There have been some recent articles arguing that Nu Metal is unfairly maligned and that many of the bands – even Limp Bizkit – are actually a lot of fun and worthy of another look. One thing that I think that people need to understand, though, is that there were a lot of Nu Metal bands. A lot. So given my random method of choosing bands from a giant list, it’s probably going to be a good long time before I land on a band that’s even remotely worth listening to.
Just look at the horseshit that I’ve rolled for this one!
I have absolutely no memory of this band. This makes sense because it looks as though they released one album in 2003 and that’s it. By 2003, people had already started giving way less of a shit about Nu Metal and were more likely to say “Let’s go see five lumps of crumpled denim laundry from NYC tonight instead”. I can’t even find a music video for a Twisted Method song, and it seems like a real red flag that we’re looking at a band that went absolutely nowhere.
Their most popular song on Spotify is called “Change Me”.
Oh wow, ouch! The production on this track/album is pretty rough. The bass guitar sounds particularly awful, and I feel as though this album must have been self-produced or something. Now I kind of feel a little bad about the things that I’m going to write about this (very bad) music, given that they seem as though they may have been just a scrappy, underdog-y little group that maybe doesn’t deserve the derision. Let’s get a look at these guys…
Alright, I don’t actually feel so bad about it now.
“Change Me” is a lifelessly mid-tempo alt-metal tune that is situated firmly in the post-Linkin Park Nu Metal camp. Clean vocals throughout that are squirting out lyrics about having been super duper mistreated by some woman trying to change the guy. But like, just look at these guys. Can you blame the lady for wanting to change ’em? The requisite rapping section of this song is a highlight, as it is extremely hilarious. The rest of the tune is unbelievably generic sub-Chester slug-rock mumbo jumbo. This is a real limp track.
“Inside Out” at least manages to muster up a Nu Metal-as-fuck riff off the top, even if it does just sound like somebody grabbed the riff from “One Step Closer” and chopped it up to be rearranged in ProTools or something. Haha, this white guy is talking about going back to the “crib”. This kind of sounds like what a Nu Metal band fronted by Adam Levine would sound like. I guess we got off light that it’s just Twisted Method sounding like that and that Adam Levine didn’t actually do that. Because nobody’s ever had to think about Twisted Method, but a Nu Metal Adam Levine project would have been unavoidable.
The remaining songs on Twisted Method’s Spotify top five all start the same way: guitar riff/fx-heavy drums intro, with a big screeeeeam when the band comes in. Including “Inside Out”, that is four of the five songs. Unprecedented! Hilarious, two of the songs start with a count-off to four and then scream, which seems like it has to be something that they didn’t notice or think of when recording and mixing the album. I love it.
Best Song: Of the five tracks, only “The End” has any kind of life to it, as it is a very hilarious stab at a Slipknot-style “heavy song”. It completely falls short of Slipknot’s worst material, but it is still very funny and kind of has a spirited stomp to it.
It’s not great writing to begin an argument by just saying LOL, but… LOL.
Fingertight. In the pantheon of bad band names, this has a pretty good shot at the bad band name hall of fame. I was a little bit nervous about doing a Google Image Search on this in order to get a look at these guys, but it was luckily just pictures of the band and also pictures of some kind of thumbscrew that you can buy.
Is this a picture of the band? Is this a picture of a pile of thumbscrews? Who’s to say?
This is another band that only released one major album, also in 2003. They may have toured with Twisted Method, for all I know. Fingertight seems to fall heavily in the alt-rock, post-grunge camp of the Nu Metal world, reaching hard to grab some of them Incubus bucks. The single posted above seems to be the only thing that actually charted. “Guilt (Hold Down)” is the kind of plodding drop-D slop that every Battle of the Bands high school band was cranking out from 1998 to 2003. The tune is such a blatant attempt to ape Incubus, even I’m blushing on Incubus’ behalf. While listening to this, I could anticipate every turn of the song. From the drum beat to the structure. Man, this kind of thing was so huge at one time. Seems
“Surface” has a little more energy and tries to rock a little harder. Still feels extremely Incubus-y. This song actually has kind of a neat bridge section that isn’t exactly what I expected. The bridge closes out with a pretty fun transition into the requisite “craziest chorus”, and it could have gone a whole lot worse than it does. If it weren’t for the sort of cringeworthy Incubus-ness of the vocal phrasing and the boilerplate riffs, I could almost see liking this.
The craziest thing about generic Nu Metal might by just how interchangeable the lyrical work is between bands. I could swear that the two bands that I’m looking at today have used the same lines in multiple songs. How many different ways can a person say something like “why can’t you see this isn’t me”, I guess? Anyway, I guess I remember being young and remember feeling those kinds of feelings. I just hope for their sake that they’re now as embarrassed of it all… just like me!
Things don’t get any better as we move into “Fear In Me”. For one thing, and this is something that I’ve noticed in other Fingertight tunes, nobody seems to be coaching this vocalist when he’s selecting notes that land just terribly. The intro to this tune is sour as hell, and not in a way that sounds intentional and interesting. Chino Moreno from Deftones has a way of pulling out notes that sound like they shouldn’t work, but they wind up working in some hauntingly complex way. This isn’t that.
This song sounds like it was written to become a single, with its two-chord chorus “hook” and mellowed-out bridge. Again, aping Incubus so hard. This is probably the most shamelessly obvious ripoff band that I’ve covered yet. Trust Company were aping Linkin Park pretty hard, but probably not quite this hard. Oof.
“Bellevue” and “Nathaniel” both mid-tempo snorefests. “Nathanial” in particular sounds like some kid figuring out how to string three chords together to write his first song, right down to the very bad guitar tone. “Bellevue” has a bit of a nifty guitar effect, but the part being played wasn’t memorable enough to mention more about that song than the guitar effect.
Best Song: “Surface” was the best by quite a fair stretch, and it seems like it was probably their “heavy/edgy” tune that wouldn’t have been a single, but maybe they kept it around so that they wouldn’t be accused of being soft. But for a band trying to rip off Incubus, they shouldn’t have been afraid of being soft, as Incubus essentially wound up being an AOR mainstay who abandoned energy and intensity altogether. Ah well.
This ranking system is rough, because I’m not sure that I remember how bad these other four bands are… and I feel like Trust Company was pretty bad! Even just deciding between the two of these bands is hard. On one hand, Fingertight is a very funny name, but nothing else about them is funny. They have a boring look and their songs are boring. Twisted Method have a boring name, but they look hilarious and are sort of hilariously unpolished, even though their songs are mostly boring.
None of these lower-ranked bands are really going to matter once there are 100+ bands on this list, so I’m just going to rank them together, at the top of this list. I mostly want to dethrone Trust Company, because I am suddenly angry seeing them at the top of the list. That being said, I’m pretty positive that while Wicked Wisdom was terrible, I seem to remember them having an amazing drummer? Or a very good drummer at least?
How about this: Fingertight and Twisted Method are practically the same band, but Fingertight may have sounded slightly more proficient and actually had a music video. I don’t remember anything about Trust Company, but I must have put them in first place for a reason, so I’m arbitrarily going to slot Trust Company in between these two other bands. The new ranking is:
- Trust Company
- Twisted Method
- Wicked Wisdom
Fingertight is the greatest Nu Metal band of all time!