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Andy_Christ
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:43 pm
Posts: 8
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun Dec 10, 2017 9:29 pm 
 

Who is really killing it right now with pushing the genre further? The last band I remember really expanding the sound was Deathspell Omega and I haven't caught anyone else going to those new levels as of late. Sadly what I seem to hear and find most often is bands simply emulating the DSO sound which is similar to what occurred in the 90's. Would really love to see some discussion on this and identify who is pushing boundaries currently.

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John_Sunlight
President Satan

Joined: Tue Apr 20, 2010 4:41 am
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Location: Kansas City
PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 5:14 pm 
 

The most copied band right now is probably Summoning. With the advance of cheap, decent sounding midi software a lot of bands are now making simplistic Summoning themed metal. And the WTC sound is pretty big right now, which of course is very DSO and Portal influenced. Cavernous and dissonant are the key adjectives in black metal at this time. Not my cup-o-tea really.

As for individual bands that are making big artistic moves within the black metal framework? Summoning of course are still the unparalleled masters of their industrially precise, yet fantastical and poetic style of ambient black metal. Nokturnal Mortum created a fresh take on folk/black by blending the styles more smoothly and adding ambient and rock elements to make a more adventurous and less frollicky sound. The last three albums are in this style.

Thy Catafalque is most unique and interesting band I can think of atm. You can pick out individual elements of their sound which can be identified as coming from electronic music or eastern European folk music or trad black metal or classic heavy metal, but it's all so smoothly blended and tastefully subdued that it's a kind of black metal unique to them. The whole catalog is great, but get's better as you go on.

Dodheimsgard made the first genuinely successful version of what Mayhem's been trying to do since "Ordo Ad Chao" with "A Umbra Omega": which is thinly produced, off-kilter, with weird riffs, strange drones, and a vocal delivery akin to a one man show about a drug trip. They achieved this by means of going into the metal backwards through a dark jazz lens, though it has been tried by others using traditional black metal, electronic, and drone sensibilities.

Nachtgeblut's most recent album is the best fusion of black metal and classical music I've seen as well, in that it doesn't sacrifice one for the other, or just have the two playing simultaneously over, rather Evigne composed the songs like short classical pieces with central themes and variations filling out the run time giving the album as a whole a linear narrative structure.

I believe the Vaivatar and Wampyrinacht albums from this year could also become benchmarks as they both made some really amazing original material without really introducing anything new or alien into BM and without going the route of just emphasizing one element of BM to an extreme degree (like, making BM with the WEIRDEST riffs or the most LUSCIOUS synths or the HARSHEST dissonance). Vaivatar shows how much variety you can have with just the basic elements of ye old Emperor style symphonic black metal if you have a little humor, aren't afraid of catchy riffs, and have some dramatic sensibilities. Wampyrinacht on the other hand, showed how much you can do with the residual traditional metal elements contained within second wave black metal, and how much character you can give a black metal composition with melody, creative leads, fills, and presentation.

Except for Nok Mort and Summoning none of these bands are influencing very many others... I also think Sigh, The Meads of Asphodel, Tengger Cavalry, Tjolgtjar, Alpha Drone, and Arkona are making pretty unique and interesting stuff, but their work steps a bit wide of the scope of black metal.
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Last edited by John_Sunlight on Mon Dec 11, 2017 5:23 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Twisted_Psychology
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 5:20 pm 
 

Oranssi Pazuzu is the first one that comes to mind for me. I need to explore their back catalogue but the one they put out last year was incredible stuff.
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John_Sunlight
President Satan

Joined: Tue Apr 20, 2010 4:41 am
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 5:31 pm 
 

Almost forgot: though I don't care for it, A Forest of Star's last couple of releases are the first serious attempts to combine Current 93's crappy sing-song neofolk with cheesy black metal. It's about what you expect. :P
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jimbies
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Jul 21, 2016 2:52 pm
Posts: 804
Location: Ontario, Canada
PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 5:32 pm 
 

John_Sunlight wrote:
Thy Catafalque is most unique and interesting band I can think of atm. You can pick out individual elements of their sound which can be identified as coming from electronic music or eastern European folk music or trad black metal or classic heavy metal, but it's all so smoothly blended and tastefully subdued that it's a kind of black metal unique to them. The whole catalog is great, but get's better as you go on.


I had never heard Thy Catafalque until I randomly picked up last year's "Meta", and I was blown away. I've still yet to get back and check out other releases.

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Hayisforhorses
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Jul 05, 2006 11:47 am
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Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 6:57 pm 
 

John_Sunlight wrote:
Current 93's crappy sing-song neofolk


Refreshing to find someone who isn't hanging off David tibet's balls, will never understand the appeal of that crap

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John_Sunlight
President Satan

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 1:44 pm 
 

Guess there's no other innovative black metal in the world. :(

OP, just read my post I guess, that's it.
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hallowed78
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Apr 27, 2006 4:53 am
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 2:32 pm 
 

Hail Spirit Noir.

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we hope you die
Metal newbie

Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2011 9:01 am
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 4:04 pm 
 

The Ruins of Beverast, although they have moved beyond a black metal in order to reach a truly innovative sound, more like very imaginative death/doom without the yawn factor.
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narsilianshard
Metalhead

Joined: Fri Aug 14, 2009 12:22 pm
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 4:46 pm 
 

I think it's a tie between Inconcessus Lux Lucis and Thy Darkened Shade for the most forward-thinking black metal bands around right now. They take the genre to a new level without adding too much of any other styles. Extreme musicianship, world-class production, and they actually care about the bass guitar:

https://inconcessusluxlucis.bandcamp.co ... ng-quietus
https://thydarkenedshade.bandcamp.com/a ... hem-sedjet

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leaving
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 1:47 am 
 

I really enjoy Diapsiquir's take on metal though i'm not entirely sure i'd immediately link them to the black metal scene.
I haven't worked my way all the way through last years album 180 but A.N.T.I. is excellent. Lot's of very interesting almost carnival/industrial/breakcore?? kinda things going on.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zW5gCUZcj0Q


MA classifies them as experimental industrial black metal.

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Pitiless Wanderer
Metal newbie

Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2017 7:34 pm
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Location: United States
PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 9:03 am 
 

Andy_Christ wrote:
Who is really killing it right now with pushing the genre further? The last band I remember really expanding the sound was Deathspell Omega and I haven't caught anyone else going to those new levels as of late. Sadly what I seem to hear and find most often is bands simply emulating the DSO sound which is similar to what occurred in the 90's. Would really love to see some discussion on this and identify who is pushing boundaries currently.



I am not big into black metal except for a few albums which I cherish. So take this as a suggestion from a casual BM fan, but Dodecahedron have to be one of the most innovative black metal/extreme bands in recent memory. They only have two albums but both are wonderfully dark and disturbing. This year's record, Kwintessens, is my #2 of the year.

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PhilosophicalFrog
The Hypercube

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 1:56 pm 
 

I mean, Jute Gyte is creating absolutely maddening music right now - to the point of drawing influences from post-modernist structure and surrealism in addition to musical queues. guy's an absolute beast.
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cultofkraken
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 5:20 pm 
 

Furze to my mind is always doing some of the weirdest shit, and I’d also suggest Urfaust and Peste Noire for bands really branching out while keeping the intrinsic spirit alive.
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nekrosonic
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 5:30 pm 
 

My favorite bm band right now is probably Odious but their last album was in 2015 so they're not really new, but both of their albums are supper elaborate and innovative. Also check out Kult of Taurus (primitive bm ala early Samael and beherit mixed with spacey atmospheres), Bolzer (kinda epic bm/death mix), Nidingr (really great wall of sound pure bm, their newest gives me that Enslaved - Frost vibe but better), Cultes des Ghoules (their last album was a double concept piece so that must mean they're innovative right), Nightbringer and Bestia Arcana (both just beastly bands), Choronzon (their new album is ridiculous, combines bm with industrial and ambient), uhh....that's the newest great, innovative stuff I can think of that hasn't already been mentioned. Most of my favorites already were - Sigh, the Meads, Hail Spirit Noir, etc.

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Bishop_Drugsalot
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Jun 10, 2012 10:42 am
Posts: 488
Location: Finland
PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 6:07 pm 
 

John_Sunlight wrote:
Almost forgot: though I don't care for it, A Forest of Star's last couple of releases are the first serious attempts to combine Current 93's crappy sing-song neofolk with cheesy black metal. It's about what you expect. :P

Oi! The third full length is a god damn masterpiece in blending black metal Macbeth and dark cabaret! And a truly innovative album to boot.

The biggest hear hear so far I have to give to A Umbra Omega. It's original, insane and really I can't think of a metal album to compare it with.

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alexo666
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 6:13 pm 
 

Twisted_Psychology wrote:
Oranssi Pazuzu is the first one that comes to mind for me. I need to explore their back catalogue but the one they put out last year was incredible stuff.


Came to post. That is black metal that is just hella fucking trippy.
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t1337Dude
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Location: Seattle
PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 11:52 pm 
 

Black metal has fairly traditional roots so I've noticed it's pretty hard to for bands to deviate far from the typical sound without becoming something else altogether. Thy Catafalque, a truly great band, barely sounds black metal these days. With its folk, electronic, and heavy metal influence, it just turns into a metal "stew" for me. Peste Noire also mixed these genre influences (without the Highland theme) and sounds much more reminiscent of traditional black metal, likely because they maintained their extreme sound (whereas Thy Catafalque largely lost theirs). Peste Noire still might be the most bat-shit crazy sounding band out there.

Then of course you have DsO and bands that sounds like DsO. But is the music DsO releases any more innovative or unique than what Ved Buens Ende put out in '94? I'm sure many (most?) will disagree but I personally feel like Ved Buens Ende sounds more innovative and unique than what DsO has been doing, and they were doing it a long time ago.

Jute Gyte is definitely unique and innovative, though likely not accessible for more fans of black metal. I suppose that's the price of doing something new. Murmuüre also comes to mind. Perhaps less experimental than Jute Gyte but a lot more accessible. Njiqahdda would be a good candidate if they were still making black metal, but their earlier stuff is very fresh and black metal sounding. Circle of Ouroborus is in a similar boat - alternating between folk, shoegazey, and black metal releases. If you haven't heard them I would check them out (the Urfaust split is great place to start). Petrychor is another notable band that has a very unique take on BM. This band some of the most amazing acoustic guitar work I've ever heard - literally leaps and bounds ahead of any other in terms of raw playing talent.

EDIT: Almost forgot Dodecahedron. They've accomplished a very fresh take on the modern black metal sound without being reminiscent of DsO. Very cold, harsh-sounding music (especially in their latest release). And might as well mention Krallice because Krallice they haven't been mentioned yet. I prefer their debut but it's not nearly as technical or experimental as Prelapsarian (released last year).

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Cat III
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Joined: Fri Apr 21, 2017 11:44 am
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 5:18 pm 
 

Lugubrum are experimental without taking themselves too seriously. It's hard to be oddball and sinister at the same time, but they pull it off. Like any experiment, the results don't always hit their target. Their album Herval from a couple years ago was a meandering disappointment. De Totem and De Vette Cuecken, which sound like Darkthrone's deformed cousin, are good entry points. Albino De Congo and Face Lion Face Oignon may stray too far out of the confines of black metal tradition for purists, but others will appreciate the incorporation of jazz and folk music.

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jjohn
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 6:26 pm 
 

Hey!

Herval is great :)

I agree about Thy Catafalque not being (much) black metal anymore, but I sure wish I could find a similar band. No one does 20 minute songs like Tamas Katai...

As for the topic itself, I'll go with Dordeduh. Constant evolution from the Negura Bunget days to Dar De Duh without never looking back.
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Diamhea
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 7:29 am 
 

Shouldn't this discussion be in the Black Metal Help Thread?
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John_Sunlight
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 10:49 am 
 

No, because we aren't trying to find recommendations for anyone in particular, rather discussing which bands are innovative generally.
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g_k
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 4:09 pm 
 

jjohn wrote:
Hey!

Herval is great :)

I agree about Thy Catafalque not being (much) black metal anymore, but I sure wish I could find a similar band. No one does 20 minute songs like Tamas Katai...

As for the topic itself, I'll go with Dordeduh. Constant evolution from the Negura Bunget days to Dar De Duh without never looking back.



this was the real negura bunget lineup to me, minus negru obviously (rip), but does anyone know if they are making more material..it's been quite a few years if i recall.
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Amerigo
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 4:14 pm 
 

Going to echo Thy Catafalque and Oranssi Pazuzu. Phenomenal stuff. Less metal, but similarly dark psychedalic krautrock is Aluk Todolo. Their album Occult Rock is a helluva ride.

Batushka has gotten a lot of press recently, but the Polish black(ish) metal band that stands out much more to me is Thy Worhsipper. Certainly a lot more folksy, but far more impressive in its nuance to my ear.
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jjohn
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 6:41 pm 
 

Amerigo wrote:
but the Polish black(ish) metal band that stands out much more to me is Thy Worhsipper. Certainly a lot more folksy, but far more impressive in its nuance to my ear.


I second this. Klechdy is an amazing experience, totally ethereal...
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Amerigo
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 7:38 pm 
 

jjohn wrote:
Amerigo wrote:
but the Polish black(ish) metal band that stands out much more to me is Thy Worhsipper. Certainly a lot more folksy, but far more impressive in its nuance to my ear.


I second this. Klechdy is an amazing experience, totally ethereal...


Glad people actually know this band--was pretty surprised that they had no reviews on here and just a measly couple of thousand listeners on last.fm.

Klechdy is like the best parts of Arkona and Primordial mixed together with a little bit of Thy Catafalque thrown in.
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slavonic777
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:52 pm 
 

Hard to say. There also might be a difference between pushing, while staying in the genre, and pushing while mixing bm with whatever genre you can think of. I guess we are talking more about the first case here.

With Gangrene Edges ​/​ Voiidwarp split by Khthoniik Cerviiks / Howls of Ebb from this year is quite wicked, thats all I can say :)

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John_Sunlight
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2017 3:23 pm 
 

We're talking about both. I tried to give examples of both cases.

What do you folks think of the relative merits of mixing genres to get something new (we can call this hybridizing) and pushing the genre while without introducing any external elements (we can call this evolving)? I think both are worthwhile ventures, as they give bands opportunities to do things other people havn't done before and thus have the excitement of carving out their own niche and having their own voice. It gives creative people room to explore their own creativity, while the grounding in black metal allows what they create to be worth listening to (since as we know black metal is the highest form of art ;) ).

I believe these are both in keeping with aspects of the original spirit of the groundbreaking first and second wave black metal bands as they were completely committed to expressing themselves with a unique sound and with a unique musical and thematic message, so doing that, rather than aping the sound they created is more in keeping with their evolutionary principles. Also, they were the ones who got the ball rolling on mixing metal with folk music, ambient, industrial, etc, so hybridization isn't alien to fundamental black metal principles either. This isn't to say I dislike "orthodox" bands or Darkthrone clones and the like, they have an important role in keeping the sound and aesthetic of the early BM-masters alive, but they are but a part, not the whole of today's "true black metal".

The main thing that is missing from today's black metal equation that drove the early black metal innovators was that they were reacting against the death metal of the time, which they thought was too uniform and "disney's haunted mansion". These days there isn't really a comparable kind of underground backlash within metal as death metal is now as weird and diverse and po-faced (at times) as anything else.
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John_Sunlight
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 5:10 pm 
 

Bumping an interesting thread full of genius posts.
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Cat III
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 31, 2017 6:34 pm 
 

jjohn wrote:
Hey!

Herval is great :)

I've listened to Herval multiple times (and will try again in the future) hoping for it to click, but it always seems aimless with nothing that grabs me. I'm looking forward to diving into their latest, Wakar Cartel.

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Electric Death
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 01, 2018 3:37 am 
 

John_Sunlight wrote:
The main thing that is missing from today's black metal equation that drove the early black metal innovators was that they were reacting against the death metal of the time, which they thought was too uniform and "disney's haunted mansion". These days there isn't really a comparable kind of underground backlash within metal as death metal is now as weird and diverse and po-faced (at times) as anything else.


Blackgaze is getting stagnant and everybody wants to be the next Deafheaven. Maybe there will be a backlash against this?

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Red_Death
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 01, 2018 10:26 am 
 

I didn't really follow closely the black metal "scene" - if we can talk about such a thing. One band that really caught my attention is Thantifaxath. Sacred White Noise sounded positively fresh without being a Deathspell Omega clone (I think they handle dissonance in a very different way) and really without no apparent gimmicky avant-garde or genre bending features.
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Zodijackyl
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 01, 2018 2:00 pm 
 

John_Sunlight wrote:
What do you folks think of the relative merits of mixing genres to get something new (we can call this hybridizing) and pushing the genre while without introducing any external elements (we can call this evolving)?


I don't think genre-mixing is inherently innovative, and it seems like a lot of the black metal/punk and black metal/post-rock hybrids are taking a lazy way of copying aesthetics of minimalist and atmospheric black metal bands. You touched on an important point here, which came up in our enlightening conversation last night:

John_Sunlight wrote:
The most copied band right now is probably Summoning. With the advance of cheap, decent sounding midi software a lot of bands are now making simplistic Summoning themed metal. And the WTC sound is pretty big right now, which of course is very DSO and Portal influenced. Cavernous and dissonant are the key adjectives in black metal at this time. Not my cup-o-tea really.


With the connectivity of the internet and the unlimited manipulation of digital recording, many bands have chosen simply to clone others, while taking little time for reflection and shaping it with their personal touch. If you follow the Dungeon Synth community on VK, the majority of the bands will be indistinct and hard to differentiate - with little personal/unique voice to it. Whether or not that is the point there is another issue. A similar phenomena is atmospheric black metal - you can go through YouTube channels of full albums, and spend hours basking in a fuzzy stasis of similar moods in long, repetitive songs which often have very little going on in terms of variation and nuance in the song structures. Half of them are hard to differentiate, and many of those use the same digital tools and sounds (drum samples, virtual amps) which eliminates much of the atmosphere and engineering component of what made some recordings unique.

Ultimately, a lot of these bands are making, for example, "Summoning themed metal" - that is, music that might share the same aesthetics, but isn't about Tolkien, rather it is about someone telling a Tolkien story and trying to imitate that storyteller's style. Sometimes that can lead to them developing their own style, but more often it does not, especially as of late...

edit:

slavonic777 wrote:
Hard to say. There also might be a difference between pushing, while staying in the genre, and pushing while mixing bm with whatever genre you can think of. I guess we are talking more about the first case here.

With Gangrene Edges ​/​ Voiidwarp split by Khthoniik Cerviiks / Howls of Ebb from this year is quite wicked, thats all I can say :)


Khthoniik Cerviiks is a good example of a band who has created a fairly distinct and unique sound by evolving, without introducing external elements. Their music doesn't sound unnecessarily busy or overdone like Deathspell Omega, they just have several musicians who seem to play off of each other and they do more within their arrangements. The drummer is never merely a timekeeper, rather he is quite involved in the music - monotonous drumming and rhythm sections in general are often a drag on black metal in general. There is frequent variation even when the same part is repeated - a sort of uneasy, crawling feeling reminiscent of Demilich and Adramelech. The Voivod influence in the band is quite apparent, but KC have their own identity.

I'd consider this a case of innovating and evolving with the genre - while all these elements had already been introduced to black/death metal by 1993, it's much more of a standout than any shoegaze band I've heard introduce black metal elements to their boring rock music with a dozen effects pedals.

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jjohn
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 6:39 am 
 

Cat III wrote:
jjohn wrote:
Hey!

Herval is great :)

I've listened to Herval multiple times (and will try again in the future) hoping for it to click, but it always seems aimless with nothing that grabs me. I'm looking forward to diving into their latest, Wakar Cartel.


Having listened to Wakar Cartel once, I can say it's in the spirit of Herval, albeit with some differences. It has some crazy instrumental bands but this being Lugubrum, I -obviously- need a lot more listens to make sense of what I'm hearing...
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narsilianshard
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 1:42 pm 
 

Red_Death wrote:
I didn't really follow closely the black metal "scene" - if we can talk about such a thing. One band that really caught my attention is Thantifaxath. Sacred White Noise sounded positively fresh without being a Deathspell Omega clone (I think they handle dissonance in a very different way) and really without no apparent gimmicky avant-garde or genre bending features.

I actually think their debut EP is the most innovative thing they've done, but that's because I'm not a fan of dissonance. Was hoping they would do more of this instead of jumping on the avant-garde train, but they're clearly talented at whatever they do.
https://darkdescentrecords.bandcamp.com ... antifaxath

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brainsmasher
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Location: United States
PostPosted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 3:06 pm 
 

Its already been said but Jute Gyte is the first thing that comes to mind.

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IamDBR
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2016 2:58 am
Posts: 1440
PostPosted: Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:34 am 
 

How about these?
Direwolf & Singularity - Spacey prog/tech death within a bm context, amazing musicianship as expected

Akhlys - Ambient(?) bm with genuinely unsettling horror elements, maybe not completely new but it's really well done.

This monstrous split with Abigor, Nightbringer, Thy Darkened Shade, Mortuus that surprisingly nobody cared about:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ND0C3lALzrs

Serpent Column - This came out of nowhere & killed half the competition for me this year. The rhythm work is fucking tight!

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therealvivs
Metal newbie

Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2010 4:26 pm
Posts: 165
PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2018 12:00 pm 
 

Serpent Column debut was nothing short of amazing. Even though I'm not the biggest fan of the production, the music itself just slays. It made my top 10. Shame no one gave 2 shits about it...
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