Death Metal Underground

Bring us another Toba catastrophe

by Mike Arsenyev
April 27, 2013 –

volc1For those that are unaware of the Toba catastrophe theory – it’s based on a supervolcanic event in present-day Indonesia that changed the world. Around 75,000 years ago one volcanic eruption bottle-necked the human species and put the Earth into a decade-long volcanic winter. The human species was rendered to less than 10,000 breeding pairs and the planet was cooled. These volcanic events are nature’s way of bringing a balance back to the planet; something that modern civilization doesn’t pay any heed to because most people pigeonhole themselves in mundane routines.

How do volcanoes transpose to metal? Well aside from their “bad” nature, the Earth reclaims its shell by cutting out the fat on its crust. This is something that needs to happen in the metal community.

How often do you find yourself at a show and every band on the bill are generic rehashes of the past or common variations of pop formulas? The scene is infested with hundreds and hundreds of boredom inducing clones that mimic their favorite bands – not extending upon the concepts that were previously founded. They are imitations. The prolegomenon of mediocre bands doesn’t leave much room for more quality music to thrive. Perhaps a metaphorical influx of lava and ash clouds would keep the weak at bay and let true metal flourish.

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10 comments

  • bitterman

    Give, for example, a band like Ara a review, but call it for what it is: metalcore. When the death metal community gets a sense of disgust from listening to it, allow it to be rightly lambasted in the comments for everyone to see. Spread awareness of originators and innovators in modern reviews to lead people to superior acts. For example, a Behemoth review should lead to Morbid Angel awareness. When the standard is raised, maybe people will stop forming bands if they know it’s crap. Better to hope to have a Blessed are the Sick every decade if it means we won’t get a Gateways to Annihilation: The Polish Version and the Czechoslovakian Heretic every 11 months (or Azagthoth solos in Genitorturers’ songs on David Vincent’s solo album). Of course, we can pray to the ancient ones for lava to burn the flesh of the earth and a cosmic breath to sweep the blood of the earth by taking Morbid Angel lyrics literally. After learning about Earache Records signing a band called Eskimo Callboy, seeing Mortiis’ transformation into a fetish club goblin, and Atrocity making a career out of covering the Breakfast Club soundtrack… we must take desperate measures.

    1. kvlt attakker

      In the DMU interview with Mike Browning, it was stated that Trey equally contributed to Disco D’s solo album.

      Metal is dead. Grr…. just grr…

      1. Steve Smith-Jones

        Even if Metal was dead I don’t know why would that matter, or make us weep, even if we trully appreciate it. In the best case scenario, there are 50-60 classics to cherish while being alive. Worst case scenario, there’s a vast array of albums from 1970-1996 to indulge oneself in distraction that one lifetime would not suffice to hear them all.
        .
        Throughout that journey you’ll probably experience more musical orgasms than most people ever will, meet a few really interesting gents with a similar take on life and become aware of something that will trully change your life forever.
        .

        1. bitterman

          You’re right. The problem is all the garbage people release today like Behemoth or Necrophagist which use the genre tag for the sake of fashion/gimmick/marketing to an unwise audience and detracting them from the great works. I had watched a Bloodbath interview where “guy from Opeth” Mikael Akerfeldt himself comes out and says something along the lines of “I don’t listen to much metal because I’m beyond that now that I have King Crimson and Genesis vinyls. If I were to listen to Swedish Death metal though, it would be Entombed, not those ripoffs like Dismember.” This kind of crap detracts an audience who would think Like an Ever-Flowing Stream is not worth listening to because some fool says it’s a Left Hand Path ripoff. He got the band name from a Cancer song, so there’s his standard of quality. Also, something like AllMusic would have a paid professional write a review on The Red in the Sky is Ours and call it “baby Entombed”, later calling Slaughter of the Soul a timeless classic that was a breath of fresh air for “death metal” at the time. It’s like when Ara flaunts their knowledge of having heard death metal, and not understanding it beyond the superficial level to promote their redressed metalcore. The good news is, no matter what, stuff like Altars of Madness or Transilvanian Hunger will always be available. The problem is who is going to do what Ara, for example, is doing today later on. 5 years, Angelcorpse is fashionable. 5 years later, Krisiun is fashionable. For the past half decade, Behemoth is fashionable. That’s 15 years of third rate Covenant ripoffs, and for what? The goal should be teaching people this so they support the be-all, end-all statements in the genre and ignore the “you need this” product mentality of the gimmicky one-trick pandering of bands today.

          1. Steve Smith-Jones

            That was my concern too, until I realized the only viable path was to enjoy and respect that which is good. During my life time I’ll be able to influence a few people into finding high-quality Metal and my job will be done.
            .
            quote: – Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

            Begin each day by telling yourself: Today I shall be meeting with interference, ingratitude, insolence, disloyalty, ill will, and selfishness — all of them due to the offenders’ ignorance of what is good or evil. But for my part I have long perceived the nature of good and its nobility, the nature of evil and its meanness, and also the nature of the culprit himself, who is my brother; therefore none of those things can injure me, for nobody can implicate me in what is degrading.

          2. kvlt attakker

            Bloodbath are mimics but it doesn’t mean that they’re bad. I didn’t know that the Opeth guy bashed Dismember. How stupid.

  • Metal Command

    Metal is just bloated. For every one good band out there trying to make real music, there’s 100 idiots trying to cash in by making the same metalcore crap every other band is making.

    1. Invisible Sandwich

      The real problem is not the 100 metalcore musicians, but the 10,000 people who buy album after album without really caring what they listen to.