CultureWatch

Bill Muehlenberg's commentary on issues of the day...

Popular Music and the Death Of Culture

Nov 10, 1998

Modern music has made some very radical changes in the past few decades. In 1953, the number one song was Patti Page’s How Much Is That Puppy in the Window?, and ten years later, the Beatles were singing I Wanna Hold Your Hand. Things quickly declined thereafter, however. Songs by the Rolling Stones such as Let’s Spend the Night Together led to even harder ones.  One album entitled Her Satanic Majesty’s Request contained songs like Sympathy for the Devil.  Occultist and satanic themes proliferated as bands like Black Sabbath and KISS burst on the scenes.

Today, gangsta rap features themes of rape and violence, well oiled with a torrent of profanity.  One rap album used the F-word 293 times. Bad language is more than matched by bad themes.  One album by Ice-T called Body Count, features songs about killing cops and raping women.

Death metal groups like Cannibal Corpse, Nine Inch Nails and Slayer dish up grizzly tales of violence and death.  Consider a few titles from Cannibal Corpse’s album, Bleeding: She Was Asking For It, Force Fed Broken Glass, and The Pick Axe Murders.  Groups like Deicide and Marilyn Manson have albums called Crucifixation and Antichrist Superstar.  Manson, an ordained minister in Anton LeVey’s Church of Satan, delights in promoting murder, suicide and hatred of religion.  Band members wear T-shirts saying, “Kill your parents”. Consider a few lines from various songs in Antichrist Superstar:  “I wasn’t born with enough middle fingers,” “I am the faggot anti-pope,” “I will bury your God in my warm spit” and “You can kill yourself now because you’re dead in my mind.”  These songs of nihilism and hate are certainly a far cry from the kind of music popular just a few decades ago.

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