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grayzone
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2009 5:09 pm
Posts: 11
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 5:17 pm 
 

No--not joking.

I'm a pro writer/metal fan/bipolar doing an article on music and mental illness.

I'm super interested in how and if metal helps those who have clinical depression, bipolar syndrome, PTSD, schizophrenia.

If it inspires or impairs your creativity or ability to enjoy metal.

For me, I first noticed metal helping when someone played Metallica while I was having a panic attack--instead of making it worse, it calmed me down.

Of course, Metallica kinda sucks now, but metal still helps.

Note: I will NOT use anything anyone might post without permission.

Anyway! being mental AND metal! How could this *not* be interesting? And maybe even helpful, the talking.

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DeathcoreDecimator
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2007 6:34 pm
Posts: 622
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 5:46 pm 
 

Well I don't necessarily have any mental illnesses, but I do feel a bit anxious and tense at times, and all of those feelings go away when I'm listening to metal. It helps create a scene in my head and just forget all of those bad feelings.

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diabolikon
Metalhead

Joined: Fri Oct 10, 2008 9:33 pm
Posts: 978
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 5:48 pm 
 

I think the effects of metal are subjective. It alleviates some and aggravates others. (It alleviates me.)

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BardInTheForest
Metalhead

Joined: Sat Sep 17, 2005 5:59 pm
Posts: 967
Location: United States
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 5:52 pm 
 

I'll get back to you on this. I think I might have some worthwhile things to say about metal and hopefully music in general helping me through some tougher emotional times a few years ago. It's certainly very therapeutic.

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DeadXManiac
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2008 12:00 am
Posts: 1963
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 5:54 pm 
 

Metal helps cheer me up and calm me down. An example I was having a horrid day and wanted to smash this kids face in so I listened to Dark Funeral for about an hour and it all went away :).
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cfvk
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2008 7:00 pm
Posts: 115
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 6:03 pm 
 

i have clinical depression, i wouldn't say metal, but a lot of music in general really calms me down, and make me FEEL somewhere else, it's quite amazing.

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samekh
Metalhead

Joined: Sat Sep 02, 2006 11:36 am
Posts: 1126
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 6:22 pm 
 

Any issues that I have (I wouldn't call them mental illnesses) pre-date my interest in metal. In fact, since I started listening to metal again about five years ago, I think I've been happier.

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KingVold
Metalhead

Joined: Sat Nov 29, 2008 10:05 am
Posts: 1082
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 6:29 pm 
 

cfvk wrote:
i have clinical depression, i wouldn't say metal, but a lot of music in general really calms me down, and make me FEEL somewhere else, it's quite amazing.


Same for me. Im currently on lexapro and no longer suffer, but when i did, it was metal that saved me.
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Unholy_Asar
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Nov 01, 2007 7:29 am
Posts: 574
Location: Sweden
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 6:31 pm 
 

I would suggest looking into the history of the band Silencer. Their vocalist Nattramn was institutionalized for quite some time, but I think he's out now. I'm not at all sure about this, but there might be some information that might help you stashed away somewhere in the background story of Silencer and Nattramn. He also started his other ambient/noise/industrial project, Diagnose Lebensgefahr, during the time he was institutionalized as a form of therapy to make him better (maybe making music can really help since I think he's out now).

Black metal in general seems to have a way of attracting people who are mildly speaking a little strange (as in probably psychotic but undiagnosed, I have met a lot of these people). There is also a lot of black metal that deals with depression as it's main topic, and a lot of these artists have been suffering from genuine clinical depression at some point and have been suicidal (see Strid for an example). There are also bands like (V.E.G.A.) that deal with insanity in general as it's main theme. perhaps looking into these bands would give you a bit of insight to any connection there is between mental unhealth and (black) metal.
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Fearphobia
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Jan 07, 2007 6:58 am
Posts: 93
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 6:32 pm 
 

Thrash and doom metal help with my dysthymia (low form of depression, but it lasts for years) in different ways for the 2 genres. My dysthimia means I have very low motivation to do anything, and everything is an effort, but listening to some Thrash Metal like Slayer or Sadus gets me pumped up and increases by motivation.
When I have the "double depression" wallowing in some melancholic doom metal like (old) Paradise Lost and (old) Katatonia is a release, where I can focus on the harmonies; and repeat them in my head until I am almost in a trance like state. Therefore, my mind is temporary taken off my depressed mood.
I used to find depressive black metal also works, but the effect of the buzzing tone and the repetitive fuzzy mesmerizing riffs soon wears off as it is only shocking for so long. I much prefer the layered textured harmonies or the delicate power chords and licks found in doom metal to put me in a trance like state, focusing my mind away from my depression.
Help this helps a bit.

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Morbid89
Metalhead

Joined: Fri Aug 22, 2008 4:07 pm
Posts: 472
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 6:33 pm 
 

cfvk wrote:
i have clinical depression, i wouldn't say metal, but a lot of music in general really calms me down, and make me FEEL somewhere else, it's quite amazing.

Same. I've suffered from pretty bad depression for the past couple of years, and have found it increasingly difficult to deal with and care about a lot of things in my life. Metal's not only one of the few things I can still maintain an active interest and enthusiasm in, but it comforts me and really helps me get through a lot of stuff. Some people have said stuff like "no wonder you're depressed if you listen to all this music about death", but I find extreme metal especially can actually raise my mood and make things easier to deal with. It's so loud and crushing it just displaces the negative thoughts, or channels them into more positive energy. I owe a lot to metal really.

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screamingstatue
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2008 11:06 am
Posts: 577
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 6:57 pm 
 

I don't suffer from depression, thankfully, but listening to music, in particular metal, helps cheer me up on general bad days and helps me deal with anxiety.

I also genuinely believe metal, particularly thrash is a source of energy for me, no joke. It;s better than caffeine.

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grayzone
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2009 5:09 pm
Posts: 11
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 6:59 pm 
 

>>It's so loud and crushing it just displaces the negative thoughts, or channels them into more positive energy. I owe a lot to metal really.

I have the same experience. I'm going to ask some neurologists if music really can sort of 'flood' your brain so the crappy stuff is diminished.

Sort of the exacting science of extreme metal.

I think alot of black metal might show the reverse side of the metal-helps idea. That maybe listening to it is almost masochistic and might cause one to get deeper into their problems/pathology.

I'm not being judgemental, just trying to see the different sides to how we listen to different types of metal.

My Gf was reading while I played Swallow the Sun, Agollach and other stuff in that vein, and she was like, 'No wonder you get so gloomy sometimes," but I said, "No--it's why I don't get gloomier."

that and some meds, I mean. :)

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Smoking_Gnu
Chicago Favorite

Joined: Sat Mar 15, 2008 11:22 pm
Posts: 2722
Location: United States
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 7:11 pm 
 

grayzone wrote:
>>It's so loud and crushing it just displaces the negative thoughts, or channels them into more positive energy. I owe a lot to metal really.

I have the same experience. I'm going to ask some neurologists if music really can sort of 'flood' your brain so the crappy stuff is diminished.

Sort of the exacting science of extreme metal.

I think alot of black metal might show the reverse side of the metal-helps idea. That maybe listening to it is almost masochistic and might cause one to get deeper into their problems/pathology.


I have found this to be true as well. A lot of times I'll listen to some Emperor or Enslaved just to "clear my head." I think it really depends on the type of black metal in general; while the aforementioned ones are "loud and crushing" they do a nice job of displacing, but they don't seem (to me) to be excessively masochistic or depressing, so I'm not affected negatively by them. This is why I tend to stay away from the more depressing kinds of music in general, I guess.

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Norrmania
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2006 12:42 am
Posts: 384
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 7:12 pm 
 

nm


Last edited by Norrmania on Thu Mar 05, 2009 7:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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FullmetalxFool
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Mon Jan 19, 2009 12:45 pm
Posts: 11
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 7:27 pm 
 

I have ADHD, so metal helps me when I have too much energy because I can rock out to it!

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PsyMoN_MDA
Metal newbie

Joined: Sat Jul 01, 2006 4:06 pm
Posts: 251
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 7:40 pm 
 

cfvk wrote:
i have clinical depression, i wouldn't say metal, but a lot of music in general really calms me down, and make me FEEL somewhere else, it's quite amazing.

same thing
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chrislyles15
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 9:08 pm
Posts: 744
Location: Aumsville, Oregon
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 8:06 pm 
 

I used to be really depressed a couple of years ago, and I was extremely suicidal. But when I felt bad, I would put in some Metal and think "if I died I would never get to listen to this amazing sound ever again." That helped alot.

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The_Velvet_Kevorkian
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2008 5:53 pm
Posts: 65
Location: United States
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 8:45 pm 
 

I listened to metal before my affliction from metal illness (PTSD)

In any regard any form of music is theraputic just depends on the afflicteds personal tastes, thoughout muliplte short and long term hostpital stays some used music as therapy, unfortunately some wouldn't allow that outlet, I was in a psych ward and had the current issue of the Magzine I happen to write for that had Slayer on the cover and a nurse snatched it away stating I don't think this will help give you a positive outlook.

I don't know if introducing someone suffering from a mental illness no matter what disorder it may be to any form of metal especially if they are an avid listener of a certian genre, for example country music, would help it could either aggravate or depress.

From my experience music has helped the many symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (Anxiety, Depression, Flashbacks... and in my case dissociation)

Some genres can calm, some can lift your mood, the biggest postive however was the release of anger, concerts obviously were the best outlet, but just blasting the shit out of some blasphemously angry music also helps release anger and anxieties...

On a negative aspect, there have been times when I was in a downward spiral and listening to dark and "evil" music which helped instigate self-mutilation which was a tool I use to relieve anxiety and flashbacks/nightmares etc...

In essence it could be a pro or a con.

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Myrggh
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 8:05 am
Posts: 55
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 8:51 pm 
 

Someone needs to treat this as a proper piece of research because all you will get by asking on a forum is biased anecdotal evidence - most people will try to justify their favorite music by saying that it is beneficial to them.

Its a good question though.

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Sadness_for_Life
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2006 5:15 am
Posts: 382
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 9:00 pm 
 

I'm mildly schizophrenic and I have borderline personality disorder.

Music really does help, it just lets me close my eyes and get lost, and be in another world. When I'm listening to metal I listen to beautiful, epic and sad things. Summoning is my favorite band to listen to when I'm depressed, the grandiose atmosphere really helps me lose track of tangible and negative real life things.

Though it's a double edged sword because sometimes when I'm really really bad I'll listen to depressing music like Make a Change... Kill Yourself and other DSBM and I'll have urges to hurt myself or I'll very seriously ponder dying.

I think violent angry music alleviates the stress much better than depressing sad music, though there is an inherent, exquisite beauty in something that is just seething with sadness and depression. It's a kind of beauty that's impossible to achieve in the typical sense.

I listen to Regurgitate when I want to let off steam, I listen to Burzum when I went to revel in the beauty of utter desolation and sadness.
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Zombie_Quixote
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2008 11:00 pm
Posts: 254
Location: South Africa
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 10:07 pm 
 

Unholy_Asar wrote:
I would suggest looking into the history of the band Silencer. Their vocalist Nattramn was institutionalized for quite some time, but I think he's out now(...)


I heard he tried to smash in a pair of young (8-9 years old I believe) girls' heads with an axe and is back in the looney bin.

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weakling_goat
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2008 8:34 pm
Posts: 755
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 12:01 am 
 

Zombie_Quixote wrote:
Unholy_Asar wrote:
I would suggest looking into the history of the band Silencer. Their vocalist Nattramn was institutionalized for quite some time, but I think he's out now(...)


I heard he tried to smash in a pair of young (8-9 years old I believe) girls' heads with an axe and is back in the looney bin.

I heard he was featured on Ripley's Believe it or Not for his explosive bowel expulsion syndrome.

On topic, I don't think metal really evokes any emotions in me, calms me down, etc. Some stuff is nice to sleep to and the rest is good to listen to while working out.

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TheJester
Metal newbie

Joined: Sat Dec 22, 2007 12:34 pm
Posts: 148
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 12:14 am 
 

When I listen to music, I become completely lost in it and it is very hard for me to concentrate on anything worthwhile. I can't go very long without having headphones in my ears, and whenever I'm not listening to music I'm doodling band logos all over the place and am thinking about bands that I want to look up or bands that I already listen to a lot and when I'm really bored I sit and try to remember off of the top of my head every band I have on my MP3 player.

Music is my fucking drug. I can't live without it. Even now, at 11:15 P.M. I'm supposed to be writing a 5 paged paper, but no; I'm sitting on the computer listening to music and trying to find more music.

I have a problem. Lol.

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grayzone
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2009 5:09 pm
Posts: 11
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 12:59 am 
 

>>>Music is my fucking drug. I can't live without it. Even now, at 11:15 P.M. >>>I'm supposed to be writing a 5 paged paper, but no; I'm sitting on the >>>computer listening to music and trying to find more music.

I do that as well.

But is that all bad? I mean, and this might sound lame, but finding new stuff, it's like giving yourself a treat after hard work or whatever.

And discovering stuff can be as cool as hearing it.

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Tantalus
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Sep 12, 2005 6:18 pm
Posts: 1100
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 6:51 am 
 

I've suffered from clinical depression (often in crippling bouts) for about 10 years, and find that metal is extremely soothing during the dark times. I find repetetive, primitive black metal like VON or trilogy period Darkthrone to be the most effective, almost like taking some rescue remedy! It's not the 'evil' content or whatever, more the frequencies and rhythms, the repetition.
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TheMancubus
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:43 pm
Posts: 196
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 10:37 am 
 

I have ADHD and OCD and both combine to really distract me and I need chaotic and complex music to be playing in the background to keep me somewhat focused on what I'm doing.

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mudbloodkiller
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2008 4:23 am
Posts: 159
Location: China
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 10:51 am 
 

I became kind of depress and feel much lonelier after I was totally into BM,but who cares,I've became much mature now except hard to get along with sometime.

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foz45139
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 1:48 pm
Posts: 448
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 11:04 am 
 

weakling_goat wrote:
On topic, I don't think metal really evokes any emotions in me, calms me down, etc.


Beyond the Realms of Death and Dreamer Deceiver don't make you feel any emotion?
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thornsentwine
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2008 5:35 am
Posts: 59
Location: India
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 11:24 am 
 

Metal is my fucking drug too. When I'm not listening, I'm busy playing my guitar for hours, I lose my track of time.
Black Metal really helps me cheer up during my dark times.
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Mezentus
Blood on my hands

Joined: Sat Mar 22, 2008 9:23 pm
Posts: 1246
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 12:05 pm 
 

Metal is a drug, that helps in many ways.

Thrash metal is often what helps me motivate, for example during school I will enjoy a casual listen to Hell Awaits, and I'm good for the day.

Death metal helps vent anger and relieves stress.

Black metal generally expresses my hatred and anger as well, but depressive black metal is more like my medication for depression. Sometimes, in my darkest of times, I will give Leviathan's "The Tenth Sub Level of Suicide" or Thy Light's "Suici.De.Pression" a listen, and my depression will get worse, but after I go through the heaviest of thoughts and then I rid of them through the music.

With intoxication, it's kinda hard to explain what I mean, but yeah, metal is therapy.

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ogmetal
Veteran of the Psychic Wars

Joined: Fri Jul 02, 2004 9:22 pm
Posts: 3999
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 12:35 pm 
 

TheJester wrote:

Music is my fucking drug. I can't live without it. Even now, at 11:15 P.M. I'm supposed to be writing a 5 paged paper, but no; I'm sitting on the computer listening to music and trying to find more music.

I have a problem. Lol.


That's called procrastination. That's not a drug. You need to work on the paper.
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Mythics
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Jun 29, 2008 10:45 am
Posts: 335
Location: Netherlands
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:01 pm 
 

I suffer from chronic depressions (depression symptoms can linger for a long period of time). About my music, I mostly listen to depressive black metal as, in a certain way, I feel attracted to it (like everyone has to the kind of music he likes). It's music I can always listen to and is, in a certain way, relaxing.

Favorite band by far is Trist (Cze). His album "Zrcadlení melancholie", consisting of only 2 tracks, is by far it's best and it's something that, in a certain way, moves me. I don't exactly know why but a friend of mine once said "a band is good when they understand the feelings they express". The point is, Trist suffers from depressions (and also commits heavy self injury) and in that way you can really bring your thoughts and idea's into this music and not simply generate them to look 'sad and depressed'..
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trueMunchies
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2008 3:19 pm
Posts: 323
Location: Israel
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:33 pm 
 

For some reason the original post made me laugh
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Tea_and_Crumpets
"Fail" is a sentence fragment.

Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2007 1:00 pm
Posts: 277
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:54 pm 
 

Mythics wrote:
I suffer from chronic depressions (depression symptoms can linger for a long period of time). About my music, I mostly listen to depressive black metal as, in a certain way, I feel attracted to it (like everyone has to the kind of music he likes). It's music I can always listen to and is, in a certain way, relaxing.

Favorite band by far is Trist (Cze). His album "Zrcadlení melancholie", consisting of only 2 tracks, is by far it's best and it's something that, in a certain way, moves me. I don't exactly know why but a friend of mine once said "a band is good when they understand the feelings they express". The point is, Trist suffers from depressions (and also commits heavy self injury) and in that way you can really bring your thoughts and idea's into this music and not simply generate them to look 'sad and depressed'..


Trist is amazing, very emotional music. I have to say that metal as a genre is one of the most injected with emotion and real power.

On a not unrelated note I remember that Devin Townsend has pi-polar disorder, and when creating the SYL album City, he didn't take his medication for a month which his Dr informed him would turn him insane. The result, one of the most passionate albums ever, full of energy and angst!

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grayzone
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Thu Mar 05, 2009 5:09 pm
Posts: 11
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 4:12 pm 
 

I'm glad he lived because, beyond any doubt, he deluded himself.

People do not make art *because* they're bipolar or otherwise mentally ill, they make art *despite" it.

There's this old terminal notion that madness is behind creativity.

Actually, mental clarity is behind creativity.

People by and large use the 'madness-is-my-muse routine to cover the fact that they're scared they won't be creative without fucking themselves up (drugs) or letting themselves be fucked up when help is available (mental illness, but obviously, people sometimes have no choice with severe mental illness.)


Okay--off my soap box.

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circleofdestruction
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Sep 24, 2008 8:15 am
Posts: 805
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 4:19 pm 
 

grayzone wrote:
People do not make art *because* they're bipolar or otherwise mentally ill, they make art *despite" it.

There's this old terminal notion that madness is behind creativity.

Actually, mental clarity is behind creativity.

People by and large use the 'madness-is-my-muse routine to cover the fact that they're scared they won't be creative without fucking themselves up (drugs) or letting themselves be fucked up when help is available (mental illness, but obviously, people sometimes have no choice with severe mental illness.)

And where are your studies that back this up, since you clearly know exactly where creativity comes from? On a serious note though, the whole thread is just a bunch of opinions. I've read books that mention in passing the author's ideas on these things, but I'm not sure you can draw any real conclusions except that, like in everything else, some people involved in metal have been diagnosed with mental illnesses, and some have not. Some great musicians have had mental illness, others have not. And so on.
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Crick
Despised by 17 Corners of the Universe

Joined: Sun Jun 01, 2008 6:11 pm
Posts: 6408
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 4:22 pm 
 

grayzone wrote:
I'm glad he lived because, beyond any doubt, he deluded himself.

People do not make art *because* they're bipolar or otherwise mentally ill, they make art *despite" it.

There's this old terminal notion that madness is behind creativity.

Actually, mental clarity is behind creativity.

People by and large use the 'madness-is-my-muse routine to cover the fact that they're scared they won't be creative without fucking themselves up (drugs) or letting themselves be fucked up when help is available (mental illness, but obviously, people sometimes have no choice with severe mental illness.)


Okay--off my soap box.


One, he only did that for City, and still created plenty of awesome material after and before it. It was an experiment to try and release a stronger emotion from him, and it succeeded. Who are you to say he's delusional? If anything mental clarity usually only leads to music thats a step down in conviction.
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TheMancubus
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:43 pm
Posts: 196
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 11:02 pm 
 

Crick wrote:
grayzone wrote:
I'm glad he lived because, beyond any doubt, he deluded himself.

People do not make art *because* they're bipolar or otherwise mentally ill, they make art *despite" it.

There's this old terminal notion that madness is behind creativity.

Actually, mental clarity is behind creativity.

People by and large use the 'madness-is-my-muse routine to cover the fact that they're scared they won't be creative without fucking themselves up (drugs) or letting themselves be fucked up when help is available (mental illness, but obviously, people sometimes have no choice with severe mental illness.)


Okay--off my soap box.


One, he only did that for City, and still created plenty of awesome material after and before it. It was an experiment to try and release a stronger emotion from him, and it succeeded. Who are you to say he's delusional? If anything mental clarity usually only leads to music thats a step down in conviction.


That wasn't City, that was Alien. He went on medication after City.

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marktheviktor
Metal freak

Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2006 3:41 am
Posts: 6904
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 11:04 pm 
 

FullmetalxFool wrote:
I have ADHD, so metal helps me when I have too much energy because I can rock out to it!


Check out Metal Health by Quiet Riot. It's a gas.

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