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Topics - carloscotarelo

Metal / Dunkelgrafen
« on: November 03, 2012, 08:25:13 AM »
Dunkelgrafen - Im Schatten der Ewigkeit (Last Episode)  37:23 

(Old S RProzak review)

1999  $14.00 [BUY] 

 Review: A potent vision of textured death metal riffing and black metal architecture, this enduringly resonant artistic vision reforms dark metal into an expression of emptiness. Thudding deconstruction of melody into raw chaos and artistic building tension in twisted riffs drives the lush sound of guitar and keyboard. Sensually overdistorted awkward vocals accompany longer verses. Violence in melodic riffing encourages the minimalist appeal older black metal bands once had. A rough but qualified sense of art is what distinguishes this release in raw creativity.
Production: Loud but poor drum sound, otherwise decent small studio.
download: http://www.mediafire.com/?0f2k8vfcp1f1ygw

Metal / Proto Black Metal pre-1990
« on: June 04, 2012, 07:11:54 PM »

These two bands are from Colombia. Both play an early form of proto black metal way ahead of its time.  Similar to Beherit and Profanatica, but these South American bands released their material 2-3 years before them.  It is said that Euronymous was influenced by Parabellum.

Reencarnación claim to be influenced by Slayer, Sarcófago, Bach and Stravinsky. They used a violin on their 1988 debut album.

Parabellum composed this song as early as the first Bathory album but was released until 1987 due to lack of money.

I would like to ask you guys, what do you think is the historic relevance of these two bands?

Would you consider them in the league of ?:
Sepultura - Bestial Devastation   (1985)
Vulcano - Bloody Vengeance   (1986)
Sarcófago - INRI      (1987)
Pentagram - Demo I       (1987)

If you would like to download the albums:

Parabellum - Tempus Mortis  2005 (compilation of Ep 1987 and EP 1988)
This is a compilation of their first two Ep’s, which are the first four tracks followed by unreleased material.

http://rapidshare.com/files/29340685/PARABELLUM_-_Tempus_Mortis_MALPHAS.rar     Password:  malphas

Reencarnación - 888 Metal (1988)
The first 8 tracks belong to their 1988 debut album plus an EP and live tracks.

Metal / Message for Conservationist
« on: May 31, 2012, 06:43:55 AM »
Morsüre - Acceleration Process 1985

Found this band on the blog comments among cocks, dicks, butt-sex and tiny midgets.

Under which sub-genre or style would you classify this band? To me, they seem to play a weird hybrid of speed metal and hardcore punk that blend into a hazy wall of industrial noise that evoke the chaotic atmosphere of later black metal. Problem is, this is I think, still speed metal, and it was made in 1985! What the hell?

Ultimately I think the music is good. Unlike anything we would likely expect from early speed metal.  So what do you think?

Listen here:

full album:

youtube vid:

Metal / Definition of Power Metal, Prog and Sam Dunn
« on: January 11, 2011, 11:21:26 AM »
Deathmetal.org posted an article on Power Metal, well written and fun to read but with one thing that made me itch: the ambiguous definition of what power metal really is and a knack for classifying power metal, “speed metal” and heavy metal as separate sub-genres.

Quote from the article:

"Having released two speed metal classics in ‘Battalions of Fear’ and ‘Follow the Blind’[...]‘Tales from the Twilight World’ became the first real power metal album that Blind Guardian would create."

My comment in response to the article:

I respectfully disagree.

I’m deeply interested in your view of what power metal really is, beyond its obvious collection of traits that sum up to their evident aesthetics.  An analysis of what power metal "is" based on compositional structure would have been more useful to readers rather than a collection of what you believe to be a "best of" or "representative" of the power metal style.

I believe there are two groups of people that view Metal’s genealogy differently and thus document power metal accordingly to their own perspectives: 1) those who claim heavy metal, "speed metal", "power metal", "doom metal" are different subgenres and refer to Metallica, Exodus as "Thrash" and 2) those who claim that power metal, doom metal, “speed metal” are NOT subgenres but merely styles of heavy metal and refer to Metallica and Exodus as Speed Metal; thus "power metal", "speed metal", "doom metal" are not really different subgenres per se, but a description of a collection of traits applying to existing subgenres. For example, both Winter and St. Vitus are doom metal, but the former is death metal in structure and the latter, heavy metal in the Black Sabbath style.  

The Dark Legions Archive tells us that power metal is essentially technically powerful heavy metal coupled with the bouncier violent rhythms of Speed Metal (Thrash to you) and coincided with the waning of Speed Metal (Thrash), in the late 80´s.  My personal opinion is that power metal is either heavy metal played with Speed Metal techniques during the first half of the 80´s and/or Speed Metal bands relapsing into a friendlier heavy metal hybrid during the late 80´s.  What makes power metal distinct however, is the topic matter and spirit yet compositionally and structurally it remains essentially heavy metal.  

I do not intend to be "right" but if we follow this logic, then "speed metal" would superficially sound different than Heavy Metal or Power Metal but because the former is a legitimate subgenre of Metal music and the latter a legitimate hybrid style within Heavy Metal - Speed Metal (Thrash) then "speed metal" would compositionally always fall within one or the other, thus absorbed, rendering the term "speed metal" obsolete.

This is the basis of my opinion to claim that early Blind Guardian and the first Helloween album are also power metal albums, or more precisely, heavy metal albums played in the power metal style.  

If one intends to use precise language in a historically/etymologically-correct context to describe the music’s inner core beyond its superficial traits, then we would have to differentiate between "type of sound" and "compositional description". The former refers to the musicians choice of how the music should "aesthetically look", in one word style, and the latter refers to how the music is organized or which design/discipline best suits the ideas that the author wants to communicate (structure attitudes toward harmony and melody), in one word sub-genre.  Therefore I would synthesize it in this way: style = type of sound and sub-genre = compositional description.  This becomes helpful in the context of understanding Metal’s genealogy to define and document it correctly and is crucial to suppress all those pesky sub-subgenres that continue to latch on to Metal like parasites (i.e. new wave of American metal, alternative metal, nu-metal etc).

-End of comment posted.-

To continue on the same line of analysis: I was reading an article on Progressive Archives.com about the nature of Progressive Metal, the author basically observes that nobody can veritably answer the question what is progressive metal?  He implies in his article that because there is lack of a credible definition, there is a question of the existence of such subgenre within progressive rock and more importantly a question of its artistic aspirations.

Quote from the article:

"When you browse for definitions of Progressive Metal on the Internet, there is a veritable bombardment of differing opinions – not one actually answers the question – but some things remain constant. These are the most critical aspects of the genre, most sites would have you believe - and these are also the very things that lead to confusion when exploring the genre.

Firstly, it is very common to come across references to blending Progressive Rock with Heavy Metal, giving the newcomer the impression that what they are going to hear is a Metallised version of Prog Rock.

This is almost never the case, however, and certainly not the case with the bands most often named as defining the genre. A statement like "Blending Progressive Rock with Heavy Metal" in itself shows a fundamental lack of understanding of what makes Progressive Rock tick, when you compare defining bands of the two genres, such as Genesis and Dream Theater. Such a statement positively invites such a comparison, as ridiculous as the comparison itself may seem - which points out the fundamental flaw in the statement itself. What is happening is not a blending, rather it is a simple acquisition of some of the basic elements."

Author: Certif1ed - Topic: What makes Progressive Metal progressive? {http://www.progarchives.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=49371&FID=58}

Analogically I question the existence of such sub-genre in Metal, and furthermore, I deny its existence even as a style within Metal’s genealogy.

Here is why:

One common definition of post Rock is "music which uses Rock instrumentation for non-Rock purposes"; which to me implies an assimilation from the outside of a genres´ methodology applied to another form of music. Subsequently, one could say that a form of assimilation of Metal music occurs when a different genre of music (usually within the rock family) uses Metal instrumentation for non-Metal purposes.  The resulting styles may vary in musical quality and relevance depending on musicians´ both artistic capability and integrity.  I see then two divergent camps: 1) metal musicians that may use "x" instrumentation-methodology for non "x" purposes, i.e. to compose metal music using partial or non-metal methodology and, 2) other types of rock musicians that may use metal instrumentation-methodology for non metal purposes, i.e. to compose within their preferred rock-genre with metal flavorings.

In rock music there are few genres that because they are artistically meaningful a sort of true essence or spirit can be perceived, or more accurately, just a few bands (usually the foundational acts) within some rock genres, are artistically relevant and together collectively portray that spirit and essence that define the genre. The more experienced progressive rock fans will agree that progressive rock does have that spirit or soul that defines prog-rock beyond its methodology (complex time signatures, virtuosity) and so would us metal fans claim that metal has that special something that makes it heavy beyond its methodology (distortion, speed, violence).  Metal and Progressive Rock are in conflicting goals that is, in the context of a musical fusion, however what both have in common is that both have intense spiritual standards within their history and heritage, both have created awesome compositions.
Musicians of either camp seeking anything other than to meet the glorious standards of each of their respective genres or surpassing them, would bring about little less than a stale hybrid, a stale product.  If however, great music is created in the form of metal with prog-rock elements or prog-rock with metal elements that is indeed artistically meaningful, most likely a spirit-essence will be achieved and perceivable beyond the methodology used to that end.  You can mix techniques, instrumentation, methodologies but if the unique spirit of metal or prog-rock music is achieved, it will always be identifiable as exclusive to one or the other.  Thus within this context the best of all "progressive metal" will always be essentially either Metal or Progressive Rock thus rendering "progressive metal" more a marketing term than a real sub-genre and if anything, rather a subgenre of progressive rock than a legitimate style in heavy metal’s genealogy.  

If we reach past the first layer of how the music sounds and even into further layers of the elements and building blocks of the music to reach its inner core, we will see this is true to all so called examples of so called “progressive metal”, be in its more early examples (1969-1971) High Tide, Fuzzy Duck, Atomic Rooster or its later variants through out the 80,s Fates Warning, Dream Theater, Kong.  The more one gets immersed in progressive metal the more you reach a revealing conclusion: there´s either good progressive rock and bad metal, or good metal and bad progressive rock. I do not question the possibility of good music within the hybrid as much as I question the existence of it as a sub-genre or style from the Metal perspective.

The same pattern should be applied to all those embarrassing “subgenres” that Sam Dunn (Metal a Headbanger’s Journey) seems to like to legitimize as part of metal’s genealogy: pop- metal, glam-metal, stoner-metal, industrial- metal, goth-metal, alternative- metal, nu- metal, new wave of American metal; {http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Metal_Genealogy.jpg}, which I wouldn’t have a problem with if they didn’t have the suffix-metal and wouldn’t be viewed as part of Metal’s genealogy.  Some of his sub-genres can be simplified to a lowest denominator and fall neatly under an existing real metal sub-genre or an inner metal hybrid (heavy metal, thrash, speed metal, proto-underground, death metal, grindcore, black metal) but others seem too far off or even alien to metal (grunge).  That is alien, from the perspective of being part of metal’s organic development or genealogy yet, similar enough in sound, instrumentation and superficial outlook.  Yet Sam Dunn’s genealogy seems tight enough to be immediately dismissed as completely faulty.  Some of the subgenres he contends as being part of Metal and the bands that exemplify his theory are among Hessians, a matter of embarrassment. Not to mention that the people that follow those styles (nu-metal, alternative metal, new wave American metal) are for the most part alien to Metal in spirit and devotion to the art form.

So how can Dunn’s metal genealogy be rebutted, and if it should, why?  If one takes a closer look, it is correct for the most part because it shows how cross-influence occurred within subgenres although visually it does not describe an organic lineage in Time, meaning going from the top and branching downard in chronological order. Without the dates he puts on each category, one could wrongly interpret that Speed Metal occurred after Death Metal.  However, where he is correct he also shows the key to his mistake and thus the key of how to rebut his genealogy: he correctly shows cross-influence of non-metal subgenres influencing metal subgenres and vice versa.  His work is not a genealogy of Metal music; it is a genealogy of Rock music!  It is correct in how he shows us the overlapping of rock genres that influenced metal but because it overlaps metal and other forms of rock into one single continuum it is not a genealogy of metal’s organic development per se as much as it is, if anything, a genealogy of rock; and it is also wrong at that because it is incomplete.

No one will deny the influence of Punk in metal, but no one would claim that Metal is a ramification of punk, nor is punk a ramification of proto-metal.  No one will deny the influence of blues rock, psychedelic rock, progressive rock, kraut rock and hard rock in Metal, but Metal is not an exclusive ramification of any of them because in spirit-essence and musical goals it is different.  More importantly, no one should deny the influence of Metal in any of the above rock genres in its modern forms.  We already established that metal instrumentation for non-metal purposes is one of many ways of assimilation from the outside (conscious or not) of metal music.  Dunn shows us in his graphic overlapping mess, that rock music (be it punk, hard rock or else) may use metal instrumentation not to create metal music but a type of stylized rock, but because it is not trying to be metal but sound like metal within the confinements of whatever rock genre it wants to be, then it can not be a part of metal’s genealogic tree.  Therefore all those “subgenres” like pop- metal, glam-metal, stoner-metal, industrial- metal, alternative- metal, nu- metal, new wave of American metal, progressive metal are not subgenres of Metal music but of Rock music and, a truly well done explicitly metal genealogy, could not and should not include them.  
Metal is a ramification of Rock (among other influences) music, just like blues rock, folk rock, psychedelic/acid rock, progressive rock, hard rock, kraut rock, punk, indie rock […]etc.  It is then sensible to say that these modern forms of metal-flavored rock sub-styles that posers seem to love are a ramification of Rock rather than Metal, therefore not metal music and Dunn proves this with his rock genealogy which perhaps coincidentally seems like a bad interpretation of Piero Scaruffi and his book “The History of Rock Music” {www.scaruffi.com}.  

Some rock genres have great music and most of them have cross-influenced each other at some point and to varying degrees, yet for them to survive as viably artistic they need to organically grow within the spiritual frame that made them great in the first place.  Dunn and other sources that seem to be in similar line with him, would group all metal-flavored rock and metal under a same common origin. However experienced listeners will note that, all the assimilated metal-gone mainstream and rock-disguised as metal “sub-styles” seem to lack the soul or the initial spirit-essence of metal created within the original subgenres of metal music {http://www.anus.com/metal/about/genre/}. Some because they don’t want to be metal except in sound and others because they pretend to want to be metal except in ideology/spirit of the respective metal subgenre they emulate or “derive influence from” consciously or not.  In this sense it is clear that Dunn’s overextended genealogical chart includes subgenres that are not metal and should not even be associated with metal, not only because it is genealogically incorrect but because some of them are truly crap music.
Dunn’s work reinforces an incorrect and mainstream view of metal music that targets people involved in metal, people that might genuinely want to be involved in metal and people who think they are involved in metal, audience and musicians alike.  His interpretation of metal resonates with the inexperienced, the poser and the hipster more than it does with the Hessian; and because it opens room for metal-flavored rock to be seen as a part of metal’s family tree it preserves the idea that anything within the rock family that might use metal instrumentation or methodology is part of metal’s history, regardless of the quality of the music or the purpose it served or may serve.  His interpretation of the genealogy of metal is noxious to the genre.

Interzone / World Cup: not as gay as Apple, but close
« on: June 23, 2010, 03:00:38 PM »
The World Cup’s pretty damn sweet.  I totally dig the USA National Team; they’re fucking tough ass motherfuckers.  Kind of remind me of Rocky Balboa, in fact if one could pin a cultural icon to this football team, Rocky would fit like a glove.  They are low profile iron-spirited blue collar workers.  Just as Rocky on the movies used to receive a battering beat and always coming forward broken-brow, blood soaked to a heroic emotional redeeming climax, this USA team bears that "eye of the tiger" and same pugilistic iron heart. 
An enlightening and freshening example of European mentality lacking even among Europeans on the present tournament, a true noble savage tall and proud, clean from the mediocrity sickness so common among the current crop of bureaucrats, math-speculators and third world passive indifference so fashionable in today’s world football. 
It’s surprising to see how one of the nations more traditionally alien to football have become one of the keepers of that joyful spirit that once permeated this sport.  Not coincidentally, the "star-spangled banner crew" is no longer the only internationalist team in competition, for almost every other national football team on the Cup bears members of adopted nationalities.  Long gone are the days when the Germans were blonde and the English had pride.  Let’s welcome the days of the noble brute punching its way upward through dead castes of a once reigning hierarchy.  Today Bill Clinton present at the match that USA won 1-0 against Algeria, jumped, clapped and danced at the blow of the “vuvuzela” after Landon Donovan’s heroic winning goal. 

He probably secretly celebrated multicultural race-mixing and globalist consumerism evident in every corner of the world and every cultural event such as the South Africa 2010 World Cup. 
Once upon a time for us lovers of this sport, we could see and celebrate the differences between an African and a German, a Japanese and a Danish on a common clash of a football match where genetic strengths and weaknesses would become evident.  Good old days sadly gone.  Now Germans bear Turkish last names and Japanese and Koreans seem interchangeable. 

I wish Team USA good fortune in this tournament.  A football unit composed of white Americans, Chicanos and Afro-Americans who together like Rocky Balboa, poise a brawling ambition and combative mentality that today seems the apex of idiosyncratic values (in the context of football) the world has to offer among nations of lost or broken traditions observable even on a football match. 


To the Metal Hall:

Do you think a different category should exist to group not bands but the albums that
qualitatively add to something more than the sum of its evident influences, at a time when
death metal and black metal were not wholly solidified as aesthetic and ideological sub-genres?
For instance the first demos, albums or eps from these bands:
Sodom, Celtic Frost, Bathory, Messiah, Pentagram or Merciless (to name a few).
Could we say that the first Bathory album is really black metal? Or do we only acknowledge
that its elements and design presages black metal?
What it’s undeniable is that the music on that album is something different to everything
else at that time and most importantly, something beyond the influences that compose it.
The early Pentagram demos featured on the Dark Legions Archive are under the label black metal; however the review reads that the music is compositionally death metal yet the assembly of the music is a hybrid of speed/death metal and quotes Kreator and Destruction.
This same example applies to many early metal albums.  Metal that compositionally may be rooted in an "older" sub-genre or sub-genres but conceptually presaged new sub-genres to come, however by the early nature of the music it may be somewhat alien to the older and new genres.  Some refer to this type of music as proto death-black approximately 1983-1987.
Should metal music that surpassed its original influences and created the foundational work for others to develop from, be referred to as the sub-genre it helped to develop or as the sub-genre it came from?  Or from a historical point of view, do these proto-styles constitute a legitimate sub-genre on its own?