Considered to be one of the most underground metal scenes in South America, Venezuela is under the spotlight and not for any good moral reasons.
Verging on bankruptcy for anyone is never good, but for a country it can only be compared to an apocalypse, in this case a financial one. Having run amok financially with inflation at an eye-watering 720% and trying to sort out a shrinking economy that shows very little promising signs of resurrecting itself, Venezuela cannot even look over it's shoulder at it's vast swathes of oil reserves as a means of shoring it's financial sector up.
Of course the moral of spending less than you earn or profit is basic common sense with or without it being placed into an economic context, however Hugo Chávez's socialist government clearly forgot this logical ruling and thus spent money as if it was going out of fashion. In the long-term this resulted in the government doing what badly-run economies do, which is print more money (yet you need money to operate the printing machinery right? Funny no?) and so whilst your reading this no doubt you will be thinking, how on earth does this apply to metal music? Read on to find out.
Speaking to a musician who won't be named for confidential reasons, he states that there are numerous factors "which contribute to the current situation, on the one hand Venezuela is a country that always lives off of oil revenues and on the other the low oil price has been compromised due to the economy", so if oil sales are meant to drive up profits and thus turned into revenue and the oil itself is dirt cheap, then thinking like an accountant would enable anyone to see the flaw in this.
Well, ok so for example oil is sold at a low price, this is great for consumers because they have to pay less right? Theoretically that's great, but if oil is your sole sector that the nation depends upon to raise finances to 'fuel' the economy then having low prices means minimized profit thus in turn means lower annual revenue and without going too economically-deep, you see where it is heading right?
Moreover the musician blames the economical state on "political factors linked to the extreme right who want to overthrow the current government through economic force, they are also finance by the American and Colombian governments, this is usually something that traditional media outlets make no comment on despite it's wholesome truth". If this proves to be the case, then perhaps this would be extremely damaging for all three entities mentioned, not just in the Americas but more globally.
In a music context, this economical impact has left musicians with a a somewhat ironical contradiction in as far as the crisis has brought on opportunities, such as limiting "the musicians to get equipment made in other countries, because Venezuela sadly is a consumer society, instead of not developing their income", so much for the notion of spend some and save some. However the importance of said people and what contributes to the current economical crisis is that in Venezuela it "becomes extremely difficult to bring foreign bands to our country, but allows our people to be aware of local music", now you would think that by bringing in foreign bands it would help boost interest by bands booking venues to perform at, thus the venues and promoters earn from this and in a macro-environmental context enabling the economy to feel some relief from the 'foreign indirect investment'.
Ending on a slightly positive note, it means that Venezuelans are learning and adjusting to consume national rock and metal bands, however the sole downside is that at present they seem to be fairly closed to supporting only foreign bands and "hardly support national bands, it is this crisis that is allowing and enabling awareness of the national movement of rock and metal to be raised", thus suggesting that whilst economical and social turmoil may well be hampering the metal and rock music scenes, Venezuelans generally are growing accustom to the breadth of national talent that are parading about their streets in extremely dire times.
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