Emo: Independent Music for the Weak

by Will Judy

Emo has been around long enough that it should have died a natural death by now. But it won’t go away. It hangs around, moping just out of view, like a skinny wuss with a journal in his messenger bag and tears in his eyes. You tell him to fuck off and he skulks away, but you see him following you again the next day. Emo needs that rejection to keep its heart pure, you see. Ugh, so creepy? Can you believe you ever thought there was something special about emo?

It’s over, emo. We’re done with you. It’s been 20 years. Why can’t you just move on?

Most emo kids are dorky enough to know the enshrined canon and history of emo, which starts in DC in ‘85 or so with Embrace and Rites of Spring. This period in history might as well be the Siege of Stalingrad to most of the grumpy larvae who cry along with Dashboard Confessional, and it’s not really accurate anyway. The first band from DC that I ever heard labeled “emo” or “emocore” was Beefeater, whose absence from the canon is mystifying, since their stance was militant vegetarian and their bass player sported the original emo beard. (Note: I grew up in DC and I saw Minor Threat live, okay, so if you’re under 35 and not a Mackaye, do not come at me with a bunch of noise you read on the web somewhere.)

As a further point, just to illustrate the roach-like . . .

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