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Invocation
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 12:11 pm
Posts: 118
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 8:13 am 
 

Empyreal wrote:
A lot of people who say the US was unimportant just don't consider PM or trad or any of it at all because it didn't move units or whatever. Metal became such a wide genre that people can ignore huge swathes based on personal tastes.


I did not say the US was unimportant. I said it was not more important than Europe.

And I don't know how you can say I'm not considering power metal when I mentioned it in my post or trad when I mentioned Judas Priest and the NWOBHM. And what do you mean when you say those genres don't move units? They are, along with thrash, the most commercially successful genres of metal. Sabaton, a power metal band, are one of the most famous recent-ish metal bands in the world.

I don't see that North America was as important to trad metal or power metal as Europe though. Who were the American bands as important for trad metal as Judas Priest, Rainbow, Iron Maiden, Saxon, Scorpions, Accept, Warlock or Running Wild? The only comparable bands are Manowar and Manilla Road. Power Metal? The first names that come to mind for most people are Blind Guardian, Helloween, Stratovarius, Gamma Ray...

LithoJazzoSphere wrote:
Invocation wrote:
The idea that the US was more influential to the development of metal than Europe is just bizarre.


Is anyone contending that other than maybe PhilosophicalFrog? But on this board the contribution is probably somewhat underrated.


This whole tangent started in response to PhilosophicalFrog's assertion. Gravetemplar disagreed with them and said that Europe was the most influential continent in the development of metal and then a bunch of people popped up to say Gravetemplar was wrong.

LithoJazzoSphere wrote:
Invocation wrote:
If anything the US seems to be mostly the source of trends metalheads don't like; glam metal, grunge, groove metal, nu-metal, metalcore...


You could add djent I suppose as well (originated in Sweden, but some of the biggest, earliest, and most influential acts like Periphery and Animals As Leaders are US). Also not generally recognized on this site per se, but elsewhere, alternative metal is heavily US, with Tool, Faith No More, Helmet, Jane's Addiction, Deftones, System of a Down, Primus, arguably Rage Against the Machine, etc. Industrial metal might be a bit more controversial, but you have Ministry, Fear Factory, and peripheral acts like Nine Inch Nails, Marilyn Manson and such. Progressive metal started as largely a US phenomenon with Fates Warning, Queensryche, Watchtower, Dream Theater and such. People mention Floridian death, but there's far more than that, with the New York scene with Suffocation, Immolation, Incantation and such, or California with Autopsy, Possessed, Terrorizer, etc.

Even the lead-up of hard rock into metal is influenced by US artists like Jimi Hendrix, Blue Cheer, Iron Butterfly, Vanilla Fudge, Steppenwolf, Grand Funk Railroad, etc. Plus from the punkier side of things having an influence on the earliest development you have artists like MC5, the Stooges, New York Dolls, Minor Threat, Minutemen, Dead Kennedys, Black Flag, Suicidal Tendencies, D.R.I., Corrosion of Conformity, S.O.D., Cro-Mags, Agnostic Front, etc. Europe is probably more important overall, but ignoring the contribution of US artists is really misguided.


Djent and alternative metal just further proves my point about the US being the source of trends.

I agree that there is much more to US death metal than Florida and that the US has always been most important territory for death metal.

I don't disagree with you about hard rock or punk, but I thought we were talking about METAL. The US dominates the history of hard rock, as it does for most types of popular music (and pop culture in general), that's why it's interesting that metal is one of the few counterexamples.

Metantoine wrote:
Invocation wrote:
The idea that the US was more influential to the development of metal than Europe is just bizarre. Almost every 70s metal or proto-metal band was British for fucks sake. Who were the American bands that were as important as Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, Rainbow, Judas Priest, or Motörhead? Then the NWOBHM came and basically defined metal as a distinct genre from hard rock with its own culture. The US developed thrash metal in the 80s (with a little help from Germany) and had the iconic Florida death metal scene but that's about it. Black metal was mostly developed by Scandinavian bands. The most important early doom metal band was Candlemass and then the genre took off due to Cathedral, the Peaceville Three and the Finnish funeral doom scene. Melodeath was an almost entiely Swedish affair. Almost every popular power metal band is European. Goth metal is pretty much entirely European apart from Type O. If anything the US seems to be mostly the source of trends metalheads don't like; glam metal, grunge, groove metal, nu-metal, metalcore...

It's easy to make such a big statement if you ignore, disregard or just don't know everything important in US metal. Saint Vitus, Pentagram, Trouble or The Obsessed were widely influential for doom metal. Proto metal or hard rock bands like Blue Oyster Cult, Van Halen, Alice Cooper, Kiss or even Rush were also important. Power metal? Manilla Road, Omen, Helstar, Virgin Steele, Jag Panzer? Also, US basically created sludge metal with Acid Bath, EHG, Crowbar and Neurosis are one of the most influential bands of their era for post metal.


For 70s bands, are you seriously suggesting Van Halen, Alice Cooper and Kiss are as important to the development of metal as Black Sabbath, Judas Priest and Motörhead?

Saint Vitus, Pentagram, Trouble and The Obsessed are all fantastic bands but none of them were anywhere near as visible in the 80s as Candlemass. The genre is even named after the Candlemass debut. Saint Vitus and Pentagram only started to get wider attention in the wider attention in the 90s after Cathedral, Paradise Lost and My Dying Bride made doom metal more visible as distinct genre; with Lee Dorrian hyping up his favourite 80s bands and Peaceville reissuing Pentagram's albums.

All of those power metal bands are great but apart from Manilla Road none of them are anywhere near as known as the bigger European bands. In fact, the most well known US power metal band is Iced Earth, why didn't you mention them? :wink:

I thought about sludge metal and post-metal, but both of them are pretty peripheral to the metal scene as a whole. They have more cultural connection to hardcore than they do to metal and aren't central genres to the scene thrash, black, death, or power metal.


blackmantram wrote:
Satanism is still relevant, metal, on the other hand is not. See that famous rapper who triggered half the country with his satanic shoes and videos a few months ago. Everybody knows metal is inoffensive at best, cringey at worst, no one, except probably metalheads themselves, take it seriously anymore.


Why are you here then?

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Gravetemplar
Veteran

Joined: Tue Mar 05, 2019 10:08 am
Posts: 2663
Location: Antarctica
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 8:56 am 
 

Invocation summed it up perfectly. Not much further to add.

Edit: typo.


Last edited by Gravetemplar on Fri May 14, 2021 7:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Wrldeatr
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Mar 14, 2012 11:13 pm
Posts: 253
Location: United States
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 10:32 am 
 

Texas King wrote:
Why there is no such thing as a black metal with political lyrical themes?


Or any other type of metal for that matter.

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Texas King
Metal newbie

Joined: Mon Jan 08, 2018 9:55 am
Posts: 84
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 11:43 am 
 

Wrldeatr wrote:
Texas King wrote:
Why there is no such thing as a black metal with political lyrical themes?


Or any other type of metal for that matter.


There are metal bands who have political lyrics in their stuff: Megadeth, Sepultura, Napalm Death, Queensryche, Nevermore, Testament, etc.
None of them are black metal though.

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LycanthropeMoon
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Mar 03, 2014 11:53 pm
Posts: 1164
Location: United States
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 11:48 am 
 

NSBM - which is inherently political - exists and it sucks ass (musically and ideologically!), so there's that.

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Kalaratri
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2020 3:22 pm
Posts: 979
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 11:49 am 
 

Texas King wrote:
Wrldeatr wrote:
Texas King wrote:
Why there is no such thing as a black metal with political lyrical themes?


Or any other type of metal for that matter.


There are metal bands who have political lyrics in their stuff: Megadeth, Sepultura, Napalm Death, Queensryche, Nevermore, Testament, etc.
None of them are black metal though.


You have to be living under a rock if you've never encountered black metal with political lyrics. There are entire subgenres/scenes devoted to expressing political ideas within the framework of black metal, like the whole Red and Anarchist Black Metal movement. NSBM obviously exists as well, so both left (or far-left) and far-right ideologies have already been covered by BM bands.


Last edited by Kalaratri on Fri May 14, 2021 11:52 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Methuen
Metalhead

Joined: Tue May 19, 2015 4:55 pm
Posts: 1864
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 11:51 am 
 

Texas King wrote:
Wrldeatr wrote:
Texas King wrote:
Why there is no such thing as a black metal with political lyrical themes?


Or any other type of metal for that matter.


There are metal bands who have political lyrics in their stuff: Megadeth, Sepultura, Napalm Death, Queensryche, Nevermore, Testament, etc.
None of them are black metal though.


Epica have lots of political stuff in amongst the philosophy and Latin chanting; environmental, current affairs, social-religious topics. It was a great shock to hear David Cameron sampled in a symphonic metal song :lol:
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Curious_dead
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Sep 20, 2006 12:13 pm
Posts: 672
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 4:01 pm 
 

Battle Beast has King for a Day and you can't convince me it's not about Trump and leaders like him! :lol:

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Exister
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue May 12, 2009 8:06 pm
Posts: 150
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 5:23 pm 
 

Wrldeatr wrote:
Texas King wrote:
Why there is no such thing as a black metal with political lyrical themes?


Or any other type of metal for that matter.


Crossover thrash bands in the 80's veered toward political matters (Nuclear Assault, Ludichrist, Cryptic Slaughter etc.).
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kalervon
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2012 10:43 pm
Posts: 919
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 11:05 pm 
 

Methuen wrote:
Realistically, are there two strands here ?

1 - is the devil just another thing that metal inherited from the blues & 60s rock, and as with all metal themes it just got sillier over time ? You can look at early metal in the 70s and the devil is there, and track that back via their inspirations right into smoky blues clubs in the 50s and 60s.
I don't think satanic imagery or philosophy in metal comes from the blues. I believe it comes from the occut revival - mainly English - with Wicca to some extent but also the stream of new age hippie culture (Era of Aquarius) that veered towards occult authors that had nothing to do with puppies and rainbows, such as Blavatsky or Crowley, etc. None of that has anything to do with Satan; but it horrified conservative Christians of the day, and some kids, because they enjoyed rebelling so much, thought: why with not go all the way with Satan worshipping and stuff, like in those horror movies ? It didn't happen only in England - Anton Lavey for instance was an American - but the first bands to translate that in music were Coven (though not at all metal) and Black Sabbath, who were into horror movies, the occult (Geezer) and possibly in the band Coven as well, who released their album in 1969. And aside of the odd heavy band here and there with pseudo-satanic lyrics, Venom were the next band to adopt satanic imagery and the first with real satanic lyrics (though perhaps tongue-in-cheek at times), some 10 years after Sabbath. I think every satanic band since was influenced (not from the musical aspect, but by the idea of adopting satanic lyrics and imagery) by Sabbath or Venom, or by bands influenced by Sabbath and Venom.

For many people, "Number of the Beast" is a satanic song and it glorifies Satan and popularized the notoriety of the 666 number (along with a few horror movies), but in reality, it is similar in theme to Black Sabbath's sef-titled track; the story of someone who witnesses something disturbing and calls for help. Most people who got a kick from listening to dark or satanic music in the 80s would just love that song and if they didn't really pay attention they'd think it's a bad-ass satanic song.

I think the "devil" theme in blues remained and evolved in music, but it never took a 'worshipping' aspect. Perhaps AC/DC were more influenced by that stream.. Highway to Hell.. but then again Hell's Bells is more in line with metal and it's before Venom, so I'm not sure. Let's say at this point, AC/DC, KISS, Judas Priest, Black Sabbath, etc.. formed some kind of nebula that people viewed in the day as metal, and it was bad ass, and it could include Satan. Actually, perhaps the Gary Greenwalds of the day had something to do with popularizing Satan in metal, they tried so hard to create a satanic panic with everything, playing vinyls backwards, making up acronyms, etc. that young people thought it was cool and embraced it totally. I know when I grew up in the early 80s I thought all hard rock bands were Satanic, this 'literature' spead like wildfire on entire continents along with many urban legends. It wasn't until 1987 or so that I realized that Satanism was actually rare in metal. If any other kids were like me and ended up playing in a band, they may have come up with satanic lyrics, because that's what this is all about, right?
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tomcat_ha
Minister of Boiling Water

Joined: Fri Oct 27, 2006 8:05 am
Posts: 5236
Location: Netherlands
PostPosted: Sun May 16, 2021 6:14 am 
 

Whole USA vs Europe thing is something Frog has been going at for ages even though I keep on telling him to quit it because its stupid.

The British(there are bands from elsewhere but the absence of any wouldn't have changed metal) may have established the fundaments back in the 70s but the NWOBHM was the last time a specific country really determined the course of the entire scene and even then while it was ongoing metal already was exploding into an interconnected global phenomenon with bands interacting over vast distances. Mercyful Fate influenced Slayer, Blind Guardian took their name from Fates Warning and Hellhammer influenced 1st wave bands from Colombia.

1st wave bands from South America did have political lyrics, Holocausto and such are good examples. Satanic lyrics for south American bands always were a bit of a political statement regardless.

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LithoJazzoSphere
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Apr 23, 2020 8:11 pm
Posts: 2064
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun May 16, 2021 7:34 am 
 

Invocation wrote:
LithoJazzoSphere wrote:
Invocation wrote:
The idea that the US was more influential to the development of metal than Europe is just bizarre.


Is anyone contending that other than maybe PhilosophicalFrog? But on this board the contribution is probably somewhat underrated.


This whole tangent started in response to PhilosophicalFrog's assertion. Gravetemplar disagreed with them and said that Europe was the most influential continent in the development of metal and then a bunch of people popped up to say Gravetemplar was wrong.


Well, GT said the US was "just another country" in terms of the development of metal, and that's a step too far. In terms of the genres GT listens to, that may very well be true, but that would overlook a great deal of other history.

Invocation wrote:
Djent and alternative metal just further proves my point about the US being the source of trends.


I suspect a fair amount of people here haven't even explored djent very much outside of some of the meme bands. There's all kinds of interesting music attached to it, with the typical range of quality that every style has, which means the best material is worth looking into. It might have been more controversial at the time, but I think appreciation for alternative metal has gone up over the last couple decades, and you see those sorts of bands mentioned favorably more often, unlike nu-metal, which hasn't aged as well.

Invocation wrote:

I don't disagree with you about hard rock or punk, but I thought we were talking about METAL. The US dominates the history of hard rock, as it does for most types of popular music (and pop culture in general), that's why it's interesting that metal is one of the few counterexamples.


When we're discussing the development of metal as a whole, adjacent styles like hard rock and punk are quite important for the trajectory. Without the development of hard rock you don't get metal at all, and punk has had a massive influence on all kinds of metal subgenres, starting especially with thrash. You certainly do have a point that metal is somewhat unique is having a bit more dispersed global development than many other genres though. Electronic music would be another major exception, with pretty heavy European roots.

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