Boobs. Right, I see that. But can they PLAY?

Anyone who’s been around here more than a couple of months knows that few things get my trident-wielding, bipedal goat like the lack of legitimate, dignifying media coverage of women in metal bands. Sure, part of this dearth can be explained away by the simple fact that there simply aren’t as many steel-throated chicks in the scene as there are hirsute, stone-faced men: it’s a boy’s game, and feigning that the ratio is 50/50 just to promote equality would be ludicrous. However, in the cases where women DO get press, it usually has more to do with their looks than their ability.

A good example of this is Revolver’s now-annual “Hottest Chicks in Metal” issue, which I also bitched about last year. I recently received this year’s issue, complete with lingerie-clad hotties Cristina Scabbia and Marta on the cover- both of whom were featured last year as well, lending credence to my suspicion that there’s an artifically small pool of XX’s from which the mainstream hard rock media can comfortably draw. If they’re easy on the eyes and haven’t done anything controversial aside from being a chick in a metal band, it’s safe to write about them- we can’t be pushing our boundaries TOO far; unconventional talent be damned. There’s a readership to maintain, after all. This becomes especially true when one considers that Marta plays keyboards. I love Type O Negative as much as the next guy, so I’m not knocking the presence of keys overall- but it’s no secret that playing them in a metal band is not exactly a complex task (Jordan Rudess being the exception). They may as well have slapped a tambourine player on the cover with Scabbia, for all the contributions Marta is actually making musically.

The magazine was graced with a perfunctory flip-through from me, disgusted at the content but curious to see how those featured had reacted. A standard question was whether they were honored or demeaned by the title: all said they were honored (although one wonders if anyone saying they felt demeaned would have made it to print). I was disappointed in this unanimous reaction- did no one find it unreasonable that they were being singled out for their looks above their talent…in a music magazine? If this were Playboy, I’d shrug, say “it is what it is,” and move on. And to be fair, at least they have the balls to call it “The Hottest Chicks” instead of trying to pass it off as having anything to do with these womens’ musical proclivities. Still, I don’t think this is the place for such a feature, and moreover, it’s distressingly indicative of where women stand in the metal pantheon that this feature would be published in the first place. Why not “The Most Talented Women in Metal?” Why not “The Most Innovative Women in Metal?” Why not “The Most Promising Female Newcomers in Metal?”

And for godsakes, if they insist on continuing this annual, then why not even things up with “The Hottest Men in Metal” for the rest of us? It could be argued that every other issue is precisely that, but I want more- I want them all shirtless, languishing on their Mesa Boogie stacks, being asked condescending questions like “what did your parents think about you joining a metal band?”

My ire was only further stoked when I saw this news item today: IRON MAIDEN Bassist’s Daughter Falls Prey To ‘Nipple Slip’; Photo Available

The girl is STEVE FUCKING HARRIS’ daughter, but does her band make the news because of that- or perhaps based on anything to do with their own merits? No, she’s in Blabbermouth because someone caught a picture of her nipple. I’ve never heard her band, so quite frankly, I’ve no idea if they’re worthy of receiving any coverage anyway (although as Iron Maiden’s openers, one would think *someone* would care enough to evaluate their abilities and do a decent writeup on them)- it could be that she’s no more listenable than any other metal veteran’s daughter’s project (see Osbourne, Kelly), but either way, I’m dismayed that the first I’ve heard of her was a report on her nipple.

But wait: it gets worse. I went back to look up more on her band, and found a post introducing them, with links to pictures. Completely devoid of all shame as well as ability to cerebrally evaluate her product, the comments were as follows:

posted by : jamesearlraygeorgewallace
id like to lick her asshole!!! shes pretty hot!
and of course her pussy hole too…id make like an ostrich!

posted by : metalliaddict
oh wow…i think i just felt movement
the roman soldier in my pants is definitely at attention

posted by : jamesearlraygeorgewallace
i would like to have her naked in front of me, with my girlfriend and i can keep switching my toungue from her bunghole then to my gf’s bunghole!

posted by : bill
man that bitch is HOT.
but can she sing though?
if she can good blow job then doesn’t matter.

posted by : SLAYTANIC
Damn she is a sexy brunette I would love to taste that!!!!!

posted by : RiotAct666
SHE IS HOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I would like to have a piece of her sweet Cherry Pie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

posted by : rexandbo
mmm mmm…
I would love to cum inside her opened asshole!

Even one of the guys aiming to knock down the panting and fapping does so with reasoning rooted in her appearance:

posted by : Paedosltt
You pack of soft cunts
I’ve never heard such detestable forum wanking in all my days. Can you not see? She’s got a tan so monstrous it makes one question the purity of her heritage. What of pale? What of eastern block? Give me a an Ukrainian lass any day.
Now put your f*cking trousers on and stop ruining your keyboard you raging soft-ons!


Now if that’s not a pack of imbeciles, I sure as hell don’t know what is. Thinking it is one thing…posting it in a public forum? Quite another. Their ability to reason is seriously called into question by their seeming nonchalance in doing so.

But the fact that their collective IQ barely surpasses that of a Zildjian crash is not the point. The point is, intelligent responses or not, the original article was not about the talent (or lack thereof) of Lauren Harris.

It was about her nipple.

(Then again, readership begets content. Perhaps it’s all a matter of capitalism- they wouldn’t have posted it if no one cared, right?)

Fortunately, there were plenty of other responses decrying the impropriety of such a post, rightly accusing it of being immaterial and senseless in such a forum. Over the din of those hooting and hollering, however, the more reasonable rejoinders were difficult to hear.

Point is: everyone likes a pretty girl. I’m not oblivious to this fact. Women in metal- in entertainment in general- make it much farther if they’re nice to look at; it gets them a foot in the door. Now can we just accept that, wipe up the drool, and make a point to switch the focus to what they’re DOING? It’s obvious that these girls have gotten where they are in part because of their genes- when was the last time you saw an ugly chick in a metal band? And christ, if that wasn’t true, why would anyone ever have heard of Kittie? They certainly didn’t make it on talent alone.

We have a long way to go before stories about Zakk Wylde’s nipple are commonplace.