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failsafeman
Digital Dictator

Joined: Wed Sep 01, 2004 8:45 am
Posts: 9725
Location: United States
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 9:01 pm 
 

BaloroftheEvilEye wrote:
failsafeman wrote:
Yeah, I'm going to record ragtime for the piano and call it metal. Metal has no rules, so you can't say it isn't metal, right?

He was obviously referring to lyrical themes, not musical style.

Dude, that makes you a SHEEP!
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BaloroftheEvilEye
Metalhead

Joined: Fri Oct 02, 2009 11:42 am
Posts: 1625
Location: Ireland
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 9:03 pm 
 

failsafeman wrote:
BaloroftheEvilEye wrote:
failsafeman wrote:
Yeah, I'm going to record ragtime for the piano and call it metal. Metal has no rules, so you can't say it isn't metal, right?

He was obviously referring to lyrical themes, not musical style.

Dude, that makes you a SHEEP!


Baah, I resent that.

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Rild
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2009 2:38 pm
Posts: 623
Location: Vancouver
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 9:10 pm 
 

Under_Starmere wrote:
Is there some sort of neo-Inquisitional/witch-skinning trend running through the unblack scene?

Maybe not, but the whole thing seems to me like another poorly conceived evangelical adventure. This 'genre' is not a 'rebellion' against black metal, it is a tasteless co-opting of genre aesthetics to espouse the usual Christian clap-trap.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sa0EtdtP ... re=related

Unblack metal is artistically the same as Christian Side Hug. To all you open-minded 'metal has no rules' types, would you agree that gangsta rap has no rules either so Christian Side Hug qualifies?

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AngelofDeath777
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 4:16 pm
Posts: 99
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 9:18 pm 
 

Under_Starmere wrote:
This is interesting, since you're probably the only person in this thread whose actually been involved in this genre first-hand. Was there an ideological conflict between your bandmates? I'm curious to know how an unblack band gets formed in the first place, and what sorts of spiritual conundrums you encountered in the process of developing yours. It might shed some valuable light on this discussion.



Sorry about getting to this so late.

The band was comprised of four core members, myself included, and other people who came and went. One of the four was not a Christian, but he never cared about the lyrics so it never bothered him. We had other people in the band at times who also weren't Christians. Whenever anybody joined, we simply explained to them that the band had Christian themed lyrics and made it clear that if they did not care, we did not care about their beliefs. Any internal problems we had were never because of ideology, but were rather typical problems that any band would have.

I do remember when we were recording our Demo with members of another christian band in the area (they weren't a BM band) one of them expressed concern that our lyrics were too anti-church. Like I said earlier, I tried to write lyrics that reflected how I actually felt, rather than how I would Ideally feel. So I often had songs about doubting my faith and having conflicts with organized religion. It didn't really amount to much, but that was one issue we had with the christian music scene here.

Personally, I never felt like i fit into the mold of Christians here. I met a schoolmate of mine that was also a christian, and we decided to form a band. I don't know if there was ever any specific purpose to it. but mostly just a way of expressing our beliefs in a way that we felt was beautiful to us. The way I see it, any lyrics I write will be from a Christian perspective, even if it has nothing to do with religion. I know there are bands our there that set out to be a Christian alternative to Satanic/Pagan/Atheistic BM, but we were just trying to do what felt natural for us.

Interesting to note that we got messages and emails from both Black metal Elitists and Christian Fundamentalists telling us that what we were doing was an abomination. So I guess they do agree on something

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Woolie_Wool
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2006 6:56 pm
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Location: Far beyond the prophecy of tyrant guardians
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 9:35 pm 
 

Personally I think unblack metal tends to go about the whole exercise the wrong way. Black metal is less about Satan per se than things that are evil, upsetting to society, etc. Therefore the proper way to do unblack metal would be to portray God as evil, and revel in/glorify his evil. Considering the way the New Testament changed Christianity, Judaism would probably be a better base for it, because you only have the Old Testament to deal with, and you can very easily use that to portray God as a sadistic, evil, twisted, mass-murdering, baby-killing monster.

Hell, I think I can come up with a track list for such an album:

1. All Hail the God of Death
2. The Rape of Canaan
3. Slaughter the Firstborn
4. Thy Flesh Consumed
5. Child Sacrifice Ritual
6. Our Lord Who Destroys
7. Dust Thou Art
8. Stoned to Death
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Peter31095Metalhead
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Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 12:03 am
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Location: Brazil
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 9:38 pm 
 

Even if ideology matters in black metal (and it does), the music comes first nevertheless, so if a christian black metal band is good, why not listen to it? Sure, you may disagree with their opinions, but if their music is great, why give a fuck? They're not you.

That's not to say I support christianity, though. I hate it just as much as everybody else, but most of all I care about the music. I only disapprove of bands that suck, and the fact that many of them are made up of christians have nothing to do with it. I think.

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kampfplatz666
Sturmbannführer Borat

Joined: Thu Mar 20, 2008 10:17 pm
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Location: Vatican City
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 9:50 pm 
 

It's easy for some to talk about what BM can be, when they just give a fuck about the genre. Those who give some time (and money, feelings and/or passion) to this genre know that it has nothing to do with christianism.

It's like white power music played by blacks, ultra-capitalist music played by marxists, etc... It is technically possible but it has no sense.
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OnwardToGolgotha
Metalhead

Joined: Sat Apr 24, 2010 11:33 pm
Posts: 434
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 9:54 pm 
 

Peter31095Metalhead wrote:
Even if ideology matters in black metal (and it does), the music comes first nevertheless, so if a christian black metal band is good, why not listen to it? Sure, you may disagree with their opinions, but if their music is great, why give a fuck? They're not you.
The issue is that, since the genre's inception, black metal has been firmly rooted in strong antichristian beliefs. Unblack metal is possible, but doesn't really make sense.

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Peter31095Metalhead
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 12:03 am
Posts: 221
Location: Brazil
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 10:03 pm 
 

OnwardToGolgotha wrote:
Peter31095Metalhead wrote:
Even if ideology matters in black metal (and it does), the music comes first nevertheless, so if a christian black metal band is good, why not listen to it? Sure, you may disagree with their opinions, but if their music is great, why give a fuck? They're not you.
The issue is that, since the genre's inception, black metal has been firmly rooted in strong antichristian beliefs. Unblack metal is possible, but doesn't really make sense.


Well... I see your point, I just don't really agree with it. Like someone else said, genres evolve. Plus, does it have to make sense?

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DrummingEdge133
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 8:48 pm
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Location: United States
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 10:27 pm 
 

It seems as thought people who are playing 'black' metal with Christian beliefs and faith (while also preaching about it) is like a parody of black metal, as if they are trying to mock this fantastic genre of music. The reaction of people criticizing unblack metal is justified, in the same way Tepes_the_Unweeping criticized Dethklok.

Personally, I think this stuff should be called white metal, but that's just me.

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OnwardToGolgotha
Metalhead

Joined: Sat Apr 24, 2010 11:33 pm
Posts: 434
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 10:30 pm 
 

Peter31095Metalhead wrote:
Well... I see your point, I just don't really agree with it. Like someone else said, genres evolve. Plus, does it have to make sense?
Probably not the best choice of words. If you can separate the image from the music, all the more power to you, but for me the image is a large part of black metal, especially in the reverse-traditional stylings of unblack metal bands.

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Under_Starmere
Abhorrent Fish-Man

Joined: Tue Apr 24, 2007 5:00 pm
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Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 10:42 pm 
 

DrummingEdge133 wrote:
Personally, I think this stuff should be called white metal, but that's just me.


Can we agree that this can pretty much resolve (at least part of) this debate? One of the biggest thorns in the general side seems to be this lumping in of Christian "black metal" bands with "true" black metal bands under the same umbrella, so if we just segregate them in their own sub-category... end of issue? I know the term "white metal" isn't a new idea, but it seems to draw a clearer distinction than "unblack." Just as black metal is metal apparently defined by certain philosophical/thematic guidelines, just so for white metal. I'm just thinking baseline genre terminology here, all confusing stylistic co-opting aside.

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gazeovice
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Sep 03, 2009 12:53 pm
Posts: 555
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 10:45 pm 
 

OnwardToGolgotha wrote:
Peter31095Metalhead wrote:
Well... I see your point, I just don't really agree with it. Like someone else said, genres evolve. Plus, does it have to make sense?
Probably not the best choice of words. If you can separate the image from the music, all the more power to you, but for me the image is a large part of black metal, especially in the reverse-traditional stylings of unblack metal bands.


I'd like to respectfully disagree with this, however, very few bands could be used for my assessment. When I think of bands where substance triumphs over the banality of corpsepaint, my mind focuses solely on bands like Rotting Christ. More importantly as you are referring to the entirety of the scene, a relevant argument for my point would be the rise of theistic black metal. Bands in that genre were their ideologies surpass the image entirely (maybe not Watain).

I've never quite understood why 'unblack' bands ape their black metal counterparts. One of the many insights offered in the discussion is a Christian warrior mentality. I am suspect of this for the fact its much the same as their "unbelieving" counterparts. I agree with Nightgaunt to an extent as black metal was indeed founded on anti-christianity. But as bands continue to experiment with different ways of thinking, I wonder about the ultimate fate of the styles original tenents

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OnwardToGolgotha
Metalhead

Joined: Sat Apr 24, 2010 11:33 pm
Posts: 434
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 10:50 pm 
 

gazeovice wrote:
OnwardToGolgotha wrote:
Peter31095Metalhead wrote:
Well... I see your point, I just don't really agree with it. Like someone else said, genres evolve. Plus, does it have to make sense?
Probably not the best choice of words. If you can separate the image from the music, all the more power to you, but for me the image is a large part of black metal, especially in the reverse-traditional stylings of unblack metal bands.


I'd like to respectfully disagree with this, however, very few bands could be used for my assessment. When I think of bands where substance triumphs over the banality of corpsepaint, my mind focuses solely on bands like Rotting Christ. More importantly as you are referring to the entirety of the scene, a relevant argument for my point would be the rise of theistic black metal. Bands in that genre were their ideologies surpass the image entirely (maybe not Watain).
To me, the whole requisite theistic ideaoligy (sp?) has part of the image. The original tenents of anything will fade over time, becoming transformed by new ideals for better or for worse. The problem I have with the image of unblack metal is that most bands I have encountered seem to just be a mirrored image of the theistic, satanic bands, except with the crosses the right side up.

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Empyreal
The Final Frontier

Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 6:58 pm
Posts: 19335
Location: Where the dead rule the night
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 10:53 pm 
 

NightmareLake wrote:
Nightgaunt wrote:

As for me, there is no irony to what I am saying. The very point I have been making is that metal, as a countercultural entity, is naturally predisposed towards opposition to some things

I oppose the idiocy in this thread. That makes me "king metal". Seriously, it's just music. Gotta go.


Yeah, because nobody ever put any heart, soul or ideology into it! It's just music. Just noises on a turntable, sounds coming from headphones. There's definitely no real thought or ambition put into music besides its technical points and the way it sounds on the surface.

Holy fuck, you're an idiot. And condescending, too; what a combination. I don't think any amount of insults would really cover it...you are beyond help.
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demisetheflesh
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Joined: Sat May 09, 2009 8:20 pm
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PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 10:54 pm 
 

My view of "unblack" metal, is that all it is is black metal with Christian inspired lyrics, I don't understand the whole thing that black metal has to be "evil", it might just be my definition of "evil" is different, as I don't see anything evil in DSBM as it generally seems to be on the suicidal end, which I don't have a problem with really. I think that lyrics do not help form a genre, whilst the music behind it does.

I've met a couple "unblack" metal bands, only one of them is sort of preachy but their newer lyrics are being geared more toward a hidden Christian message, whilse the other has lyrics focusing on what happens when god is pissed off, and that being rather sadistic based lyrics. Neither of them have lyrics featuring a mutilated Satan/Lucifer/whatever.

That being said, I think of "unblack" as a rather ridiculous as it sounds the same as black metal, and the only point of it being different is between fans of each.
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gazeovice
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Sep 03, 2009 12:53 pm
Posts: 555
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 11:02 pm 
 

OnwardToGolgotha wrote:
gazeovice wrote:
OnwardToGolgotha wrote:
Peter31095Metalhead wrote:
Well... I see your point, I just don't really agree with it. Like someone else said, genres evolve. Plus, does it have to make sense?
Probably not the best choice of words. If you can separate the image from the music, all the more power to you, but for me the image is a large part of black metal, especially in the reverse-traditional stylings of unblack metal bands.


I'd like to respectfully disagree with this, however, very few bands could be used for my assessment. When I think of bands where substance triumphs over the banality of corpsepaint, my mind focuses solely on bands like Rotting Christ. More importantly as you are referring to the entirety of the scene, a relevant argument for my point would be the rise of theistic black metal. Bands in that genre were their ideologies surpass the image entirely (maybe not Watain).
To me, the whole requisite theistic ideaoligy (sp?) has part of the image. The original tenents of anything will fade over time, becoming transformed by new ideals for better or for worse. The problem I have with the image of unblack metal is that most bands I have encountered seem to just be a mirrored image of the theistic, satanic bands, except with the crosses the right side up.


That's what I was saying as well; giving credence to the second part of your post, however,it may or may not disinclude Christianity.

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Under_Starmere
Abhorrent Fish-Man

Joined: Tue Apr 24, 2007 5:00 pm
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Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 12:08 am 
 

AngelofDeath777 wrote:
I do remember when we were recording our Demo with members of another christian band in the area (they weren't a BM band) one of them expressed concern that our lyrics were too anti-church. Like I said earlier, I tried to write lyrics that reflected how I actually felt, rather than how I would Ideally feel. So I often had songs about doubting my faith and having conflicts with organized religion.


Hmmm... so in your case, you actually did have content that might be construed as "anti-Christian"? That's interesting, it brings a new twist to the perspectives here. Though, of course, it's all part and parcel of organized religion's history in regards to heresy. :)

AngelofDeath777 wrote:
Personally, I never felt like i fit into the mold of Christians here. I met a schoolmate of mine that was also a christian, and we decided to form a band. I don't know if there was ever any specific purpose to it. but mostly just a way of expressing our beliefs in a way that we felt was beautiful to us. The way I see it, any lyrics I write will be from a Christian perspective, even if it has nothing to do with religion. I know there are bands our there that set out to be a Christian alternative to Satanic/Pagan/Atheistic BM, but we were just trying to do what felt natural for us.


So if I understand you correctly, you felt that the aesthetic medium of black metal served your purposes best in conveying the emotions/atmospheres you had to express. In a way this makes sense to me as black metal has always struck me as being a quite singularly passionate-sounding style, regardless of whatever ideas might be behind it, lyrically. It provides an aura of spiritual intensity.
So it felt natural to you... you never had any misgivings or conflicts over this? How did you come to appreciate black metal in the first place, being of the Christian persuasion?

Sorry if any of this sounds elementary or prejudiced, it's just you rarely find Christians that would ever, EVER go there. As I'm sure you well know.

AngelofDeath777 wrote:
Interesting to note that we got messages and emails from both Black metal Elitists and Christian Fundamentalists telling us that what we were doing was an abomination. So I guess they do agree on something


Hahaha! Ehhh...I guess it figures. Can't please everybody, eh? Might as well please yourself...

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Scourge441
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Jul 31, 2007 11:38 am
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Location: United States
PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 12:58 am 
 

Can someone explain to me why the ideologies of the black metal musicians are relevant at all to the genre? Because to me, musical genres have been defined by sound, and nothing more.

Christian black metal sounds like black metal, so it's black metal. Easy, simple, done. Why does the original inspiration/ideological intent matter?

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Veddartha
Apocalyptic Destroyer of Angels

Joined: Wed Jan 19, 2005 4:12 pm
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Location: Mexico
PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 1:30 am 
 

Unblack Metal=White Metal?

I have said it countless times since I post here -and many people before me have expressed the same opinion in this thread-: christian black metal is a fucking oxymoron.

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TheUglySoldier
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Location: Australia
PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 1:31 am 
 

Anglican Metal would have lyrics akin to Motley Crue. The only difference being that before each sexual conquest, the singer's character would divorce and remarry.
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Veddartha
Apocalyptic Destroyer of Angels

Joined: Wed Jan 19, 2005 4:12 pm
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Location: Mexico
PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 1:40 am 
 

Scourge441 wrote:
Can someone explain to me why the ideologies of the black metal musicians are relevant at all to the genre? Because to me, musical genres have been defined by sound, and nothing more.


Not necessary. The ideology is an inseparable aspect of an artistic expression, in this case music. Just because it features the aesthetic elements in terms of sound doesn´t mean it´s part of the genre. In a musical movement rooted so deeply in anti-religious ideologies, like black metal, or even death metal for that matter, it´s absurd to label a band who preaches a completely opposed ideology to what the genre has standed for since it´s inception in the same category as the founders of said movement. Maybe they could be labeled as a avant-garde, in a very lame and ambiguos way, if you ask me.

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Foxx
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Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 6:59 am
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 1:45 am 
 

Scourge441 wrote:
Can someone explain to me why the ideologies of the black metal musicians are relevant at all to the genre? Because to me, musical genres have been defined by sound, and nothing more.

Christian black metal sounds like black metal, so it's black metal. Easy, simple, done. Why does the original inspiration/ideological intent matter?


Why is it that music can't be classified according to subject matter or the intent of the music? That sort of classification is commonplace in other forms of art. I do not think that separating black metal from unblack metal is that absurd an idea as the two scenes are so far removed from eachother due to the differing ideologies anyway.

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AngelofDeath777
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 4:16 pm
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 1:54 am 
 

Under_Starmere wrote:
Hmmm... so in your case, you actually did have content that might be construed as "anti-Christian"? That's interesting, it brings a new twist to the perspectives here. Though, of course, it's all part and parcel of organized religion's history in regards to heresy. :)


I never thought of it that way but that is one way to look at it. I knew several people in my life who had been driven away from christianity by certain churches or schools. either by the message they preached or by the hypocrisy they saw. So my lyrics were kind of a reaction to that. For example the catholic church has so many regulations on their members that have no biblical base. It is baffeling how they carry on the way they do.

Under_Starmere wrote:
So if I understand you correctly, you felt that the aesthetic medium of black metal served your purposes best in conveying the emotions/atmospheres you had to express. In a way this makes sense to me as black metal has always struck me as being a quite singularly passionate-sounding style, regardless of whatever ideas might be behind it, lyrically. It provides an aura of spiritual intensity.
So it felt natural to you... you never had any misgivings or conflicts over this? How did you come to appreciate black metal in the first place, being of the Christian persuasion?

Sorry if any of this sounds elementary or prejudiced, it's just you rarely find Christians that would ever, EVER go there. As I'm sure you well know.


No not at all. and you hit the nail on the head. I was only 16 at the time (I'm 20 now) and it was something very different for me. There were times that I wondered if it was a good idea for me to be focusing on such dark music. But that came and went. I never had any theological conflicts over playing it, it felt right to me. I still thank God I am where I am today, being a metalhead and all.

When I first heard BM, I remember simply enjoying the aesthetics of it. I knew full well that these bands were opposed to my own beliefs, but that never bothered me too much as far as playing my own music goes. My bandmate could answer that question much better, since he has been involved in BM more heavily than anyone I have ever known. These days I have been more involved in Death and Thrash, but we will be reforming our old BM band soon.

Under_Starmere wrote:
Hahaha! Ehhh...I guess it figures. Can't please everybody, eh? Might as well please yourself...


Exactly

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iamntbatman
Chaos Breed

Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2009 5:55 am
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Location: Innsmouth
PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 5:15 am 
 

Peter31095Metalhead wrote:
Even if ideology matters in black metal (and it does), the music comes first nevertheless, so if a christian black metal band is good, why not listen to it? Sure, you may disagree with their opinions, but if their music is great, why give a fuck? They're not you.

That's not to say I support christianity, though. I hate it just as much as everybody else, but most of all I care about the music. I only disapprove of bands that suck, and the fact that many of them are made up of christians have nothing to do with it. I think.


That little bolded bit rattles off the tongue (or keyboard, I guess) so easily, doesn't it? The thing is, it doesn't make a lick of sense. On a purely aesthetic level, sure the actual audio component is going to trump other aesthetic components (quality of album art, the band's image, this beauty of the lyrics and other aesthetic elements of experiencing a band) but I really don't get why so many people are so quick to say that the quality of the music on display should matter more than any other element one might consider when choosing music to listen to. If some kid witnessed his mother brutally murdered with a jackhammer while "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds" played in the background, would you tell him to suck it up and listen to that song anyway because "the music comes first"? Of course you wouldn't. If people feel strongly about certain ideologies (in this case, the distaste many black metal fans quite understandably have for pro-Christian lyrics and themes), is it at all reasonable to expect them to toss their beliefs out the window and only take into account aesthetics not related to lyrical content and themes?

My argument doesn't really apply to the broader conversation here (i.e. whether or not Christian bands have any business calling themselves black metal or even copying black metal's aesthetics for their own purposes). As for that, I think it's pretty clear that black metal was consciously created in opposition to an entire host of Judeo-Christian beliefs, practices, traditions, etc. and their effects on society so I do think it's quite fair for people who participate in black metal (be they musicians or fans) to reject the idea of people adopting the musical elements of the genre yet vehemently opposing the ideology that was purposefully entwined with the music.

Edit: typo.
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funeralbirth
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Joined: Wed Jun 24, 2009 6:50 am
Posts: 219
Location: Malta
PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 5:28 am 
 

Black metal is a music genre, it does not hold personal religious or political beliefs. I can't have a conversation with it and say "Hey there Mr.Black Metal, I was wondering, do you have the time?" Black metal in itself is not a living being and thus it is neutral. You might tell me the original black metal band members' intentions and blah blah blah yada yada yada. They are still the band members, people, and not a music form. Just because the band members had certain thoughts does not mean that black metal has those thoughts because...it doesn't think! You know, a lot of you mock people when they act all "kvlt" or "gr1m" but here you are practicing that very same attitude whether you like it or not. To give a metaphor (best I could think of), you're all saying that if red apples were grown first, but then people found that green apples existed too, but they're not apples, simply for the fact that they are not red. What's the logic in that? And besides, that means that every black metal band that doesn't hold lyrical themes similar to the original black metal bands false. Why make a compromise? If Christian black metal is not real black metal than neither are bands that sing about nature, depression, etc, simply because they don't hold the same lyrical themes and/or beliefs. Just accept that some Christians can appreciate good music and move on.

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Cruciphage
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 7:07 am 
 

funeralbirth wrote:
Black metal is a music genre, it does not hold personal religious or political beliefs. I can't have a conversation with it and say "Hey there Mr.Black Metal, I was wondering, do you have the time?" Black metal in itself is not a living being and thus it is neutral. You might tell me the original black metal band members' intentions and blah blah blah yada yada yada. They are still the band members, people, and not a music form. Just because the band members had certain thoughts does not mean that black metal has those thoughts because...it doesn't think! You know, a lot of you mock people when they act all "kvlt" or "gr1m" but here you are practicing that very same attitude whether you like it or not. To give a metaphor (best I could think of), you're all saying that if red apples were grown first, but then people found that green apples existed too, but they're not apples, simply for the fact that they are not red. What's the logic in that? And besides, that means that every black metal band that doesn't hold lyrical themes similar to the original black metal bands false. Why make a compromise? If Christian black metal is not real black metal than neither are bands that sing about nature, depression, etc, simply because they don't hold the same lyrical themes and/or beliefs. Just accept that some Christians can appreciate good music and move on.

Go back and read my post on page 2. Also, you don't seem to understand art at all.

Art would not exist if people did not create it. People create art from ideas, and when similar or identical ideas become widespread, presto, you have an artistic movement. It's the people involved, the creators and sustainers, who give shape to something, not the thing itself, and in giving it shape their ideas become inextricably bound to it. This holds true for physical things--i.e. sculptures and snot-nosed kids--as well as abstract ideas--i.e. Yahweh and black metal.

Under_Starmere wrote:
Can we agree that this can pretty much resolve (at least part of) this debate? One of the biggest thorns in the general side seems to be this lumping in of Christian "black metal" bands with "true" black metal bands under the same umbrella, so if we just segregate them in their own sub-category... end of issue? I know the term "white metal" isn't a new idea, but it seems to draw a clearer distinction than "unblack." Just as black metal is metal apparently defined by certain philosophical/thematic guidelines, just so for white metal. I'm just thinking baseline genre terminology here, all confusing stylistic co-opting aside.

What a marvelous idea. Isn't goregrind just grindcore with gory lyrics (forgive my ignorance if I'm wrong)? Why the special name? Because it's a specific type of grindcore. White or unblack metal is certainly an offshoot of black metal, but by no means should it be lumped together with it.

Unfortunately, there are quite a few people who, for reasons I still don't understand, vehemently insist on including it with black metal. I mean, vehemently. I've browsed and been involved with several of these discussions and, as Nightgaunt has pointed out, they usually degenerate into circular discussions and flamewars. Usually, this is because the white-on-black supporters get really steamed when they can't free our minds or achieve whatever their goal is. With people like me, supporters of a clear seperation between white and black metal, you could hit us in the head with a sledgehammer and you wouldn't open our minds any further.

What I find funny, I mean really fucking funny about this, is that it's an argument about a genre classification, a stupid label. I don't get why some are so adamant about including Antestor and Horde in the same musical category as Burzum and Satan's Almighty Penis, as if this is the only way to lend their music validity.
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funeralbirth
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 7:52 am 
 

Cruciphage wrote:
funeralbirth wrote:
Black metal is a music genre, it does not hold personal religious or political beliefs. I can't have a conversation with it and say "Hey there Mr.Black Metal, I was wondering, do you have the time?" Black metal in itself is not a living being and thus it is neutral. You might tell me the original black metal band members' intentions and blah blah blah yada yada yada. They are still the band members, people, and not a music form. Just because the band members had certain thoughts does not mean that black metal has those thoughts because...it doesn't think! You know, a lot of you mock people when they act all "kvlt" or "gr1m" but here you are practicing that very same attitude whether you like it or not. To give a metaphor (best I could think of), you're all saying that if red apples were grown first, but then people found that green apples existed too, but they're not apples, simply for the fact that they are not red. What's the logic in that? And besides, that means that every black metal band that doesn't hold lyrical themes similar to the original black metal bands false. Why make a compromise? If Christian black metal is not real black metal than neither are bands that sing about nature, depression, etc, simply because they don't hold the same lyrical themes and/or beliefs. Just accept that some Christians can appreciate good music and move on.

Go back and read my post on page 2. Also, you don't seem to understand art at all.

Art would not exist if people did not create it. People create art from ideas, and when similar or identical ideas become widespread, presto, you have an artistic movement. It's the people involved, the creators and sustainers, who give shape to something, not the thing itself, and in giving it shape their ideas become inextricably bound to it. This holds true for physical things--i.e. sculptures and snot-nosed kids--as well as abstract ideas--i.e. Yahweh and black metal.

.


And why are people so stuck up in applying this rule to Black metal and not other music forms? If a death metal band doesn't sing about death, gore or violence, no one says that it's not a real death metal band. And yet, when a black metal band is different, it causes this controversy. Unless people start applying this to different genres, and not just black metal, then i am resigned to my opinion.


Last edited by funeralbirth on Tue May 18, 2010 8:13 am, edited 3 times in total.
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iamntbatman
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 8:02 am 
 

If I borrow all of the visual elements of Suprematism to create a painting that is an allegory for a return to Russian feudalism and tradition, can you call that painting a Suprematist painting? If you're thinking, "it would be incredibly difficult to even imagine conveying these ideas using that aesthetic vocabulary" then you're only reinforcing the point.
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NightmareLake
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 8:36 am 
 

People want black metal to fit into their little box they have created. If it goes outside of that box they become uncomfortable. They are putting limitations on the art form. When I hear black metal it's the riffs that have a feeling to me. I couldn't care less what the vocalist is talking about. If a black metal band was singing about eating captain crunch on a saturday morning while watching the smurfs I would enjoy it as long as I got a feeling from the riffs and overall music. I understand people want black metal to fit their own little world, it reminds me of how religious folks become uncomfortable when their beliefs and ideas are taken out of the box.

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Lord_Jotun
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 9:44 am 
 

Woolie_Wool wrote:
Personally I think unblack metal tends to go about the whole exercise the wrong way. Black metal is less about Satan per se than things that are evil, upsetting to society, etc. Therefore the proper way to do unblack metal would be to portray God as evil, and revel in/glorify his evil. Considering the way the New Testament changed Christianity, Judaism would probably be a better base for it, because you only have the Old Testament to deal with, and you can very easily use that to portray God as a sadistic, evil, twisted, mass-murdering, baby-killing monster.

Hell, I think I can come up with a track list for such an album:

1. All Hail the God of Death
2. The Rape of Canaan
3. Slaughter the Firstborn
4. Thy Flesh Consumed
5. Child Sacrifice Ritual
6. Our Lord Who Destroys
7. Dust Thou Art
8. Stoned to Death


Am I the only one who finds this awesome? Damn, I'm almost feeling tempted to start a new project (which won't happen, because I'm not stealing other people's ideas; also, no time right now).
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Abominatrix
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Joined: Fri Oct 24, 2003 12:15 pm
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 9:46 am 
 

Cruciphage wrote:
funeralbirth wrote:
Black metal is a music genre, it does not hold personal religious or political beliefs. I can't have a conversation with it and say "Hey there Mr.Black Metal, I was wondering, do you have the time?" Black metal in itself is not a living being and thus it is neutral. You might tell me the original black metal band members' intentions and blah blah blah yada yada yada. They are still the band members, people, and not a music form. Just because the band members had certain thoughts does not mean that black metal has those thoughts because...it doesn't think! You know, a lot of you mock people when they act all "kvlt" or "gr1m" but here you are practicing that very same attitude whether you like it or not. To give a metaphor (best I could think of), you're all saying that if red apples were grown first, but then people found that green apples existed too, but they're not apples, simply for the fact that they are not red. What's the logic in that? And besides, that means that every black metal band that doesn't hold lyrical themes similar to the original black metal bands false. Why make a compromise? If Christian black metal is not real black metal than neither are bands that sing about nature, depression, etc, simply because they don't hold the same lyrical themes and/or beliefs. Just accept that some Christians can appreciate good music and move on.

Go back and read my post on page 2. Also, you don't seem to understand art at all.

Art would not exist if people did not create it. People create art from ideas, and when similar or identical ideas become widespread, presto, you have an artistic movement. It's the people involved, the creators and sustainers, who give shape to something, not the thing itself, and in giving it shape their ideas become inextricably bound to it. This holds true for physical things--i.e. sculptures and snot-nosed kids--as well as abstract ideas--i.e. Yahweh and black metal.

Yes, and I'm not sure why this is so difficult for some folks, who adopt a pompous demeanour about how this is "Just music", as if we should engage with art in precisely the same surface-scratching manner that they do, to comprehend. It's not as if precedent in music was invented with black metal. If you heard something that sounded like Gregorian chant or bore the cadences of church hymns, yet discovered that what you were listening to was actually singing the praises of Satan and speaking about disemboweling infants, they wouldn't be Gregorian chants or church hymns, would they? They would be parodies...a novelty, at best, and an obscene blasphemy at worst. Remember that some of the oldest music known to us was created specifically to be religious in nature, based very precisely on a set of ideals. Maybe this seems unfortunate or limiting to some of you, but consider this. These rules and precepts are what gives a movement its identity. The sounds of music arguably spring from that identity, and not the other way around. Bathory, Venom, Sarcofago, Mayhem, Darkthrone...all set out for a time to create unsettling sounding music that would be perceived ;(and indeed, flaunts this nature) as being evil, flagrantly and vehemently opposed to christianity. If you turn that on its head, you are creating a parody no different from the satanic church hymns. HOw about bluerass with themes about space travel or the Mughal dynasty in India? White power blues? Something that sounds like hardcore punk but, when you study the lyrics, turns out to be dedicated to the greatness of your neighbourhood cops and how awesome it is to work for teh Man and ride around in his Rolls Royce? It's absurd that people can belittle those who choose not to accept such things because they go against history, context, and everything meaningful about this art form. By all means, listen to whatever the hell you want, but don't go around calling people childish who have the tenacity to recognise that nothing was created in a vacuum of meaninglessness.
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Last edited by Abominatrix on Tue May 18, 2010 12:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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circleofdestruction
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Sep 24, 2008 8:15 am
Posts: 805
PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 10:02 am 
 

funeralbirth wrote:
And why are people so stuck up in applying this rule to Black metal and not other music forms? If a death metal band doesn't sing about death, gore or violence, no one says that it's not a real death metal band. And yet, when a black metal band is different, it causes this controversy. Unless people start applying this to different genres, and not just black metal, then i am resigned to my opinion.

Because Bm was based in being antichristian, and many of the bands didn't/do not consider it "just music." I don't see the point of your argument. Yes, it's making a special case for BM, but only because BM has long concerned itself with certain ideologies. It's not a "rule," I'd say it's more that the genre has its basis in nonreligiousness, therefore many would see a band with lyrics praising Jesus to be incongruous with the label "black metal." The term "black metal" is generally considered to have the meaning of being antichristian in addition to the sound it has, which is why "unblack metal" is considered a contradiction in terms.

If BM is "just music" to you, even if it's praising Jesus, that's fine, but I don't see why you must assume that it is only a certain kind of sound to everyone, and that all BM musicians are just creating a certain guitar tone and doing vocals a certain way and they don't put any of their ideas and thoughts into it at all. I'm not necessarily saying "black metal ist krieg!!!!!" etc. I'm just saying that, as others have said, art is not created in a vacuum, and anti-religiousness is part of BM for a lot of people.
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Cruciphage
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 12:23 pm 
 

NightmareLake wrote:
People want black metal to fit into their little box they have created. If it goes outside of that box they become uncomfortable. They are putting limitations on the art form. When I hear black metal it's the riffs that have a feeling to me. I couldn't care less what the vocalist is talking about. If a black metal band was singing about eating captain crunch on a saturday morning while watching the smurfs I would enjoy it as long as I got a feeling from the riffs and overall music. I understand people want black metal to fit their own little world, it reminds me of how religious folks become uncomfortable when their beliefs and ideas are taken out of the box.

Do you have anything to offer aside from your personal approach to music appreciation which, sadly for you, lacks basic understanding of artistic principles? If you want to listen to it in a superficial manner, as mere entertainment, then that's perfectly fine. You need to realize that many people analyze on more levels than the outermost, and to scorn others for doing so--as you keep doing with your tone--is perhaps the pinnacle of ignorant behavior. Additionally, it makes little sense to blunder into a conversation armed only with innocuous platitudes, faulty logic, generalizations, and insubstantial assertions while others are actually trying to probe the topic on an academic and philosophical level.

No one's going to change your mind, and that's fine, but you sure as hell aren't going to convince anybody without a genuine foundation for "Black metal is just music" and its cousin "Music is just music, lyrics and ideology don't matter." The vocalist, yes, is another musician, his pipes the instrument of choice. If a band doesn't feel vocals and words are important to what they wish to create then they don't have vocals and lyrics. Frankly, it seems as if you're the one who's trying to limit musical expression.
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Winterkald
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Joined: Wed May 14, 2008 10:43 am
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Location: Netherlands
PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 12:26 pm 
 

Abominatrix wrote:
If you heard something that sounded like Gregorian chant or bore the cadences of church hymns, yet discovered that what you were listening to was actually singing the praises of Satan and speaking about disemboweling infants, they wouldn't be Gregorian chants or church hymns, would they? They would be parodies...a novelty, at best, and an obscene blasphemy at worst. Remember that some of the oldest music known to us was created specifically to be religious in nature, based very precisely on a set of ideals. Maybe this seems unfortunate or limiting to some of you, but consider this. These rules and precepts are what gives a movement its identity. The sounds of music arguably spring from that identity, and not the other way around. Bathory, Venom, Sarcofago, Mayhem, Darkthrone...all set out for a time to create teil sounding music, flagrantly and vehemently opposed to christianity. If you turn that on its head, you are creating a parody no different from the satanic church hymns. HOw about bluerass with themes about space travel or the Mughal dynasty in India? White power blues? It's absurd that people can belittle those who choose not to accept such things because they go against history, context, and everything meaningful about this art form. By all means, listen to whatever the hell you want, but don't go around calling people childish who have the tenacity to recognise that nothing was created in a vacuum of meaninglessness.


I want all people in this thread that do not agree with me and other people posting in this thread that tried to explain why Christianity has no place in black metal, and ESPECIALLY Nightmarelake to read and understand this post! Well said Abominatrix :) .
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Abominatrix
Harbinger of Metal

Joined: Fri Oct 24, 2003 12:15 pm
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Location: Canada
PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 12:27 pm 
 

circleofdestruction wrote:
funeralbirth wrote:
And why are people so stuck up in applying this rule to Black metal and not other music forms? If a death metal band doesn't sing about death, gore or violence, no one says that it's not a real death metal band. And yet, when a black metal band is different, it causes this controversy. Unless people start applying this to different genres, and not just black metal, then i am resigned to my opinion.

Because Bm was based in being antichristian, and many of the bands didn't/do not consider it "just music." I don't see the point of your argument. Yes, it's making a special case for BM, but only because BM has long concerned itself with certain ideologies. It's not a "rule," I'd say it's more that the genre has its basis in nonreligiousness, therefore many would see a band with lyrics praising Jesus to be incongruous with the label "black metal." The term "black metal" is generally considered to have the meaning of being antichristian in addition to the sound it has, which is why "unblack metal" is considered a contradiction in terms.

If BM is "just music" to you, even if it's praising Jesus, that's fine, but I don't see why you must assume that it is only a certain kind of sound to everyone, and that all BM musicians are just creating a certain guitar tone and doing vocals a certain way and they don't put any of their ideas and thoughts into it at all. I'm not necessarily saying "black metal ist krieg!!!!!" etc. I'm just saying that, as others have said, art is not created in a vacuum, and anti-religiousness is part of BM for a lot of people.


Also, while I'm no doubt setting myself up for potshots from the gallery here, remember that black metal goes hand in hand with a large helping of romanticism for other cultures that are, shall we say, suppressed by years of christian domination. In medieval times, such cultures were linked with Satan, for reasons that should be obvious to everyone..and it is ancient times of splendour that many of the more romantic black metal bands idolise. You may feel strongly that christianity brought enlightenment and over-all betterment to the western world, but the reality is that black metal bands and fans historically do not, and should not, see it this way.

I would also like to point out that it's a mistake to claim that other genres of music are not held up to similar levels of scrutiny regarding their content (lyrical, visual, musical). It may seem that death metal doesn't come with such rigorous strictures as to what it can and cannot be, but consider that most topics dealt with by serious death metal bands can in fact be broadly defined as being depictions of death and horror and violent rebellion, with the real variance in the subject matter determined by the level of intellectual discourse the artist seeks to employ. Demigod and Cannibal Corpse may have very different lyrical approaches, but both tackle death and the dissolution of soul and body in two very different fashions.

Consider heavy metal as a whole. Would you get the same awesome feeling from Omen or Manowar (assuming, of course, you feel any sort of resonance with their music at all) if they were singing about sitting by the pool drinking lemonade, or maybe writing accounting ledgers? I know I wouldn't...I'd feel that the whole thing was rather stupid and wonder why the hell they were writing such grandiose music to express such mundane feelings. I would feel that somewhere along the line, someone was being insulted; that they were doing this to gain a few cheap snickers from a puerile audience, and that's not what I'm after at all.
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SomberSymphony
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Joined: Fri Dec 11, 2009 4:42 pm
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 2:04 pm 
 

I really don't think that the entire black metal vs. Christian black metal debate will go anywhere. Why? Two components.

1.) Some people believe music is defined by the sound.
2.) Some people believe music is defined by the lyrics.

If you hold to 1.), then Christian black metal is really just black metal being played by Christians. Examples: Antestor, Slechtvalk, etc.

If you hold to 2.), then Christian black metal is a paradox. Norwegian black metal was largely a response to the opposition by Christians who hated black metallers. There was a huge amount of hatred between black metallers and Christians in Norway. Varg Vikernes has mentioned that burning churches was a strong reaction to the burning that the Christians did when they came to Norway. Norwegian black metal was built upon the hatred of Christianity, thus the lyrics are heavily anti-Christian and pro-Satan, even though none of the black metallers were Satanic. Thus, the origins of black metal cannot be understood and taken by Christian bands, because they would have to be Christian lyricists writing anti-Christian lyrics with an anti-Christian mindset. It doesn't work. FOR THIS REASON, Antestor took up the genre of "sorrow metal". That is what they called themselves. However, if you listen to their album, "The Forsaken", it's very much black metal. However, they wanted to stay with sorrow metal because they realized that there was too much opposition from people who hold onto component 2.).

Although in the end, it doesn't really matter. I view black metal as being defined by sorrow, grim, dark, and hopeless atmospheres. That is extremely possible for a Christian to write about, because being a Christian is a far cry from being easy. So if you think of black metal as darkness and sorrow, Christian black metal exists. If you think of black metal as anti-Christian darkness and sorrow, then just call it sorrow metal instead of something stupid like "white metal" or "unblack metal".
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DrummingEdge133
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Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 8:48 pm
Posts: 1636
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 3:13 pm 
 

Abominatrix wrote:
Yes, and I'm not sure why this is so difficult for some folks, who adopt a pompous demeanour about how this is "Just music", as if we should engage with art in precisely the same surface-scratching manner that they do, to comprehend. It's not as if precedent in music was invented with black metal. If you heard something that sounded like Gregorian chant or bore the cadences of church hymns, yet discovered that what you were listening to was actually singing the praises of Satan and speaking about disemboweling infants, they wouldn't be Gregorian chants or church hymns, would they? They would be parodies...a novelty, at best, and an obscene blasphemy at worst.


This is kind of what I said, except without the fantastic analogy of the Gregorian chants. I've always felt this way about unblack metal, as if they are trying to mock black metal, just as it would be a mocking of Gregorian chats if using satanic lyrics and themes. I don't want to support bands trying to mock black metal.

Also, as for the death metal thing not focusing on gore, correct me if I'm wrong, but death metal was never founded on gore lyrics as a core fundamental part of its art. Does Morbid Angel have vocals about cutting off heads and raping dead bodies? I don't know, I haven't studied their lyrics that closely, but judging by the lyrical themes, it doesn't appear to be the case. Same with Napalm Death, they don't really have gore lyrics at all. Same with Possessed, they are more akin to black metal lyrical themes than gore. I guess my point is, death metal was much more varied in lyrical themes to begin with and gore lyrics were just one approach to death metal.

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Abominatrix
Harbinger of Metal

Joined: Fri Oct 24, 2003 12:15 pm
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Location: Canada
PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 3:21 pm 
 

DrummingEdge133 wrote:
Abominatrix wrote:
Yes, and I'm not sure why this is so difficult for some folks, who adopt a pompous demeanour about how this is "Just music", as if we should engage with art in precisely the same surface-scratching manner that they do, to comprehend. It's not as if precedent in music was invented with black metal. If you heard something that sounded like Gregorian chant or bore the cadences of church hymns, yet discovered that what you were listening to was actually singing the praises of Satan and speaking about disemboweling infants, they wouldn't be Gregorian chants or church hymns, would they? They would be parodies...a novelty, at best, and an obscene blasphemy at worst.


This is kind of what I said, except without the fantastic analogy of the Gregorian chants. I've always felt this way about unblack metal, as if they are trying to mock black metal, just as it would be a mocking of Gregorian chats if using satanic lyrics and themes. I don't want to support bands trying to mock black metal.

Also, as for the death metal thing not focusing on gore, correct me if I'm wrong, but death metal was never founded on gore lyrics as a core fundamental part of its art. Does Morbid Angel have vocals about cutting off heads and raping dead bodies? I don't know, I haven't studied their lyrics that closely, but judging by the lyrical themes, it doesn't appear to be the case. Same with Napalm Death, they don't really have gore lyrics at all. Same with Possessed, they are more akin to black metal lyrical themes than gore. I guess my point is, death metal was much more varied in lyrical themes to begin with and gore lyrics were just one approach to death metal.


Not gore, but as I said, death and horror. Gore could be a part of that ... so could existential quandaries dealing with spiritualism and the afterlife. I guess I could liken this to horror films..you have reasonably high-brow, psychologically motivated stuff, and you have slasher films....both more or less fit into the same genre, but one can be a fan of one extreme without really giving much attention to the other.

Similarly, there are some black metal fans who only seem to enjoy the romanticised, nostalgic side of black metal and hold no stock with blatantly satanic bands, and vice versa. What I think it's necessary to see is that the two sides have perhaps more in common than their proponents might think, at least as far as this argument goes. People used to get all confused when a band like Necromantia would sing about Satan in one song, and Zeus in the next, so they felt tte need to explain it to everyone with the rather unsubtle hymn Ancient Pride, which wrote:

You Came And Slaughtered Odin
You Came And Murdered Zeus
Our Gods Became Your Satan
And Satan Became Our God

The Wolf, The Bear, The Raven
Still Guard The Ancient Soul
The Ram Will Crush Your Temples
The Bull Will Slay Your Priests
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enghell666
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Joined: Mon Mar 27, 2006 3:10 pm
Posts: 425
Location: Sweden
PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 3:24 pm 
 

NightmareLake wrote:
People want black metal to fit into their little box they have created. If it goes outside of that box they become uncomfortable. They are putting limitations on the art form. When I hear black metal it's the riffs that have a feeling to me. I couldn't care less what the vocalist is talking about. If a black metal band was singing about eating captain crunch on a saturday morning while watching the smurfs I would enjoy it as long as I got a feeling from the riffs and overall music. I understand people want black metal to fit their own little world, it reminds me of how religious folks become uncomfortable when their beliefs and ideas are taken out of the box.


Since you obviously go for anything you think sounds cool, I don't think it's even possible to get you to understand what this conceptual sub-genre of metal is about. Black metal doesn't have to be Satanic, it can be about paganism or about the dark forces in nature or things like that, but it should always be anti-christian in some way. No one that is serious about their respect, love and appreciation of black metal should ever even consider of accepting christians trying to play or put pro-christianity lyrics into black metal. It's not at all about limiting yourself or fitting anything into some fucking box, it's about the fundamental values of a whole sub-genre of metal, and if you don't understand that, stay the fuck away. And since you don't care about the lyrics, it convinces me even more that black metal is not for you, since they are very important as well as the music.
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