Century Media signs Opiate for the Masses, I choke on tongue

I thought it must have been a goof. Though most emails from PR people are unintentionally hilarious–“Band X is poised to take the music industry by storm with their jagged riffs, soaring choruses, and unbridled energy”–I figured this one had to be intentional. Century Media did not just sign Opiate for the Masses. They wouldn’t do something like that, would they?Alas, they did. Opiate for the Masses used to be on Warcon, the label run by Warped Tour’s Kevin Lyman. Calling Opiate for the Masses sub-Limp Bizkit jock rock is an insult to athletes and Fred Durst, assuming there are any insults left to be hurled in his direction. I hated this band when I first saw them, and I hate them now. They’re the extreme evolution of three equally terrible trends in music:

1. Douchebags playing the role of sensitive outsider. Sorry, but dudes that mainline creatine, walk around flexing their abs while shirtless, and have frosted hair don’t get to mine the same angst-driven creative territory as Kurt Cobain and Marylin Manson. While I’m at it, Secondhand Serenade takes this same aesthetic in the direction of weepy acoustic emo that makes Dashboard Confessional seem like Nick Drake.
2. Thinking that strip-mining the 90s is somehow a revolutionary concept. I quote guitarist Jim Kaufman: “Since its conception, OPIATE FOR THE MASSES has been a band in a constant state of transformation. Unwilling to change course merely to fit in among the flavors of the week, this band has gained popularity by blazing new trails for others to follow.” Evidently, “blazing new trails” is done these days by combining the fresh, revolutionary pseudo-metallic sludge of Alice in Chains with the Prodigy.

+ = ?

Dude, neither of these bands was even revolutionary in their own right. How the hell does adding them together equal a revolution in sound?
3. Taking themselves so goddamn seriously. To wit, I give you the Opiatist’s Manifesto, via their myspace page:

The Opiatist Manifesto
est’d. 1999

A Spectre is haunting the World- the Spectre of Opiatism. All the Powers of the World have entered into a Holy alliance to excorcise this Spectre: Pope and President, Ayatollah and Idealist, Radicals and Police spies. Where is the Party in opposition that has not been decried as Opiatistic by its Opponents in Power? Where the Opposition that has not hurled back the branding reproach of Opiatism, against the more advanced opposition Parties, as well as against its reactionary Adversaries?

Two things result from this fact:
I. Opiatism is already acknowledged by all World Powers to be itself a Power.

II. It is high time that Opiatists should openly, in the face of the whole World, publish their Views, their Aims, their Tendencies, and meet this Nursery Tale of the Spectre of Opiatism with a Manifesto to the Party itself. To this end, Opiatists of various nationalities have assembled in Los Angeles, and sketched the following Manifesto, to be published in all the World’s written languages.

Yep. That’s the preamble to the Communist Manifesto. I get it. I was confused. I thought you guys were a loud, touring, 45-minute beer commercial that aped the sound and style of two of the most careerist bands of the previous decade. Now I get it. You’re deep.

So there you have it: douchebags mining the 90s, posing as guerrilla warriors. I ain’t buying. They can grow dreads and tone down the “Marilyn Manson-meets-Motocross-and-gelled hair” all they want: a spade is a spade, and they are the worst band I’ve ever seen.



  1. ha, that was an awesome rant

  2. dude, its apparent that you have not seen this band. its easy to RANT about something you dont know about. lets see what happens with them in the next 6 to 8 months and you will eat your effen words!


  3. Brett,

    Saw them at SXSW in 2006. They played at Emo’s with Helmet. I really didn’t enjoy them then and I don’t enjoy them now. I may be ranting, but it’s not out of ignorance of the subject.

  4. I used to be kinda mad when people bad-mouthed bands; but this band is a complete waste of talent getting reprocessed and dumped.

  5. I am a shit expert and this band is a whole bowl full of poo-poo. Let’s ride!

  6. This band is definetely a joke. I live in Phoenix, Arizona and unfortunately have seen this band from it’s beginning in the late 1990’s. Mr. Kaufman was originally the guitarist/songwriter of a two-rapper fronting rap-metal band called “Projex”, which was not only shite, but what you’d expect rich preppy kids playing at the height of the nu-metal scene. The nu-metal scene dies…no more Projex? Hmmm…

    Then, Opiate for the Masses comes out, aping marilyn manson-esque industrial that meets N-17, who were the only other somewhat nationally known band from Phoenix of the genre they were copying. They get advertised on the radio non-stop, start playing headlining gigs at a newer venue at the time that apparently was/is owned by one of their parents (yes, this band only exists because they got money), and we had to deal with their constant crap for years, before Mr. Kaufman decided to move the project to L.A. to “make it”.

    I’d like to note that this band has gone through so many lineup changes since it’s inception due to the control freak, it’s not even funny. It will be interesting to see how well they do on Century Media. Normally, I would be totally behind a band from my neck of the woods heading towards this level of success, but when you’ve had it all from the beginning and never had to “really” try to make it, yet are also trying this hard to be accepted, it’s just not worth my time.

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