Don't Hate: Creed Is Back and Headed to Town
When I heard about a Creed reunion in the offing - set to hit Houston September 25 - I didn't cringe angrily or go into music-snob convulsions, clicking through my iTunes looking for the new Bon Iver EP or feverishly dialing up the new Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Nor did I commence making scatological apoplectic posts to my Twitter, Facebook, MySpace profiles. And why should I? What did Creed ever do to me? Besides give my friends and I hours of enjoyment, playing ironic air guitar and dressing up in leather pants and a wifebeater, placing a high-powered fan one of our garages as we bellowed "With Arms Wide Open" like Creed singer and amateur porn star Scott Stapp.
There's no reason to get into a seething ridiculous lather over a reunion of a trite yet unwittingly hilarious band that somehow sold 25 million copies of three versions of the same album and still finds 15 of their singles littering Clear Channel rock radio. My Own Prison , Human Clay , and Weathered are laugh-a-minute drunken karaoke party jams with a quasi-religious bent that never fail to bring a laugh to my heart and chuckle to my soul.
Don't get me started on every album cover and music video that Creed launched into the musical ether. Most all looked as if they were conceived in a high-school digital graphics class, with a heaping dose of heavy-handed oppressive overtones and late-'90s Matrix effects, with ever-present haughty brunette Stapp out front with his locks seemingly braving gale-force winds inside a crowded indoor amphitheater. But I can't hate Creed. A few weeks back I reviewed Nickelback's show. I went in with an open mind, and came out with a new view of the band. It wasn't a complimentary one, but I came back with another angle on why people revile the band so much. I deduced that people who were prone to hating Chad Kroeger and the boys hated the fans of the band, and not so much the music itself, even though they protested to the contrary, it still all came back to Kroeger's "bleached-out" hair and the physical appearance and attire of the folks buying the albums. Somewhere along the line, Nickelback took over for Creed in the "world's shittiest band" department for most folks. I never understood how you could dislike a band so earnest in their beliefs, most of which were misguided yet admirable. They may have been dopey Florida boys, but they wanted to save your souls, dammit!
"Higher" or "My Sacrifice" are laugh riots from start to finish, with the chugga-chugga guitar riffs and Stapp emoting like the undersexed lead singer of a Dickinson bar band. Creed to me is an awful, yet entertaining Hollywood blockbuster. I can take Creed the same way that film fetishists watch Plan 9 from Outer Space or Glen or Glenda with corny reverie. A venue for September's show is still up in the air, but don't you think for a second that Creed couldn't sellout Toyota Center, or have scalpers sitting outside Verizon Wireless Theater padding their wallets with Franklins. Even scarier than the upcoming swine flu pandemic is that, without fail, the band can and will fill any venue it wants to.
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