TWISTED SISTER frontman Dee Snider recently reflected on the demise of the “hair metal” genre in the early 90’s to the burgeoning “grunge” scene. In a new talk with Consequence, the 66-year-old frontman says a shift in rock was unavoidable, and singled out the David Coverdale fronted act, WHITESNAKE, as a prime example of an “assembled” band.
“It had gotten so watered down and so corporate and so predictable,” Dee states, that “bands were being assembled for their look. Whitesnake, you know, the band in that first video, ‘Still of the Night,’ was assembled — physically assembled — for being pretty. They were talented, as well. … But certainly, it was a looks driven-thing.”
Snider added, “It got to the point where you get the right producer and the right songwriter … you get the right costume designer, and … do the video. And you’ve got a multiplatinum act, yay! … Then, all of a sudden, it’s ‘unplugged,’ and we’re not even electric anymore, we’re singing folk songs — well, now you deserve to be knocked off your pedestal.”
As is well known, the rising sound of “grunge” began to dominate the rock scene with bands like NIRVANA, SOUNDGARDEN and PEARL JAM owning the charts in the early 90’s, leaving little room to the oversaturated “hair metal” era.
“When that Nirvana album arrived, that first Soundgarden, the first Pearl Jam album, Alice in Chains — I was like, this is awesome, this is heavy,” Snider recalled. “People forget that first Pearl Jam album was pretty heavy. To me, it was metal; I didn’t see what was not metal about it. But then it started to become this thing where they [said] it wasn’t metal — it was this new thing. And suddenly, it became what was killing other bands. But I thought it was great when it first came out.”
That being said, “hair metal” is still the genre that sticks to TWISTED SISTER, which Dee says he has come to embrace.
“Most people aren’t aware,” Snider explained, “that that name along with virtually every other nickname given to any form of music was a derogatory term stuck on the music by some journalist. ‘Grunge’? Those bands in Seattle hated being called grunge.”
Snider’s latest solo album, “Leave a Scar”, arrived in July of this year.