Sredni Vashtar Explores Metal

edited 2016-10-30 14:36:45 in General Media
Self-explanatory. I came to metal through noise rock, industrial music and drone, with some grounding in the British and American New Waves and thrash through my friends, so my perspective tends to be skewed, moving from the outside in. I'm trying to educate myself. It's a fun process.

Right now I'm listening to Blasphemy's Fallen Angel Of Doom...., an album which, well, speaks for itself:

 

Recommendations and suggestions go here.

Already on the list:
  • Behemoth (cursory knowledge)
  • Cannibal Corpse (negligible knowledge)
  • Death (ibid)
  • Emperor (ibid)
  • Gorgoroth (ibid)
  • Gorguts (passing acquaintance)
  • Manilla Road (no substantive acquaintance)
  • Mayhem (some familiarity with their earliest work)
  • Morbid Angel (next to no knowledge)
  • Pig Destroyer (some dim familiarity with their output)
  • Sarcófago (near-zero practical familiarity)
  • Sepultura (ibid)
  • Sodom (ibid)
  • Suffocation (ibid)
  • Ulver (minimal familiarity)
  • Venom (ibid)
These will be crossed out as I got through them, while others will be added later.
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Comments

  • edited 2016-10-30 14:22:51
    “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    Incidentally, I am now listening to Ion Dissonance's second album, Solace, which is about as ridiculously pummeling as their first thus far but with a noticeably greater death metal influence beyond the weird Meshuggah riffing of their first. Superb drum work, great mixing. A *bit* stylistically monotonous like the first was, although actually the deathcore elements like the increased number of breakdowns actually give the songs a bit more room to breathe and break up the default song structures, which while bizarre got almost predictable on the first. The layered vocals in different styles are also a neat touch, and in some ways the screamo/powerviolence influence is clearer here despite their gradually moving away from it overall, which is kinda neat. The increased thuggishness is a bit of a tradeoff, though, for obvious reasons.

    Side-note: I made the mistake earlier of comparing them to the more straightforward metalcore act Every Time I Die earlier in a way that implied that they predated them when the reverse is true, albeit only by a few years. That said, the analogy still holds here: Both draw on the post-hardcore tradition, but what sources within it are... distinctly different. It's also worth noting that the relationship of stuff like this with later deathcore does remind me a little of, say, Converge's relationship with more recent metalcore acts; that both kind of get lumped into the "mathcore" category with the likes of Dillinger Escape Plan makes a fair amount of sense, both in that light and given their respective approaches, although they are *very* different bands.

    Oh, and now I'm on the last track, which I've seen compared to the much maligned "groove metal" phenomenon, and... I dunno, it's more like one of those long post-rock-inflected screamo tracks that a band like Envy or Suffocate for Fuck Sake would release, but through a metal lens with noisier guitar work and heavier drums. I guess there are grooves here and they do ride them, but it's more like Isis or the aforementioned non-metal bands or even Bastard Noise than Pantera or Gojira or whatever. Probably one of the best things here, if I'm being honest.
  • remember, a believing heart is your magic
    I like Primus.

    My metal recommendations begin and end there sadly :B
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    I think you would like A Forest of Stars and perhaps some of Alchemist's work, but that's more about how idiosyncratic and melodic they are than anything else.
  • with Sepultura I suggest starting at Beneath the Remains and Arise. Later they turned into some kinda Korn band, not to my liking.

    with Sodom you want Agent Orange and Persecution Mania. If you like those, you oughta try the other two major German thrash bands, Kreator and Destruction.

    Any Death is good but their later albums are more technically sophisticated and finely produced.

    other bands I feel compelled to mention: Atheist, Cynic, Testament, Sadus, High on Fire, Suffocation, Exodus
  • oh, you already had Suffocation. Well you can never suffocate enough
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    Listened to Suffocation's début last night. It's weird how slam is kind of the "it" thing for a certain crowd now—albeit a reviled sub-genre in many quarters as well—when this record is twenty-five years old and really not all that far off at all. This must have been fucking bizarre back in '91. Ditto Blasphemy, granted, but war metal is pretty much just a tiny clique of Canadians to this day. Brutal death metal, deathcore, slam? Not so much.

    Another odd thing: Most of the slams themselves, when they appear, are in 3/4 or some form of waltz time. It's like the whole song suddenly shifts down a gear and goes into three for a while before the sudden atonal solosplosion after the doubled kicks come back in. And speaking of which, it almost sounds like they have two drummers at points, à la Swans, although I'm unclear on the line-up details beyond "there are two actual black dudes in this tech-death band."
  • The world that we used to know, people tell me it don't turn no more
    band I'm very, very dumb for not mentioning earlier: Incantation
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    Continuing in the "deathcore that most metal people are OK with" trend, which I am pursuing tor... some reason, I just finished listening to The Red Chord's Fused Together in Revolving Doors, and honestly, it's fantastic. I mentioned Pg. 99 in describing Ion Dissonance, but that influence is way more obvious here—the demos included at the end suggest that the band started out as an emoviolence outfit for all intents and purposes, albeit one with a death metal drumming style and the occasional gurgle; and while the album proper is decidedly metal and surprisingly technical, this album really does split the difference on the two sides of the "deathcore" construction.

    And maybe that's why I've been listening to bands like this in the first place: In the hope that I will find a deathcore band that sounds like what I imagined that deathcore logically ought to sound like. Luckily, these guys are even better! :D This is at least partly because they embrace all the weird experimental touches you get on early screamo records and such, and overall seem to have a distinct sense of humour in their compositions—definitely getting some Mike Patton vibes from the bouncy grooves suddenly imploding and the wild vocal antics, although the latter are also very Bastard Noise in execution.

    My sole reservation is that the vocalist/lyricist, who became a police officer in 2013, appears to be some degree of conservative wingnut. Thankfully, he keeps this out of his lyrics for the most part (they skew oblique and personal), and otherwise seems like a reasonably thoughtful dude; plus, the rest of the band are apparently on quite a different page politically speaking, so I guess he's not totally insufferable about it. Either way, it's ultimately ignorable in a way that, say, Dave Mustaine's politics aren't.
  • It's kinda funny to me how you started with Noise, industrial and Drone and then got into metal, because it parallels my interest and development in those genres, but in reverse.

    Gonna second Imi's recommendations for Sepultura, but add Chaos AD and Roots as well. Sadus is another good band to check out, especially the album Illusions, which is also known as Chemical Exposure because of record label reasons. For Gorguts, Obscura is a good starting point and then working forward to From Wisdom to Hate and Colored Sands is recommended. I haven't listened to their first two albums, so I can't offer an opinion there. For Pig Destroyer, their Natasha EP is fantasic. It's completely different from their normal stuff, but it's a great Doom/Sludge Metal album. Speaking of Doom and Sludge, Trouble's Psalm 9 and Grief's Come to Grief are both great albums in their repsective genres.

    For Emperor, every one of their albums are good, but I'd recommend either their first In the Nightside Eclipse or their last Prometheus: The Discipline of Fire & Demise as a good starting point. Also, If you like Emperor's stuff you should check out Ihsahn's solo work. It's not super out there, but it's definitely willing to experiment more than a lot of other Black Metal. Peccatum is another good band to check out, which is the brainchild of Ihsahn, his wife Ihriel and his brother in law. For other Emperor related bands, Green Carnation and In the Woods... are both good bands. Green Carnation is kinda interesting in that each record gets less and less heavy. Their first EP was straight up Death Metal, their next two albums were Prog-doom and then ther last two albums were just Hard rock and an acoustic album, respectively. Definitely recommend Light of Day, Day of Darkness, as a starting point, which does the whole one 60+ minute long song album thing. In Woods... was formed by a bunch of former members from Green Carnation, after Tchort left to focus on Emperor and are as far as I can tell, one of the first Black Metal bands to really flirt with songwriting that gets called Avant-garde Metal. Omnio and Strange in Stereo are both solid albums, as is their live album, which has a great cover of Jefferson Airplane's "White Rabbit".

    I have more recommendations, but this is getting pretty long, so I'll hold off for now.
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    Side note before I continue:

    I mentioned Pg. 99 in describing Ion Dissonance, but that influence is way more obvious here—the demos included at the end suggest that the band started out as an emoviolence outfit for all intents and purposes, albeit one with a death metal drumming style and the occasional gurgle; and while the album proper is decidedly metal and surprisingly technical, this album really does split the difference on the two sides of the "deathcore" construction.

    Totally forgot to mention that this came out on Robotic Empire, better known as *the* skramz label. So this connection runs deep. No wonder I love this record.

    Now, onto expanding that list:
    • Acid Bath
    • Alcest
    • Arsis
    • Atheist
    • At the Gates
    • Bathory
    • Botch
    • Candiria
    • Coalesce
    • Converge
    • Cryptopsy
    • Cynic
    • Darkthrone
    • Deathspell Omega
    • Demilich
    • Destruction
    • Dillinger Escape Plan
    • Dodecahedron
    • Entombed
    • Exodus
    • Goatwhore
    • Green Carnation
    • Grief
    • High On Fire
    • Ihsahn
    • In the Woods...
    • Incantation
    • Kreator
    • Kyuss
    • Peccatum
    • Periphery
    • Sadus
    • Testament
    • Trouble
    • Ulcerate
    I have actually listened to Grief's Torso and something or other by DSO, but that was quite a while ago, in both cases.
  • if doom/stoner is on the menu, then Electric Wizard
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    Naturally! I listened to Dopethrone aeons ago but I should probably revisit their work at some point.

    On a barely related note, I'm watching these two dudes talk about groove metal (because why not), and about half an hour in Prong comes up and I just smile at the bizarre realisation that a former Swans drummer was partly responsible for the existence of Lamb of God.
  • I'll be honest and say I don't know why groove metal has such a bad rep among many metalheads.
  • edited 2016-11-05 03:47:24
    How does she do that?
    I don't know very many metal bands, but Torche is on the top of the shortlist of the ones I do know.

    (Jesu is, too, but you already know them.)
  • Torche are good. Kylesa. Pentagram. Rwake. Spirit Caravan
  • edited 2016-11-05 03:56:04
    “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    I also know Torche, albeit not well, partly because I am actually more familiar with Floor. Which I think is the reverse of how it's supposed to work, but whatever.

    I'll be honest and say I don't know why groove metal has such a bad rep among many metalheads.

    Too close to nü-metal or alt-rock or something? I can kind of get where people are bugged by it, and I'm not sure that it's my thing given what little I've heard, but ultimately, if you play thrash metal at a normal rock speed and add a bit more bounce, that's what you get.

    I'm not in much of a position to judge anyway.

    ^ Kylesa did a split with Cream Abdul Babar, who are pretty sweet.
  • Groove metal seems to mainly be "thrash at moderate tempos" which is an okay thing by me
  • Most of the Groove Metal hate that I've seen comes from people who really hate Pantera and their influence on Metal.
  • The world that we used to know, people tell me it don't turn no more
    i didnt say "listen to Incantation" before so

    listen to Incantation
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    Part of my curiosity about Sepultura comes from the fact that their later work was apparently a *huge* influence on bands in that vein, and it's an area that I really am just kind of aware exists but haven't listened to much at all.

    Really, most of my early positive experiences with metal were with the more out-there members of the doom/sludge family, coming out of listening to a lot of Swans, so riding on a single riff for a long time is far from anathema to me. But I feel like I wasn't as sold on thrash or its progeny at the time because I felt like the speed and the lack of emphasis on the low end took away from what I wanted out of metal at the time, which was sheer crushing immensity and evil. Had I heard Indian's From All Purity at that age, I think I would have become a full-on metalhead overnight. Records that abominably heavy do not come out very often. But I have come to appreciate fast bands much more, although I don't think that part of my taste has changed so much as it has become more eclectic and less rigid. Why I'm drawn to certain schools of black metal, for instance, is that sense of pure evil and utter foreboding. It's just a faster-paced sense of pure evil and utter foreboding.
  • The world that we used to know, people tell me it don't turn no more
    oh and Vektor

    and Voivod, of course!!!


  • I think this here may be the most crushing, immense doom metal album I ever bought
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    Tamlin said:

    band I'm very, very dumb for not mentioning earlier: Incantation

    Tamlin said:

    i didnt say "listen to Incantation" before so

    listen to Incantation

    But you did! :P
    Tamlin said:

    oh and Vektor

    and Voivod, of course!!!

    Yes, good, definitely will look into those.

    Most of the Groove Metal hate that I've seen comes from people who really hate Pantera and their influence on Metal.

    I suspected as much.



    I think this here may be the most crushing, immense doom metal album I ever bought

    I know I have heard of these guys before, if not heard them. So very much checking this out.
  • They made only one album, but it is heavier than a metric fuckton of osmium.
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    Discogs and other sources tell me they dropped a second, Ghost, which is just one half-hour song, plus and EP and a demo CDr. But that's it. Very small discography.

    *...*

    I must have it all.
  • edited 2016-11-05 04:42:19
    How does she do that?
    If you're fine with me piggybacking off this thread a little bit, I'm kinda curious what metal bands I would like.

    I know a few I should listen to already, but I'm curious if there are more.
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    I'm kind of using this as a liveblog of me digging into various bands, but if anything sounds intriguing, I would strongly encourage you to check it out. At this point, it's probably best if you ask TNS, Naney and Imi before you ask me, but I can tentatively offer recommendations in certain areas.
  • How does she do that?
    Cool, cool.

    I already asked Edlyn privately, and will keep the other people you mentioned in mind, too.

    Have fun with your quest.
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    I could probably rec you war metal albums but there are probably less than ten war metal bands of note, so that's not exactly taxing, nor do I think that would really be your cup of tea.
  • How does she do that?
    Haha, fair.
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    (If you want to know what "war metal" is, scroll to the top and play that Blasphemy track. Loud. It's fucking baller.)
  • I have seen High on Fire described as "war metal".
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    Generally speaking, "war metal" has a very different meaning; the name reflects the typical subject matter and imagery of bands like Conqueror rather than their sound. That sound, however, is more... well, another, more descriptive term for the genre is "bestial black metal." Basically, it's blackened deathgrind: Unpredictable song structures, extremely violent playing, animalistic guttural/wretched vocals, guitar solos that shred like atonal chainsaws, loads of blast beats in different styles, the whole nine yards. It's a bit like the better mathcore acts in that one expects the musicians to be slavering or foaming at the mouth when playing it.
  • edited 2016-11-08 02:29:46
    “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    Listening to Mind Cemeteries, the début album by the experimental tech-death act Coma Cluster Void, and it's pretty baller. Weirdly, though, the first comparison that came to mind when I listened to it was all the early, math/grind-inflected deathcore I've been listening to: The chugging, Swans-y piano wire bass sound; the almost jazzy sound of the higher clean guitar parts; the different vocal approaches explored with two or three vocalists; the highly erratic song structures; the slamming, thudding rhythmic riffs. All very in keeping. The main difference was the near complete lack of obvious hardcore influences outside of the alternating roars and shouting.

    The second thing I thought of, however, was Ehnahre, and man, stylistically, they're pretty different, but the atmosphere, the production, the use of classical instruments, the sinister quiet sections, the Viennese serialist chord structures, the slow builds in and out of total chaos—so very, very Ehnahre. But also very much their own thing, which is great.

    I'm quite liking this.
  • edited 2016-11-08 03:33:51
    “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    And now, Quttinirpaaq, a fine heavy one-man rock project from Texas indulging in some serious Skullflower/Ramleh worship. This is only barely metal, specifically the kind of experimental sludge/doom that The Goslings are best known for, but I like this kind of music and it's really heavy and definitely has a metal lineage so in it goes.

    Speaking of which, I need to listen to more Goslings.
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    Listening to Manilla Road's Crystal Logic now... or should I say, CRYSTAL LOGIIIIIIIIIC!?

    It's good stuff, fam.
  • I think I liked that the best out of all of Manilla Road's stuff, because it's just so.....I dunno....early 80s, I guess?

    and the singer is such a whiny-voiced geek
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    He does have a strange voice, but man, does he sell it. I love when people with weird voices sing with so much conviction you just can't help but get pulled in.

    Also, that guitar soloing is extraordinary.
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    Also listened to recently: Pig Destroyer, Prowler in the Yard.

    Jennifer says hi. ovvvvvvvvo
  • edited 2016-11-22 23:29:50
    So beautiful.
    Are any of these low on or lacking vocals, I want something to listen to while trying to catch a baby meteor. It only seems fitting.
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    The first bands that spring to mind are Tempel and Earth, both of whom are predominantly to entirely instrumental, although there are plenty of bands where the unintelligibility of the vocals means that they're more like an instrument than a singing voice, or where the mixing places them in a similar support role. Atmospheric black metal in particular tends to push vocals to the back of the mix.
  • Oooh, I'll check out what sounds interesting from that genre later on then. Thanks for the suggestions.
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    Fell Voices and Ash Borer are always good choices.
  • Earthless are more on the stoner metal/stoner rock side but are usually instrumental.
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    I considered mentioning Earthless but I think of them more as a heavy psych band, although that's ultimately an academic distinction and they're good fun so I'm glad you brought them up.
  • I mean, it's all good. I've just found that the scratchy, snarly, and repetitively aggressive vocals that have defined a lot of what metal I've heard are particularly not to my liking. Just in a personal sense, as opposed to my receptiveness to checking it out for what it is. So I'm down for that.
  • I used to not like growly death metal vocals ("Cookie Monster" vocals) but they've grown on me over time.
  • Crystal said:

    Are any of these low on or lacking vocals, I want something to listen to while trying to catch a baby meteor. It only seems fitting.

    Barrows is a good choice for instrumental metal. Both of their albums Imprecari Island and Red Giant are fantastic.
  • “His thoughts were red thoughts, and his teeth were white.”
    I think Imi would really like Bell Witch's Four Phantoms. It's sadder than the average "Imi album," in my experience, but it totally is one. Assuming said cowfriend has not heard it yet.

    On that note: Funeral doom. Somebody tell me more.
  • I will listen to this, but not now, because right now I am already too sad
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