It's only rock'n'roll

"They sing of hate and suck dead animals on stage. But Slipknot may represent something more disturbing" ("Meet the teenagers' latest idols", 18 March). Oh dear, here we go again. Every extreme trend in popular music is accompanied by an analysis claiming that it represents a departure from previous extreme trends.

We have seen it all before. Thirty years ago, many of my teenage friends saw nothing to live for. While some took speed and acid for fun, others took barbiturates for more negative reasons. Sadly, a small number didn't make it into middle age, but most grew out of it, as has been true for every successive youth culture.

Howard Lawes

This article first appeared in the 25 March 2002 issue of the New Statesman, Should we go to war against these children?