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Poor poetry in metal

Re: Poor poetry in metal
June 09, 2006, 03:56:46 PM
metal musicians are all unschooled mavericks, haven't you gotten the memo? In all seriousness, it would do many a (metal) musician good to swallow their pride and take lessons instead of burning out creatively inside of two or three albums. In the end, there's no substitute for individual creative potential, but virulent anti-formalism as an excuse for incompetence gets old fast.

Re: Poor poetry in metal
June 09, 2006, 06:21:14 PM
The lyrical content usually isn't the main focus in the music, which is 98% of the time for good reason. Most bands focus more on the music and just use the words as a vehicle for the instrument of the voice. Windir did an entire album where all the lyrics where just retellings of the events and thoughts of his day. They did other albums though that did put more emphasis on the lyrical content. It all depends on the intent of the band...whether or not they are trying to convey a message via the words or the music. Those who choose to stress the level of importance of the lyrics though must do so very carefully whereas sadly, most bands are very terrible writers. There are a few exceptions though.
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Re: Poor poetry in metal
June 16, 2006, 09:30:55 AM
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But to actually write poetry like that would require extended study/practice which would go beyond the attention span of most people.


Not that much studying reqired to write good poetry. It mostly requires talent and practice.

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The lyrical content usually isn't the main focus in the music, which is 98% of the time for good reason. Most bands focus more on the music and just use the words as a vehicle for the instrument of the voice.

Ausgebombt certanly has a point. But I'd also add that lyrics still help to define the message of the song.

IMO, to which extent lyrics should use classical poetic forms also depends on the music itself, and on the message it carries.

Re: Poor poetry in metal
June 16, 2006, 10:56:32 AM
If metal must evolve into a neoclassical era in order to survive, this is one possible direction of growth.
”The Revolution ends by devouring its own children” – Jacques Mallet du Pan, 1793

Re: Poor poetry in metal
June 16, 2006, 01:12:35 PM
"In Analyzing I learn To Consume The Sphere Of Immense Power And To Become Immortal Darkness Hate and Winter Rules the Earth when I Return War Between Races A Goal Is Reached Chaos, Hate"


Pretty meaningless and pathetic lyrics. Lyrics in blackmetal should embody the true Nihilistic beauty of death and life - the never ending circle of chaos.

Re: Poor poetry in metal
June 17, 2006, 02:35:21 PM
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"In Analyzing I learn To Consume The Sphere Of Immense Power And To Become Immortal Darkness Hate and Winter Rules the Earth when I Return War Between Races A Goal Is Reached Chaos, Hate"


Pretty meaningless and pathetic lyrics. Lyrics in blackmetal should embody the true Nihilistic beauty of death and life - the never ending circle of chaos.


"My Journey To The Stars" surely isn't best of Burzum's songs, but it doesn't make the lyrics meaningless.

By far not always lyrics are straightfoward -- sometimes you just have to think about it for a while to understand them.

Besides, there's such thing as metaphors. And at times, they can be pretty hard to depicher.
Get the idea?

(But on the other hand... It may be so that the song is actually meaningless, and Mr.Vikernes is going to laugh his ass off at people figuring out the meaning.)

Re: Poor poetry in metal
June 18, 2006, 02:48:40 PM
there's no way metal bands are going to sing in iambic pentameter and shit like that.  it just won't happen, because it's a) gay and b) not cool to write riffs that follow that rhythm.

Re: Poor poetry in metal
June 18, 2006, 06:32:48 PM
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there's no way metal bands are going to sing in iambic pentameter and shit like that.  it just won't happen, because it's a) gay and b) not cool to write riffs that follow that rhythm.


a) This is a subjective argument that the old world (say pre-1940s) and anyone with an education would scoff at, similar to liberals screaming fascist at those in power. It might be a way of separating the wheat from the chaff amongst musicians, or more closely to your description: separating the men from the boys.

b) That's really the unknown for me, not being literate in music. What would it sound like? Iambic pentameter is probably not the best pick for metal, however.
”The Revolution ends by devouring its own children” – Jacques Mallet du Pan, 1793

Re: Poor poetry in metal
June 19, 2006, 11:37:11 PM
DEICIDE "Serpents of the Light" must be one of the most rigidly rhythmic metal vocal performances ever. If you recall what that sounds like you know some of the rigidity required to support such a thing musically.


Re: Poor poetry in metal
June 21, 2006, 11:10:19 PM
The greatest lyrics ever written (and some of the best metal too) was written by Fates Warning. John Arch is a fucking genius. I understand this forum likes to focus on death/black metal, but Arch-era Fates Warning is some of the best metal ever made.

For instance, The Apparition:

Flame is burning center of a fountain yearning
water spring eternal, spiritual water physical fire
Above the center is sky, cold cold neverness
Just vastness filled with stars upon stars
In the four corner of life are the golden mirrors
Reflecting what you are and what you are to be

In the first is a young boy
white dove in his hand
in the second is a warrior in amour
in the third is an old man
Gold watch in his hand
Fourth and last
no relection at all
no reflection at all
No reflection at All

Re: Poor poetry in metal
June 22, 2006, 05:39:24 PM
How the hell can you have "poetry" in metal music when it's all just screaming and roaring and "cookie monster vocals"

If you want decent poetry withyour music then look elsewhere.
Like my custard?

Re: Poor poetry in metal
June 23, 2006, 06:01:33 AM
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If you want decent poetry with your music then look elsewhere.


Or you could, as the topic starter suggests, change the music. Mindboggling isn't it? They had to work hard to make me understand, but I think I finally get it.
Conflagrations

Au milieu de l'hiver, j'ai découvert en moi un invincible été.

Re: Poor poetry in metal
December 27, 2008, 08:41:52 PM
But to actually write poetry like that would require extended study/practice which would go beyond the attention span of most people.

Well that's the point. Classical music is actually being taught in universities and all that. Why pop sucks (and surely not all pop sucks) is that the musicians take it's form for so easy and liberate that they do not need to know the theory behind the music they make. Metal is all the same in that the musicians aren't educated in music - the theme work, the forms/structure etc - because it would need serious research and one would have to give it all his attention. People study to be a composer, they study to be a conductor, an instrumentalist - each and every of these positions requires many years to master. And in the band, you have to be a pro in many of those fields to succeed. There's the composing, there's playing and also the lyrical poetry - until you did not undergo some university degree (sounds silly that way - well we can say until the wisdom of the specific field of art hasn't been transferred to you from a master), there's very high chance that you cannot even imagine the possibillities of art - or you could perhaps end up inventing something already invented. Music needs fanatics like Vangelis, because it should be a way of living, so high value that one should die for it (born in 20th century, i am not really sure about this..but then i remember Balzac dying for his invented world of fictional Paris) - every field of human doing needs people that are curious and hungry for knowledge in terms of knowing history and opening new possibillities. But one man can't do everything.

I happen to know some people studying classical music and am beginning to study it myself and many of them - at least the more open-minded (it seems to me that this term is somewhat pejorative here - i do not use it as described here (http://www.anus.com/metal/hall/index.php/topic,4921.0.html), rather for people that do not hide behind some rigid mask, preventing them from growth in ways they do not concentrate on - most people are open in the fields on which they are focusing) show very friendly attitude towards metal AND folklore. Of course, even from those elites, there will be a lot of garbage, but hey, what does it matter.

What i wanted to say is that metal is starting to be recognized on this level - and should be kept there for good by people that give their lives to it.

Re: Poor poetry in metal
December 27, 2008, 08:56:46 PM
If there's a weakness to this approach, it's that rhythmically sophisticated poetry would have to either dominate the rhythmic aspects of the music (cheesy) or have much or all of its potential impact diluted and overpowered by instrumental rhythm.  Don't forget that metal lyrics are heard only as a part of a larger musical experience, rather than as unaccompanied declamation...

Re: Poor poetry in metal
December 28, 2008, 06:26:43 AM
I think the meaning (at least if understood) is much more important than the, "technique" shall we say, that was used. It's the same type of argument as one would have if one person places the technical and structural aspects of music above the, "emotive" and "artistic" side of music. The ideal would be to incorporate both. Yet, if you could only have one, which one would one choose?

This thread inspired me to post two songs where I think the lyrics are brilliant in their own ways:

Morbid Angel
Rebel Lands:

War-kills on the land
Blood-saturates

Hallowed ground
To which my fathers fell
Rebel souls
Buried deep beneath
This hallowed ground
Land of my ancestry
Drink the blood
Rebel lands rise again

War-death lingering
Blood rivers flow
In sacrifice

Unholy war
Implored from below
No peace as
rebel lands rise

Quaking below my feet
Mortals shall suffer defeat
Forgotten evils below
Rejoice as the blood flows

Ophthalamia
Elishia's Mistresses Gather:

Majestic night everlasting in beauty and gloomy sadness
thou supreme starfilled skies caress us and rock us to sleep
Of powers of this melancholy world with evil you us caress
Enchant this gathering and hold it in the grasp of your deep

Battles have been won and battles have been lost
And this is the darkness that we worship where foul is fair
Listen to the cries and the freezing cold pains long time gone
In the black winds we hover through fog and filthy air

Behold the race superior rise with overwhelming might
And the ages dark to come are filled with softly whispered promises
Where hate and desire are the greatest weapons in the commencing fight
Bonded by blood and by the dark arts we are fearless

At the very death of the Ophthalamian sun we'll meet again
I will be the air we breath and black shall be the nights dress
Dark mistresses of greatest misery wrapped in lighting and rain
Cast your most cruel spells and paint the eclipse with deepest distress

We are the chosen all blessed with evil