If you have been a hardcore listener of various genres or you are a person of taste, you must have come across such a genre as black metal. Providing you have not happened to get acquainted with it yet or you have indeed come across the sound of black metal and you want to know about this genre more, you are in the right place. It is especially a great moment to learn more about the genre because of the anniversary of Mayham, one of the most crucial bands of the history of black metal. Read this article and explore dark headbanging genre.
The evolvement of black metal
Black metal derived as a sub-genre of heavy metal music. It established itself with its distinct fast-paced, raw distorted sound giving the genre its own place to hail on. The black metal genre rose around the early 80’s. Although it has its roots in the 70’s with the bands such as Black Sabbath who had already been writing dark, anti-Christ lyrics. Another particularly crucial band for the development of the black metal genre was fast-paced heavy metal Motorhead.
Still, it is most often pointed towards such bands as Venom from England, Bathory from Sweden and Hell Hammer from Switzerland. These underground giants are often credited for the establishment of this genre. Why not, if you listen to them you will certainly notice the characteristics of the extreme metal sound dominance.
The two waves of black metal
The history of black metal is often divided into waves. The first wave is categorised as the music featured with the rising sound typical for Hell Hammer, Bathory and Venom. They all had the imagery and sound that invoked the feelings of dark and Satanism aspects and philosophy.
The second wave is heavily credited to the army of the European bands, especially Mayhem, Burzum and Emperor. These bands took the first wave of black metal and made an even more extreme transgression to the black metal genre with a whole new scene than the first. This was the time of early 1990’s.
The Norwegian black metal scene
Norwegian black metal basically created a whole new scene and culture with heavy issues and acts. among the most outrageous deeds of the members of the Norwegian black metal bands were church burning, suicides and homicides among the band members, for instance, the death of Dead, former frontman of Mayhem whose name was Per Yngve Ohlin. Another tragic example is the murder of Euronymous who was a former guitarist of the same Norwegian band. As you can imagine, the mystery and disturbance surrounding the art of such bands gave rise to a whole new scene for black metal. At its earliest sound, it was pretty low-budget production with a great part of home studio tape recorder production or just a regular tape recorder to capture the vile magical sound into it.
What is exactly the sound of black metal?
Black metal sound is a combination of extreme metal genres especially death and thrash metal. It has some signature characteristic of sound and imagery. The most noticeable is the “Corpse Paint”. “Corpse Paint” is the make up reflecting the skin of death or putting on ashes of death for various theatrical or personal performance. There are words that the performers can reach an alter state with this make up on their bodies, while the band’s sound help them to express their materials more efficiently.
The instrumentation section consists of typical rock or heavy metal bands instrumentation with guitars for riffs, another guitar for solos, bass, drums and a high-pitch ear piercing voice that goes up and down the lowest and highest point of their register to express the truest feeling of the song.
There are bands who would not like to play live while others love to pull off a show with the place swarming with their like-minded fans or listeners.