On my trip out today I picked up the recent re-release of Emperor's In the Nightside Eclipse.

Shortly after this album was made over twenty years ago, the drummer murdered a man (stabbed the guy 37 times), one of the guitar players burned down a church, and the bass player went to jail for assault. They were part of a music scene that engaged in church burning and grave desecration on a larger scale.

The band reformed - again - to play the big stage at Wacken a couple weeks ago in front of I believe over 70000 people. It was a special show playing this album in its entirety. The murderer and church-burner were on that stage performing. See that concert here: Emperor Live at Wacken Open Air 2014 - Full Show [HD]

And I bought the album - for the second time, because I think my original copy was one I sold off before coming to Finland to lighten my load, but they released this one with an alternate mix on the second disc so there's another 25€ spent - because it really is one of the more important heavy metal albums.

So just imagine now what I think of the idea of someone being mean on the internet affecting the hobby as a whole or even affecting individual purchasing decisions.

I used to be like that, when I was younger. "Oh no this person did this and said that! We should be more respectable!" and I made myself think it made a difference as far as the music on a disc. It was an immature view, doing nothing to stop creative flawed people from being either creative or flawed, but sure stopped me from enjoying great work.

(Not so long ago this impulse still got the best of me. I was pissy like that about a certain reaction to Kingdom Death while a certain person's Kickstarter was going on, and I made a thing about canceling my backership - but I went ahead and bought that book anyway because it's a thing I should at least be familiar with, if nothing else... so I understand the knee-jerk reaction, but continuing to hold a grudge against a book because of a name on it?)

Fact is, the work is what is important - the people don't really mean shit. When the creators are dead, when the people they did things to, and the people who did things to them, are all dead, the work can still remain. That's what has the chance to live forever. The work is all that matters.

Lets play "what if."

What if it turns out that Rafael isn't really a nice guy with a rather peculiar taste in music and movies, but actually chops people up in his basement?

What if Zak wasn't just a cantankerous poster, and was guilty of everything he was ever accused of?

What if Geoffrey didn't just write some nasty-ass black magic rituals, but practiced those same rituals?

What if Dave Brockie had actually gotten arrested on obscenity charges and was a heroin... oh, wait.

What if...? Nothing changes. Their work is still good, their work enriches the gaming world, and that's that.

Hell, if Lovecraft stepped out of time and, his unpleasant 1920s-30s views intact, wanting to do something with me, it'd get done.

You do cool stuff that makes me want to risk being able to pay rent to produce (there's plenty of stuff that's a bit out of my taste that'll I'll happily buy one copy if someone else releases it, but I don't want to produce myself), I'll work with you, I don't care who you are. Internet meanie? Criminal? Progressive McAccuseypants? Unassuming internet mouse? Normal, healthy person?

You come to me with a killer (heehee!) idea, and I'll do what I can to make you immortal.

Or maybe I'm just trying to get ahead of the public perception of a nasty scandal that'll erupt as soon as the cops decide to stop waiting for me to come out with my hands up.
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