Story online since: 13.05.2012 / 01:26:02
On 13th – 14th April 2012 the 2nd edition of the Metal Research Symposium HARD WIRED took place at the Theological Faculty of the University of Zuerich (Switzerland). It introduced an interdisciplinary view on the methods of metal research. Academics from fields like sociology, musicology, pedagogics, cultural and media science and even religious studies presented results of their work.
I missed the first day. But here are the titles of the Friday speeches:
Britta Sweers – An Ethnographic Approach to Lettish Pagan Metal
Susanne Sackl – What is Metal? A sociologic discussion of the term as a basis of empiric research
André Epp – social science perspective as methodic approach
METAL AND SOCIAL PROCESSES
Pierre Hecker - ‚Doing Metal‘ Can the Concept of ‚Doing Gender‘ be Applied in Metal Studies?
Jörg Scheller - Adorning Heavy Metal
On Saturday some more inspiring presentations took place:
Lorenz Beyer – The Musical Syntax of Extreme Metal in Slayer’s "Angel of Death”
Lorenz Beyer tested out classic musicological theories like the Set Theory to explain the popularity of Slayer’s "Angel Of Death” and presented an interesting psychological approach based on Bob Snyder's "Music and Memory".
Florian Heesch – Intermediality as an Approach to Musicological Heavy Metal Research
Florian Heesch demonstrated intermedial connections between metal and Nordic mythology, using pagan metal audio samples as well as theories like the intermediality typology of Lund.
Charris Efthimiou - "Gott, da draußen sind eine Viertelmillion Menschen – versau es nicht!" A Trial to describe the typical IRON MAIDEN sound under a music-analytical Perspective
Charris Efthimiou analyzed the success factors of the typical IRON MAIDEN sound, including statistics like the development of the length of songs or the compass of Bruce Dickinson’s voice.
Anna-Katharina Höpflinger – The Circuit of Culture as a Methological Framework for Researching Verstimentary Processes in Swiss Black Metal
Anna-Katharina Höpflinger gave some insights into her research project about "Clothing and Religion” and encoding-decoding mechanisms of "clothing using religion” in the Swiss Black Metal scene.
Manuel Trummer – book presentation: Sympathy for the Devil?Transformations and Appearances of the Devil in Rock music
Manuel Trummer presented some aspects of his revealing book about the history of the devil in music culture. Make sure to get a copy of this opus here:
Arlette Huguenin - "Wimps and Posers Leave the Hall - Text Linguistics in Music Magazines and Webzines
Arlette Huguenin explained the framework of her current research project about changes of metal journalism in the age of internet.
Dominik Irtenkauf – Narratology as the Key to the Myth Machine Metal
Dominik Irtenkauf puts narratology into the center to explain the myth of metal. See his fascinating presentation here:
DEFINITORY Rolf F. Nohr - ‚Objekt‘ Metal. Konstitution eines Forschungsgegenstands
And finally Prof. Dr. Rolf Nohr proved his reputation as the Christoph Schlingensief of Metal Research with a vital speech about the traps an perspectives of a scientification of metal. He envisioned a methodological perspective that rejects all methodology and warned of the danger of becoming a dry encyclopaedic part of the scientific establishment. Instead he suggested to use metal research to understand the character of culture itself on a meta perspective.
Will Metal Research remain a fancy field for intellectual outlaws of metal as well as of science? Or is it on its way to become an established part of the scientific community? Will metal professors become as normal as professors of classical music or jazz one day? Will they play the Kuhn/Fleck paradigm game well? And what will they loose when they win? Time will tell…