Screamo


Screamo

Infobox Music genre
name = Screamo
color = white
bgcolor = crimson
stylistic_origins = Hardcore punk
Emo
Post-hardcorecite news
title =Blood Runs Deep: 23 Bands Who Shaped the Scene
pages =126
publisher =Alternative Press
date =2008-07-07
]
Post-punk [Interview with Justin Pearson, "Skatepunk.net", [http://www.skatepunk.net/articles/jpiview.html] Access date: June 13, 2008]
cultural_origins = Early 1990s San Diego
instruments = Drums, Bass guitar, Electric guitar, Vocals
popularity = Initially underground; second wave experienced burst of popularity in the mid-2000s [cite news|title= Screamo rules the 209 |publisher=209Vibe|author= Hill, Ian|date=2008-04-02|url=http://www.209vibe.com/articles/view/162/]
derivatives =
subgenrelist =
subgenres =
fusiongenres =
regional_scenes =
other_topics = Mathcore

Screamo is a sub genre of rock music which evolved from hardcore punk and emo in the early 1990s. The term "screamo" was initially applied to a more aggressive offshoot of emo that developed in San Diego in 1991, which used short, chaotically executed songs which grafted "spastic intensity to willfully experimental dissonance and dynamics,"Jason Heller, "Feast of Reason". "Denver Westword", June 20, 2002. [http://www.westword.com/2002-06-20/music/feast-of-reason/print] Access date: June 15, 2008] often with a political message. Some groups had an even harder edge that put them closer to the noise rock and grindcore styles.In the early 2000s, the genre name began to describe a different, slower and less dissonant style that borrowed from alternative rock, most notably in a 2003 "New York Times" article. The term's application to the "second wave" is controversial among fans and practitioners of the earlier style."A History of Emo Music", "Gigwise". July 17, 2008. [http://www.gigwise.com/article?id=44697&
] Access date: July 18, 2008.] One musician observed that the term "has been kind of tainted in a way, especially in the States".

First wave (c.1991-Present)

The term "screamo" was initially applied to a more aggressive offshoot of emo that began in 1991, in San Diego, at the Ché Café, ["A Day with the Locust", "L.A. Weekly", September 18, 2003 [http://www.brassland.org/ahb/writing/archives/2003/09/a_day_with_the.html] Access date: June 19, 2008] with groups such as Heroin, Antioch Arrow, ["Local Cut", Q&A with Aaron Montaigne. [http://localcut.wweek.com/2008/05/14/qa-aaron-montaigne-of-antioch-arrow-magick-daggers-etc/] May 14, 2008. Access date: June 11, 2008.] Angel Hair, Mohinder, Swing Kids, and Portraits of Past.Ebullition Catalog, Portraits of Past discography. [http://www.ebullition.com/catalog32.html] Access date: August 9, 2008.] These groups were influenced by D.C. hardcore (particularly Nation of Ulysses and Fugazi), [Jason Heller, "Feast of Reason". "Denver Westword", June 20, 2002. [http://www.westword.com/2002-06-20/music/feast-of-reason/print] Access date: June 15, 2008] straight edge, the Chicago group Articles of Faith,cite news
title =Blood Runs Deep: 23 Bands Who Shaped the Scene
pages =126
publisher =Alternative Press
date =2008-07-07
] and post-punk, such as Joy Division [Swing Kids covered "Warsaw"; Justin Pearson discusses Joy Division's influence in an interview on Skatepunk.net, [http://www.skatepunk.net/articles/jpiview.html] Access date: June 13, 2008] and Bauhaus. [Jason Heller, "Feast of Reason". "Denver Westword", June 20, 2002. [http://www.westword.com/2002-06-20/music/feast-of-reason/print] Access date: June 15, 2008] Gravity Records [Trevor Kelley, "California Screaming". "Alternative Press" 17 (2003), pp. 84-86.] and Ebullition Records released this more chaotic and expressive style of hardcore. The scene was also notable for its distinctive fashion sense, inspired by mod culture. [Interview with Justin Pearson on Skatepunk.net, [http://www.skatepunk.net/articles/jpiview.html] Access date: June 13, 2008] Screamo bands became increasingly theatrical, and re-appropriated aspects of Gothic rock and synthpop in groups such as the VSS, Pleasure Forever,Jason Heller, "Feast of Reason". "Denver Westword", June 20, 2002. [http://www.westword.com/2002-06-20/music/feast-of-reason/print] Access date: June 15, 2008] The Crimson Curse, The Locust, [Matt Schild, "Going to Extremes", "Aversion", May 19, 2003. [http://www.aversion.com/bands/interviews.cfm?f_id=198] Access date: June 16, 2008] Some Girls, [Matt Schild, "Heaven's Pregnant Teens" review, "Aversion". [http://www.aversion.com/bands/reviews.cfm?review=2420] ] and The Rapture. [Sub Pop biography, [http://www.subpop.com/artists/the_rapture] Access date: June 16, 2008.] The Plot to Blow Up the Eiffel Tower incorporated the style into punk jazz. [Joel Caris, Concert Review, Blogcritics Magazine, February 21, 2005. [http://blogcritics.org/archives/2005/02/21/134418.php] Access date: June 17, 2008] Much as emo was, the term "screamo" was always controversial in the scene.Jason Heller, "Feast of Reason". "Denver Westword", June 20, 2002. [http://www.westword.com/2002-06-20/music/feast-of-reason/print] Access date: June 15, 2008]

The innovations of the San Diego scene eventually spread elsewhere, such as to the Seattle group The Blood Brothers. [Matt Schild, "Bleeding Hearts." Aversion.com. March 3, 2003. [http://www.aversion.com/bands/interviews.cfm?f_id=189] Access date: June 15, 2008.] East Coast groups, such as Orchid, ["Orchid always was, and always will be the quintessential screamo band of the late 90s, as they encompassed everything people like me love about the genre, and throw their own unique spin on it" - Anchors; Review of Orchid's "Totality", December 27, 2005. Access date: June 16, 2008. [http://www.punknews.org/review/4842] ] [Nick Catucci, "The New Rolling Stone Album Guide", 2004. [http://www.rollingstone.com/artists/blackdice/biography] Access date: June 17, 2008.] Circle Takes the Square, pg. 99, Hot Cross, Saetia,Ryan Buege, "Circle Takes the Square is in the Studio". "Metal Injection", June 15, 2008. [http://metalinjection.net/latest-news/circle-takes-the-square-is-in-the-studio] Access date: June 17, 2008] and Ampere [Nick Greer, Ampere review, "Sputnik Music", August 29, 2005. [http://www.sputnikmusic.com/album.php?albumid=3361] Access date: August 9, 2008.] were influential in the continual development and reinvention of the style. These groups tended to be much closer to grindcore than their forebears.Ryan Buege, "Circle Takes the Square is in the Studio". "Metal Injection", June 15, 2008. [http://metalinjection.net/latest-news/circle-takes-the-square-is-in-the-studio] Access date: June 17, 2008] Powerviolence-inflected screamo is sometimes referred to as "emo violence", a name half-jokingly proposed by In/Humanity. [Jason Thompson, "Violent Resignation" review, "PopMatters". [http://www.popmatters.com/music/reviews/i/inhumanity-violent.shtml] Access date: June 17, 2008.]

The original screamo style is still practiced by a variety of groups, particularly in Europe. Amanda Woodward, [Kevin Jagernauth, "PopMatters", November 29, 2004. [http://www.popmatters.com/music/reviews/w/woodwardamanda-ladecadence.shtml] Access date: July 28, 2008.] Louise Cyphre, ["Altogether, our music certainly still is 'screamo'." - Sven, interview with Julien, "ShootMeAgain Webzine", 06-11-2006. [http://www.shootmeagain.com/?section=interviews&read=39&version=vo] ] La Quiete and Raein are prime examples of the European scene. These bands often release their records themselves or through independent labels, often recording splits with other bands from the same scene.

Although the contemporary DIY screamo scene is more prevalent in Europe, there are still many active bands in America. Examples include ComadreJan, "Yellow is the new pink", 18-04-07. [http://yellowisthenewpink.com/articles_detail.php?idno=21] ] from Redwood, Off Minor (ex-Saetia) from New York and ...Who Calls So Loud (ex-Funeral Diner) from San Francisco and Tentacle's a Flower from Texas.

Conceptual elements

Many first-wave screamo groups saw themselves as implicitly political, and as a reaction against the turn to the right embodied by California politicians, such as Roger Hedgecock. [Interview with Justin Pearson on Skatepunk.net, [http://www.skatepunk.net/articles/jpiview.html] Access date: June 13, 2008] Some groups were also unusually theoretical in inspiration: Angel Hair cited surrealist writers Antonin Artaud and Georges Bataille,Jason Heller, "Feast of Reason". "Denver Westword", June 20, 2002. [http://www.westword.com/2002-06-20/music/feast-of-reason/print] Access date: June 15, 2008] and Orchid lyrically name-checked French new wave icon Anna Karina, philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche, and critical theory originators the Frankfurt School. [Orchid, "Dance Tonight, Revolution Tomorrow". "Allmusic Guide". [http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:g9foxqraldje] Access date: June 17, 2008.]

Characteristics

First-wave screamo uses typical rock instrumentation, but is notable for its brief compositions and chaotic execution. It has been described, by music journalist Jason Heller, as "graft [ing] spastic intensity to willfully experimental dissonance and dynamics,"Jason Heller, "Feast of Reason". "Denver Westword", June 20, 2002. [http://www.westword.com/2002-06-20/music/feast-of-reason/print] Access date: June 15, 2008] indicating a kinship with noise rock. Later groups sometimes included synthesizers and other electronic sounds.Jason Heller, "Feast of Reason". "Denver Westword", June 20, 2002. [http://www.westword.com/2002-06-20/music/feast-of-reason/print] Access date: June 15, 2008]

econd wave (2002-Present)

By 2002, [Jim DeRogatis, "Screamo", "Guitar World", November 2002 [http://www.jimdero.com/OtherWritings/OtherScreamoGW.htm] Access date: July 18, 2008] the genre name drifted into the music press, especially in the journalism of Jim DeRogatis and Andy Greenwald. "Screamo" began to describe a different, much slower and less dissonant style that borrowed from alternative rock.San Diego Weekly Reader, November 22, 2006. [http://www.sandiegoreader.com/bands/far/] Access date: June 16, 2008] These new bands incorporate commercial elements of rock, emo and post-hardcore. As the two styles are noticeably distinct, the wide contemporary usage of the term 'screamo' has been controversial among some critics. The Sacramento band FarSan Diego Weekly Reader, November 22, 2006. [http://www.sandiegoreader.com/bands/far/] Access date: June 16, 2008] and the Canadian group Grade were among the first bands to practice this variety of screamo. The second outcropping of groups to be given the name included Thursday and The Used.cite news
last =Dee
first =Jonathan
title =The Summer of Screamo
pages =Section 6; Column 1; Magazine Desk; Pg. 26
publisher =The New York Times
date =2003-06-29
] Thursday also cited post-punk (Joy Division) and post-hardcore (Fugazi) as important influences, but also took cues from the alternative rock of Radiohead, U2, and The Cure. [Interview with Thursday on The PunkSite.com, [http://www.thepunksite.com/interviews.php?page=thursday] Access date: June 13, 2008.] [Andy Greenwald, "", New York: Saint Martin's Griffin, 2003, p. 153] In contrast to the DIY first-wave screamo groups, Thursday and the Used have signed multialbum contracts with labels such as Island Def Jam and Reprise Records. [Greenwald, p. 149.] Bert McCracken has declared that "screamo" is merely a term "for record companies to sell records and for record stores to categorize them." [Andy Greenwald, "Screamo 101", "Entertainment Weekly", no. 738, Nov. 21, 2003. [http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,543090,00.html] Access date: August 2, 2008.] The groups generally prefer to be described as post-hardcore. [Corey Apar, "A City By the Light Divided" review, Allmusic, [http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:kpfqxq8dldte] Access date: August 2, 2008.]

Characteristics

Second-wave screamo typically makes use of dual guitars and eschews guitar solos, and is most identifiable by its "frequent shifts in tempo and dynamics and by tension-and-release catharses." Unlike the first wave of screamo, these bands often compose ballads. ["Plus, what screamo band doesn't have ballads?" -Troy Davis. "San Diego Weekly Reader", November 11, 2006. [http://www.sandiegoreader.com/bands/far/] Access date: June 16, 2008] Second-wave screamo has been described as "mixing the literate, poetic lyrics of hardcore punk with a harsher and more metallic brand of sonic thrash" [cite news
last =DeRogatis
first =Jim
title =Keep Thursday in mind
pages =WEEKEND PLUS; NEWS; LIVE; Pg. 5
publisher =Chicago Sun-Times
date =2003-09-19
] as well as using screaming vocals "as a kind of crescendo element, a sonic weapon to be trotted out when the music and lyrics...reach a particular emotional pitch.

References


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