Is the once popular nu-metal music style dying?

We all know who they are: Korn, Limp Bizkit, Linkin Park, Papa Roach, but where are they now? Today’s top musical talents and critics now believe the once innovative genre of music, dubbed “nu-metal”, will fade out sooner rather than later.

For those who are unfamiliar with nu-metal, it is a genre of music that combines the beats of hip-hop with rock meets metal-based music. Bands in this genre were once known as unforgettable, but recently their albums are beginning to collect dust in music stores everywhere.

Bands like Papa Roach, Korn, Limp Bizkit, Linkin Park and Crazy-Town once ruled the charts as late as two years ago, but now find themselves in hot water after receiving poor reviews and dwindling record sales.

These artists orchestrated what was once thought to be perfect melodies pulled from a chaotic world of inner confusion. Once considered innovative and original, these acts now find each other falling off of radio play lists and are being considered a thing of the past.

Early signs are revealing that today’s audience feels this genre of music is quickly being played out. How can something that was considered so innovative and state of the art be gone that quickly?

Is this the sign of a nu-metal meltdown? If so, who is to blame for this, and what is in store for the future of rock?

While looking for answers, we here at The Houstonian turned to Cory Garcia, the Loud Rock music coordinator for SHSU’s own 90.5 The Kat.

Never at a loss for words, Garcia explained his beliefs when asked if these bands will evolve or fall by the wayside.

“I don’t think these bands will die off so to speak but will stick around like the plague.”

Are current record sales for Korn and Papa Roach proof that nu-metal is going to die?

“Korn wasn’t well managed; their singles weren’t released at the right time, and Papa Roach just didn’t have the break-out radio hit that ‘Last Resort’ had.”

What will these bands have to do in order to improve record sales?

“These bands are going to have to go towards a ‘hard-core’ image. That seems to be the new evolving style of music. Extreme is becoming more and more popular.”

Who is to blame for this occurrence? Did the fact that bands tried to capitalize on the popularity of nu-metal hurt the credibility of the bands and help this newfound style fade out?

“Definitely! Look at Crazy-Town, for example, and their song ‘Butterfly.’ No one wants to hear that now; it’s too trendy and cheesy, and that is what starts to throw the public off. Nu-Metal became the ‘thing to do’ and thousands of little girls started buying those records and bands wanted a share of the profit.”

Is this a sign that bands need to start broadening their horizons and start dabbling in different styles to find the next best thing?

“They should definitely broaden their horizons; it might open up their fan base, giving them much needed sales. Fans are very cynical and want someone they can relate to, something more down to earth. I cannot relate to someone who is hanging out at the Playboy mansion and who was once dating Britney Spears.”

Is there a possibility of experiencing a backlash like the type Vanilla Ice encountered?

“It’s already started, and I think record sales will show that.”

Is the rock/hip-hop thing played out, and if not, is it possible for this style to make a comeback?

“Yes, it is possible and could be popular again. Eminem is proof, and I think Linkin Park will have another smash album. Anything is possible if it has the right combination and is something people just want to hear. I think these bands are proof.”

What’s next? What could be the next musical style we are in for?

“More hard-core. People want a more extreme style, not trendy cheesy stuff like Crazy-Town. Bands like AFI, Hatebreed, and Poison the Well, are going to be getting a big push,” Garcia said. “Definitely more metal, think the tough-guy image, not the boy band image.”

Garcia said he thinks Linkin Park will stick around, but as for the rest, he predicts poor album sales and an eventual fall off.

Will these bands fall by the wayside? Only time will tell. But right now, all signs are pointing to ‘yes.’ We aren’t saying they will not have another big hit, just that they will not stick around for long.

In the music world a band’s success is decided by record sales. That leaves it up to you, the fans, to decide these bands’ fates.

What’s next? Who knows and that’s the point. Things change. Let’s face it; we change our minds so fast there’s no telling what will be the next nu-metal. Maybe opera. Just joking.

As for Cory Garcia, you can catch him and his “Loud Rock” music program on 90.5 The Kat Monday and Tuesday nights from 9 p.m. to midnight.

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