Grunge musicians didn’t kill anything except themselves. Heavy metal isn’t a trend, it had been around for 21 years in 1991 and it’s still around today. Grunge was a trend and lasted what, maybe 6 years? Nobody was going to tell guys like Malmsteen, Dimebag Darrell or Zakk Wylde to not play guitar solos anymore because if they had they’d have told them where they could stick that idea.
I answered that in the part you quoted… here it is:
That began back when the grunge fad started and clubs found out that the grunge bands couldn’t draw nearly the numbers of people to the clubs as the 80s style bands had. Clubs went from being packed in the 80s to half full in the grunge era.
That didn’t just happen in one club; it happened to many of the biggest and best clubs ala cross the country… A club in the Washington D.C suburbs where I worked was so packed in the 80s that on Friday and Saturday nights it was a struggle just to get to the bar and then you waited maybe 10 or 15 minutes to get a drink because they were just that busy. The grunge bands just couldn’t get the job done… When it was very new attendance was already less than before the grunge era but it was at least decent attendance. The novelty wore off quickly, and in that club and others like it all over the country, attendance dropped to where it would barely be half full on the weekend and less during the week. The club went bankrupt and it’s a shame because in the 80s they were making damn good money.
Think about why people go to rock clubs. One is obviously to have a good time. After a while, when every band they heard was singing about being angry, depressed, and addicted, the novelty wears off. Those subjects aren’t conducive to having a good time. It reminds me of the grunge band that walked into a heavy metal band’s dressing room, saw all the women, whiskey and coke and asked “What the hell are you doing”!!! Their vocalist replied “We’re having a good time…why don’t you”!!!
Besides the music the other big reasons young guys go to rock clubs are drinking and picking up women. Well, when the male/female ratio of a club drops from half women and half men to mostly men, that’s going to cause problems. Young guys will go to where the young ladies are and vice versa. If there are very few young ladies at a club, the young guys will go somewhere else. What you want is a healthy 50/50 ratio of men to women. The more young women there are, the more young men will go. The more young guys there are, the more young ladies will go. That cycle goes on until petty soon you’ve got a packed house. That’s what you want! That’s something the 80s hard rock and heavy metal bands were very good at. The grunge bands and the vast majority of the thrash and more extreme types of metal bands were not as good at that.
When the girls went from wearing nice skirts or nice jeans and high heels pre-grunge to wearing flannel shirts, baggy clothes, and Doc Martins, it had an affect on attendance as well for reasons I think you can figure out. Heavy metal and especially glam had their own specific images but don’t kid yourself - so did grunge. Unfortunately for grunge and the clubs where grunge bands played, grunge’s image was not aesthetically appealing to as many of the young people at that time. It’s one of many reasons grunge didn’t last. The damage that era did to the club scene remains though. Even after grunge was done, the nightclub scene, at least in The USA was never as strong again as it had been pre-grunge.
Well, the local scenes are where the future arena headliners come from. Without strong hard rock and heavy metal scenes in cities all over the country, there are no breeding grounds for the stars of the future. When you think about why this century has produced so few bands capable of going on the road and with just one opening band, headlining 15,000 - 20,000 seat arenas, the weakness of the local scenes including the lack of very many good clubs where these bands can hone their craft, perfecting their stage presence and their songs, is part of it.
On the regional and national levels the biggest part of it is that no matter how good you are, nobody will come to see you play if they don’t even know you’re playing. That takes promotion and marketing - two the things the record labels used to do for their bands. Since illegal downloading put so much of the major record label industry out of business, there is nobody left to pay for those things or for artist development. There’s nobody left to front a band the money for their nationwide tour. There are bands touring and making money but they’re mostly bands who were signed back when record labels still had money for artist development. Pink Floyd released something like 6 albums which sold poorly before finally releasing Dark Side Of The Moon but their record company believed in them and kept spending money on them. If Pink Floyd had started out in this era they wouldn’t have made it because if you don’t sell well by your second album you’ll almost certainly be dropped.