Spin Magazine September 1998

Two massive A&R feeding frenzies are currently in full froth, as weasels from nearly every major label chase New York City digital shockcore band Mindless Self-Indulgence and Santa Barbara, California-based mainstream rockers 8stops7. The Mindless Self-Indulgence derby is particularly intense: The band is considered universally cool by an industry that scrupulously assesses what its competitors are doing before forming its “own opinions,” and the likelihood here is that, much like Korn, the band’s dark lyrical content and menacing sound will draw a younger audience no longer interested in focus-grouped modern rock. In the case of 8stops7, what they lack in controversial cool they make up for in song craft, churning out the kind of mid tempo hits radio hungers for, à la Creed. In the reindeer games of A&R, there’s no downside to inking Mindless Self-Indulgence–if they don’t break, you can claim the music was just too damn edgy and uncompromising for the world–but if you sign 8stops7 and they don’t produce, not only do you appear incompetent, but worse yet, uncool. Why do you think they’re called weasels, anyway? JOE FLEISCHER

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