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MeltedFace
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 3:08 am 
 

I'm sitting here, listening to the new Illdisposed album, Sense the Darkness. I enjoy a ton of the riffing and song structure, but it certainly isn't anything ground breaking. That said, I feel like Bo Summer's vocals on the album improve it from "good" to "great" and bring a whole new dimension to an otherwise "just above par" album.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E_0v2YY-z84

Another example of great vocals comes from this year as well, with Witchcraft's latest, Legend. Though the well orchestrated bass lines intertwined with awesome riffing is what drives the album most for me, Pelander's haunting clean vocals bring an element that a lesser vocalist would not have been able to elicit.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=njeD-Id3 ... re=related

For me, vocals can take an otherwise ordinary sounding band and catapult them from average/good to great. Vocals can also take an awesome band/album and catapult it to amazing (IMO Halford does this on Painkiller)

We've had plenty of discussion on how vocals can hinder a band, and who has the best vocals in the business. What I'm interested in discussing though, is what bands/albums have vocals have that actually improve the material?
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dragmire
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 12:44 pm 
 

I feel that Cattle Decapitation wouldn't be as good if Travis Ryan wasn't their vocalist. Especially on Monolith of Inhumanity. He's one of the more versatile vocalists in death metal/deathgrind.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6mgNLE4GHvk
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Subrick
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 1:56 pm 
 

Some of the songs on De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas that would've been just alright to me are boosted into "this is amazing" territory through Attila's vocals, particularly the title track.
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iAm
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 2:01 pm 
 

Iskra would be awful if it weren't for the insane, over the top vocals. Probably Anaal Nathrakh too.
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Poisonfume
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 2:17 pm 
 

Subrick wrote:
Some of the songs on De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas that would've been just alright to me are boosted into "this is amazing" territory through Attila's vocals, particularly the title track.


The first time I heard it I thought the exact opposite. Then after a while of listening to it I thought, this fucking album and the vocalist are inseperable.
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Xlxlx
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 3:09 pm 
 

Oh yes, there are some cases where the vocalist greatly improves a band's music. iAm mentioned Anaal Nathrakh, and I thoroughly agree. Yes, the sharp riffing and absurdly aggressive percussion convey a big sense of chaos all by themselves, but without Dave Hunt's monstrous bellows and throat-shredding screams (not to mention his beautiful cleans), the music would lose a lot of its charm.

Another great example of such a thing I can think of is Soundgarden, mostly from Badmotorfinger and backwards; you have this dense as fuck songs filled to the brim with Iommi-esque riffs that are dirtier than a gutter and meaner than an Tasmanian devil, with Chris Cornell's unbelievable wails gliding over it all. The contrast is big, but the effect is breathtaking.

There are many more examples, but those are two of the best that come to mind right now.
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Shadoeking
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 3:13 pm 
 

Queensryche has always struck me as that kind of a band. Particularly for a couple of albums after Operation: Mindcrime when their musical quality went downhill. Geoff Tate's vocals have always been fairly impressive. Of course after Promised Land, everything was basically terrible.

Kamelot is also a good example. I think their music would be pretty boring without Roy Khan. I have yet to check out their new album with their new singer.
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Empyreal
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 11:35 pm 
 

Shadoeking wrote:
Kamelot is also a good example. I think their music would be pretty boring without Roy Khan. I have yet to check out their new album with their new singer.


Not their mid-era stuff like Epica and Black Halo. That's outstanding music no matter how you shake it.
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DoomMetalAlchemist
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 11:58 pm 
 

I've got some doom metal picks for ya.

Reverend Bizarre. I find their music to be mediocre - good most of the time, and occasionally great. However, their singer, Albert Witchinder, is one of the best in the business. Just so powerful.

Reverend Bizarre - In the Rectory (this is actually one of their songs I find to be musically great)

Candlemass - Epicus Doomicus Metallicus. Messiah is really good too, but Johan Lanquist is on a-whole-nother level. Like Albert Witchfinder, one of the best in the business. Musically the album is really strong, but I don't think it would be the all time classic it is with someone else singing on it, even Messiah.

Candlemass - A Sorcerer's Pledge

Capilla Ardiente. Musically decent - pretty good, but the vocalist has a strong resemblance to Johan Lanquist of Candlemass. Enough said.

Capilla Ardiente - Solve (not the whole song)

Black Hole (Italy). Technically, Robert Measles is not a good singer at all. But the way his vocals are recorded--very distant and lots of reverb (I think that's the right word)--his voice gets a very spooky sound that fits the music like a glove. The already great music gets a huge lift from the vocals.

Black Hole - Bells of Death

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Shadoeking
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 12:19 am 
 

Empyreal wrote:
Shadoeking wrote:
Kamelot is also a good example. I think their music would be pretty boring without Roy Khan. I have yet to check out their new album with their new singer.


Not their mid-era stuff like Epica and Black Halo. That's outstanding music no matter how you shake it.


I was referring to Ghost Opera and later.
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Empyreal
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 12:22 am 
 

Shadoeking wrote:
Empyreal wrote:

Not their mid-era stuff like Epica and Black Halo. That's outstanding music no matter how you shake it.


I was referring to Ghost Opera and later.


Haha, well yeah, true enough, those albums are mostly pop-metal centered around the vocals. The new album I think would still be good music without the vocals, as it's more adventurous and like the old stuff with more dynamic riffs and melodies, but the vocals and lyrics definitely make it even better than it would be otherwise.
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HenryKrinkle31
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:41 am 
 

I like the AT VANCE albums with Hartmann the best...because of Hartmann.

I think Matt Barlow really carried ICED EARTH from Dark Saga onward.
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Misfit74
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:46 am 
 

Martin Van Drunen: any/all. (sure, I'll take the duck on the pond, ;) )

Agree w/ the Cattle Decapitation comment above, too. I suppose it could be ditto for Murder Construct.

The best slam/brutal death vocals have to be by Bodysnatch - Insights Of A Rotten Theatre (2011). The vocals really stand out and elevate an already fantastic album - a difficult feat within the genre, IMO. It's not often vocals get praised with this type of music, but damn are they good!

For me, if death metal vocals don't get in the way or stand out in a bad way then they are usually good enough. I love the music part of things. Especially guitars. There are more bands that the vocals turn me off than turn me on, so to speak. When the vocals do stand out in a good way it's noteworthy, and this thread is a really cool idea.

How about King Diamond's career? I can't say Mercyful Fate or King Diamond would be viable bands w/out his vocals. That said, the style of music is really predicated on vocals. Bands like Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, and others ride a vocalist to soar. That's the distinction w/ other forms of metal that interests me - how many truly stand out in line with this topic as far as bands not really based around vocals?
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DoomMetalAlchemist
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:54 am 
 

Misfit74 wrote:

How about King Diamond's career? I can't say Mercyful Fate or King Diamond would be viable bands w/out his vocals. That said, the style of music is really predicated on vocals. Bands like Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, and others ride a vocalist to soar. That's the distinction w/ other forms of metal that interests me - how many truly stand out in line with this topic as far as bands not really based around vocals?


I would say King's vocals are absolutely essential to the Melissa album. On pretty much the rest of the MF and the KD albums I've heard, they're not as good. On Melissa, he strikes a perfect balance between the wild falsetto and the lower gruff sounding vocal. It really carries the album.

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HenryKrinkle31
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 3:02 am 
 

If you ask me, the vocals are the weakest part of the Melissa album.

What a fucking masterpiece that is.
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katatonia47
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 4:12 am 
 

I'm gonna say Alice in Chains.
Sure, the instruments are good by themselves, but Layne's style of singing really makes the band.
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Metallic Shock
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 7:20 am 
 

I know it's not a popular opinion, but I think Mikael Akerfeldt's vocals improve the quality of later Opeth. I really dig his style/sound (both clean and dirty) and particularly on an album like Damnation where there is more vocals his singing seems to elevate the inconsistent songwriting.

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norcalslayings
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 7:26 am 
 

dragmire wrote:
I feel that Cattle Decapitation wouldn't be as good if Travis Ryan wasn't their vocalist. Especially on Monolith of Inhumanity. He's one of the more versatile vocalists in death metal/deathgrind.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6mgNLE4GHvk


dude cattle decapitation is the best fucking band.ever
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Ecliptik
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 8:16 am 
 

I'm pretty sure that Overkill wouldn't be nearly as entertaining if Bobby wasn't behind the mic. He always sounds like he's having too much fun, which always puts a smile on my face. That kind of passion is just infectious.

Sonata Arctica also wouldn't be the same without Tony. The musical aspect of the band has never been anything revolutionary, but I think he makes it make sense. It's one of those things where when the creator of something actually believes in his/her product, it makes it that much more likeable. I don't think they could have otherwise pulled off the likes of White Pearl, Black Oceans or Destruction Preventer had it been anyone else singing them.

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reven
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 8:52 am 
 

I'm pretty sure Nocturnal Breed would be a mediocre band if it wasn't for Destroyer's ferocious vocals.
Sure, they could just get a weaker vocalist and they'd still be one of the best blackened/thrash bands out there with their blazing riffs, but that man's a beast.

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CoF
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 9:37 am 
 

New Cattle Decapitation is really one of the best examples for this, especially when Travis uses the unconventional semi-clean vocals and adds a whole new level of atmosphere to the music.

Another example I can think of is Code's "Resplendent Grotesque", where Kvohst does some of the most haunting clean singing I ever heard, and his harsh vocals aren't inferior either. The vocals make me easily prefer this album over their debut.
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metaldiscussor666
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 10:20 am 
 

The very first thing that comes to mind are the vocals of Flemming Rönsdorf in By Inheritance. I feel like he just raises the entire album to completely new heights. I looked up a video of them live from 1991 (I think) and there was a vocalist other than Flemming Rönsdorf and it did not sound like artillery I'm familiar with. I'll probably look like a fanboy really fast here, but he's probably my favorite thrash metal vocalist ever on By Inheritance. I didn't care for previous artillery albums (not to mention their later stuff) as much as By Inheritance though. However, I don't think By Inheritance wouldn't be as great an album without this vocalist.
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SladeCraven
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 12:39 pm 
 

I second Attila for the De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas album. Truly a haunting performance.

I also really like Dallas's vocals in later Nile work. If all of the vocals were performed by Karl I wouldn't like the band nearly as much.
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MalignantTyrant
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:38 pm 
 

Diabolis Interium wouldn't be nearly as intense if it had had any other vocalist other than Caligula. The blood curdling scream that he does at the beginning of the title track is pretty damn phenomenal.
There's also Helmuth, he's never really had a bad vocal performance, neither has Ross Dolan.
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nosferatu1234
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:43 pm 
 

how about Warning - Watching From a Distance

Without Patrick Walker's vocals, that album would be boring as fuck. It's really the highlight of the album. Tho there's plenty of people out there who don't like the vocals, it took me awhile to get into them but now I really like them.
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HorrorMetal
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:48 pm 
 

I wouldn't like Judas Priest nearly as much without Rob Halford's vocals. Don't get me wrong, Glenn Tipton and K.K. Downing are amazing guitarists but Halford is really the one who makes Priest so awesome in my opinion. Also, Iron Maiden weren't extremely popular without Bruce Dickinson and they didn't really take off until he joined the band. I love their first two albums with Paul Di'Anno, however, and find them to be really underrated. Gorgoroth is another band that comes to mind as Pest really made them stand out for me. He has one of the greatest black metal voices of all time in my opinion.
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Misfit74
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 3:13 pm 
 

katatonia47 wrote:
I'm gonna say Alice in Chains.
Sure, the instruments are good by themselves, but Layne's style of singing really makes the band.


I have no idea why I didn't bring this up...probably because Jerry Cantrell also does strong backing vocals to make the sound and writes the music (large majority, anyway), but Layne's vocals really made AIC. I agree 100%. My favorite vocalist ever, as well.

Brings up the idea of Chris Cornell's vocals and Soundgarden...I think a case can also be made there.
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colin040
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 3:40 pm 
 

Tad Morose definitely. I probably wouldn't listen to that band if it wasn't for Urban Breed. What an awesome vocalist.

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BasqueStorm
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 4:45 pm 
 

-Matthew "Chalky" Chalk in (2003) Psycroptic - The Scepter Of The Ancients.
-Chino Moreno in Deftones.
-Robert Smith in The Cure.
-Niklas Kvarforth in Shining.
-Kristoffer Rygg in Ulver.
-Jello Biafra in Dead Kennedys.
-Abbath Doom Occulta in Immortal.
-Ihsahn in Emperor.
...

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MARSDUDE
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 4:53 pm 
 

All three band members shrieking in Darkspace

Don't know what they are saying, and I don't care. It fits.

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Twisted_Psychology
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 8:47 pm 
 

Shadoeking wrote:
I have yet to check out their new album with their new singer.


Don't worry, he sounds exactly like Khan. Great album either way.

After a bit of thought, I may have to go with Tarja formerly of Nightwish for this one. She really takes songs like Passion And The Opera and 10th Man Down to an almost ethereal level with her vocal lines.

Also, there is no singer but Ian Gillan that could've pulled off the songs on Born Again. Disturbing The Priest has some of the wicked laughter you'll hear.
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DoomMetalAlchemist
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 9:06 pm 
 

Twisted_Psychology wrote:
Shadoeking wrote:

Also, there is no singer but Ian Gillan that could've pulled off the songs on Born Again. Disturbing The Priest has some of the wicked laughter you'll hear.


Personally, I thought Gillan's performance on the Born Again album is way better than most of his performances with Deep Purple that I've heard (his first initial run with the band) except for Child In Time.

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Misfit74
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 10:03 pm 
 

DoomMetalAlchemist wrote:

Personally, I thought Gillan's performance on the Born Again album is way better than most of his performances with Deep Purple that I've heard (his first initial run with the band) except for Child In Time.


Agreed. He was great on Born Again. Terrific album.
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Hircine
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 10:06 pm 
 

iAm wrote:
Probably Anaal Nathrakh too.


This. Vocals can be a deal breaker in all forms of music for me, to the extent that if a band has poor vocals, I won't like them.
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Awblaster
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 11:03 pm 
 

nosferatu1234 wrote:
how about Warning - Watching From a Distance

Without Patrick Walker's vocals, that album would be boring as fuck. It's really the highlight of the album. Tho there's plenty of people out there who don't like the vocals, it took me awhile to get into them but now I really like them.


This. Easily one of the most emotional performances on an album ever.

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Ilwhyan
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2012 7:06 am 
 

Sear, especially with Tapsa Kuusela. The riffs are hardly outstanding, and although the grim, morbid atmosphere makes the music enjoyable, the vocals truly make it great.

Alan Averill's vocals are clearly an integral part of Primordial music. The drawn-out compositions are essentially held together by his vocals especially in Storm Before the Calm and The Gathering Wilderness. His incredible delivery, vast range and storytelling is such an important aspect of the music that it would never function in that form without a vocalist as excellent as him.
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MeltedFace
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2012 12:17 pm 
 

Ilwhyan wrote:
Sear, especially with Tapsa Kuusela. The riffs are hardly outstanding, and although the grim, morbid atmosphere makes the music enjoyable, the vocals truly make it great.

Alan Averill's vocals are clearly an integral part of Primordial music. The drawn-out compositions are essentially held together by his vocals especially in Storm Before the Calm and The Gathering Wilderness. His incredible delivery, vast range and storytelling is such an important aspect of the music that it would never function in that form without a vocalist as excellent as him.


I can't believe that Nemtheanga out of my original post. I love Primordial's instrumentation as well, but as you said his vocals hold everything together so well. Nemtheanga is one of very few vocalists who can give me chills even though I have heard the song hundreds of times.
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grauer_mausling
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2012 12:18 pm 
 

SladeCraven wrote:
I second Attila for the De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas album. Truly a haunting performance


actually only Attila's vocals are what's good and interesting about this album imo!
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BasqueStorm
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2012 12:45 pm 
 

grauer_mausling wrote:
SladeCraven wrote:
I second Attila for the De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas album. Truly a haunting performance
actually only Attila's vocals are what's good and interesting about this album imo!

REALLY?!? What about THE RIFFS?!?

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grauer_mausling
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2012 12:50 pm 
 

well, I don't "care" about those on DMDS. Can't really say why. When the whole 2nd wave BM started I was fully into it and as such DMDS was kind of omni-present so to say. I just never cared about the album apart from the song "Funeral Fog" and liking Attila's weird vocals. With all those "starting albums" of the 2nd wave at hand (tape ;) ), DMDS was my least liked... Of course it's historical and infleuncing position is undoubtly, it was just not "my" album. That's all...
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