Chris Riemenschneider of the Minneapolis Star Tribune is reporting that hard rock bands are not getting the kind of attention from radio stations and mainstream media that they did two or three years ago.
STAIND has gone from co-headlining Xcel Energy Center in 2001 to playing the smaller Roy Wilkins Auditorium on Tuesday. Likewise, Canadian pop metalists NICKELBACK have failed to repeat the success of their 2002 hit "How You Remind Me". At Target Center last weekend, NICKELBACK played to only 5,500 fans, about a quarter of the arena's capacity.
Most telling, '90s rap-metal kings LIMP BIZKIT and KORN are playing Roy Wilkins together Monday, when each of them used to headline arenas twice that size. The pair still had not sold out the Wilkins at press time.
Although LINKIN PARK remains a huge succees, rap-metal as a whole is seen as a dying genre. KORN's last album stiffed. LIMP BIZKIT's new CD had strong first-week sales of about 500,000, but with little radio or MTV play, it has slipped to No. 21 on the Billboard album chart.
LIMP BIZKIT's "downfall," as a Boston Globe article called it last week, comes after a lineup change — and after a much-publicized class-action lawsuit was brought against the band by Chicago fans for cutting a performance short this summer. Frontman Fred Durst has become one of the most chided rock stars in the press.
STAIND guitarist Mike Mushok, a friend of Durst's, said the backlash is just a temporary result of "overexposure."
"I honestly never really understood why when a band gets big, people want to knock them down, but it happens," the guitarist said.
STAIND, too, might have fallen victim to too much, too fast. Its new album, "14 Shades of Gray", has barely sold a million copies after four months, compared to the nearly 10 million that its previous disc, "Break the Cycle", sold.
"It's how the music industry works nowadays," Mushok said. "It's harder for everyone to maintain a career in the music industry right now, whether they're rock, hip-hop, whatever. Album sales are down across the board, and stardom is totally fleeting." Read more (free registration required).