Revelations in Counterculture – The Myspace Era

28 Jun

Like many other kids, I had my middle school “emo” phase. Recently I decided to take a time machine back to 2006, made a Taking Back Sunday Pandora station, and whined along with Adam Lazzara once again. Unfortunately, I deleted my old MySpace account, probably because my parents forced me to, but for our purposes, I’ll say it was because I was ashamed of my bad haircut and even worse makeup skills.

Print

(this isn’t mine – but you get the gist)

Anyway, the 60s had their hippies, and the 2000s had emo kids. I’m sure when I was in middle school, I cared about its subcategories (scene, goth, etc) but for our purposes, they’re emo kids. With the ubiquity of the Internet combined with the attention-whoring mindset of many adolescent MySpace users, “emo” can hardly be called “counterculture.” They were (and maybe still are) bonded by a sense of disillusionment and a hatred of the mainstream society that they, like most counterculture movements, eventually would seep into. It should be a no-brainer that emo stemmed from the post-9/11 fear and disillusionment that all of the United States went through.

Green Day’s American Idiot blew up, I remember buying American Idiot merchandise in goddamn Claire’s. After the Bush-bashing first track, Billie Joe, in his typical nasally fashion, tells the story of characters who are completely damaged by the world around them. Just watch the Jesus of Suburbia video, because make fun of those guys all you want, but they nailed it.

american idiot

“Everyone is so full of shit

Born and raised by hypocrites

Hearts recycled but never saved

From the cradle to the grave”

The world suddenly became a terrifying place in the mid 2000s. Even kids who weren’t from New York like me sensed it. MySpace gave everyone a place to congregate and share their disillusionment through badly applied eyeliner, and poorly written poems about sadness. The raw anger and fuckall attitude of punk gave way to the fear and sadness of emo, which this album perfectly solidifies.

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