GREATEST METAL ALBUM CUP - Winner: Iron Maiden - Seventh Son of a Seventh Son!

Which album is your favourite?


  • Total voters
    39
  • Poll closed .

Perun

In the labyrinth of eternity
Staff member
1. According to some/most definitions?, "extreme metal" is pretty much everything apart from traditional heavy metal - thrash, groove, doom. That would mean Master of Puppets is extreme metal, Pantera is extreme metal etc.

That's a typical Wiki hive mind definition. No metalhead I ever talked to would consider thrash, groove or doom "extreme metal".
 

JudasMyGuide

The resident saudade aficionado
That's a typical Wiki hive mind definition. No metalhead I ever talked to would consider thrash, groove or doom "extreme metal".

Okay, but in that case you still need a definition. What is it? Growls (and shrieks)? Blastbeats? Atonality?
Are Children of Bodom extreme metal? Arch Enemy? Metalcore?
(I guess we would all agree that Cattle Decapitation and Anaal Nathrakh would fit, but that's not enough)

Personally, I would be wary of calling even the aforementioned Opeth "extreme metal" proper, but the term has been thrown around a lot, so I tried to comment on that.
 

Perun

In the labyrinth of eternity
Staff member
I've always been of the impression that the label was invented as an umbrella term for black and death metal in opposition to a more accessible mainstream sound as embodied by bands like Maiden, Metallica, Judas Priest and so on.

Personally, I find the term useless and devoid of constructive meaning, I just meant to point out that I've never met anyone in real life using the definition found on Wikipedia.

And to expand on my "Wiki hive mind" critique: If you look at the archived talk page, you will find that the whole thing was being discussed by just about a handful of users and their consensus relies on one book by a music journalist. Sure, they offer a lot of references in the article, but they are from a myriad of individual articles that have nothing to do with each other and never meant to produce a consensus on what "extreme metal" is, they just use the term in assumption people will know it.
 

JudasMyGuide

The resident saudade aficionado
Sooooo extreme!


In case you're not just pointlessly trolling, when Metallica as a thrash band is being talked about as the "gateway band for many to extreme metal", it's meant in the context of tracks like these:



which leads to listening to thrash in general, including brutal thrash like Kreator and Slayer, to thrashy death metal and so forth.

You most likely know that already, so thank you for the contribution.
 

Diesel 11

As you scream into the web of silence...
I think thrash is sort of a case-by-case basis. Possessed? Definitely extreme metal, they bridge the gap between thrash and death. Slayer? I would say that Reign in Blood definitely is, but their other albums I’m not so sure about. Metallica? Nah.

There are lots of bands that are hailed as extreme metal but may not actually be. Venom I can see a case being made for. Mercyful Fate... not so much.
 

Zare

Automaton Sovietico
The issue is with the label "extreme metal". It's something that was made up along the way. Per wikipedia, it was defined by some guy in some book in 2007. After the heyday of bands that supposedly stand as pillars of "extreme metal".

The label also does not reflect a certain movement in time, like first metal, NWOBHM, Thrash, US death metal, Euro death and black metal, etc. Those things were defined as the movement lived. NWOBHM was there and then.

It's just an arbitrary label that you slap on a metal band if it has enough drive and non-clean vocals.
 

Detective Beauregard

Independent as a hog on ice
I’ve heard plenty of Opeth. Music’s great, clean vocals are great, but their harsh vocals are intolerable to my ears. Can’t get over that particular hump.
Opeth haven't growled on an album since 2008, so at this point half of their discography may appeal to you. Additionally, Still Life, Blackwater Park, Deliverance, Ghost Reveries, and Watershed each contain one or more non-growly songs. Damnation (2003) contains no growlies and is one of my favorites by the band.
 
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JudasMyGuide

The resident saudade aficionado
Opeth haven't growled on an album since 2008, so at this point half of their discography may appeal to you. Additionally, Still Life, Blackwater Park, Deliverance, Ghost Reveries, and Watershed each contain one or more non-growly songs. Damnation (2003) contains no growlies and is one of my favorites by the band.

I know you feel that way. To me, Damnation is just way too specific - it's just one side of them, in the end. It lacks the dynamics and the bleakness and the haunting nature and the riffs are all present only in a very... specific way. And it's a tad too short. But I get it.

The main problem is, the growless songs (even the more metal ones like A Fair Judgement or Face of Melinda) are great, but are missing some of the best parts (again, growless) that they keep for the "standard" songs. Like the haunting, psychedelic interlude around the third minute of Baying of the Hounds (still possibly my favourite Opeth moment ever). Or the outro to Deliverance (including that jazzy acoustic prelude with the title drop). Or, well, the whole of Ghost of Perdition. Or that best riff everTM on Godhead's Lament.

Whatever, I lost my way.

Thing is, I also used to hate growls and harsh vocals in general. I found it to be a stupid, obnoxious mannerism that served no good purpose and shat on a possibly great piece of music. A type of puerile posturing, a moronic attempt at being edgy. I still am not a fan, but I learned to overcome this sentiment and to appreciate them in certain contexts. And - precisely because of this, my development - I get frustrated with people who are unable to do so.
 

Jer

Yes, Yes, Another Beer!
Thing is, I also used to hate growls and harsh vocals in general. I found it to be a stupid, obnoxious mannerism that served no good purpose and shat on a possibly great piece of music. A type of puerile posturing, a moronic attempt at being edgy.
Nailed it!

I still am not a fan, but I learned to overcome this sentiment and to appreciate them in certain contexts. And - precisely because of this, my development - I get frustrated with people who are unable to do so.
I am able to overcome it in certain instances, but even in cases where that’s possible for me I have yet to encounter a single example of the growls actually enhancing the music. In every case so far I still believe the music would have been better off without the nonsense.

My list of albums that I can genuinely enjoy listening to all the way through while still having extreme vocals on them is very short:
So far I think that’s it. There are a couple on the edge that may or may not get promoted eventually: Be’lakor - Stone’s Reach and Borknagar - The Olden Domain.
 

JudasMyGuide

The resident saudade aficionado
Oh, Borknagar, the third band I forgot to mention there originally.

I'm still pissed no-one nominated Winter Thrice, personally.
 

LooseCannon

Enterprise-class aircraft carrier
Staff member
Iron Maiden overwhelms Slayer, but Slayer takes down Ozzy.

Round of 16 Matchup Set:
Iron Maiden - Seventh Son of a Seventh Son vs. Slayer - Seasons in the Abyss
 
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