About twenty-five years ago, a small group of musicians crafted a genre of music designed to express a way around the futility and rage of modern society. Evolving from other genres more inclined toward anger and despair, the new movement attempted to capture instead a melancholic hope for sanity and discernment to win out over the herd.
They joined notoriously heterodox and eccentric conservatives who believed that, contrary to what most people thought, our problem has always been ourselves and our tendency to run headlong toward illusions — of power, self-importance, and sensation — instead of paying attention to what is actually real.
Such conservatives, including Plato and Aldous Huxley, felt that humanity would never fall prey to an obvious evil like Communism, but instead would make itself a paradise that turned out to be a wasteland. The constant pursuit of self-gratification would lead to an erasure of the actual good, making people empty and neurotic.
As it turns out, history has not just validated these thinkers but proven them right. We live in a consumer paradise of infinite product options and limitless entertainment, and yet people are still casting around listless and confused. Obviously we need more than simply gratifying our personal urges!
Black metal also posited that humanity destroyed itself through trends where, in a need to participate in whatever was conveying importance in that second, people would form into vast herds and mindlessly pursue novelty. This would make them feel free, important, etc. but actually enslave them to what others were doing, and result in the usual crisis of bad results that groupthink and mass conformity bring about.
In the grand tradition of recognizing hypocrisy of the nature of “the Leftist cries out has he strikes you,” we can see the cries of the Left for more diversity so that we can avoid “inbreeding” to in fact be a desire to avoid intellectual inbreeding, which is what trends (and trend-based ideas like Leftism) get us.
Trends are a substitute for life itself. Instead of discovering meaning, a combination of inner order and its correspondence to external activity, people search for distractions. They chase superficial pleasures instead of lasting enjoyment of life. They avoid reality and themselves.
When we read about some clown like this XXXtentacion guy who just got himself wasted in Miami, it is important to recognize that we are looking at something that is merely a trend.
In the bigger scheme of things, rap music never made life more meaningful for anyone. Neither, really, did rock, pop, blues, or any other big musical product. These genres are based on the trend mentality: pursuing the external as a means of shaping the internal, and hoping that having enough others participate makes it more important than the facts of reality themselves.
That, too, is an illusory dream. All that matters is what is real and what we do with it; escaping it will do no good, only twist our souls into the empty shapeless wrecks we see wandering all around us. As the era of the individualist ends, a new dawn arises for the notion of actually having a soul.