Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Feral Metal Make Up

A fragment of a piece with Feral Men exhibiting effeminate behaviour.

And here is the finished drawing (without colours):

Lately I have been poking fun at the Black Metal thing, because corpsepaint seems to become my medieval feral men. This does not mean that I don't like the music. On the contrary, and the history about the early days of the phenomenon is particularly fascinating. There is a certain mystique around it that is rare in pop music. But then, mysticism goes well with a sense of humour (unlike dogmatism). The combination of the homophobia within the BM scene and applying make-up before every gig is just too good.

The inspiration for this piece comes from Donna Kossy's Strange Creations, to be more precise the chapter on Oscar Kiss-Maerth (yes, that sounds dangerously close to 'kiss my ass', but that was his real name) and DEVO (who took a lot of nuttiness from him). Kiss-Maerth was a morosoph who argued in his book The Beginning was the End that humans had become smarter in the course of evolution by eating the brains of slain enemies.
So here my canibal feral men are eating the poor nuns' brains, but that comes with certain unexpected side effects.


donaldh said...

Dunno, the makeup is bad ass in a Norwegian death metal kind of way, it's the flower poking out of his butt that makes it kind of effeminate.

Aeron said...

nice, how about one dipping their fingers into the guts of a ripped apart animal to use as fingernail polish or lipstick?

donaldh said...

Ritual mysticism in the feral men, or are they tripping (mandrake, agaric); hormones, encephalitis?

Anyway, this is incredible.

Robert Adam Gilmour said...

In the book Esoterra I recently bought, Aller Seelen said in an interview that in Oskorei rites young men used to paint their faces, wear ghostly clothes, screw up their voices, make up false names for themselves and pretend to be demons. Pretty strange, I wonder if those traditions were passed on or just revived by accident?

Metal fans in general frustrate me, especially when hunting around reviews for something good.
I often feel like writing big rants about them but that would be completely useless. The reason it keeps bothering me is because I have basic things in common with most metal fans and I would like to see everyone make the best of this fascination.
But most of them mold themselves in a cast and end up not being able to see outside the box, not being able to see the contradictions in their views, often refusing to challenge their own ideas, and it just becomes like a religion when they always bang on about being an individual.
As I was saying previously on a blog post: they integrate themselves so fully so they forget what attracted them to metal, what they didnt like so much and what they would like to see more of brought to the table. So they cant bring new things and make it more satisfying.

Aeron said...

On the subject of Metal, here is a great tumblr with a lot of great metal imagery..

Marcel Ruijters said...

@Donaldh: thanks!
@Robert: I agree! I wasn't interested until Norwegian Black Metal put some punk attitude into their production. Traditionally, Metal was about polished virtuosity just like prog rock was in the 1970. Music for music teachers. (shudder!)
Punk, post-punk, electro and industrial had dissolved from this reverence of virtuosity more than a decade before, developing concepts that went beyond mere showmanship. (for instance, Kraftwerk obviously copped their act from Gilbert & George)
I have been waiting for a metal act that would use disharmonies like Deathspell Omega does today, 25 years ago but -unless I missed something- that simply wasn't around back then.
Anyway, I will post more art in this vein soon... There is more where this came from and I actually did design a CD sleeve for a Belgian BM band recently - it should be released in the autumn.

Robert Adam Gilmour said...

I have to disagree with a little of this. There had been substantial punk elements in metal in the british bands late 70s/early 80s although it was cetainly mixed with prog.
Canadian band Voivod had equal enthusiasm for prog and punk. Electronic music has a lot of important roots and influences from prog. Even some of the major punk bands had a fondness for prog, but it was dangerous to say so in the original punk days, as some dumb fans attacked their heroes for admitting to liking certain things. Sham 69 were attacked for jamming with some older bands and Rat Scabies was cautious about exposing his love of Genesis.

Several years ago here we were talking quite a bit about prog and I thought Sean was going to mock me because he is such a big punk, but he loves prog too. Do you have any favorite prog bands?

Prog and Punk should be liberating but both end up being treated as self-imposed artistic slavery by many fans.

I think I have heard more Black Metal being primitive for the sake of itself at the expense of the vision than I've heard prog being technical for its own sake at expense of the vision...

ELP are often technical for the sake of it but they are also capable delightfully absurd visions.

Rush are beloved by music teachers but they can be simple when they need/want to be.

Cynic are a spectacular and original prog metal band. Who knew you could be a massive hippy and disciplined technical death screamer at the same time?

One of my biggest reservations about modern metal and prog as well as being too derivative is they often have excessively polished plastic artificial production.

Sometimes early Burzum is primitive for the sake of it, at those times certainly at the expense of the music. Sometimes the song titles and lyrics were far more evocative than the music. Legions of BM bands do this to death. If Emperor had been primitive for the sake of it, they never would have taken us into those Gustave Dore skies, those insane tangled trees and beyond.

In metal it is quite natural to have grandeur visions and that "needs to be lo-fi" conviction often makes graveyard worlds and hell seem a lot less convincing. I prefer symphonic stuff but my favorite primitive BM was this french guy who did these rasping growls and had ghostly moans in the background, it could sound silly but I think it was cool.