Last week we examined what the term "selling out" means in 2012, and concluded that it's hard for bands to make money off the things that used to make tons of it: records, shirts, and various memorabilia.
Metal fans may be more prone to buy dozens of band-logo stamped black shirts, but that doesn't mean that a big chunk of the metal world hasn't gone the way of the market place. Due to our awesome economy, government, and the overall world-falling-to-pieces situation, it seems that there are some bands that latching onto anything they can.
But I guess money is money, and it was recently announced that Soulfly and Fear Factory are on the lineup for the Gathering of the Juggalos, which takes place August 8-12 in Cave-in-Rock, Illinois. The-Gathering-of-the-freaking-Juggalos.
"It's a challenge and at the same time it's an honor that they specifically asked for Soulfly to play at the festival," says Soulfly's Max Cavalera in a press release. "We're gonna give our best show possible and we're going to fuck shit up at the Gathering of the Juggalos." (Don't worry, Soulfly has a local date coming up, Thursday, August 2, at the Marquee Theatre in Tempe.)
This isn't the first time heavy acts have played the queasy, makeup-smeared hip-hop festival. Gwar, Andrew W.K., Powerman 5,000, Mini Kiss, Drowning Pool, Bobaflex, and Mushroomhead have all put in appearances at past gatherings (sometimes to the boos of angry Juggalos).
ICP does share a horror-and-supernatural fascination with heavy metal. The duo's lyrical (based around their own weird Dark Carnival mythology) themes aren't entirely out of touch with metal's primary obsessions, but they're also known for aggravating the hell out of Eminem, and their overweight suburbanite fans (decked out in face paint and spider legs-style hair) being classified by the FBI as "a loosely organized hybrid gang." I don't think they're that bad. I just think of them an irritating cyst in the armpit of society, alongside fans of Black Veil Brides, Justin Bieber, and the San Diego Chargers.
But the crossover between Juggalos and metalheads exists (as evidenced by the festival's heavy metal lineage). Both fanbases have an insane rep and extremely loyalty to their respective bands. After all, even Charlie Sheen has admitted to being a Juggalo. But I'm a little biased, of course. Juggalos may have their fair share of hardcore energy, but metal fans are even more brutal and no-holds-barred; plus, a sick twisted mask always overrules some black and white face paint, any day. In my opinion, seeing a fight between one of Slipknot's maggots and Juggalo would be like seeing Jason (of Friday the 13th) take a machete to one of the Rock of Love girls. Like Chyna grabbing Snooki by her obnoxious poof of hair and swinging her like a rag doll, or like Dimebag Darrell crushing Black Veil Bride's Jake Pitts in a shredding competition (and maybe even crushing him literally).
I'm anxious to hear how all the heavy metal fans and Juggalos mix at the Gathering. I don't imagine metalheads rushing out to buy tickets, but it's worth nothing that ICP's next album, Mighty Death Pop, promises to be heavier. Based around the life of Chris Benoit, the former WWE world champion who murdered his wife and son before hanging himself five years ago, the record is supposedly, about the loss of sanity, the moment when you snap, that acute sense of panic. A thoroughly metal idea, sure, but I don't think I'll be listening.
Soulfly is scheduled to perform Thursday, August 2, at the Marquee Theatre in Tempe.