So I had a conversation with someone that made me curious about top 40 album sales. I plan on looking into other mediums outside of music too, but the conversation was about music so it's where my mind was at at the time. I usually don't pay attention to what is charting and what people like. I know I have a pretty weird taste that exists well outside of the mainstream - or at least that's what I thought. So I was looking back through Billboard to see what charted when this year, this one particular week caught my attention.

Deafheaven at number 36. Wut? There are other acts on the chart that I enjoy, but this blows my mind. They're a band I've been infatuated with for years as I instantly knew upon hearing Roads To Judah that they weren't your run of the mill act. I could go on for a long time about how super atmospheric and highly melodic their take on black metal is. That is the thing though, they're still a black metal band. Blast beats, shrieky vocals, tremolo picked guitars, long musical passages. The sort of thing I didn't think the average person would listen to. Hell, I'd almost be willing to bet I'm one of the few (I know one other person) people that use this site that has an appreciation for such extreme sounds in music.

The thing is I don't know what to make of this, as they don't even appear on the charts next week. Is the average consumer of art becoming less mainstream? Do the concepts of mainstream sensibilities even matter anymore? Are we beyond the point of marketing to the average person, since it's starting to look like the average person is making less and less art related purchases?

Among other trends I've noticed, lots of Kidz Bop and Now That's What I Call Music charting all year. Does the average person that purchases music only purchase music for the singles? What is even going on in the world?