a briefcase.
    They shoot the guy and take the girls to some cheap motel room - and even that scene, in itself, seems to imply the girls are nothing but whores and criminals anyway so why not hurt them? Its really, really wrong.
    After that, they strip them at gunpoint and then Andy essentially kills everyone (including the girls) after that. It struck me at first, when the band pointed guns at eachother that it could be one of two things. Either the other band members are killing Andy to defend the girls, or to have them for themselves.
    First idea went out the window when one of said band members pushed the girl down on the bed, and basically told her to shut the fuck up. And after all is said and done, the stripper runs off with the money.
    Now tell me, doesn't that seem to imply something too? I will say this much: after tearing apart the video, I think I may understand the statement he's trying to make: that women can be criminals and murderers just as much as men.
    But if that's the case, he really went about it the wrong way. The statement in itself isn't bad; it's sad but unfortunately true.
    However, he really failed to get his point across - especially when his reaction to the controversy was that it was the girls idea in the first place. I hate to say it, but I've experienced that reaction.
    Whenever men are caught red handed doing something fucked up with a woman (or women), they react that way - it's the girls fault so they're somehow absolved of blame. About 99 percent of the time it isn't true, and when it is it's still not a valid excuse.
    Granted, I did not see his reaction personally. I'd like to decide for sure, but I believe it because as I said - I've been through it and it seems rather fitting.
    All in all, the video is fucked up. I hope Andy and the rest pull their heads out of their asses and straighten up again, because as I said - I really do adore their music.


    1. "I think I may understand the statement he's trying to make: that women can be criminals and murderers just as much as men.
      But if that's the case, he really went about it the wrong way. The statement in itself isn't bad; it's sad but unfortunately true.
      However, he really failed to get his point across - especially when his reaction to the controversy was that it was the girls idea in the first place. I hate to say it, but I've experienced that reaction.
      Whenever men are caught red handed doing something fucked up with a woman (or women), they react that way - it's the girls fault so they're somehow absolved of blame. About 99 percent of the time it isn't true, and when it is it's still not a valid excuse."

      ding ding ding! Yeah I wouldn't give himmuch credit for trying to make a statement in the first place but you are right, if you wanna make a statement, own up to it and talk about it. Don't run when people ask you questions.

      This video is just all around to makemoney from the new generation of macho industrial dudes who wanna be industrial but don't wanna be wussy goth fags so they get these kind of videos to make them feel hard. To be honest it's just boring to me.

      I can understand why people like combichrist's sound. I still listen to suicide commando even though half his songs and videos are totally misogynistic.

  13. Hey, I found this while searching for Mr Pathogen's blog re the Combichrist video, and I'm really glad there are people addressing the issue!

    I've been an industrial fan for many, many years, and I won't even pretend for a second that wanting to get away from the misogynistic BS in mainstream music didn't play a role in that choice. Reading your list of things you like about industrial and goth scenes, I tick a lot of the same factors as well. And thus the nature of bubbles: even if we create spaces outside of the mainstream, we are never quite apart from it after all.

    I haven't yet worked out what my response should be: not listening to the worst offenders, not buying their stuff and not attending their gigs are fairly obvious things to do. Is it enough?

    In a way, it's kinda fortunate that Mr LaPlegua's music has been getting steadily worse, now I can avoid him on grounds of taste AND politics!

    So thanks again for writing & raising awareness, will post out the link where I can.

  14. I couldnt read all the comments here(although I read alot of the ones on the other guys blog)so I apologize if this has been siad already but has everyone missed that this isnt a video of Combichrist but a movie using Combichrist and Wes and Sin as actors in a movie??While this doesnt invalidate your whole point it does make the use Combichrist as main offenders kinda odd.Especially when the other videos you linked ARE videos of their actual bands.This isnt to say Combichrist doesnt have their moments.This is a movie about a deal(drugs?)gone wrong.So are we to assume you think all actors endorse what they portray on screen?With that line we can say you think Combichrist endorse drug dealing(which the by the way isnt actually in this movie)Killing others,killing yourselves,humiliation of women,and Dodge vans!!That would be like sayin Dakota Fanning endorses killing people for drinking their blood.Sorry but I thought it would be funny to refrence twilight on a gothish site just to annoy people.

  15. May I link this to Tumblr? I was going to write a post about misogyny in Industrial music, but this is a nice concise article that is recent-ish and fantastic. As an industrial fan who is also a (queer) woman of color, I would probably be adding a few points from that perspective as well just to let you know the context.

    1. Please do share far and wide and please please add your insights and thoughts! If you could post the link back here so I and others could read your additions that would be awesome. Thanks!

  16. This is great, I just wrote a post about my complicated relationship with punk for the same reasons. I was listening to Ministry yesterday and realized how much I miss listening to industrial.

  17. I am sick of how hypocritical people are. I love Combichrist cause I think they GET it. That's what it feels like to be a girl sometimes. Guys push you around don't even know they are doing it. Combichrist puts it all out there. Guys who have said the most sexist stuff to me listen to calm music and have not even heard of bands like this. Maybe if they could see and hear how aggressive this kind of behavior is, they would think twice. Violence against women is becoming invisible, it is up to artists to put it out into the open. Have you seen front man Andy's wife or maybe ex-wife? she is not a skinny little girl like the ones featured in the video. She is a powerful woman, who does not look like she takes shit from anyone. How many men claim to be wholesome and respectful of women than have lil cute tiny wives? Oh yeah they're wholesome, nothing sexist or dominating going on there.

    1. I actually agree with some of what you have said here, I just disagree that others are going to see it the way you do. As females we see the violence, but for those who do not experience it, seeing it glorified does not help them understand our plight. How does "shut up and swallow" translate to men who benefit from male privilege daily and are not forced to confront violence via victimization?

  18. Did you see the 2012 Kinetic opener for Combichrist & Nachtmahr, Ad*ver*sary (who is awesome), point out the very things in this article at the end of his set (joined by Antigen Shift):

    Let's hope it's not an isolated event; totally agreed on everything in this article. Also the same age you are, female, and I wonder what the hell happened to this genre of music in the last fifteen years. It's not just sexist and racist - it's not creative and flat out lazy of these artists.

    1. What am I saying? I'm sure you've seen it and discussed it; *goes to read rest of blog* - but just in case someone stumbles on this post and is curious, thought I'd mention it....

  19. This was a GREAT article.....I enjoyed it thoroughly!!!!

  20. I hope you don't mind me posting this but I thought some people might be interested....I too am an "old" industrial fan, I'm 37. I have a project/band called 2WENTYTHRE3 that is sometimes "industrial" changes in genre so much that I just refer to it as "experimental"... everything can be heard and downloaded free at .I hope you enjoy it....

  21. Dude, are you serious? I know I arrive like two years later but I was glad to find this blog, even though I have to speak somehow.

    I mean... I'm also an industrial lover (well, maybe I'm throwing too many roses to myself, I discovered it a few years ago, at the age of 19 or so), but yeah, I don't know the whole fucking underground but I can defend myself on it (if well, it's true I'm too lazy and still have legendary bands I know I like without a full or regular listening), and I would say most of those bands could be called "gay-friendly" (not like "Madonna gay-friendly", but "not homophobes" or "cool with homosexuals" or "not giving a fuck about people's sexuality). I am still in the metal scene, and in the folk scene and in the pagan scene (and in the industrial scene) and I've always despised (in my country) that "sense of activism" which is totally unnecessary since gay people here have rights and major social acceptance, but in the music scenes I move in, just the industrial scene's the one I don't feel homophobia floating everywhere in the air.

    I think there's no need to say I don't support violence towards women (actually, I don't support violence unless it's self-defense or violence INSIDE the arts), but most of those bands (if you make an exception of Andy LaPlegua) have videos of violence towards women in an artistical way, out of context and with non-political message (or without a message at all, just part of a story). It's not unknown that Industrial inherited the "sex, drugs, rock ' roll" attitude, actually, I would even say LaPlegua was pretty accurate when he wrote the song "Electrohead", but dude, don't take it so seriously (UNLESS, as I said, you find a real exception).

    The way I see it, Industrial and Dark Electro scenes are one of the alternative but non-political and/or "hard" scenes with most "good vibes" in the atmosphere, where there is violence everywhere but it's purely anecdotal and part of the culture's image most of the time.

    I'll keep reading this blog tomorrow, I'm really intrigued by it, bu it's very late here in Spain, but to find gay people who don't listen to Lady Gaga compulsively it's a real release (not that I have anything against those or her, but I like social interaction and sometimes, without similar likes, it's quite difficult to reach within our community).

    Night, night!

  22. This comment has been removed by the author.

  23. The Project Pitchfork video is down on YouTube :/

  24. I found this blog - and this article - after watching Throat Full of Glass and since this is in the inter-webs and maybe you can spin this in a useful way, I'll be honest.

    My first reaction was arousal. I'm female, (almost 30 myself), white, middle-class, heterosexual, and hold a B.Sc.H. I too am also swimming in student debt. lol. So maybe I make a nice contrast by also being similar.

    But that was my initial reaction. As the video progressed and I wasn't zeroing in so much on the male Eye-Candy I noticed the girls and starting to think "wtf am I watching...?" And I started to wonder "how bad do the things I'm exposed to have to get for me to even NOTICE the women in them, let alone decide it's beyond what I consider acceptable?" I'm a woman and I don't even see women.

    I grew up on Skinny Puppy and Wumpscut as well as more mainstream-accepted acts but never really looked for 'music videos', I mean c'mon, if VAC doesn't have slew of them, why would these other acts? Bryan Erickson is a genius.

    I didn't even notice the misogynistic lyrics in a lot of what I've spent over a decade listening to until this little trip. And to my surprise, it bothers me.

    I should be surprised that this bothers me. I am uncomfortable realizing that I don't even notice women, I am so used to how they are portrayed.

    I honestly grew up believing that people like you (allow me to stereotype you for a purpose here) were just in need of something to bitch about for whatever reason you had. Everyone was equal and abuse is something that happens behind closed doors and gosh dang it, we are well on the way to beating it. It's certainly not right there in public, and certainly not glorified, and if it is - but it's so not - it wouldn't be in the 'outcast' music I listen to! /sarcasmoff

    Then I ended up here and watched the other videos and really wish I hadn't because it's affected how I feel about those artists. And what really bothers me, is that even though I'm disgusted by them, I will probably shut my eyes, like a good little girl, and just pretend I didn't see what I saw.

    1. This is powerful stuff, Andy. We all have our moments of "Oh shit... this shit is fucked up." I am happy the blog led you to see some of them.

      We're definitely not done fighting. I don't think the fight against oppression is ever over. But some things do get better.

      Also, being turned on by something oppressive does not make you a bad person. We can be turned on by whatever we like as long as there's an analysis and consent if we act out what we like.

  25. I'm waiting for someone to explain to me how a lot of this is misogynist, like Throat Full of Glass, someone said it was misogynist, in what way exactly? There are prostitutes/strippers in the video? That's misogyny?

    1. Hi Mike, thanks for stopping by. It is misogynistic because it glorifies violence against women and sexual assault against women. You have the cool band guys who the fans obviously think are cool harming women. It is the very simple fact that this video is just like any mainstream film or other mainstream video where women are objects not only as things to be desired and used by men, but also as hated things that are the receivers of violence. These women are not treated as people, but as objects. Objects that are sexualized then hurt. It'sd the same patriarchal narrative used against women for a long time. Women are either there for sex or violence. Does that make more sense?

    2. In short, the video does nothing to challenge the violence towards the women. It simply makes it glorified. You can have violence in a video and have it not be misogynistic. This is not the case.

  26. I'm so glad I found your blog. I enjoy industrial music but its misogyny makes me feel uneasy.

  27. Also, some interesting reads
    and this, which is great.

  28. A lot of industrial culture is founded upon misanthropy. Coil, TG, PTV, all were heavily inspired by WSB and Brion Gysin who famously wrote "man is a bad animal." Misogyny is just one side of the coin, misandry is the other - the real misanthropists are equally disgusted by both male and female humans. Now in my case I am referring to the "stereotypical" or "normal" man or woman - the happy housewife, the provider-husband, the gold digger, the guy with a trophy wife, a hundred shades of human types who are doing nothing subversive, transgressive, revolutionary or even creative.

    Nobody summed it up better than Burroughs: "We intend to march on the police machine everywhere. We intend to destroy the police machine and all its records. We intend to destroy all dogmatic verbal systems. The family unit and its cancerous expansion into tribes, countries, nations, we will eradicate at its vegetable roots. We don't want to hear any more family talk, mother talk, father talk, cop talk, priest talk, country talk or party talk. To put it country simple, we have heard enough bullshit."

    We need to destroy ALL institutions, family structures, gender roles, etc. - and sometimes that means OFFENDING PEOPLE *shock* - I'm radically liberal in many ways but this oversensitive, PC stuff is just getting ridiculous.

    1. I'm very confused by your comment. The last paragraph seems in direct contradiction to the rest. How is fighting institutionalized oppression (which is what we strive to do here) NOT part of "destroying all institutions" and how is reducing us to "PC" and "oversensitive" in line with the rest of what you wrote?

  29. My interpretation of a lot of the misogynistic Combichrist content, is that is no more that S&M scene ambience. I just picture leather, chains, dominants and submissives. I think if your are misogynistic, that this kind of music will certainly resonate, but I highly doubt it will create new misogynists from thin air.
    BTW, I always got the impression that throat full of glass was about ice usage. Maybe I am reading too much between the lines.

  30. I have mentioned before that I am a kinkster. And, BDSM is directly addressed in this post. BDSM is not an excuse. BDSM without radical analysis is dangerous. S&M scene ambiance can be achieved without rapey misogynistic and violent bullshit that is literally just like mainstream violence against women.

    I can see how TFOG lyrics can be about meth addiction but the video is not portraying that at all. I'm telling you as someone who's been off drugs over 12 years. If they wanted to portray meth addiction they could show them picking at their faces and selling all their shit.

  31. Ah yeah, just discovered this blog, I am only 28 and didn't really grow up around the original post-punk, EBM, and the beginning of electro-industrial age, but I agree with what a poster here said...the misogyny among certain artists always make me queasy. But combichrist is wanna-be industrial-metal now. We can forget they exist now :)

    And Nachtmahr is trash. I do kind of like L'Âme Immortelle though, but forgive me...I haven't read their lyrics.

  32. I am fucking fascinated about your point of view. I came here after seeing a post from The Birthday Massacre relating been having serious issues with their substitute drummer, Joe, which also was from Combichrist and shit. They hired him after discover some trash he did. But moreover, I want to express my gratitude about your speech, it contributes soooo far much with some discussions about gender and other opressions' gamma. I will be back here after a "session" of overthinking, self questioning and introspection :)