In their perceived habitat, a metalhead is a lone wolf, a vagabond, an unrepentant practitioner of anything and everything metal. But the moment you witness a metalhead disconnect from their controlled, brutish persona into a sappy, emotional being who makes meow meow noises at kitties in pet shop windows is the moment you realize that the savagery of metal is purely an illusion. Everyone who listens to metal is not a sociopathic caveman who hates your family and sacrifices stuff to whatever. If we’ve learned anything from Hesher or various episodes of Metalocalypse, metalheads are deeply sensitive souls who feel feelings. They cry at the end of The Notebook (I’ve seen this…twice), they stick up for people they care about, and they crumble at the sight of a fluffy kitty.
Alexandra Crockett, a photographer and doctoral student at the California School of Professional Psychology, has witnessed this softer side of the metalhead as well. After spending nearly 15 years in the Seattle metal scene, her visual documentation of extreme musicians and their kitty cat pals prompted the idea behind her upcoming book release Metal Cats, a 100-plus photo collection of metal’s most misanthropic figures and their cute, cuddly felines. Featuring members of Cattle Decapitation, Phobia, Morbid Angel, Napalm Death, Xasthur, and Skarp, the dynamic between metal’s most violent and domineering musicians and their furry kittehs are explored through 176 pages of adorable that destroys the stereotypical metalhead image we’ve come to accept.
English singer Emmy The Great popped her Coachella cherry this year so we made her write about it.
In the week leading up to Coachella, I had a sick terrible feeling in my stomach. I don’t like going to stuff that I know nothing about, and I hate not knowing what to expect. I prefer being the person who tells people stuff. For example, I am so confident in my knowledge of Glastonbury that I keep a regular checklist of things to bring that I can circulate amongst Glastonbury virgins before the festival. I’m that girl. The idea of going to a brand new festival, in a desert, that I heard was hot as hell and incredibly expensive, was not attractive to me at all. Pathetically, the only thing stronger than my aversion to new experiences is FOMO. So it was that I found myself driving a rental car full of English people from LA to Palm Springs, chasing an experience that could possibly be dreadful, but at least would be the same dreadful experience that other people were having. God forbid someone on my Instagram should post a photo of a line for the porta potty that I didn’t have the chance to stand in.
So you could call my trip to Coachella a fact-finding mission. And yes, I did learn a lot. I learned a lot about naked human bodies, about celebrities, about myself. I saw some bands. Did I mention naked human bodies? I saw more of those.
Legend has it that Gene Simmons once said a great guitarist doesn’t play with his mind, but with his dick. Ron Jeremy—porn icon, cameo king, and classically trained musician—took this unbelievably far beyond the realm of metaphor on his first single, pounding his “schmeckle” on the keys of his piano while playing “1812 Overture.” You can take Ron Jeremy into the studio, but the studio will be subject to the whole Ron Jeremy experience as soon as he crosses its threshold. And that experience involves his penis.
For me, Coachella means two things: crashing parties, and checking out the exceptionally high concentration of hot-ass bros. Everywhere I looked there was a beautiful bro, gallivanting around, shirtless, in all his masculine glory. The pool where all these bros congregated to drink beers and swim became a watering hole where I felt the need to answer to my animal instincts. There were bros as far as the eye could see. Yung (probably underage) bros, old(er) bros, scruffy bros whose chests I wanted to caress, unnaturally hairless bros I wanted to rub suntan lotion all over. Soon even girls started morphing into bros, a mirage caused by the excruciating heat of the desert and my unquenchable thirst to find the most caliber specimens of the male breed. This past weekend I scoured the party grounds for the hottest bros I could find from every genre. Here they are. And sorry, but I’m dating all of them.
THE REALITY TV STAR BRO AKA TOM SANBROVAL
If you thought Tom Sandoval was hot onscreen, he’s even hotter in real life. I clearly need to open my own restaurant to enslave hot yung bros to work for me. Lisa Van Der Pump knows what’s up.
THE MODEL BROS AKA THE BRODELS
I. JUST. WANT. TO. STARE. AT. YOUR. FACES. ALL. DAY.
THE FRAT BROS AKA THE WTF ARE THESE BROS DOING AT COACHELLA BROS
I want to purposely lose in a game of college beer pong to these bros then stumble all over them like “TEEHEE, I’M 19 AND DRUNK.”
Weekend one of Coachella 2014 was all about the artists who weren’t on the bill. Because our attention spans are about as short as Beyoncé’s surprise dance routine with her little sis Solange or the one-song break in between Pharrell’s star-powered ensemble show—and social media’s nowness has turned us into insta-reaction bots unable to appreciate a straightforward set without any immediately postable highlights—performers felt the need to dress up their sets with a grab bag of surprises. Accordingly, we recapped the first weekend of Coachella in numbers.
Bros I saw refused at the gate for taped-together wristbands: 3.
Girls who all high fived when the security guards didn’t check their bags: 4.
Life hack: You don’t actually have to go to Coachella to go to COACHELLA. Maybe I’m going to sound too much like Selena Gomez in Spring Breakers when I say this, but my life changed two years ago when one of my friends exposed me to a little thing called “Coachella Parties.” Although I had a ticket to the fest, I got so caught up the ecstasy of lounging by the pool, taking advantage of all the free food/alcohol/other shit, on top of seeing everyone I wanted to see at the festival anyway without having to go into a literal desert, that I ended up only going to the last hour of the fest (but saw Rihanna come out for Calvin Harris, and cried). This was 2012, the first year Coachella decided to have the same festival two consecutive weekends, marking the death of the special “you had to be there” feeling that makes a music festival what is in the first place. I vowed to never waste $300 on a ticket ever again, and since I don’t have any more student loan money to waste on music festivals anyway, the parties have become a very economic turn up for a college grad living with mad debt.