This genre of rock music is as complicated as anything can get with its endless list of subgenres and fusion genres. To get a better understanding of how intense metal is, picture a colossal tree with branches that flow in every direction. Each branch represents a subgenre, and each new branch represents a fusion genre.
But before we get into fusion genres lets take a closer look at subgenres. Going in alphabetical order, they include black metal, classic metal, death metal, doom metal, glam metal, gothic metal, groove metal, power metal, speed metal, and thrash metal. This article will cover the non-extreme subgenres.
Classic metal is also referred to as traditional heavy metal, or simply put, heavy metal. This is what metal was called back before it evolved and branched out into all the sub and fusion genres. In other words, this music is much like a living creature because it grows more complex as time goes by.
Since the late 1960s and early 1970s metal has been melting faces of proud headbangers all over the world. It originated essentially in the United Kingdom and the United States with roots in blues-rock and psychedelic rock. Some of the first metal bands include Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, and Deep Purple. Buffalo’s It Dies Today is considered heavy metal as well. Typical instruments that are used include the electrical guitar, bass guitar, drums, vocals, and keyboard.
Doom metal is an underground metal formed in Europe and the United States in the early-mid 1980s. It’s not the typical extreme metal; in fact it has a slow tempo and low-tuned guitars. When you listen to the music and lyrics you get the feeling of misery and impending doom. Doom metal sounds like impending doom?! No way!
A few doom metal bands are Candlemass, Pagan Alter, Count Raven, and the early works of Black Sabbath.
Glam metal, also called hair metal or pop metal, began in the late 1970s and early 1980s in the United States, more specifically Los Angeles and New York City. It was mostly popular because of the head turning fashion, and the style of the music. Think about it. Glam was like a bright, flashy float in a parade, music included. Also, it was most popular throughout the 1980s and late 1990s, until grunge came along, although because of some recent bands of the 2000s there has been a moderate revival.
Can you say Black Veil Brides?
Some glam bands you may know are Kiss, Motley Crue, Poison, Skid Row, Cinderella, and Twisted Sister.
Gothic metal originated in Europe, where it is most popular, in the early 1990s. It combines aggression, as well as, dark gloom. In other words, if death and doom metal had a baby they’d call it gothic metal. Cigars all around!
Bands that established this style of metal are Paradise Lost, My Dying Bride, and Anathema who are all from northern Europe; however these bands don’t identify themselves as gothic metal. The only bands that have found viable success in the United States are HIM, Lacuna Coil, Evanescence, and Cradle of Filth. Who doesn’t like Evanescence, seriously?
Did you know that female vocalists are more common in gothic metal? Well if you didn’t you do now.
In conclusion, metal isn’t just growling and screaming with random pounding of the drum. It’s far more than that. In fact, it can be soothing and beautiful; it really depends on the style and the band. Also, if you don’t like what you hear you have the ability to change it and create a new form of metal. The possibilities are truly endless.