In honor of the solstice and what I guess is the official start to summer, I had a pilsner.
I shouldn’t have. The beer is fine. More malty than bitter, easy to drink, a fine concoction for a hot day. It’s not you, as they say, it’s me.
I rode down here on a storm of heavy metal. Pounding on the steering wheel like a prizefighter, the snare drums my jabs, whipping my head like uppercuts to the cadence of singers that bring more tyrannosaurus than Plant to the table, fingers riffing on my jeans fast enough to warm the skin beneath.
And pilsner is not metal. Sure, sure, metalheads ’round the world drink it. Who hasn’t seen a rock show without the promise of cheap libations, always pilsners. There are no ‘cheap’ IPAs.
But the very promises of what pilsners are; cheap, forgettable, easily consumable, this is not metal. Heavy metal can be many things; fun, intense, rage to equal to a god, murkier than the motives of your ex lover, dense as an osmium brick, but it isn’t easily consumable. Shouldn’t be.
Not to say that heavy metal excludes. No music should exclude anyone as a central characteristic, and even my use of the term heavy metal simplifies all the possible sounds (and opinions) you’ll hear in the genre. However, heavy metal is frequently enjoyed by people who get heavy metal, and if you don’t get it, no one, not me, not the Universe, can explain to you what we naively understand. You either hear those sounds in your soul or you don’t.
So it is with this beer. Everyone could enjoy this. Nothing wrong with that. Probably should enjoy it later this week, when the temps get into the 80s and we’re all reminded again that there’s no friggin’ air conditioning in Portland. Even tonight Bailey’s has the front door open-something that seems more like a portent than a necessity.
But it ain’t metal. And I’m in a metal mood.
/ah, c’mon. You knew that last link was coming.