Based on the first part of the title of this post ( Depressing trends in metal ), you probably thought that it was going to be about black metal bands wearing corsets and looking like extras in The Matrix. Perhaps you thought it was about guys at death metal shows growling as though they were auditioning to be in the band. Maybe you thought it was about Robb Flynn's disease. As you can see by the rest of the title, however, it's not.
As it turns out, none of these trends compares to the ultimate, and most depressing trend ever. Cardboard guitars. You read right my friends, cardboard guitars. Turns out, they were a crucial part of the NWOBHM scene, and luckily for us, the BBC was there to document this unbelievable moment in metal history, and the great cast of characters that surrounded it. By "unbelievable" and "great" I actually mean "pathetic" and "dry-heave inducing". It all started with a cardboard guitar being used as a prop in a contest to see who was the best headbanger. No, I'm not kidding. When you watch the video, note the guy towards the end of the clip who is all pissed off because record labels wanted to give away cardboard guitars rather than letting headbangers make their own. The outrage!
Watch, be amazed, and depressed by it all. By the way, I would pay top dollar to find out where the main guy who is interviewed in this documentary is today. The poor dope has the personality of a dead moth...so I'm sure he went on to excel in the world of business, so he's probably a C level executive at a major corporation. The strong manner in which his voice projects, and his birdlike physique are the signs of a man with an unbelievable drive and vision. Just listen to him at the end, where he decides that he's too old to learn how to play the guitar, so perhaps he's better off excelling at pretending to play a cardboard guitar. It's like he invented Guitar Hero, he was so ahead of his time!
Watching this video makes me wonder if this is how the rest of the world saw my brother and I many yeasr ago as we toiled away making our (just as depressing) plywood bass guitar. It was a 5 string bass, by the way, since we couldn't decide if we wanted a guitar or a 4 string bass. We compromised on a 5 string bass with a whammy bar.