100% Metal Forum (Death Metal and Black Metal)

Metal => Metal => Topic started by: Time Curator 23 on October 03, 2010, 05:11:52 AM

Title: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Time Curator 23 on October 03, 2010, 05:11:52 AM
Having listened to metal for several years now, I got into classical about a year ago (Respighi rules)... and am now noticing something I hadn't before: Rather than picking out favorite tracks, some metal albums are best listened to as a whole.

In the past, I had favorite tracks, but now... it seems best to turn off the lights, sit down on the floor, and let the whole album play as if it were one epic mind journey of a track. Have any of you experienced this? If so, what are good examples of albums like this?

Thanks!
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: JewishPhysics on October 03, 2010, 06:34:17 AM
This is a pretty pervasive idea 'round these here parts.  I'm pretty sure everyone agrees with this, and I know things like this have been discussed in the past.  Any good album should be listened to as a whole.  In terms of listening to music in the dark, I'd suggest anything by Burzum or Beherit.  Hvis Lyset Tar Oss and Electric Doom Synthesis being the best.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Hessian on October 03, 2010, 07:10:13 AM
Having listened to metal for several years now, I got into classical about a year ago (Respighi rules)... and am now noticing something I hadn't before: Rather than picking out favorite tracks, some metal albums are best listened to as a whole.

In the past, I had favorite tracks, but now... it seems best to turn off the lights, sit down on the floor, and let the whole album play as if it were one epic mind journey of a track. Have any of you experienced this? If so, what are good examples of albums like this?

Thanks!

The best examples for me is "In The Nightside Eclipse".
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: scourge on October 03, 2010, 08:52:10 AM
Select hit singles strikes me as commercial. If a group records a great single and sticks it in a full length then what are the other six tracks? Filler? That reminds me of food. The toy prize was very creative but the rest of it was a Happy Meal of a paper box, chicken gristle, and soggy fries.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Gefechtsgruppe10 on October 03, 2010, 01:07:34 PM
Ipods have lead to a regression to the mean... in the 50s-60s music came out in singles and albums were merely a collection of singles or a few singles with a bunch of filler.  The Beatles, Bob Dylan, the Who and others all started to change this in the late 60's by making entire albums to be listened to as a piece.  Granted, Sgt. Pepper and Tommy were both confused failures, they were at least trying to overcome the limits of the music industry.
Long before I got into metal I was concerned about getting ALBUMS to which I could listen.  Poorly organized wrecks like Tommy and Blizzard Beasts still disgust me and I cannot understand why you'd want to listen to Det Som Engang Var and not keep going through to the last note of Tomhet.
I still have numerous singles on my computer (hey, sometimes one just needs to hear Manic Monday, haha), but I will only buy complete albums.  If a group tries to sell me shit, I will pay for it exactly what it is worth: nothing.  Thank Odin for torrents.
Immolation - Close to a World Below, Here in After, Failures for Gods are all albums which I can listen to only as a complete album (although I will listen to "I Feel Nothing" by itself while getting ready for work).
Darkthrone - Transylvanian Hunger... quite possibly the best black metal album.  So beautiful.
Graveland - Following the Voice of Blood
My Bloody Valentine - Loveless
The Who - The Who Sell Out.  one of the most innovative albums of the 60's - recorded and released concurrently with Sgt. Peppers.  A much better concept for an album than Tommy or the failed 'Lifehouse project' of later Who years.  The album's concept is an hour long broadcast from a pirate radio station complete with commercials.  Like Tommy the concept is linked together by too many shitty songs, but they are of overall better quality and there is far less evident confusion on this album.  Not a great album, but at least it had a good concept unlike Tommy or Sgt. Pepper(what was the concept there?  Some of the worst Beatles songs written.  The whole thing is tarted up with glossy production to distract one from the obvious conclusion that this album generally sucks.  A precursor of modern pop - all production very little writing.)
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: comment on October 03, 2010, 01:33:43 PM
I've found that listening to albums as a whole (the entire thing, no shuffle) is something I really do more for black metal and not death metal.

Death metal listening for me might go something like: listen to a couple tracks off 'Suffocation - Pierced from within', then a couple of tracks off 'Immolation - Here in After' and then 'Immolation - Close to a world below' and then the Timeghoul demos and so on.

Even with black metal it depends: stuff like Antaeus and Drakthrone gets thrown into the above mix, while 'Emperor - ITNE', 'Avzhia - Key of Throne' and Graveland 'Thousand Swords' I *only* listen to when I know I have time to listen to the entire thing from start to end, uninterrupted.

Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Humanicide on October 03, 2010, 03:14:25 PM
This is how I generally like to function when listening to metal. I don't like picking and choosing tracks like "singles" or "commercials", but everyone has their favorite songs. Most of the time I try to get through an album in its entirety, and it's no problem when it's an album I absolutely love (for instance I've played Anticapital so many times I don't even need to listen to it; I can pretty much play the whole thing in my head).
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Cargést on October 03, 2010, 03:33:02 PM
play the whole thing in my head

I've got this mainly with Burzum and Emperor, and I occasionally get a shock when I absolutely anticipate every note of every solo of some Power Metal album which I haven't listened to for five years but which used to be a daily listen.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Wolfgang on October 03, 2010, 03:44:55 PM
I almost only listen to albums and often I won't listen to anything at all if I can't squeeze the entire thing in. Once an album has revealed itself to the point I have to skip even a few tracks I usually stop listening to it all together.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: istaros on October 03, 2010, 03:49:13 PM
I don't even consider listening to music any other way, to be honest. This has made me all the more disinterested in most forms of music, as the majority of it is produced on a song-by-song basis - which makes listening to an entire album's worth of jazz/rock/pop/etc. songs extremely disheartening. And drab.

...I occasionally get a shock when I absolutely anticipate every note of every solo of some Power Metal album which I haven't listened to for five years but which used to be a daily listen.
Heh, I love it when that happens. It's a rather comical feeling for me.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Time Curator 23 on October 03, 2010, 08:42:30 PM
Quote from: JewBob
Electric Doom Synthesis

Ha! That is actually the one that prompted me to start this thread.

... Thanks all.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Jim Necroslaughter on October 04, 2010, 09:29:33 AM
Listen to the entire album, or go home, I say.

There's only one album I don't listen to in its entirety:  A Blaze in the Northern Sky.  I skip "In the Shadow of the Horns."  God I hate that song.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Wolfgang on October 04, 2010, 10:24:39 AM
Ditto on In the Shadow of the Horns.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: MilitantIdiotCrusher on October 04, 2010, 01:51:00 PM
I sort-of like In the Shadow of the Horns, but now that I've thought about it, it could be the reason the album doesn't flow very well for me. I'll re-listen without it, I guess.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Jim Necroslaughter on October 04, 2010, 01:59:50 PM
Going from track 1 straight to track 3 works remarkably well, actually
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Heydrich on October 04, 2010, 07:01:22 PM
Since I come from the old-school(ie. I'm old) it is unnatural for me to listen to albums any other way, though not all recordings lend themselves to the experience the same way, of course.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Bacchant on October 05, 2010, 12:58:29 PM
I've been listening to metal (and all worthy music) this way since I bought a cassette of Ride the Lightening when I was ten years old.  Listening to an album as a whole, especially with headphones on in the dark, has greatly assisted me in separating the good from the bad.  It should be pretty obvious, even to the uninitiated,  that a Cradle of Filth album lacks substance if they were to focus the entirety of their attention on it for 72 consecutive, mind numbing minutes. If that person were to continue playing select, "kewl" songs from the album to their friends while getting drunk, they may remain under the delusion that Cradle of Filth is quality music for who knows how long.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Wolfgang on October 05, 2010, 05:03:11 PM
Unfortunately this is only half true, as there are hordes of idiots in metal who would be able to listen to a Cradle album in its entirety and connect with it. What are they connecting with? The same thing Lady Gaga and Coal Chamber connects to fans with.

Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Transcix on October 05, 2010, 07:34:43 PM
I have yet to come across an album I love all the songs on and that I could tolerate and be willing to devote the time towards listening to all the way through in one sitting, except maybe for Ulver's Bergtatt album.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: sofiana on October 06, 2010, 12:25:25 PM
Mortifera - Maledictiih
Stormnatt - The Crimson Sacrament
Endezzma - Alone
Black Sin - Light of despair

are some recent releases I like to listen to without need to skip tracks.

Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Wolfgang on October 06, 2010, 12:54:42 PM
Like I said, if I have to get skip happy with some albums I'll just stop listening to them, but that said, sometimes an album's message is better received if some of the tracks are left out. This is especially true with extremely intense death metal like early Deicide and Cryptopsy.

None So Vile has several skip worthy tracks. I'm never not in the mood for Dead and Dripping, Crown of Horns or Phobophile but Benedictine Convulsions has its time and place.

The first Deicide and even Legion has some skippers. Lunatic of God's Creation, and Satan Spawn are not the best ways they could have started those albums. Fuck it, should have started them both with Suicide Sacrifice. Satan.

Reign in Blood and even South of Heaven have some mandatory skippers. Behind the Crooked Cross is the worst Slayer song ever.


The infamous Teacher's Pet on Black Metal is a major skipper. I've retconned that song out of that album entirely.

And unfortunately the latter half of Blessed are the Sick is really hurt by being inconsistent and disjointed compared to the first. I can never finish it. After the title track my heart sinks as the experience kind of ends there. Altars of Madness has no required skippers. That is what evens the albums out in terms of their value to me.

All classic Metallica albums have serious skip requirements. Especially after Kill em All. Honestly the next three albums have one long album of absolute classics strung between the "Escapes", "Leper Messiahs" and "Eye of the Beholders".

Paranoid, Master of Reality and Vol 4 have no skippers, while the other three albums of the first 6(66) albums are cut-and-paste-playlist types.

Most metalish or neoclassical prog rock from the 70s has songs you have to skip that are too rooted in older rock styles. One notable exception is Captain Beyond's first album. Such a classic. Metal before metal realized it was metal. That in essence makes it [/i]more metal.[/i]

I absolutely am enchanted by the most recent Pagan Altar album, but there are a few on this album I usually find myself passing by, where as on their debut I don't find myself doing that nearly as often.

Pentagram is another classic band with classic songs that often didn't get it right for an entire album. A common problem for more rock-based styles and acts.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Wolfgang on October 06, 2010, 01:00:10 PM
I've come to realize, just now, the true nature of Cannibal Corpse. They are a theoretical good band that produced entire albums of skipworthy tracks. You put on an album, think, "ok..this is alright...but let's see what else is on this record...". In three and a half minutes you're at the last track and begging for Immortal Rites.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Dead_Soul on October 06, 2010, 01:24:25 PM
Like I said, if I have to get skip happy with some albums I'll just stop listening to them, but that said, sometimes an album's message is better received if some of the tracks are left out. This is especially true with extremely intense death metal like early Deicide and Cryptopsy.

None So Vile has several skip worthy tracks. I'm never not in the mood for Dead and Dripping, Crown of Horns or Phobophile but Benedictine Convulsions has its time and place.

The first Deicide and even Legion has some skippers. Lunatic of God's Creation, and Satan Spawn are not the best ways they could have started those albums. Fuck it, should have started them both with Suicide Sacrifice. Satan.

And unfortunately the latter half of Blessed are the Sick is really hurt by being inconsistent and disjointed compared to the first. I can never finish it. After the title track my heart sinks as the experience kind of ends there. Altars of Madness has no required skippers. That is what evens the albums out in terms of their value to me.

All classic Metallica albums have serious skip requirements. Especially after Kill em All. Honestly the next three albums have one long album of absolute classics strung between the "Escapes", "Leper Messiahs" and "Eye of the Beholders".

Paranoid, Master of Reality and Vol 4 have no skippers, while the other three albums of the first 6(66) albums are cut-and-paste-playlist types.
You have a bizarre sense of taste. "Benedictine Convulsions" and "Satan Spawn" are two of the best tracks on each of their respective albums.

Other than that, you make several good points. I feel that all of Voivod's noteworthy albums are hit-and-miss affairs.
Title: Evil seed, injected!
Post by: Wolfgang on October 06, 2010, 05:36:31 PM
Satan Spawn actually is a great track in of itself, but for whatever reason I just don't think it was the best way to start the album with. But Legion is perhaps my most-listened-album ever, so I could concede that I might pick apart whatever the first song would be since naturally it is one of my most listened singular songs ever. But I was unclear there, and made it seem like I don't like that song. In actuality, every song on Legion is perfect for what the album says. Wipe away this world of unworth. Decapitation, satanic rebirth.

Come to think of it, before Legion infested my soul, None So Vile was my standard as best Death Metal ever, so again, I've listened to much that I've come to anticipate every note on every song. Which comes back to my original point, once I start "not feeling like" a song or two too many on an album, no matter how good, I stop playing them as much. Once you "get sick" of an album you start to get annoyed by songs you otherwise especially like. Both albums have sat on the shelf for me a little bit, down from(multiple) daily listens to once every few months, so recently I've been able to experience them both in their entirety without the need to press any buttons, much more often. The same I could also probably say about the first Morbid Angel, but I never skipped anything there with regularity, just shelved it.

However Blessed will always have skippers, no matter the mood I am in.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Sepulchral Voice on October 06, 2010, 07:51:56 PM
Other than that, you make several good points. I feel that all of Voivod's noteworthy albums are hit-and-miss affairs.

Got to disagree with that. Killing Technology, Dimension Hatross, and to a lesser extent Nothingface are frighteningly consistent. The best speed metal has to offer.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Eleison on October 07, 2010, 04:24:02 AM
There are only a few metal albums that are genuinely through-composed, these are the ones that you won't understand without hearing the whole album.  Off the top of my head I can think of these...

Burzum - Hvis Lyset Tar Oss (This is the most important)

Morbid Angel - Blessed are the Sick
Incantation - Onward to Golgotha
Gorguts - Obscura

Apart from that most albums are disparate enough that you can grasp their significance from just a few songs, having said that I still prefer hearing complete works.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Wolfgang on October 07, 2010, 04:58:26 AM
Morbid Angel - Blessed are the Sick


Maybe half of it anyway. The album is a mixture of the band as they were in 1991 and some throw aways that didn't make Altars but had existed in various forms since the middle part of the last decade. The interludes do a lot to unify it but song placement, especially as the album winds down, is incidental. The album's high points date it low points very badly to my ears. Like DMDS being five songs shorter and using rerecorded Deathcrush songs to fill in the gaps.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Humanicide on October 07, 2010, 08:19:56 AM
Other than that, you make several good points. I feel that all of Voivod's noteworthy albums are hit-and-miss affairs.

Got to disagree with that. Killing Technology, Dimension Hatross, and to a lesser extent Nothingface are frighteningly consistent. The best speed metal has to offer.

Killing Technology is probably the last Voivod album I can tolerate. The rest just sounds like pop/rock in a speed metal shell.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Sammaellofi on October 10, 2010, 04:45:53 PM
I feel Transylvanian Hunger was always meant to be listened to as a whole.  I get that impression when I hear them them about it.  They make it a point to mention that the rhythm never changes drastically until the 6th track.  I feel they were going for an experience, rather than just recording once they had enough songs to fill it up.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: TheDeathlyLama on October 12, 2010, 09:55:21 AM
I feel the same way about the obscura album "Cosmogenesis".It has that story like feel to it, Same thing with Gojiras "From Mars To Sirius". The way that all of the songs go together, and seem to flow one right into the next. I love it when an album can do this.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Sammaellofi on October 14, 2010, 08:52:08 AM
Abbandon Poetry.
Now.
Abbandon nothingness.
And embrace it again renewed.

I would sooner disown nihilism than disown John Milton.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Spectrum on October 17, 2010, 12:21:18 PM
What about Edge of Sanity's "Crimson"?  You end up doing what this topic's subject intended to do by listening to it's  single song-album.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Wolfgang on October 18, 2010, 12:22:30 AM
Someone's gonna have a new set of band opinions in under 6 months.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: metal on metal on October 18, 2010, 01:02:27 AM
The sooner, the better... Btw, Spectrum, why don't you take Wolfgang's recommendation on Krypts? I'm drowning in them for days, and it's not only "as a whole", but "on repeat"!
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Parasite on October 18, 2010, 11:33:32 AM
I'll second Wolfgang's recommendation for the Krypts.  Everything works well on these songs, im a fan of the drums, but the vocals remind me of Six Feet Under...
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Wolfgang on October 18, 2010, 11:46:37 AM
The only SFU I can remember hearing is "No WAAAAAAR". Such a (bowel) moving piece of music.

Does anyone else detect that Master influence early in the demo? You wouldn't think direct, browbeating punkdeathmetal would fit with the over all concept, but they intertwine it perfectly. If we can continue rewarding success in Death Metal, the genre will become very interesting again as bands with the right spirit will continue creating new pieces of art out of the entire arsenal of metal techniques, as opposed to cut and paste mashups of favorite bands and influences.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: scourge on October 18, 2010, 01:00:39 PM
I've come to realize, just now, the true nature of Cannibal Corpse. They are a theoretical good band that produced entire albums of skipworthy tracks. You put on an album, think, "ok..this is alright...but let's see what else is on this record...". In three and a half minutes you're at the last track and begging for Immortal Rites.

I'm not so sure it was a revelation since all of this has already been stated about the band. Perhaps you read about it (http://www.anus.com/metal/hall/index.php/topic,496.0.html) and regurgitated what you read - for our benefit of course.

If we can continue rewarding success in Death Metal, the genre will become very interesting again as bands with the right spirit will continue creating new pieces of art out of the entire arsenal of metal techniques, as opposed to cut and paste mashups of favorite bands and influences.

Wait, isn't this more regurgitation of the same ideas that have been bouncing around here all along? I'll be impressed with implementation and results. Plagiarized repetition followed by inaction in the wake of crowd-reply fanfare (the goal) isn't making the cut. You'll have to do better.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Spectrum on October 18, 2010, 01:54:47 PM
The sooner, the better... Btw, Spectrum, why don't you take Wolfgang's recommendation on Krypts? I'm drowning in them for days, and it's not only "as a whole", but "on repeat"!

Sounds cool I'll check it. Wolfgang has recommended some good stuff before and I've only been here a little while.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: zebra bodine on December 07, 2010, 08:37:22 AM
I know "Transilvanian Hunger" has been said, but what a beautifully complete album.  I still haven't found another bm album as consistent as TH. 

Cryptopsy - None So Vile
Napalm Death - Scum
Massacra - The Final Holocaust (But I prefer the raw aggression of '88 demo version as opposed to the polished official release, though it's excellent)
At the Gates - Gardens of Grief
Kayo Dot - Choirs of the Eye (kinda pretentious, I know)

Though it was "Ride the Lightning" and "Master of Puppets" that initially got me into metal, there are definitely skippable tracks on both.  For the first time in years, I listened to all of "In the Nightside Eclipse", and I can't really remember why I used to enjoy it so much.  It just sounds ineffectual to me now as a whole.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Eelpop on December 10, 2010, 04:03:49 PM
I know lots of people aren't a big fan of Chuck over here but I reckon earlier Death albums (Leprosy, Spiritual Healing) are best listened to as a whole. Despite the predictability of early Death they still make for a very good listen. Also ditto on most of the black metal albums as a whole. Lots of doom metal also has that 'complete' feel to it as well I reckon.
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Isotexcris94 on January 02, 2011, 07:07:34 PM
I prefer to listen to an album as a whole all the way through. I mean shit, what else are albums for right? Anyway, I find most latter Nile albums great as a whole. More so Ithyphallic than anything else.

1.Death - The Sound Of Perserverance
2.Arcturus - Aspera Hiems Symfonia
3.Disincarnate - Dreams Of The Carrion Kind
4.Vader - The Ultimate Incantation
5.Unholy - Rapture (Great Death Doom Metal, give it a listen.)
Title: Re: Listening to an album as a whole
Post by: Andrew on January 02, 2011, 10:52:35 PM
Wongraven's "Fjelltronen" is a very good example of a work that functions more as a whole than a collection of songs.  I would never listen to it without listening to the entire thing.  Like Transylvanian Hunger, it has a very strong beginning and ending with what appears to be some sort of wandering journey in between.