Metal me, please
October 26, 2011 12:17 PM   Subscribe

Help me find more metal/black metal to listen to, based on some very specific likes and dislikes, please.

For me, the best album in the genre is "The Archaic Course" by Borknagar. Ten years ago, I absolutely wore that thing out. Haven't listened to it, or the heavy stuff, since then.

But something made me put it on lately, and man, I forgot how much I love it. I see that in the years since I laid the genre down, it's continued to grow, and I see terms like "symphonic black metal" and "viking metal" and "folk metal" and that all appeals to me, but I don't know where to start.

What I love:
* Big, atmospheric sounds
* Clean vocals, at least 50 percent of the time
* Cosmic and/or fantasy lyrical themes (or both) (I also loved "Nexus Polaris" by Covenant)
* Outrageously inventive vocal hooks (which is, I think, what primarily gripped me about that Borknagar album)
* Theatricality (Arcturus turned me on, too, as did that album by Ulver about William Blake) and a high level of intelligence (Vintersorg also turns me on)

What I hate:
* Mean-spirited or violent lyrics (HATE Cradle of Filth for this reason)
* An emphasis on religion (anti-Christian, pro-Satan, whatever - all nonsense to me)

So ... what else would I like? What have I been missing? Please note that I am not necessarily limiting this to "black metal," it just happens that my favorite metal album is from that genre.
posted by jbickers to Media & Arts (11 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black has always been one of my favorites...a level of theatricality that is not to be missed...brilliant lyrics, too...
posted by sexyrobot at 12:20 PM on October 26, 2011


Features Lars Nedland, who is also in Borknagar.

Also, Tyr and Moonsorrow are favorites of mine. I recommend both highly.
posted by spinifex23 at 12:22 PM on October 26, 2011 [1 favorite]

Falconer is more "speed metal" than "black metal" but it covers a lot of your desires. Lead singer, Mathias Blad, had a background in musical theater.

I'd also recommend Hammers of Misfortune and Slough Feg. Slough Feg is a little bit more straightforward in terms of sound than Hammers of Misfortune, but both might be close.
posted by darksong at 1:01 PM on October 26, 2011 [1 favorite]

These are a little old since it's been awhile since I listened to much metal, but I tended to like similar aspects:

Nightwish (closest to your list), Opeth

Maybes: Iced Earth (lyrics tend towards theology, but doesn't seem to emphasize religion), Porcupine Tree (progressive rock), Dream Theater
posted by ejaned8 at 1:35 PM on October 26, 2011

Check out Ludicra, they shared a member with Hammers of Misfortune (lots of shrieky vocals but a good amount of clean also.) I'd check out Hammers' first record (The Bastard) for sure, it's a sort of weird black metal/folk/prog concept album with various voices representing different characters.

You might dig Agalloch also. More atmospheric than theatrical, and has a lot of nature-inspired imagery going on.
posted by evisceratordeath at 1:56 PM on October 26, 2011 [2 favorites]

King Diamond maybe? Fantasy themes and very theatrical. "Them" is my favourite.
posted by crocomancer at 2:04 PM on October 26, 2011

I really liked Battlelore - Doombound. They're a J. R. R. Tolkien only band, and the earlier albums have kind of spotty production. But that one looks like it matches your list.
posted by andrewzipp at 2:07 PM on October 26, 2011

Oh I love this type of music. Some of the other suggestions are fantastic.
Dragonland reminds me of Vintersorg a bit.
posted by polywomp at 8:36 PM on October 26, 2011

Have you checked the map?
posted by popaopee at 8:28 AM on October 27, 2011 [1 favorite]

Disclaimer: I'm not much of a metal guy.. but I like: Dethklok Metalocalypse/ The cartoon and their albums. Seconding Nightwish. Dragonforce, though its... light-speed metal? :)
posted by Jacen at 1:47 PM on October 27, 2011 [1 favorite]

These may be too "mainstream/poppy" for you, but they resonate with what you're talking about (I hate the cookie monster stuff too)

- Lacuna Coil (especially "Comalies")
- Dream Evil
- Enchant
- Sentenced
- Vanden Plas
posted by softlord at 7:43 PM on October 30, 2011

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