Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Getting Into Extreme Metal As A Black Metalhead.

October 4, 2020 by  
Filed under Ent., Music, News, Opinion, Weekly Columns

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(ThyBlackMan.com) Before I discussed being a Black metalhead. Just getting into heavy metal as a someone the genre might not seem to appeal to off the bat. Let’s go deeper into that and look at being a fan of extreme metal.

How Is Extreme Metal Different?

Extreme metal is basically a family of harder edged metal such as black metal, death metal, and sometimes doom and thrash metal. It really depends on who you ask but black metal and death metal are always included in this list. It’s partially about how aggressive or abrasive the sound is compared to other forms.

It’s odd because doom metal can be abrasive or just slower heavy metal. All of this also depends on the band. There’s been death metal with mild themes that isn’t about death, violence, and gore. It’s just that it ticks all the death metal boxes sound-wise.

Honestly, it’s the same with all metal and no different from hip-hop. You have artists who put out stuff with themes that are stock in hip-hop since a lot of it will be relatable to their fanbase or this stuff is what this artist does well.

For instance, I don’t drink lean or do women dirty in relationships and wonder why I’m alone—but I can vibe out to Future rapping about those things. If that’s not your pace, there’s a whole world of hip-hop that is about nerd stuff, gaming, horror, and so on.

Metal as a whole is just like that only a lot of the stuff is defined. Even band names will let you know what you’re getting into listening to them. So, the main difference between heavy metal and extreme metal comes in the lyrical themes.

As a very loose guide, black metal lyrical content is often demons, Hell, anti-religion, folklore, darkness, etc. Death metal is often death, gore, and violence. These are both for just the most base of those subgenres.

Either one can have lyrics about anything and that doesn’t mean it’s basic music—just that the content is pretty common or the foundation of that genre. Also, death metal tends to feature growled vocals. The common example is listening to Cookie Monster. Meanwhile black metal often features raspy vocals and shrieks.

Extreme Metal Music

Getting Into Extreme Metal As a Black Metalhead

When I got back into heavy metal, it was due to documentaries and shows on it. Then I’d look up these bands and subgenres. I love the history of things and reading about how death and black metal grew out of thrash was interesting.

It would be a while before I finally listen to either of those subgenres because I had decades of music to go through.

Of course, once I did it was through some of the heavy but mild bands. Venom is a band sounded like a faster, eviler version of Motorhead—a band we’ve covered before. That was an easy transition as was finding extreme metal about history and folklore.

While the approach is going to be different for everyone, easing in always worked for me. Some Black metalheads I’ve talked to about their tastes kind of dove into death metal or black metal either because they listened to stuff like Slipknot or Cradle of Filth prior or they stumbled upon it and liked it.

I rarely stumble upon something but it takes a certain level of adaptability to just jump into death metal, doom metal, and black metal. That’s like enjoying Drake or Chance the Rapper then stumbling upon Brother Lynch Hung or Evil Pimp.

Because You Enjoy Extreme Metal Doesn’t Mean Something’s Up With You

This should go without saying but just because you enjoy gory, violent, anti-religious metal doesn’t mean something’s wrong with you. Yeah, you can understand this guy growling over very fast music for a whole album.

It doesn’t mean that you’re taking all of this stuff to heart. You might have a particular stance on religion but that doesn’t mean you’ll be motivated to burn churches or nuns or sacrifice someone to Satan. Have there been incidents where this has happened? Certainly, but you can find instances of moral degeneracy in any genre.

I enjoy southern blues but I’m not a Motel Lover. No one calls me Mr. Jodie. I love trap and crunk but I’m not instigating fights or trapping. However, there have been fans who love that stuff as well only they live by it.

The thing to remember here is that metal is mainly narrative than hip-hop’s autobiographical leaning. Even taking that out, it’s music. It’s an escape that might be relatable but isn’t a guide to life.

Staff Writer; M. Swift

This talented writer is also a podcast host, and comic book fan who loves all things old school. One may also find him on Twitter at; metalswift.

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