Thursday, February 26, 2009

Black Metal



With cold and grey weather over the last few days and the chance to do a bit of work from home, I have been delving into my (mostly black) metal collection.

I truly believe that metal is one of the most important and positive global unifiers, music-wise, and I love the way that it sells millions and millions or records and still remains way outside the mainstream. Hmm.....it may have to get it's own 30 Minutes Over Tokyo edition at some point...

Anyway, for now, Watain are from Uppsala, Sweden (a beautiful town just north of Stockholm that I have visited many times - off again in a couple of weeks time actually!) and can be filed under "Black Metal". I know it might not be everyone's goblet of virgin's blood, but I thought it might add even more diversity to the already eclectic 'Spill.

Watain - Sworn To The Dark

6 comments:

ejaydee said...

So what's the differnce between Black Metal and regular Metal. Is there an added Satanic element? Also while I'm at it, what's Thrash/Trash Metal?

Japanther said...

Good questions EJD. But difficult to describe in words, looks like a podcast may definitely be needed!

But, yeah, basically Black Metal has a Satanic element and is characterised by lo-fi production and the general aesthetic seen in the photo of Watain above.

Thrash Metal is a bit more difficult to describe, but it's basically faster and more upbeat. There is a big Thrash revival going on at the moment which has the old guard moaning, but as I wasn't there the first time around, I think it's great!!

Speaking of Podcasts, how's the microphone shopping going ejaydee???? Come on!

CaroleBristol said...

My partner liked it, she is into that sort of thing.

She has loads of Polish metal on her MP3 Walkman.

The band look like orcs, which I suppose is the point.

TonNL said...

...not that much into death metal, but you're right about Uppsala, nice & beautiful town, been there a couple of times too....

ejaydee said...

Thanks Japanther, the podcast is still in the pre-development stage, so don't hold your breath. But the more podcasts I hear, the closer I get to doing mine.

jonana said...

Apologies for the rather belated comment, but I couldn't stumble across this article and not say something... :)

@ejaydee, by no means all black metal these days has a satanic influence. While the early scene was very much based around anti-Christian imagery, nowadays there are bands like (from the top of my head) Negura Bunget, Gris, Drudkh, Xasthur and Wolves in the Throne Room who are definitely 'black metal' but whose lyrics/imagery have nothing to do with inverted crosses or cavorting demons.

As for the difference between black metal and other metal: There are no absolute rules. It's like that old "I can't define what pornography is, but I know it when I see it" rule. Having said that, BM tends to be fairly fast; the vocals tend to be higher and rawer (screamed rather than clean or growled); keyboards are commonly used (but not by everyone). But really, I know it when I hear it.

Watain are great. My favourite song on STTD has to be Stellarvore, though, with its ending evocation of entropy and eternal darkness. Mmm, cheery!