Twenty years have passed since August 12th, 1995. For eighteen and a half of those years, I have been part of something that ends today. Welcome, then, to the end of Chronicles of Chaos.
Ever since Gino and I reached the decision to stop publishing new content a few months back, I have spent some time wondering how to say goodbye to Chronicles of Chaos. Of course many other things in life are much more important than writing about music, but Chronicles of Chaos was never just about that. The good news is that what matters the most -- the steadfast friendships, the priceless memories -- will live on.
Maybe none of what I wrote above belongs in an article like this; or perhaps it is the very reason Chronicles of Chaos made it this far.
I assume by now you will have read Gino's editorial, so I will try to skip all the details you already know. This was not an easy decision for us, nor is it quite straightforward to predict how it will impact us in the future. We do, however, feel confident that this is the right time to exit the stage: on our own terms, and never having compromised the vision we tried to realize for CoC.
I have no final musings to share on the current state of the music industry, or what circumstances have brought us to this day. For that purpose we have gathered the input of many of those who helped make CoC what it is throughout its existence. Instead, I will try to recount some of my own experience with Chronicles of Chaos and how it shaped my life.
When I first e-mailed Gino back in late 1996 about the possibility of writing for CoC, there really was no way I could have anticipated what a pivotal moment that was. Had I never sent that e-mail, or had Gino and Adrian refused to take a chance on this European kid, there is no telling how different my life would have been. Chronicles of Chaos gave me the opportunity to express my opinions, improve my writing skills, find a wealth of new music and talk to many people in the music industry. Then when I started proofreading, editing and programming the site, gradually reducing my own article submissions, I became involved in CoC on a whole new level. Gradually, I also found friends within CoC, which is the most valuable thing of all.
Gino and I have worked together in this endeavour for many years now, and if not for this extraordinary individual, none of this would have been possible. I owe him a great deal, and have always tried my best to repay that with whatever I could bring to the table to help CoC thrive. Now this stage of our lives reaches a conclusion, but there is still much more to look forward to.
The work produced during these twenty years will not disappear just yet, and everything will remain online, in stasis, for the foreseeable future. More than seven thousand articles were published by Chronicles of Chaos. We like to believe they were good -– most of them, anyway. Some of them we are really proud of. We hope that, to some extent, they will continue to be read by old and new readers alike.
So much has changed in twenty years, and lately much faster than it seems to have ever changed before. Chronicles of Chaos was never in a rush to adapt, or reshuffle just for the sake of it; and I believe that helped maintain the standards we aimed for right to the end. CoC has always remained self-financed, independent, treading a path of its own until the end. For me at least, it was worth every one of those countless hours.
These were never meant to be my final words for Chronicles of Chaos.