Friday, April 9, 2010

What isn't metal

The metal community today has very strong opinions on what doesn't count as metal which don't always match up with what the mainstream thinks. Here is where they diverge:

70's hard rock: Although it was called "metal" at the time, a lot of hard rock bands like AC/DC aren't considered metal today. The website Metal-Archives doesn't really have standards on what does and doesn't count among 70's bands, which ends up in them leaving out AC/DC and Led Zeppelin while including Rush, Deep Purple and Thin Lizzy. Although I don't agree with all of their decisions, I think their case-by-case approach is best.

Glam metal: A lot of hair metal bands aren't considered to be metal by metal conouisseurs today. Metal-Archives includes bands like Motley Crue and Def Leppard because they consider their early work to be metal enough to get entries. I think the genre is more hard rock than metal, and by the 80s, there was enough of a difference between the genres to distinguish between them easily.

Nu-metal: It's been said that metal is rock and roll with the black influences stripped out. That's not entirely true (some doom metal bands are quite bluesy), but I say that nu-metal is rock and roll with the black influences stripped out and newer, more recent black music awkwardly spliced in. Nu-metal fans are generally mocked among the internet metal community. I think it counts as metal, but it's a terrible, terrible subgenre that should be ignored.

Grindcore: Some people consider grindcore to be more of a subgenre of punk than metal. I haven't listened to the genre enough to form an opinion.

Metalcore: This genre combining hardcore and metal is also not well liked among metal stalwarts. I like a grand total of one band in this genre, Between the Buried and Me. Metal-Archives takes metalcore bands on a case-by-case basis, but they used to have an entry for BTBAM and now they don't anymore.

These are just some of the genres that people aren't sure about whether they're metal or not. I'm not sure about some of them, either.

1 comment:

  1. Well, when I think grindcore, I think Napalm Death, and when I think Napalm Death, I think metal.

    As far as Nu Metal, "the internet metal community" mocks those who listen to Sunn O))) and Earth and Boris, too, so you see how far that sort of argument gets you.

    Nu Metal is clearly metal, and if to make some silly point you'd rather pretend that System of a Down haven't put anything decent out, well, it's a free country (I assume).

    Me, I'll listen to SoaD and some Creed and I guess a few others if I could just think of 'em right now and fuck what any random metal website might say. Used to be metal was populist, now we've got a bunch of snobs in their webmaster underwear dictating metal "taste?"

    Easy enough to break it down: A goodly amount of nu metal sucked, but so does a goodly amount of everything else.