Tuesday, October 21, 2008

What is the wackest subgenre of metal?

If you listen to Dream Theater, you are this guy.

Let's start with an easy target. Why is it that technically skilled musicians choose to play such awful music? (I'm looking at you, Dave Weckl) Look, I like Cynic, Atheist and Watchtower as much as the next guy, but I have to call it like I see it. Metal is full of socially awkward weirdos that exist in their own, bizarre world and have no idea how to interact with human beings, but prog fans are misfits even among this motley crew of losers. It is very impressive that you can play Mekong Delta's entire catalog on your Chapman Stick, but it would be even more impressive if you had the courage to throw yourself on a sword and salvage what little is left of your dignity.

Coming soon to Hydra Head

Stoner Rock
There are two kinds of people who listen to stoner rock: Beardos and old guys with jean vests. Both suck. It is the heavy metal equivalent of rockabilly or ska: a kitschy costume party that couldn't possibly be more contrived and phony. To the beardos, I say that your ironic bandana is about as cool as a pompadore and those dumb rolled-up jeans, and you're certainly not fooling anyone. For the old dudes, I simply ask that you please shut up. Who will help me drive a stake through the black heart of this wretched genre?

This man is the brains behind Explosive Dickhole

One-man MySpace drum machine grindcore
Noisecore is one thing, but one-man MySpace drum machine grindcore (OMMSDMGC) is another. Much as computers ruined graphic design by unleashing desktop publishing on the world, technology also destroyed music by making music-creation tools so cheap that any asshole with fetal alcohol syndrome and a Putrid Pile shirt can and does make a OMMSDMGC project. You know that a band is absolutely fucking terrible if they make you long for the rigorous quality control practices of 7 Minutes of Nausea or the Meatshits.

Wigger slam
Obviously this is not the answer. I only put it in here to see if you were paying attention!

Pantera cover band or brutal death metal? You be the judge.

Brutal death metal
Let's be honest, this shit fucking sucks! If I ever hear another tremolo riff again, it will be too soon, to say nothing of the endless, repetitive blast beats that fill the Unique Leader catalog. Seriously, could there be anything more dull than Deeds of Flesh, Hate Eternal or Vital Remains? Now that I think about it, Vital Remains might be the most boring band in the history of music. And I would rather chop off my asshole with a machete than listen to Krisiun for even a single second. Someone, please invent a device that will incinerate the legions of BDM douchelords with shaved heads, goatees, and Immolation shirts.

What's your take?
I covered a few obvious targets but I am sure there are many that I missed. What is your take? What is the wackest subgenre of metal in your book?


  1. There's a subgenre called Brutal Death Metal? As opposed to what? Gentle death metal?

    I must be out of touch. Must start reading the music press so I can catch up with what's happening these years. No, wait....

  2. The whole cut-n-past "uber-technical" metalcore shit is just useless. Its loud and obnoxious

    see: The Number 12 looks like you, Iwrestledabearonce, War from a Harlots Mouth, etc.

  3. if "stoner" overlaps with "drone", then i wholeheartedly agree. the whole sunn o)))/sleep/earth (wind, fire, ocean... what-the-fuck-ever) worship annoys me to no end. the way they spell sunn o))) alone makes me wanna break stuff. and it's mostly because of the beardo choads that like 'em.

    1st place goes to what human remains said, though.

  4. just reading the names of those technical metalcore bands is enough to make me fly into a rage.

  5. the first Horrorpops album is great.

    and i throw one-man myspace black metal bands into the running for "wackest subgenre of metal".

    see: crebain.

  6. How does Sleep fall in the same category as Sunn 0)))? Sleep is stoner doom metal and Sunn 0))) is drone. They don't sound alike (listen to Sunn 0)))'s white 2 and then check out Sleep's Holy Mountain if they sound the same then I'll switch to whatever you're smoking from now on). Don't mess with Sleep or you'll get the power of Matt Pike.
    and Psychobilly and Ska are two great musical genres. First HorrorPops albums is great jared.
    Nice to see this thread was started just to reactions from everyone. well done.

  7. Referencing back to the Anal Blast post from a while back i nominate porno-grind, the musical equivalent of a ricky gervais stand-up routine.

  8. brutal death metal is faster, technical and in many cases more annoying. if you listen to Nile or Hate Eternal, and then you listen to Morbid Angel or Obituary or something you'll hear the difference. By the way, how sad is it that by today's standards Obituary are barely death metal. i'm bummed. I feel old.

  9. i'm not smoking anything. that's why i don't like it.

    granted, i'm too prejudiced to give it a proper listen, so i'll take your word for it.

    and now someone pass me that bong, i need to make it through the 20-minute 2 BPM buttwater alive.

  10. Sideways myspace haircut just-heard-At The Gates-last-month-and decided-to start -this-band fingerbang cry baby lip ring dick licker metal.

  11. I mean everything is spot on here, even the graphic design comments, so I just want to point out something amazing on the dave weckl site:
    "Of course, a guy this busy does need to get around town efficiently. A fan of automobiles, Dave stays on schedule by driving a 440 horsepower Lingenfelter Camaro (read about it here). With a 0-60 time of 4.2 seconds, you're not likely to see him out on the L.A. highways - but you're bound to hear him!"

  12. I don't smoke anything either and I thoroughly enjoy the oddities in stoner metal - anyone check out Spiritual Beggars (Mike Amott's band that's not cashing in on reunions now)?

    Going back to the Brutal Death Metal thing, I agree 100% - is there such a thing as Gentle Death Metal? I hate reading about bands that are br00tal - it just means they suck eggs - pig squealing, breakdown addicted, vomit inducing garbage. Metalcore is the worst overall metal genre - these kids are more into posing than playing and it shows on every song. Whitechapel anyone?

  13. Myspace metalcore is a foregone conclusion, needs no special mention. Doesn't get much worse, though.

  14. Progressive: you have a point. If the metal doesn't have an erection, it's worthless. However there is a lot of early progressive metal that maintains an erection. It's only post-theater that things went to shit. I call this stuff 'ponytail metal' after the LotFP definition.

    Your mistake here is naming Watchtower or Mekong Delta as 'prog' bands. They come from a thrash background and the proper name for this sort of thing (though sadly a defunct genre nowadays) is techno-thrash. You know you like it because Forced Entry and Coroner and even Confessor in a way, are parts of this small subgenre. It is a useful name because it denotes that the stuff is complicated and cerebral, but it still has erection!

    Stoner rock and drone and whatever: complete agreement, this is by far the easiest - and therefore most redundant metal type music to make. Whatever was to be achieved in this sort of niche was done by Kyuss in 2 records and that Sleep record. Oh and you drone idiots, ambient was introduced to popular music by Brian Eno 30 years ago. It has been spent a loooong time before you slapped a black metal cover on a recording of your guitar feedbacking for 2 hours. Shameless.

    One man grindcore projects: never have heard, no opinion.

    Wigger slam: Truly worthless as a type of art, useful only for Metal Inquisition-related endeavors.

    Metalcore, technical especially: I look at this like the 00's Glam scene. Remember back when hair metal was around and talented musicians actually could make a decent living out of playing their guitars, if only they agreed to sweeten the sound and make the lyrics be about fucking? That's what's happening now too. Metalcore is a way to make a living and all these absurdly talented players are congregating there, but the music is worthless.

    Brutal Death Metal: it's the same as 'prog metal'. This is ponytail metal with delusions of toughness. There's nothing tough about playing this type of music. In fact the whole time you should have spent slicing prostitutes' necks and eating babies, you spent diligently in your bedroom learning guitar scales. Congratulations.

  15. yes, i left out myspace metalcore because it's like pointing out that water is wet.

    regarding brutal death metal, it is a recognized genre. the most obvious point of contrast and comparison would be melodic death metal (ATG et al). BDM is mostly just boring tremolo riffs and blast beats, very dull. just listen to newer Deeds of Flesh (their first two records are excellent).

    as far as psychobilly and ska go, these are the absolute worst, least credible genres of music imaginable. the fact that i, a huge fan of Crazytown and Korn, can look down my nose at fans of these genres should be all the evidence that you need to see that this is true. look, i don't mind when "stray cat strut" comes on the radio, and a good friend of mine played with lots of western swing bands like Deke Dickerson, but let's be honest... this stuff is the definition of gay.

  16. Well, I totally agree about metalcore, porno-grind, one man grindcore project, etc, etc, but I can't believe there was only one person that made reference to bedroom black metal or one man black metal projects. Stupid kids that found burzum a year ago and thought they could also do it (half of them did this, the other half tried to copy At the Gates adding some core to it). They should have listened to Hellveto instead, to realize that to start a one man project, you still need to be imaginative.

  17. what about the bizarre, yet strangely addictive Arnie-Core of Austrian Death Machine? there needs to be more Arnie-Core bands out there

  18. all that stupid deeds of flesh,dying fetus tough dude death metal..that shit blows dog,thats the worst sub-genre by far..

    and yes,alla those stupid sissy pants myspace sissy hair lip ring bands all need to be nuked.

  19. To be fair I like to think that all the extreme metal genres are overwhelming filled with shitty bands that you have to sift through with fine tooth comb to find anything unique or interesting.

    What especially annoys me about extreme metal, BDM especially,is that labels, fans, the press bands, and just about everyone associated have such low expectations and standards for quality that I can't fathom how certain bands even have a fanbase. If everyone just ignored the derivative, predictable bullshit, something better might float to the surface.

  20. that is an excellent point. it's shocking to see how low the standards are among genre fanboys across the board. we suffer from a constant flood of new releases, very very few of which are any good. it only gets worse when you get to be an old fart like most of us here at MI because the novelty of "extremity" wore off many year ago. blast beats? yawn. shredtastic fretboard gymnastics? snore. br00tal growls? zzzzz.

    thank god there are fresh, dynamic new genres like wigger slam to breathe life into the decaying corpse of metal!

  21. Brutal death metal and Melodic death metal killed my beloved Generic death metal...I'll always hate them for this!!!

  22. This comment has been removed by the author.

  23. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-MWZ6iOUfow

    two things you dudes love

  24. I think Misfit hit it pretty dead on.
    My nomination goes to one-man "isolationist black metal" projects.
    Buy some clown makeup, a few Burzum albums and Nitchze's "thus spoke zarathustra" and you are well on your way.

  25. Boy I can't believe nobody mentioned Gothic Female (or faggot) fronted Metal. Nobody?? What's wrong with the readers of this blog, I tought we all liked real metal. Nightwish are horrible, as are all the others with their gay keyboard uplifting melodies and unmanly eyeshadow and of course the chicks are very shaggable but that does not excuse them to make horrible popmusic and market it as some sort of metal subgenre. It is NOT metal! It is the stuff that teenage girls whine over, teenage girls are NOT metal.
    Anyways otherwise I sort of agree on the BDM topic. Metalcore used to be good, back in the nineties I mean: Integrity are an awesome band for example, Drtone is boring, stonerrock is just rock, what's wrong with rock? and for a fact: Josh Homme never grows a beard, the guy is a total babyface. To everyone his taste but chick metal should becom a violation of the universal rights of humankind.

  26. I saw Obituary for the first time about 3 weeks ago in San Francisco even though I've been a fan since 89.

    The opener was Carnifex. I guess you'd have to call that 'brutal' death metal? Let me tell you chaps something: Obituary wiped the floor with them. The reasons are simple. Even though Carnifex were good on a technical note, it's as if they threw their riffs into a blender and you had to drink the diarrea. You could even predict with laser accuracy when a blast beat or a slow chug would surface.

    Obituary had a crafted sound. It was a truly great show, but I've never felt older.

  27. i call that "riff salad."

    regarding female-fronted gothic metal, i love it. especially in the fall and winter. i would give my soul to give cristina scabbia the "special hug."

  28. No. Gothic Female Fronted Metal Bands (GFFMBs) are the worst thing to happen in the history of mankind since the holocaust, and I'm counting Vietnam and Axl Rose's new head.

    I'm pretty tolerant of weirdo subgenres of metal, but I've literally NEVER heard a GFFMB worth listening to.

    Having said that, Neo-Classical Power Metal (NCPW) is pretty fucking weird. I've heard NCPW shit that's tolerable, but not much.

    Having said THAT, the ultimate weirdo genre for me is JAPANESE NEO-CLASSICAL POWER METAL. Please see Area51 and Versailles for a reference on this one.

    It's not so much that it's bad, per se, but more that it's just inexplicable. What the fuck are the Japanese doing playing Victorian-era inspired power metal?

    Having said THAT, the official weirdest metal subgenre is Van Canto. Van Canto can't explode fast enough for me.

  29. The whole "Groove metal" trend IS the worst. All those clones of Anselmo, with annoying vocals, "macho" lyrics and movements on stage, and especially Anselmo himself make me foam at mouth... ;-)

  30. So where does Fantomas fit it?

  31. Flandex metal (late 80's/early 90's crap when all the glam fags started to play alternative and grunge).Also worth mentioning is the Exmortes/Apator split 7 inch from way back,trully some of the worst shit put to vinyl ever.But those guys hearts were into it at least....

  32. "Riff salad" is what is killing modern death metal. Doesn't anyone write "songs" anymore?

    And I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks Vital Remains is boring as hell. Their songs need to be cut in half because they repeat EVERYTHING.

  33. Anything that bites from the Dillinger Escape Plan is the worst subgenre of metal. aka "mathcore", aka "technical grind", aka "every band on relapse". It's has a pretentious art fag element, but it's really just shallow, fake and it's just unappealing if you don't buy the image.

    Hey, let's go to a million dollar studio, do some improv grinding and try to make it look intentional! We're artistic.

    I agree that the emo myspace metalcore is just the hair/nu-metal of today. Not even metal, and it's like making fun of a retarded kid anyway.

  34. I'd like to throw emotional funk metal into the mix.

  35. It's has a pretentious art fag element, but it's really just shallow, fake and it's just unappealing if you don't buy the image.

    well said!

  36. el unblack/christian black metal me pone rabioso!

  37. i think you nailed it on every account.

  38. "Having said THAT, the ultimate weirdo genre for me is JAPANESE NEO-CLASSICAL POWER METAL. Please see Area51 and Versailles for a reference on this one."

    << Versailles or how to choose an awesome name. A must-check band.

  39. is neo-classical japanese power metal anything like visual kei? that shit is weird.

  40. I think it comes out of the same bizarre "we live on an island with a lot of technology and sexual repression" thing that Visual Kei comes out of.

    Imagine visual kei.

    Now imagine that, but with a healthy dose of prog thrown in.

    No, fuck that. Don't imagine it...



    Those outfits look like Marie Fucking Antoinette on crack got in a fight with Final Fantasy and lost big time.

    On top of that, they totally sound like the ending theme music of some low-rent anime.

    The weird thing, though, is that I'd rather listen to that than almost any prog metal band or goth metal band west of the former iron curtain.

  41. you know i went through my math metal phase 10 years back at 17 or 18...but it was cynic and watchtower.
    nowadays the bands in that genre are just so over the top its unlistenable. for sure, that genre, for example sikth and dysrhythmia, are missing the point and completely wacky. i mean when it doesn't groove, you just can't even call it music anymore. the younger bands now are missing the point.

    anyone remember toxik???! think this was a great technical metal album....but a good balance (in my opinion) of solid riffs too.

  42. I dunno, I happen to like some brutal DM, even some mathcore shit. Doom/stoner metal as well.

    If you don't like it don't listen to it.

  43. Thrash. Especially 80's thrash, thin guitars, weak drums.. all bands sound the same and they dressed like rednecks. Anyone who likes thrash is gay or wants to be.

  44. if you don't dig any thrash, you don't dig metal. Thrash is the forefather of metal, roots in early punk. most sub-genres are in one way, shape, or form, a descendant of thrash, bro.

  45. How about folk metal? I'm a big fan personally, but I'd love to hear what you think of it.

  46. I agree with most subgenres mentioned here except for stoner. I love stoner rock, whereas drone stuff like sunno))) really sucks. Anyway, just wanted to mention a really fucked up genre, don´t know if you yanks are familiar with it: NSBM, which stands for national socialist (yeah you read it right)black metal. nazi black metallers!! as if depressed, introvert, antisocial fags with make up would not be the first ones to be sent to the extermination camps in a new nazi empire. it is just too stupid.

  47. Toxik were alright. Dude's voice was really high. Sadly the first album is a bit frontloaded, kinda like Realm's "Endless War" first few songs (especially SLAY. THE OPRESSSOOOOOOOOR) get you all fired up and then the rest of the album goes nowhere.

    It's not a big surprise not a lot of those technical bands could keep the songwriting to a high level consistently through an album. That shit is tough to write and also have it breathe, be musical, make sense. First Sieges Even is all gold, Watchtower records, naturally, Deathrow from germany pulled it off... Voivod of course, Megace perhaps! Annihilator's first two are all class (I even like Stonewall!)... Rosicrucian's second (No Cause For Celebration) is a minor gem... perhaps Flaming Anger were also consistent and of course, Coroner never wrote a bad song.

  48. I'm casting my vote for One Man MySpace Drum Machine Grindcore, seeing as how I've actually dabbled in such metal before and know how offensively easy it is. Seriously, just download Drumsite, program a blastbeat, get a jack to plug your guitar into your computer, downtune to Drop-B standard or something, and record. Instant grindcore.

    Also, why has no one pointed a finger at nu-metal yet? That's gotta be one of the wackest "metal" subgenres out there.

    Finally, just for the record, stoner rock kicks ass. I'm a beardo by my own admission, and I'm damn proud to be one.

  49. I dunno...I tend to like progressive metal at times. When it gets complicated enough, it becomes absurdly awesome, like Nitro or Dragonforce or something. Progressive metal fans are decidedly not awesome, though.

    Stoner rock is pretty uniformly horrible, although I guess an exception would maybe have to be made for later Cathedral and Kyuss...?

    What about funk-metal? Who can defend the likes of Mordred, Ignorance, and "31 Flavors"? Even the Infectious Grooves stuff that seemed okay back then is hard to stomach now...

  50. For my money the worst "active" metal sub-genre is the whole porno grind thing which has become a parody of a parody of a parody of itself. No one's laughing with it anymore, just at it.

    All time -80's chick metal, like Girlschool, Rock Goddess, Lita Ford, Bitch & Acid. No redeeming qualities whatsoever & the broads weren't even really all that hot. I remember Lee Aaron as being pretty bang-able, so was the chick in She & Lita had her moments but by & large, meh & the music was atrociously horrid.

  51. it's funny you should mention that, i just wrote a long post about how much i love pornogrind! but you are right, the majority of it is truly putrid garbage.

    chick metal was fun! lita had some good songs, and i liked vixen too. bitch were terrible.

  52. 1) e-grind is like if someone tried to make a CGI version of the Alien films. an absolute atrocity.

    2) in defense of sunn o))), they are amazing, but 80 percent of the people who listen to them hate it because they look at it from a metal perspective. I first heard of sunn o))) as a noise band, and went in listening to their more experimental endeavors, such as flight of the behemoth and white 1, and was blown away. however when they try to put metal into their music it doesnt really work out. what they're doing is experimental and it should be treated as such, but when a band tries to be an experimental version of a specific genre it tends to be pretty lame compared to if they had just stayed purely experimental weirdness.

    3) Stoner rock is a totally separate genre completely different from sunn o))). I think most people mix stoner rock and doom/sludge into the same thing, while they are actually very very different. doom/sludge is slow, trudging guitar and slamming drums, sounds like its so dense and heavy its crushing you, hitting you hard with each slam (see khanate, burning witch, corruped). while doom/sludge has a very abrasive feel, stoner rock has a warm, embracing sound. the blues/sabbath-esque guitars and much less abrasive drumming give a melodic flow to the sound that grows psychadelic as the music progresses. that's why its called stoner rock, the progression from structured bluesy rock to psychadelia is personification of what it feels like to get really stoned.

    that being said, i don't really think theres a basis for saying a genre like stoner rock with so much influence from black sabbath as being wack metal. its possible i just have a weird perspective on it, but its just my honest opinion.

  53. 90-95% of metal is a total wank.

    that is why this website is pure gold.

    mallcorekidsdie - if you cant find a groove in sikth's - death of a dead day release its time to hang up the faded sleeveless denim jacket.. in a genre where emulation reigns supreme.. sikth forged a sound that is a subgenre all to their own...

    personally i find cheesey-dance/trance-metal quite humorous... see enter shakiri etc... anyone for tennis?

  54. did i just see someone shit on GIrlschool and Acid? FOAD.

  55. im gonna have to agree with the one dude..

    funk metal was a horrid abomination

  56. Glam


    Really homo erotic european powermetal bands, a la rhapsody, sonata arctica.

    and Jazzthrash.

  57. What about skate metal? There's nothing in skating that's metal! NOTHING! Just a bunch of bullied and pimple-faced kids who happened to skate and listen to generic shit thrash metal and drink beer in late 80s early 90s. What a bunch of fucking nerds! I hate thrash metal, and if someone says that weak punk shit is the forefather of metal has a really big misconception up their ass.

    And hardcore, that shit's done nothing good to metal, everything that ends with -core makes me puke immediately. Whining emo retards every last one of them.

    Satan, weed and Black Sabbath - that's what metal is really about.

  58. Metalcore sucks. Prog sucks. But ppl like it. And that's their problem. Anything that makes me grit my teeth and bang my head thru a song is worth listening to. But if a song takes a right turn to do something a guitar magazine would rave about, then fuck it.

  59. I find it funny how its labeled "subgenre" because yes in fact most of these styles are underground scenes. It comes with the territory no matter what you listen to people somewhere are going to hate it. It does not surprise me one bit to read how terrible one type of music is to another. So his type is better? and this guy's style is worse? No one will ever have a last word on this.Ever.

  60. heres some last words...
    cheer up everyone, and think of happy thoughts.

    i actually like NSBM because its fast as hell (some) and its (some) is way more evil than anything sabbath ever did...

    oh and lemmy was influenced by punk.