We live in a dynamic system that shifts, changes and evolves with every breath we take. The changes within ourselves are reflected outwardly in the things we make.
In this article we’ll be focusing on the evolution and changes that have been, are, and will be occurring inside the Metal genre.
The initial Sound
Metal is now like the mythical hydra. The seven-headed beast of the sea. But if each head represents a sub-genre, the abominable monster has over 50 heads and they keep on growing.
The genre can be characterized by highly amplified distortion, extended guitar solos, emphatic beats, and overall loudness. Heavy metal lyrics and performance styles have been originally associated with masculinity and machismo.
The Metalmorphosis – is metal turning electronic?
The genre then started branching out into progressively heavier subgenres, reaching a black peak in the second wave of Black Metal. Fast tempo, loudness, screamed vocals and a fascination with the morbid make this subgenre probably the most corrosive of them all. According to some, black metal is more about the history of the genre rather than the actual music. We say it’s whatever makes it work for you.
As long as you listen to it, there’s no wrong way of doing and no wrong reasons. Unless you plan to burn a church down, in which case – please make sure to Livestream it and send the footage over to us.
Death metal, blackened death metal, christian metal, folk metal, deathcore, grindcore, djent, atmospheric black metal, depressive black metal, doom metal, avantgarde metal glam metal… and the list can go on and on.
Metal is becoming a supercluster of sub-genres. As more music is made, it’s becoming increasingly challenging to create a unique composition by following the original so called ‘metal guidelines’. Therefore bands like Rotting Christ, Gojira and Arcturus decided to tear down the wall and approach Metal in a unique way.
A relatively new trend that has been sparked by Meshuggah is the increased used of djent. That is, tuning your guitar low. palm muting and perfectly syncronising the drumbeats, with guitar riffs.
A new emerging trend in metal music is including electronic and even dub-step like elements in the music. It’s about at this moment that we can feel the metal purist’s blood boiling with anger and swearing “blasphemy and treason, by beard of Thor!”. But before you reach for you ax and throw it at us, consider the following:
Music is in constant change, no music genre has ever remained the same in time. Like a river, its constant flow will carve out a new path in the ground given enough time. But it ultimately remains the same river. We’re not trying to convince you this is the right direction for metal or to convert you into a musical-neophile. But based on our own research and a few other sources, we’re ready to bet £20 that metal and electronic will continue merging in the future.
The arcturian sign by Arcturus is a great example of this.
Notice the transition between the first, electronic part of the song and the second, more analog part? What do you make of it? Is this a good direction for metal, should metal bands keep experimenting with electronic, dub inserts in their music?
British based black metal band Anaal Nathrakh have been experimenting with this as well. Their take on electronic inserts blends with the corrosive character of black metal into an abyssfully beautiful and corrosive sound.
Our second most favourite activity, other than listening to music, is forecasting. Given what we’ve listened to so far, current industry trends, and the global fascination with electronic music, we predict that Metal will continue to be mixed with electronic music. The experiment might turn into a sub-genre – and since no one named it yet, it is our duty as part-time-music-historians to add our mark on the face of music culture.
Electronic metal sounds a bit too vanilla, and el-metal makes us think of Spanish curse words. We, therefore, propose the following name: Dub-metal. What do you think? Is this emerging sub-genre a brave pioneering exercise or an undesired short-lived fad that will be forgotten sooner before your phone battery reaches 0%?
And if you’re a Rock/Metal or otherwise hardcore experimental band that’s looking for digital and meatspace promotion for your music and live performances, get in touch using the form in the bottom right corner of the website. We promote rock bands and we create custom awareness campaigns based on what stage you’re at.