The noise endures: Immortal and Varathron

It’s 1995, some of black metal’s most revered works have already been released, and many of the musicians responsible are now behind bars. But the movement is stronger than the murderous actions of one or two people. Music is louder than words and wider than pictures. Well, it's certainly louder than murder anyway. What better … Continue reading The noise endures: Immortal and Varathron

Advertisements

Death metal…I’m afraid the Americans did it better: Incantation and Suffocation

Okay, so if we’re weighing it up against European death metal alone it’s a close run thing when you look at the early output of Therion, At the Gates, Bolt Thrower and Dismember, but in terms of quality and quantity I’m afraid the Americans just clinch it. And it’s consistent workhorses like these two artists … Continue reading Death metal…I’m afraid the Americans did it better: Incantation and Suffocation

Symphonic nocturnal majesty: Rotting Christ and Emperor

Musical extremity is a means to an end. This fact is perfectly demonstrated by the two artists we’ll be looking at this week. If black metal is not abrasive and obscure then it’s dramatic and symphonic, a combination which often leads to cheese. But here we have two studied sets of musicians who knew their … Continue reading Symphonic nocturnal majesty: Rotting Christ and Emperor

Tortured spectres of the macabre: My Dying Bride and Type O Negative

With the rise and rise of extreme metal came a competing trend for many musicians to return to music of humanity. Away from esoteric spiritualism, death, gore and war, a clutch of artists arose who wished to leave their own stamp on familiar themes, and started writing what can only be described as loves songs … Continue reading Tortured spectres of the macabre: My Dying Bride and Type O Negative

The Story of Anvil: The endearing comedy of art that tries too hard

‘The Story of Anvil’, released in 2008, follows failed Canadian heavy metal band Anvil as they embark on a disastrous European tour and endeavour against all the odds to release their thirteenth studio album ‘This is Thirteen’. The film opens with footage of Anvil playing at a festival in Japan to a packed out crowd … Continue reading The Story of Anvil: The endearing comedy of art that tries too hard

The second division of Norwegian black metal: Satyricon and Gorgoroth

Satyricon and Gorgoroth both achieved an undeserved level of fame in the post 2000 extreme metal scene. The former for fusing black metal with more conventional chord patterns and time signatures, creating a style now known as 'black ‘n’ roll'. The latter for positioning themselves as the ugly and violent bastions of true black metal … Continue reading The second division of Norwegian black metal: Satyricon and Gorgoroth

The never ending funeral: Esoteric and Thergothon

Funeral doom represents the other end of the extreme metal spectrum to black metal in many ways. Whilst death metal largely relies on riffcraft before guitar tone to justify its existence, for funeral doom and black metal (approximately the fastest and the slowest of underground metal), surface level aesthetic can make or break an album. … Continue reading The never ending funeral: Esoteric and Thergothon