Genre snobbery is still ever present in rock music, there are certain people who will disregard whole areas of rock music purely for the tone of a band’s guitar, or even weirder, how the band themselves look. Two of the bands that have been the focal point of this hatred over the years are Bring Me The Horizon and even more recently Black Veil Brides. These bands share a similar story in that they started off in their respective towns, grew fairly quickly and gained a small fanatical group of fans, this then expanded and, as with any band to be honest, they received their own share of haters, but these two more than most it seems.
Bring Me The Horizon are a great example of a band that has fed off this hatred, and in some ways thrived in it. They’ve received a torrent of hate, through a number of different mediums, and in that hate their fans grew tighter and more and more loyal to the albums, and their shows. There was an experiment by rock magazine Metal Hammer a few years ago where they actually played a couple of Bring Me songs to people heavily involved in metal music and gauged their reactions. Overall there was a positive “that’s fantastic”, “very heavy” and “quite technical” reaction to their songs, and as soon as the band’s name was revealed, their opinions seemed to change. It was their image that was holding them back, and less about the music itself.
Soon enough Bring Me started winning over fans with their music, instead of their looks. It started to become a bit boring to hate them for the sake of it, and people were starting to accept them for the great band that they are. ‘There Is a Hell, Believe Me I’ve Seen It…’, was the real turning point for the band, as their sound matured, and they started to gain a personal identity their fan base grew exponentially, and look at them now, they’re about to headline Wembley Arena, what is a monumental feat. Black Veil Brides, are a more recent change, and this came with a change in their image. Recently they got rid of the make-up and stripped themselves back a bit, and since people have seen them as less of a joke and a band to be taken a bit more seriously.Credit: press
The two bands have had completely different tactics when it’s come to live shows. Black Veil Brides have kept it a bit safer when it comes to supporting bands, or the bands they pick as support. Notably, they’ve supported the likes of Avenged Sevenfold and Murderdolls, and have just set out on a UK tour with Atilla, Fearless Vampire Killers and Drama Club, bands which are more likely to share support with the band. Whereas Bring Me The Horizon decided to run head first into danger and have had some risky live shows. Incredibly there was a recent time where they have toured with Devildriver, which is probably the striking example. It was incredible to see two bands with completely different sets of fans going on tour to try and win over new support during the tour. Musically the two probably aren’t that drastically different, it was the statement of the two bands being on tour that shocked people more.
It’s safe to say that these two bands could quite easily have thrown in the towel and said enough is enough with the amount of negativity they have received, but instead they strived to go forwards and continue to please what fans they did have, while at the same time proving the haters that they don’t know what they’re missing. Both have come out stronger and wiser of it, and have had to create better music because of it. In the end, you shouldn’t be judging bands on how they look. Try going in blind, listening to the music and then making a judgement afterwards, and if you don’t like how they look even after that, then you now have a new guilty pleasure, congratulations.