Nü-metal has finally come full circle after almost 30 years. The genre got its start around 1993 with the birth of Korn and them Neidermayer’s mind demo, it really blew up in the late 90s and early 2000s, and slowly became a date that everyone looked back on and cringed at. Then, in the last few years, the next generation took up the torch, and all of a sudden, nü-metal and its aesthetic was cool again.
So what was the tipping point between cool and uncool the first time around for nü-metal? Korn vocalist jonathan davis revealed in an interview with metal hammer that he feels at the time when the band was doing untouchable by 2002, the genre had become a parody of itself.
“For me, we were doing untouchable and that’s when so many bands were coming out and jumping in the [nü-metal] car. Now I don’t care about the ‘nu metal’ label. They named an entire subgenre after my band? Holy shit! That’s great! – but punk-ass, crazy Korn back then, we were like, ‘What the hell? Fuck everyone! Let’s make this crazy record. Keep people guessing. He had become a parody of himself: ‘I don’t want to be defined like that!’”
Davis he later noted that he doesn’t care now, but at the time he passionately hated the term “nü-metal”, saying “I make the music that I make… you don’t call metallic some thrash band! they are fucking metallic!” Which I suppose is true, although we all definitely mean metallic like a thrash band… because they totally are.