I thought this forum could use a dedicated thread about metal and related genres. I hope this can be a place for discussion, recommendations and news, and hopefully not just random youtube video dumps.
Iron Maiden released their 17th studio album. Critics seem to love it but praising any new Iron Maiden album is probably the music business equivalent of nobody ever got fired for buying IBM.
There’s nothing wrong with Senjutsu but doesn’t do anything new either.
Lingua Ignota also released a new album (Sinner Get Ready) which might be even more haunting and disturbing than her previous work.
Both releases probably won’t lose their respective artists any fans but it’s doubtful that it will gain them many new ones either. Having said that I think Sinner Get Ready is more interesting because of her unique style.
I know very little about metal. What would be 5 essential albums? I can listen to them then share my thoughts. Which I assume you are all dying to hear.
“Metal” is not a category of music, some genres of metal are completely different from other ones, there’s no way there’s a “listen to these 5 albums to get an idea” type thing. Especially when you get into the whole dirty vs clean vocal stuff.
I hear you but of someone told me “I don’t really get country, what are 5 things I could try” then I could give them 5.
Here’s a superficial list. I find the RS top 100s to lean heavily to popular stuff.
Predictably these are all ancient and from more or less the same genres, “pop” metal, not a woman in sight, hair everywhere, etc. I mean if you like “oldies” def listen to… holy diver by dio? Mötley Crüe? I mean cmon.
Most of the ones on that list from the last 25 years aren’t bad. try:
Slipknot, ‘Iowa’ (2001)
Mastodon, ‘Leviathan’ (2004) (their later stuff is much more accessible, try emperor of sand)
Kyuss, ‘Blues for the Red Sun’ (1992)
System of a Down, ‘Toxicity’ (2001)
Alice in Chains, ‘Dirt’ (1992)
Rage Against the Machine, ‘Rage Against the Machine’ (1992)
Tool, ‘Ænima’ (1996)
listen to 1, 11, 19, 31 and Undertow by Tool.
Ride the Lightning
Rust in Peace
Seasons in the Abyss
Interesting list—includes Soundgarden and Living Color excludes AC/DC.
As Grue has said metal is a collection of dozens of subgenres so picking just 5 is pretty tough. Some of the suggested albums I’d consider advanced listening. I’d go with a more basic selection that aren’t even necessarily the band’s best albums but are a good entry point in my opinion.
In no particular order:
Iron Maiden - Number Of The Beast [Heavy Metal]
Metallica - Metallica (“Black Album”) [Trash Metal]
Sabaton - Heroes [Power Metal]
Nightwish - Wishmaster [Symphonic Metal]
Volbeat - Rock The Rebel, Metal The Devil [Heavy Metal/Rock]
AC/DC is more hard rock than heavy metal.
Agreed, but if you’re going to include Soundgarden and Living Colour then AC/DC makes that definitional cut.
The blues rock roots are much more obvious with AC/DC (or say Aerosmith) than with Soundgarden. It’s hard to draw a line and at some point it becomes arbitrary.
Like power metal, can’t stand Sabaton for some reason. UtA posted above way better imo.
Dark Passion Play has an amazing 1st 4 tracks despite, well, annette tbh. Once is good too. The rest are all big passes to me really.
For whatever reason my bands for the past 5 years are all female led metal either power or symphonic. I just can’t sign on to the death/dirty vocals stuff the whole time, I find it pretty comical. Bands like Amon Amarth are definitely really good at their instruments but 4+ minutes of being screamed at every song doesn’t do it for me in my 40s apparently. Every once in a while fine sure but the whole thing nah.
As a child of the 80’s, I’m biased toward the foundational thrash metal classics, but
Black Sabbath – Master of Reality
Metallica – Master of Puppets
Megadeth – Rust in Peace
Slayer – Reign in Blood
Iron Maiden – Number of the Beast
Gonna recommend anything by Mastodon if you want something more contemporary. Those guys rock.
Megadeath, Lamb of God, Trivium and In Flames are coming here in a couple weeks. That would be a killer show.
If someone asked me to name 5 metal albums they should listen to my first question would be clean vocals or can you handle screaming, growling etc. I used to stick to cleaner vocals (or metalcore type stuff) but have moved much more towards unclean lately.
The thread has done a good job of picking out some great normie metal. @mosdef if you want to get adventurous, here are some more genres and a pick or two for each. I think you’re Canadian, right? I’ll note the city with the best scene for each where applicable.
Black Metal - often tinny guitars, keyboards, a lot of bands are one guy in his basement playing everything. Often anti-christian, pro-satan. Pretty silly stuff with face paint and costumes. Fun.
Doom - Black Sabbath influences. Slow, tuned down. Sense of doom. Great writing/reading music imo! One of my faves.
Tech metal - (Montreal) Technical metal, named for the level of technical proficience needed. Some of the best musicians on the plant. Usually a bit of a boring performance because the dudes need to really concentrate on their playing!
Industrial - metal but with computers and depression.
Stoner Metal - similar to Doom, but more blues influence. Get baked and groove.
Some metal + punk hybrids…
Posi-core (Vancouver) - positive hardcore. Lots of vegan, straightedge (no alcohol, drugs, smoking) bands. Themes of cooperation, positivity, overcoming adversity.
Grindcore (Saskatoon) - sloppy, chaotic, band needs a good drummer but otherwise very egalitarian in that anyone with a week’s practice can start a band lol. Best mosh pits. Lots of alcohol and body odor.
Goregrind (Victoria) - edgelording before the internet.
Look up AnalC**t if interested. 13 year old me thought they were cool, but they make me a little uncomfortable now heh.
Hardcore (Calgary) fast, pounding, punk vocals. For some reason hardcore kids have their own scene in most cities and don’t get along with the punk or metal kids. :shrug
Those are good recommendations for the advanced listener but starting out with Black Metal or Grindcore is like saying to someone who never had asian food “why don’t you try balut?”
Wikipedia link for Balut spoilered so not everyone has to see the unappetizing pic of “a fertilized developing egg embryo that is boiled and eaten from the shell”
Honestly Metallica’s black album might be the best choice for someone who’s not into metal because it’s very accessible.