Posers – they're everywhere. In the old days they stuck to Motley Crue shows and hair salons in L.A. ; now you can find them lurking in the mall at Hot Topic and the food court, in theaters screening PG-13 movies, at theme parks enjoying their first high school romance, ringside at MMA fights, and countless other locations. Most tr00 metal fans will avoid these places, but sometimes you've got to take care of business and there's just no fucking escape. Verbally engaging a poser can be an ugly business unless you're prepared to duel to the tear by insulting their favorite bands. In no particular order, here's a quick starter's arsenal of notable embarrassments to metal that you can reference as probable inclusions on a poser's iPod. Successfully call them out on one of these, drop some profanity along with it, and you just may walk away the goddamn champ. The ghost of Paul Baloff would surely be proud.
1) Suicide Silence: Hot Topic's golden boys. Image characteristics include excessive tattoos without meaning, beards, and headbanging like Jesus of Nazareth nailed to the cross. Vocalist Mitch Lucker spends more time telling audiences to "get up," "fucking move," or "get [their] hands up" than he does screeching like an asshole, but in neither instance does he appear legitimate to metal. Songs are defined by throwaway deathcore riffs and ludicrous breakdowns that approach tortoise speeds, which fans interpret as extremely br00tl. They are now at the height of their popularity, having already opened for Disturbed on their Music as a Weapon tour earlier this year (do you really need anymore ammo than that?) and having been given two Revolver Magazine Golden God awards as well (surprise surprise). Suicide Silence insults are moderately potent against posers but may require a degree of explanation as to what constitutes death metal as opposed to deathcore; otherwise, the poser will not understand and try to argue that Suicide Silence is better than Morbid Angel. Whitechapel, Bring Me the Horizon, and Job For a Cowboy are similar options for insult, but if your opponent is Christian, use Impending Doom as your substitute.
2) Attack Attack!: The new breed of pre-pubescent genre orgies. Now known to us as the originator of the term "crabcore", which has nothing to do with the nature of the music but rather the way in which band members squat and sway like crabs when they play breakdowns. Defining image characteristic is quintessential scene kid androgyny, complete with toddler jeans, v-neck shirts, and female art student haircuts. Songs are a mish-mash of metalcore, deathcore, techno, wigger hop, emo, and dog shit, with titles that purposefully make even less sense ("What Happens if I Can't Check My MySpace When We Get There?") in order to feign a clever but ultimately nonexistent sense of humor geared toward those with at or below a junior high education. Under the right circumstances, throwing out Attack Attack!'s name in a battle can be a deathblow. You really don't even have to try, but brokeNCYDE is an acceptable alternative if for some reason it fails.
3) Disturbed: Pop rock radio's hardest band next to Nickelback. Image characteristics aren't as important with them but don't forget to mention David Draiman's bottom lip fishhook piercings (they HAVE to get in the way when he gets throat raped by other bald guys). Songs revolve around sophisticated nu metal bops set to Draiman's rhythmic Rastafari-inspired burping. A Disturbed insult can be very effective but watch your ass - fans of this band are typically either UFC enthusiasts or U.S. Army soldiers. As such, you could wind up shirtless in an octagon or pantsless at Guantanamo depending on your enemy. Proceed with caution. Drowning Pool and Slipknot are your most logical back-up weapons if something goes wrong, but bringing them out might make things even worse on you.
4) Cradle of Filth: Black metal never looked or sounded so corporate. Image characteristics are more in line with rejected Hellraiser costumes than the traditional occult garb, and it's not a good thing. Songs constantly borrow from other bands and genres into one big melting pot of suck with Dani Filth's chipmunk-in-a-steam-press vocals as heavy seasoning, which fans regard as the peak of extreme metal perfection along with Joey Jordison of Slipknot's drumming. Over indulgent song titles accurately describe the gagglefuck of music to which they're attached. CoF is yet another beloved Hot Topic act. The band's reputation would probably be a little better if Dani Filth didn't appear on a whole episode of Viva La Bam, but it wouldn't improve by much. If you can't pull off a CoF diss, resort to Dimmu Borgir, or in fact any band that claims to be black metal but doesn't record and release all of their songs on cassette tape only.
5) In Flames: The pinnacle of melodic dea – uh...wait, this is just melodic rock. For most posers In Flames is the only Swedish band they've ever heard, but they'll have no idea what Lunar Strain is when you mention it because they think either Reroute to Remain or Soundtrack to Your Escape is the band's debut album. Song titles and lyrics comprised of broken English rarely make sense, but it always sounds like Anders is about to cry when he sings so let's just assume he's sad about something all the time. The band has scooped up old nu metal fans through consistently worthless studio albums since 2002; where Korn, Linkin Park and Papa Roach no longer deliver, In Flames apparently does. It should come as no surprise that the majority of American pop metal bands learned everything they know about harmonized guitars from IF, which isn't much. Any popular act attached to the "melo-death" genre can be used in their place, but Soilwork or the downright god awful Sonic Syndicate are your best bets.
6) Dragonforce: A band that owes everything to video games – literally. Without Guitar Hero, their power metal vomit songs would have perished into obscurity faster than Herman Li's credibility. Songwriting skills include playing too fast for their own fingers to keep up with, not being able to sweep pick properly, masturbating the whammy bar when things go wrong, and a general ignorance of music theory. They are notorious for recording guitar leads in the studio that they can't replicate live (hence the names Studioforce and Dragonfarce). If you can couple a Dragonforce diss with a Demoniac diss, the hilariously bad "blackened power metal" band formed before Dragonforce by Herman and his equally untalented raging alcoholic douchebag partner Sam Totman, you are the physical embodiment of the one true god.
7) Trivium: Often hyped as the rightful heirs to Metallica's late 80's throne. Even with the generic metalcore riffs and pre-pubescent teen attitude poisoning each and every one of their songs, Matt Heafy's vocals take the cake in the shit department; just listening to him alternate between imitating James Hetfield and barking like a lost dog is enough to make you beg for a slow painful death. Lyrics are terrible as well. Image characteristics have changed over the years from sleeveless button-downs, emo hair and ear gauges to band t-shirts and long hair, as they now believe that they're actually a thrash band (the ear gauges are still there, though). If insulting Trivium doesn't work, go the more commercial route and rip on Avenged Sevenfold, Bullet For My Valentine, or Atreyu. They're all pretty much the same fucking thing.
8) Waking the Cadaver: Torchbearers of New Jersey guidocore. Image characteristics include straight-billed baseball caps, spray tans, hairy Italian chests, meticulously planned five-o-clock shadows, and brand new white tennis shoes. Songs are comprised of nothing but palm-muted power chord breakdowns and laughably bad gurgling vocals that fall somewhere between Jabba the Hutt and explosive diarrhea. Every song has some br00tl title about rape stolen from a Cannibal Corpse idea, but instead of looking menacing onstage, the band prefers a bouncy approach with lots of hip hop arm waving. To add insult to injury, frontman Donald Campan sells energy drinks, women's cosmetics and ludicrously priced cookware through Amway Global. In the words of Forrest Gump, that's all I have to say about that. New Orleans "brocore" band The Unwilling Commencement is a worthy substitute, but really there are too many bands like WTC to count so anyone with an unreadable logo should suffice.
9) Hellyeah: How Vinnie Paul kills time in between running his strip club and chugging fistfuls of Jager. Image characteristics can be summed up as "urban cowboy" attire on par with anything CMT would endorse. Almost every song is about getting drunk or "kicking ass" in the most metaphorical sense, which is fine when the lyrics are coming from someone with a dick; instead, we get Chad Grey from Mudvayne. Some people will pull the Dimebag card and say you're disrespecting him and his brother, so tread lightly. Hellyeah fans typically also listen to Mudvayne so throw them under the bus too while you're at it.
10) In This Moment: Shit. Totally dependent on exploiting their frontwoman as male masturbation fodder in order to stay relevant. Image characteristics include four guys and two boobs. Songs are typical melodic metalcore fare. Try not to be too shocked when you find out they covered Blondie's "Call Me" (what a risk they took!). Maria Brink has one of the worst screams ever, even worse than Otep Shamaya. Insults in this area can be replaced with any metal band that has a female singer (Lacuna Coil, Nightwish, and yes, even Arch Enemy) because all of them are dependent on sex appeal; it's literally that easy. You can also include bands like Killswitch Engage and Diecast if gender doesn't matter.
In conclusion, the thing to remember is this: bashing posers is like trying to beat sense into a retard. The harder you try, the worse they'll get – but I'll be damned if it isn't fun as hell.