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Commisaur
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2013 1:16 am
Posts: 80
PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 3:01 pm 
 

Why did it take so long (at least 7 years from 1969 to 1976 with Judas Priest’s Sad Wings of Destiny, if I’m not mistaken, and with the start of NWOBHM and most especially with the start of Venom) for there to be an explosion of bands copying and expanding upon (by expanding upon I mean speeding the sound up and making it more aggressive) the dark and gloomy sounds of Black Sabbath?

Whereas when Venom came onto the scene there was an explosion of extreme metal/Venom copy cat bands almost overnight? Was Black Sabbath just that far ahead of the curve in terms of innovation that it took years for other musicians to catch on and mimic what they were doing despite their massive commercial success? Was Black Sabbath simply just another popular 1970s hard rock band with a unique attitude and sound (like Deep Purple with their organ and Led Zeppelin with their folksy stuff)? And because they were seen as just another band, many musicians trying to start bands at the time (1969-1976) were influenced by the 1970s hard rock scene as a whole instead of just focusing in on the stylistic template created by Black Sabbath?
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_flow
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Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2017 6:31 pm
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 3:21 pm 
 

Black who?

Skip James - Hard Times Killing Floor Blues, live 1967
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mYALBzfY5QY

Blind Willie Johnson - Dark was the night cold was the ground, 1927
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BNj2BXW852g

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Empyreal
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 4:31 pm 
 

I feel like back then, things were evolving so fast that a lot of bands just took what they liked from the basic outline of Sabbath's sound and incorporated it. Then later when things were solidified you got bands who were more openly imitative and willing to draw directly from Sabbath.
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idunnosomename
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 4:40 pm 
 

Thought this would be about doom metal. Although perhaps no one ripped them off to the level of pastiche, bands like Uriah Heep were doing similarly dirty tones and dissonant bluesy riffs at the same time. Ozzy's voice remained unique of course...

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droneriot
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 8:13 pm 
 

Much of the 70s was just going completely overboard on the prog and psychedelic styles, wasn't until near the end of the decade that people for longing for a more straight-forward sound again.
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Space_alligator
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:14 pm 
 

There were bands, just didn't get as much exposure. You have Pemtagram, Sir Lord Baltimore, Possessed (70's band), Dust, Buffalo etc etc.
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Metalion_SOS
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 05, 2019 2:04 am 
 

Atomic Rooster (second album), Buffalo, Blues Creation, Flower Travellin' Band, Zior… etc. were all modelled on Sabbath in 70-1, IMO. It's not like it took years.

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shwartzheim
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 05, 2019 8:19 am 
 

I believe the real trend started in 1994 when the Nativity In Black tribute album came out. Around that time and for a good few years after, you were in the minority if you didn't reference Sabbath in some form.
Was a pretty cool compilation too from memory but it's been a loooong time since I've given it a listen.
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Twisted_Psychology
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 05, 2019 8:36 am 
 

shwartzheim wrote:
I believe the real trend started in 1994 when the Nativity In Black tribute album came out. Around that time and for a good few years after, you were in the minority if you didn't reference Sabbath in some form.
Was a pretty cool compilation too from memory but it's been a loooong time since I've given it a listen.


It's not a bad compilation but boy does a lot of that "homage" feel like lip service in hindsight.

When it comes down to it, Sabbath's rhythms and structures were defined by a loose, jammy sense of swing that metal had completely moved away from by the 80s. Considering how metal's evolution was all about getting tighter and more aggressive until about the mid-90s, there didn't seem to be much room for direct Sabbath emulation beyond a few superficial cues. Even direct Sabbath acolytes like Trouble and Candlemass aren't really known for their swing. Perhaps groups like Saint Vitus and Pentagram are exceptions to the rule but I'd argue that they're more popular now than they were in their heydays.

Also, the "sounds like Sabbath" tag that every single stoner doom band gets nowadays really drives me up the wall. Plenty of bands get the dark vibe right but very few capture the exploratory vibe that made Sabbath truly special. I'd argue that groups like Sleep and Electric Wizard are the true biggest influencers in the modern scene. Of course, I also say this as the guy whose last band put a Sabbath cover on our last album...
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Commisaur
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Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2013 1:16 am
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2019 11:30 am 
 

Twisted_Psychology wrote:
shwartzheim wrote:
I believe the real trend started in 1994 when the Nativity In Black tribute album came out. Around that time and for a good few years after, you were in the minority if you didn't reference Sabbath in some form.
Was a pretty cool compilation too from memory but it's been a loooong time since I've given it a listen.


It's not a bad compilation but boy does a lot of that "homage" feel like lip service in hindsight.

When it comes down to it, Sabbath's rhythms and structures were defined by a loose, jammy sense of swing that metal had completely moved away from by the 80s. Considering how metal's evolution was all about getting tighter and more aggressive until about the mid-90s, there didn't seem to be much room for direct Sabbath emulation beyond a few superficial cues. Even direct Sabbath acolytes like Trouble and Candlemass aren't really known for their swing. Perhaps groups like Saint Vitus and Pentagram are exceptions to the rule but I'd argue that they're more popular now than they were in their heydays.

Also, the "sounds like Sabbath" tag that every single stoner doom band gets nowadays really drives me up the wall. Plenty of bands get the dark vibe right but very few capture the exploratory vibe that made Sabbath truly special. I'd argue that groups like Sleep and Electric Wizard are the true biggest influencers in the modern scene. Of course, I also say this as the guy whose last band put a Sabbath cover on our last album...


I think everyone is really missing the point I was trying to make. I was not talking about bands closely copying Black Sabbath and developing the doom/stoner sub genres. I was asking why it took so long for musicians to speed up Black Sabbath’s music and make it more brutal and aggressive (thrash/Death/black).

I mean you would think a band like Venom would have appeared immediately after Black Sabbath
released their first three albums. Was there not musicians in 1971 whom heard the dark sounds of Black Sabbath and whom were yearning for an musical outlet to their anger and aggression? The hypothetical guitarist I’m referring to could of just heard the title track of Black Sabbath and immediately started playing a tremolo picked variation mixed in with palm mutes of power chords and gallops. Then naturally the drummer would hear all this and play some fast beat (most likely not double bass or blasting, but something fast nonetheless like the drum beat in “Paranoid”). And then the vocalist might be compelled to do some kind of harsh vocals and maybe even make themselves sound like a demon lol. And then, boom, death metal is made.

So in a nut shell, why did it take so long for extreme metal to develop after 1971 with the release of the Master of Reality album?
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Amerigo
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2019 1:56 pm 
 

Commisaur wrote:

I think everyone is really missing the point I was trying to make. I was not talking about bands closely copying Black Sabbath and developing the doom/stoner sub genres. I was asking why it took so long for musicians to speed up Black Sabbath’s music and make it more brutal and aggressive (thrash/Death/black).

I mean you would think a band like Venom would have appeared immediately after Black Sabbath
released their first three albums. Was there not musicians in 1971 whom heard the dark sounds of Black Sabbath and whom were yearning for an musical outlet to their anger and aggression? The hypothetical guitarist I’m referring to could of just heard the title track of Black Sabbath and immediately started playing a tremolo picked variation mixed in with palm mutes of power chords and gallops. Then naturally the drummer would hear all this and play some fast beat (most likely not double bass or blasting, but something fast nonetheless like the drum beat in “Paranoid”). And then the vocalist might be compelled to do some kind of harsh vocals and maybe even make themselves sound like a demon lol. And then, boom, death metal is made.

So in a nut shell, why did it take so long for extreme metal to develop after 1971 with the release of the Master of Reality album?

It took medieval Europe 400 years to go from monophonic to polyphonic chants. 400 years for a gaggle of monks to think "What would happen if I sung one thing but everyone else sang something else?" And you're surprised it took 20 years to develop an insular and not-exactly-popular subgenre of music? If anything it developed remarkably fast considering this was all before the modern-day Internet.
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Osmiumthemetal
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2019 3:39 pm 
 

I think one of the major reasons for this is that rock music wasn't nearly as segregated into specific scenes in the early 1970s as it is now. Rock bands at the time would experiment and every one had a unique blending of styles. It wasn't the style at the time to just copy a band you liked, you had to put some sort of slant on it. Punk Rock in my opinion was the very first rock style that was a "self-aware" genre with dozens of prominent bands that were mostly copycats just mostly imitating the sound of a certain band or two. If the punk rock movement never happened, the NWOBHM definitely wouldn't have either. Metal started to follow the trend that punk rock did, with many groups clearly imitating what sounded good to them, and that's where metal as the genre comes from.

There were plenty of bands at the time that were already influenced by Sabbath. Flower Travellin' Band and Iron Claw were making Sabbath covers in '70, and Budgie, Pentagram, Dust, Bang, and many others would very soon follow. All of these groups still sounded unique though and were mostly underground. Judas Priest was around since 1970 and was playing similar to Sabbath for that entire time, just not receiving much attention really until 1975-76. Iron Maiden and Accept were slumbering through most of the seventies until they finally got attention as well. I'm gonna guess there still were plenty of other people playing really heavy, doomy music that never got past the garage, due to any number of reasons from being shit songwriters to going off to school.

Venom has absolutely no place in '71-72. Not even garage rock bands were playing that sloppy at the time, and if you were an angsty musician at the time, you would most likely be making some sort of art/glam rock record or really moody prog. It's almost like asking why didn't Morbid Angel form and release Altars of Madness immediately after Welcome to Hell was released. Things take time to develop, and even 81' and 89' are as different from each other as 71' to 79' were.

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Acrobat
Eric Olthwaite

Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2007 8:53 am
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2019 6:44 pm 
 

_flow wrote:
Black who?


Black Fucking Sabbath, that's who! I don't know what blues has to do with this thread, either.

And people are right, there were a few bands, but predominantly obscure in nature (Necromandus, fit the bill, don't they?) and, as droneriot noted, the rest of the 70s predominantly spent following other musical ideas.
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BURlAL
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Joined: Fri May 21, 2010 11:32 pm
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2019 3:45 pm 
 

I think the better question is why did the Priest/Maiden style get popular but not the Sabbath style.

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Osmiumthemetal
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue May 24, 2016 10:30 pm
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2019 6:36 pm 
 

BURlAL wrote:
I think the better question is why did the Priest/Maiden style get popular but not the Sabbath style.

Probably because it's a lot harder to pull off the Sabbath sound correctly (i.e. not sound unoriginal or totally butcher it). Notice how many of the earlier bands that did follow the Sabbath style like Witchfinder General and Pagan Altar are often waved off as copycats. Also notice that Sabbath themselves transformed into something much more akin to the Priest/Maiden style when Ozzy left.

The only band I can think of from the NWOBHM era that followed the Sabbath style while managing to sound really unique as well was the UK Legend and they are unbelievably obscure.

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kalervon
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2019 10:05 pm 
 

Acrobat wrote:
_flow wrote:
Black who?


Black Fucking Sabbath, that's who! I don't know what blues has to do with this thread, either.
It's a thread about Black Sabbath. Black Sabbath were influenced by the blues, not by polka.

As for Venom, they couldn't play what they did until Motörhead came along.
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Acrobat
Eric Olthwaite

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2019 1:01 am 
 

Yes, but this thread isn't about what influenced Sabbath and, even then, if we're talking blues it's definitely more of the Cream variety than Skip James.
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Abominatrix
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:20 am 
 

Flo does this sort of thing sometimes, as I recall.

At first I thought this was going to be about doom/early Sabbath-sounding bands, too. I don't understand why the op is puzzled about no Venom-ish bands forming immediately after Sabbath. I always thought it was common knowledge that Venom loved Motorhead, although now that I think about it I don't know that I ever read any interviews where they said as much. Still though, it seems obvious enough to me that without Motorhead and punk there wouldn't be a lot of that other stuff and maybe metal would have evolved in a completely different way. And Motorhead would not have existed, likely, had not Lemmy been kicked out of Hawkwind, a psychedelic rock band withs ome heavy tendencies and even borderline punk songs, in 1975/76. The course of thigns seems pretty natural to me and I don't at all comprehend the way of thinking that suggests that somehow 1976 was both too late for Judas Priest to be developing their trademark sound and that somehow there should have been more Sabbath copying bands. I think people might not be getting your point because your post appears to be something of a contradiction, on the surface.

Listen to Budgie and Flower Travellin' Band. Maybe throw in Purple's Machine Head. Then listen to Priest's first few albums and have somee late 70s Motorhead. Then put on Welcome to Hell. All will become clear. I'm not saying it's a straightforward progression from points a to b to c all the time, but nothing really happened overnight.
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CrippledLucifer
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:31 am 
 

Commisaur wrote:
I was asking why it took so long for musicians to speed up Black Sabbath’s music and make it more brutal and aggressive (thrash/Death/black).


The tl;dr answer is because punk rock/hardcore punk and Motörhead, all of which were necessary stepping stones for the extreme subgeneres of metal, took 5 to 10 years to arrive after Black Sabbath started releasing music.

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gasmask_colostomy
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2019 5:43 am 
 

I'd argue that it took longer than just releasing their debut for Sabbath to establish anything close to a "sound". If you listen to the self-titled album, every song sounds different, so how could another band copy that? Paranoid is the same but to a lesser extent, and then Master of Reality is pretty much the first time the band hit a groove. Everything until then was heavily blues-influenced or sounded like prog (I'm of the opinion the debut doesn't even really count as metal), so it took a few years for Sabbath, as well as other bands, to weed out the remainder of blues and prog and hard rock until they were primarily left with metal.

Regarding the OP's question about why bands didn't instantly get heavier after Sabbath magically hit the "metal" button, the answer is that history isn't clear cut like that. Everything before Sabbath was just as important in developing metal and we've only picked these graded steps in retrospect to show how the genre evolved. Sabbath was a only a little bit heavier than Led Zeppelin, who were only a little bit heavier than Jimi Hendrix, and so on. Going forward chronologically, mid-'70s Judas Priest was only a bit heavier than mid-'70s Sabbath (some would argue not at all), then NWOBHM was slightly heavier than JP, and it just kept going like that.

One reason why bands can't get suddenly heavier is because they are limited by their paradigm and can't imagine becoming something totally different. That's why no one on this site can imagine what metal will sound like 20 years from now. Another reason is equipment and technology. The earlier metal bands were pushing the limits of their equipment to make it sound like they did. Go back to The Kinks for the classic story of Ray Davies actually cutting his speaker cone with a razor blade to give it a "sharper" sound.

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kalervon
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2019 9:30 pm 
 

Commisaur wrote:
Led Zeppelin with their folksy stuff)?
Forgot to comment on this. Led Zep's first two albums were pure heaviness (of the time), no folk tunes yet. So by the time Black Sabbath recorded their first album, Led Zep I was already out and about. When Sabbath recorded their self-titled, Led Zep II was recorded but not released yet.
Commisaur wrote:
Was there not musicians in 1971 whom heard the dark sounds of Black Sabbath and whom were yearning for an musical outlet to their anger and aggression?
I don't think Venom played their kind of metal to outlet their anger and aggression. I think they enjoyed playing music and found a niche at the height of their talent. This is typical; someone does something in jest or bravado, and influences a bunch of people who then take it seriously and push it to another level. I also believe that the whole idea of "characters" (band members with stage or nicknames) was probably influenced by KISS. Though KISS members had no stage names, they were characters (each recognizable by their trademark make-up).
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Jonpo
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 11, 2019 3:15 pm 
 

I would argue there are actually still to this day almost zero bands capturing what Sabbath did. There is an INFINITE and exhausting pool of acts who nicked one little piece of their sound and won't stop releasing the same song.

Very few bands that I've heard bring the speed and technicality like Sabbath did. It's usually just really fucking boring stoner doom riffs and bad lyrics about pot.
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HeavenDuff
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 8:34 pm 
 

Amerigo wrote:
It took medieval Europe 400 years to go from monophonic to polyphonic chants. 400 years for a gaggle of monks to think "What would happen if I sung one thing but everyone else sang something else?" And you're surprised it took 20 years to develop an insular and not-exactly-popular subgenre of music? If anything it developed remarkably fast considering this was all before the modern-day Internet.


This.

We have to put things in their right context. In the 70's, recording gear was far more expensive. Recording music was way more costly. Getting produced required you to impress a studio and do something they'd think would turn a profit. Self-production was not an option, and recording and distributing music that was unconventional was not quite as easy as it is today.

Music was far less accessible even for listeners. If you wanted to hear music, you had to listen to the radio, or go buy yourself a turntable and vinyls. Discovering new, more underground bands was much harder than it is now. Remember that this was even before the tape trading community even existed. By the time Black Metal by Venom was recorded, music and it's associated technologies had already changed a lot since the early days of Black Sabbath.

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HeavenDuff
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 8:42 pm 
 

Abominatrix wrote:
Still though, it seems obvious enough to me that without Motorhead and punk there wouldn't be a lot of that other stuff and maybe metal would have evolved in a completely different way. And Motorhead would not have existed, likely, had not Lemmy been kicked out of Hawkwind, a psychedelic rock band withs ome heavy tendencies and even borderline punk songs, in 1975/76. The course of thigns seems pretty natural to me and I don't at all comprehend the way of thinking that suggests that somehow 1976 was both too late for Judas Priest to be developing their trademark sound and that somehow there should have been more Sabbath copying bands. I think people might not be getting your point because your post appears to be something of a contradiction, on the surface.


This, yes.

We sometimes make teleological fallacies, by looking back on our history from the point of view of someone who knows what actually happened and making the mistake of thinking that the evolution of things leading to the present is extremely obvious and that things were almost destined to be like they are now.

We can't take all the work and creativity of artists for granted. People had to actually take risks and push the enveloppe for things to evolve the way they did.

gasmask_colostomy wrote:
One reason why bands can't get suddenly heavier is because they are limited by their paradigm and can't imagine becoming something totally different. That's why no one on this site can imagine what metal will sound like 20 years from now.


I like this analogy. Great explanation!

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wednesdaysixx
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 17, 2019 3:07 am 
 

So, trying to chime in without repeating what has been said:
We’re looking back knowing what happened with people confused as to how it wasn’t all viewed as an obvious outcome.
Sabbath weren’t influenced by themselves. Sabbath were influenced by other rock bands but also blues, jazz and classical music along with then-contemporary pop stuff. Bands that followed listened to Sabbath and Sabbath’s contemporaries then their successors listened to that wave and their contemporaries and so on, hence incrementally getting heavier/faster/doomier/thrashier/blacker/whatever.
Also, you can’t implement something if you don’t know what it is. A post suggested playing Sabbath’s Sabbath from Sabbath with tremolo picking but most musicians at the time who were self-taught were either experimenting with blues scales, key changes, time signatures or effects or banging out chords. Prog and punk were big in Sabbath’s wake and so such techniques weren’t, it would seem to me, common knowledge.

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Ill-Starred Son
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 17, 2019 9:56 pm 
 

_flow wrote:
Black who?

Skip James - Hard Times Killing Floor Blues, live 1967
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mYALBzfY5QY

Blind Willie Johnson - Dark was the night cold was the ground, 1927
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BNj2BXW852g


Come on man, that's old school dark blues and it's cool, but hardly heavy like black sabbath.

Then again, nothing acoustic really can be, and I can see it as the roots of doom metal in many ways, but Black Sabbath and Doom Metal it ain't.

I don't really know why it did take a while for Doom bands to pop up that were directly influenced by Sabbath, but there were many contemporaries with a similar sound that just went mostly unnoticed.

Pagan Altar and Witchfinder General were 2 of the first to really be influenced by Sabbath, but there were a lot of other lesser known bands doing similar things at around the same time as Sabbath, most of whom aren't on this site like: The ORGINAL Iron Maiden (existed from 1966--1970), Atomic Rooster, Bloodrock, Writing on the Wall, Flying Hat Band (pre-Judas Priest), Monument, Icecross, Warpig, FLower Travelin Band (they're on here), Iron Claw, Necromandus, Zior, Pinnacle and a whole bunch of others in the early 70s and some even the late 60s.

As far as why it took longer for heavier genres of metal to develop, I agree with those who said that punk and motorhead were necessary for Venom who was necessary for thrash and black metal etc, and also with everyone mentioning working within a given paradigm and technological differences, no tape trading, etc.

I mean, Venom is A LOT heavier than Sabbath or most stuff that came out in the 70s when you really compare them and I don't know why it would be a surprise that it would take a decade to get there, just as it's no surprise how different metal in 1980 was from metal in 1990.

It would have been weird to expect someone in retrospect to have just heard Black Sabbath's first record and within a year or two sped it up and add growls and have death or black metal in 1971. I mean come on, things just don't move that fast, and technologically speaking I don't think guitar really was that heavy back then.

Speaking of which, does anyone know if there was something in terms of guitar technology, whether it was a type of guitar or pedal or amp or anything else, which allowed for extreme metal like death, black and grind to be created in the mid 80s which perhaps didn't exist in the 70s?

I mean, it's obviously no mistake that it would have been impossible for music to be as heavy as death or black in the 70s, so does anyone know if there was any type of guitar technology (maybe bass too) that was specifically created in the 80s that could have led to metal getting heavier and more extreme?

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TrooperEd
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 17, 2019 10:42 pm 
 

I feel the urge to post this:

https://rateyourmusic.com/list/warpigcat/the_heaviest_100_obscurities_of_the_70s_by_martin_popoff/
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Ill-Starred Son
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 17, 2019 11:54 pm 
 

TrooperEd wrote:


That's a really great list and while I've heard and own a bunch of them there's a lot I don't know so now I definitely want to buy (or download if I can't afford/find them) as many of those as possible.

In particular, Jerusalem, Bang, Flower Travelin Band, Blood Rock, Captain Beyond, Sir Lord Baltimore, Warpig, Warhorse, High Tide, Atomic Rooster and Lucifer's Friend are all excellent and I own releases by all of them.

I really feel that the majority of those bands are metal and deserve to be on here, yet only a few of them are like Atomic Rooster, Bang, Flower Traveling Band and Lucifer's Friend.

Out of all of the ones on there that I own the Warpig album is the one I'd say is the most impressive and deserving of recogition with Jerusalem a close 2nd (and I mean, they were called WARPIG in 69' BEFORE Sabbath!!)

Theres' so many more too that aren't on the list.

I recommend the Downer Rock Genocide Compilation:

https://youtu.be/M4A07vUZO8I


This got me so into stuff from that era and I started researching them all.

Honestly, there's enough obscure metal bands from that era (I'd probably have it cut off right before 78' with the NWOBHM) that you could have an entire site revolve only around them, and I'm constantly discovering that more and bands from that time were just so fresh and unique with relatively few sounding derivative (not that there weren't plenty of Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple clones, though IMO not really all that many Sabbath clones till the 80s).

I really think there needs to be more acknowledgment of all these bands as being pioneers in metal, and while some of them are getting more well known, most just end up as footnotes.

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