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Mamo

Post-black metal/Blackgaze/Symphonic black metal/Experimental black metal

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These are my favorite sub-genres and fusion-genres of Black metal. Blackgaze is a fusion of Black metal and Shoegaze, Post-black black metal is a little harder to explain as it is more experimental here's a description by @Bear

It's black metal that's gone beyond the boundaries of what black metal was originally about, which in general means that there's hella lot of post-black metal out there. But in newer times it's a term often been applied to bands that mix either post-rock, shoegaze or drone and black metal.

And Symphonic black metal is Black metal with Symphonic instruments and melodic melodies.

 

Who else is a fan of this truly beautiful music?

 

Here are some playlists to better exemplify what I mean: 

 

 

 

Edited by Mamo

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51 minutes ago, reminiscing2004 said:

https://wallower.bandcamp.com/

^ One of my favorite black metal inspired projects

Never heard of them but I'll be sure to check them out and even by their releases if I like them enough. 

 

Some of my favorites include: An Autumn for Crippled Children, Gnaw their Tongues, and Tyrant(Japan). 

https://gnawtheirtongues.bandcamp.com/album/genocidal-majesty

 

 

 

Edit: wait does Wallower only have that 1 ep?

Edited by Mamo

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2 hours ago, diryangrey said:

https://wedonthaveaname.bandcamp.com/album/demo
these guys are tied w/ dfhvn for my fav band to come out of this whole scene

Haven't heard of them either I'll also have to check these guys out too. Deafheaven is another one of my favorites as well.

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1 hour ago, suji said:

haven't gotten to check any of these out yet but this is already my favorite music thread ♥

Glad to hear. I thought I heard you mention on here before that you're a big black metal fan. Are you familiar with these sub and fusion genres? If you never have heard them I will say prepare for an amazing beautiful journey.

Edited by Mamo

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On 2.4.2018 at 4:06 AM, Mamo said:

Post-black black metal is a little harder to explain as it is more experimental but mostly involving a lot of Post-hardcore elements mixed in,

 

 

I'm not gonna be nitpicking too much on this stuff, but this is not it. The vast majority of post-black metal bands have no traits of post-hardcore in their music whatsoever. It's black metal that's gone beyond the boundaries of what black metal was originally about, which in general means that there's hella lot of post-black metal out there. But in newer times it's a term often been applied to bands that mix either post-rock, shoegaze or drone and black metal. 

The problem with modern post-black metal is that there isn't any specific traits or rules as to how it should sound, which makes it really hard to classify bands as post-black metal. It's just experimental and non-traditional  black metal. But if we were to look at it like that 70% of all black metal out there would be post-black metal. Not really a fan of the post-black metal name tag at all. On one side of it you have Lantlos and Deafheaven who are considered post-black metal, and on the other side you have Fen, De Arma and Skagos who are not considered post-black metal. Despite all relying heavily on mixing black metal and post-rock. 

 

And just to make it even more confusing. Amesoeurs and Lantlôs. Lantlôs' second album .neon, which are brilliant, are considered one of the best post-black metal albums around. But it's basically a rip-off of Amesoeurs with Neige of Alcest and Amesoeurs handling the vocals. The thing that makes it a bit confusing is that Amesoeurs is not considered post-black metal.

 

When it comes to the post-hardcore thing you have bands like Bosse-de-Nage, Castevet, Scenery of Tomorrow and Cracked Vessel. But they're not post-black metal because they incorporate post-hardcore into their black metal, but they mix post-black metal and post-hardcore. It's hard to explain, so like I said I don't like  the post-black metal name tag at all.

 

In recent times I've been a huge fan of Deafheaven's debut album "Roads to Judah", The Great Old Ones, Altar of Plagues (everything up until Mammal), Lantlôs' two first albums), Scenery of Tomorrow.

 

 

But if you go back to the begining of it all, before it got trendy as fuck, you have norwegian black metal like Solefald, Fleurety, Arcturus, Dødheimsgard, In the Woods... and more which really stretched the sound of black metal into something quite special and unique. Really ground-breaking stuff at the time. And these bands fit the post-black metal tag A LOT better than the likes of Deafheaven, The Great Old Ones and so on as they actually set themselves apart from the traditional sounds of black metal a lot more and experiment more. But all these are also just considered avant-garde/black metal.

 

You could also throw in Celtic Frost's Into The Pandemonium as the very first post-black metal album, even though that was way ahead of the term post-black metal. But it was the beginning of it all.

 

 

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Basically what Bear said, I feel it is impossible to actually pin down what Post-Black Metal is supposed to be, I feel the bands that are named within this genre are so far apart in their style of music.

Anyway, I'll just go for a few recommendations that I guess would fit the term in some way! I second Deafheaven (Sunbather might be hyped, but to me rightfully so, pretty much the best you can find in this genre for me), The Great Old Ones and Altar of Plagues, all fantastic bands.

 

Oathbreaker is also pretty cool, even though their last album is kinda all over the place. They had strong hardcore influences before, but now the whole thing has a lot more clean vocals and really quiet songs. This song is fucking intense:

 

Show Me A Dinosaur are also pretty good, despite the weird name:

 

Tanpopo Crisis might be interesting if you like Deafheaven, used to be a grindcore project but now the style is rather dreamy and somewhat positive.

 

Edited by Kaleidoscope

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As I said a little harder to explain and I suppose I didn't do a great job lol Thanks for the input @Bear

 

Btw I think I have most of the bands you and @Kaleidoscopementioned in my playlists in the OP.

Edited by Mamo

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I just wanted to say this is a lovely thread with lovely recommendations. I never really looked into the general music section so I had no idea people on here are also interested in this kind of music. 

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8 hours ago, Bear said:

And just to make it even more confusing. Amesoeurs and Lantlôs. Lantlôs' second album .neon, which are brilliant, are considered one of the best post-black metal albums around. But it's basically a rip-off of Amesoeurs with Neige of Alcest and Amesoeurs handling the vocals. The thing that makes it a bit confusing is that Amesoeurs is not considered post-black metal.

That's why I prefer to call them just "avant-garde", like solefald and arcturus, is just "new", and for me is difficult to tag them cuz every band is trying to sound different but of course with clear influences, the tags in almost every time are created by magazines

now, talking about the "new" trend on adapting black metal to other genres I really dislike all this kind of bands like deafhaven, bosse-de-nage, etc. I feel isn't honest music like the roots of this genre, black metal was of course a bunch of teenagers enraged with the christianism in their countries and flavoured with patriotism, but I feel it more honest than this newer bands making black metal "artistic" hipster, that's why I only listen to a handful of bands and probably some of them aren't post-black metal haha, still there's some good bands

 

Träumen Von Aurora is really good
 

 

Edited by Sickle

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18 hours ago, Bear said:

It's just experimental and non-traditional  black metal. But if we were to look at it like that 70% of all black metal out there would be post-black metal. Not really a fan of the post-black metal name tag at all. On one side of it you have Lantlos and Deafheaven who are considered post-black metal, and on the other side you have Fen, De Arma and Skagos who are not considered post-black metal. Despite all relying heavily on mixing black metal and post-rock. 

 

And just to make it even more confusing. Amesoeurs and Lantlôs. Lantlôs' second album .neon, which are brilliant, are considered one of the best post-black metal albums around. But it's basically a rip-off of Amesoeurs with Neige of Alcest and Amesoeurs handling the vocals. The thing that makes it a bit confusing is that Amesoeurs is not considered post-black metal.

 

When it comes to the post-hardcore thing you have bands like Bosse-de-Nage, Castevet, Scenery of Tomorrow and Cracked Vessel. But they're not post-black metal because they incorporate post-hardcore into their black metal, but they mix post-black metal and post-hardcore. It's hard to explain, so like I said I don't like  the post-black metal name tag at all.

But couldn't this be solved by simply considering all of the bands who you are referring to who are left out Post-black metal? Because it seems you only have a problem with the tag in the sense that people are leaving certain bands out. But like I said you or anyone really could just consider them Post-black metal yourself and who really cares if other people don't? If you think these bands sound similar and are clearly playing the same type of music.

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No. I have a problem with the tag because it doesn't tell you anything about the actual music. Like I previously said - the tag post-black metal tells you that the band evolved from black metal and focus a bit on experimentation and non-traditional elements in the music, but so does symphonic black metal, ambient black metal, avant-garde black metal and more.

 

What defines melodic black metal?

What defines symphonic black metal?

What defines ambient black metal?

What defines progressive or psychedelic black metal?

What defines avant-garde black metal?

What defines post-black metal?

 

All those can easily be answered with the exception of the last one. You can easily explain to someone why Naglfar is melodic black meta, why Obtained Enslavement is symphonic black metal and why Sigh is avant-garde black metal. It's not a problem at all.

 

But how on earth are you gonna explain to someone that Altar of Plagues' "White Tomb" and Lantlos' ".neon" belongs to the same genre when they in reality don't share any of the same elements and traits other than being rooted in black metal? They belong to the same subgenre, but neither have any of the same elements of traits in the music than make them belong to that genre.

 

But with symphonic black metal bands, you can know they belong to the same genre because they both put emphasis on the symphonic element in the music. The riffing might be different and the symphonic element itself may be different, but the main element that put them into the same genre will be very obvious.

And with melodic black metal they will be called melodic black metal because they both put emphasis on the melodic element in the music. The riffing might be different and the symphonic element itself may be different, but the main element that put them into the same genre will be very obvious.

 

But you just can't say this about post-black metal as there isn't a specific element or trait that makes it into post-black metal. That's why a band sounding like A and a band sounding like Z suddenly belong to the same genre, even though they're not got anything in common.

 

This is why post-black metal is such a shitty and useless subgenre. You get what I mean here?

 

 

I think it's a bit hard to explain, but that should be good enough I guess.

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5 hours ago, Bear said:

What defines progressive or psychedelic black metal?

What defines avant-garde black metal?

No offense but I don't actually think there's much difference between the terms avant-garde, progressive, or experimental in any genre. 

 

5 hours ago, Bear said:

But you just can't say this about post-black metal as there isn't a specific element or trait that makes it into post-black metal. That's why a band sounding like A and a band sounding like Z suddenly belong to the same genre, even though they're not got anything in common.

I get what you're saying, which is that the term Post-black metal is ill-defined and seemingly would apply to lots of other bands based on it's current usage.

 

But again couldn't  you just say any band that doesn't meet the requirements to be  i.e. Melodic black metal, Symphonic, ambient, etc. Since all of the other Black metal sub-genres are clearly defined?

5 hours ago, Bear said:

What defines melodic black metal?

What defines symphonic black metal?

What defines ambient black metal?

What defines progressive or psychedelic black metal?

What defines avant-garde black metal?

What defines post-black metal?

So basically ask yourself all of these same questions and if whatever band in question doesn't fit then it's Post-black metal.

 

5 hours ago, Bear said:

But how on earth are you gonna explain to someone that Altar of Plagues' "White Tomb" and Lantlos' ".neon" belongs to the same genre when they in reality don't share any of the same elements and traits other than being rooted in black metal? They belong to the same subgenre, but neither have any of the same elements of traits in the music than make them belong to that genre.

At the same time I fully get what you mean here though as you said there are no clear definitions. But like I was saying if you see that a Black metal that doesn't fit any other category. Of course I suppose any band of any genre will always fit into avant-garde, progressive, or experimental since all of these term vary little and basically mean experimental. To be honest I don't think avant-garde really even needs the additional genre tag i.e. avant-garde black metal, I think you could just simply call anything that is avant-garde simply avant-garde.

Edited by Mamo

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Quote

No offense but I don't actually think there's much difference between the terms avant-garde, progressive, or experimental in any genre. 

 

I'm not an expert on this subject, but there is a difference. I think an easy explanation would be so say that avant-garde is about being very heavy on the experimentation and about being innovative and unique, whereas progressive are about making more complex music and creating music with more complex song structures. A lot of progressive music are also radio friendly as fuck, but avant-garde usually isn't - for a good reason.

 

Some suggestion that makes it easy to hear the difference.

 

Progressive black metal:

 

Enslaved - Below the Lights

Borknagar - The Archaic Course

Hidden in the Fog - Damokles

 

Avant-garde black metal:

 

Anubi - Kai pilnaties akis užmerks mirtis 

Ved buens ende - Written in Waters

Deathspell Omega - Paracletus

 

 

Quote

But again couldn't  you just say any band that doesn't meet the requirements to be  i.e. Melodic black metal, Symphonic, ambient, etc. Since all of the other Black metal sub-genres are clearly defined?

 

So basically ask yourself all of these same questions and if whatever band in question doesn't fit then it's Post-black metal.

 

But which bands would that be? I have a decent knowledge of the genre and I have heard a lot of bands, but I have yet to find a band that can not be placed in an already existing subgenre of black metal. And if they don't fit into one, we usually use two. Hell, maybe we'll use three to describe the sound.

 

I think genres, be it in form of comics, music, books, films/TV-series, games or whatever else should be helpful in a way. It should tell you something helpful about the product, about how it is. If you throw 10 entirely different sounding bands into one genre, how is that genre any helpful at all?

 

 

Wouldn't the better thing to do be to just call the likes of Altar of Plagues and The Great Old Ones atmospheric/ambient black metal, and call Bosse-de-Nage black metal/post-hardcore? Because there's just no way they belong to the same subgenre. 

 

Quote

To be honest I don't think avant-garde really even needs the additional genre tag i.e. avant-garde black metal, I think you could just simply call anything that is avant-garde simply avant-garde.

 

I don't agree at all. By putting black metal, prog, jazz, electronica, classical or whatever maingenre you can think about  after the avant-garde you'll get a much better idea about what type of avant-garde it is, because avant-garde can be a lot of different things. If you take a listen to the four albums below you'll get what I mean, and why I mean it's necessary.

 

Igor Stravinsky - Petrushka

Ornette Coleman - The Shape of Jazz to Come

Ved buens ende - Written in Waters

Ulver - Themes from William Blake's The Marriage of Heaven and Hell

 

 

 

I know we might be a bit off-topic here, but I really enjoy this discussion. I feel like I am getting a lot of knowledge atm. Two thumbs up!

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Gonna try being a bit on topic too and post a few of my favourite symphonic black metal albums

 

 

 

Didn't find the whole debut album, The Nightspectral Voyage, from Obsidian Gate on youtube, but this album is damn fucking good. It's one hell of a massive album. These would also be my favourite albums from all these bands. Grand, dark, majestic, powerful. When done right, symphonic black metal is among my favourite subgenres of black metal. It's a shame too many piss weak bands are giving the genre a bad name, though.

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6 hours ago, Bear said:

I don't agree at all. By putting black metal, prog, jazz, electronica, classical or whatever maingenre you can think about  after the avant-garde you'll get a much better idea about what type of avant-garde it is, because avant-garde can be a lot of different things. If you take a listen to the four albums below you'll get what I mean, and why I mean it's necessary.

 

Yes but avant-garde can also have no real type of intended musical direction at all or cross over 20 different genres in the course of 1 song. So I do agree with you in a sense about adding an additional genre to to the already existing avant-garde just for clarity. But at the same time I think simply referring to them as simply avant-garde applies just as well.

 

As for everything else you've said about the usefulness of the Post-black metal, I'm largely in agreement for the most part. 

 

Btw you've been on topic. We're discussing all of the genres listed in the topic. lol

 

Edited by Mamo

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1 hour ago, Bear said:

Didn't find the whole debut album, The Nightspectral Voyage, from Obsidian Gate on youtube, but this album is damn fucking good. It's one hell of a massive album. These would also be my favourite albums from all these bands. Grand, dark, majestic, powerful. When done right, symphonic black metal is among my favourite subgenres of black metal. It's a shame too many piss weak bands are giving the genre a bad name, though.

It's on Spotify, also is it supposed to be an ep or a full album because there's  only 6 tracks on Spotify or do you just call all releases album(I know plenty of people who do lol)? 

 

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Not sure if it fits here, but I've been relistening to lots of Arcturus. Great band. Even the last album (that came like a decade after the previous one) is solid.

 

Not sure whether they can be classified as black metal, but at least the first album is pretty kickass symphonic / atmospheric / avantgarde black metal, and the rest are amazing avantgarde extreme metal works.

 

...that's all. :D 

Edited by Jigsaw9

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3 hours ago, Mamo said:

It's on Spotify, also is it supposed to be an ep or a full album because there's  only 6 tracks on Spotify or do you just call all releases album(I know plenty of people who do lol)? 

 

They've released three albums, The Nightspectral Voyage, Colossal Christhunt and Whom the Fire Obeys, and an EP called The Vehemence. They also released two demos under the name The Gate. The two first albums, The Nightspectral Voyage, Colossal Christhunt, are complete classics as far as symphonic black metal goes. The keyboards are out of this world, but they also got amazing riffs and song structures to back it up.

 

3 hours ago, Jigsaw9 said:

Not sure if it fits here, but I've been relistening to lots of Arcturus. Great band. Even the last album (that came like a decade after the previous one) is solid.

 

Not sure whether they can be classified as black metal, but at least the first album is pretty kickass symphonic / atmospheric / avantgarde black metal, and the rest are amazing avantgarde extreme metal works.

 

...that's all. :D 

 

The debut album is atmospheric black metal, and the later are more in the vain of avant-garde and progressive metal.  You've also got the debut EP My Angel which is more in the line of death/doom and the EP Constellation which are more of a cross between the gloomy doom on My Angel and atmospheric black metal of their debut album.

 

I haven't bothered with the latest album yet, but I love everything they've done before. Aspera Hiems Symfonia are among my very favourites no matter the genre. 

 

 

And I think it fits here as this has been more of a general black metal thread. I mean, there's no old school (80's and very early 90's) and raw black metal yet, but there's been talked about a lot of different stuff.

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I want to recommend two albums I'm obsessed with but that haven't been mentioned yet. 

The first one is Stellar by der Weg einer Freiheit.  Very atmospheric post black metal with German lyrics.

 

 

The second one is Nacht by Madmans Esprit.  Extremely gloomy and depressive avantgarde with Korean lyrics.

 

 

 

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Not sure if anyone is familiar with them(they've been mentioned on M-H a handful of times) but here is both a modern and Japanese example of Blackgaze

わたしと私だったもの(Awakening)

by 明日の叙景(Asunojokei): 

 

And Ghost Bath Chinese name 鬼浴 which does Atmospheric and Blackgaze  stuff. Although the band originally claimed that they were from Chongqing, China, it has been revealed in a 2015 interview with Noisey that they're actually an American band based in Minot, North Dakota. Really brilliant guitar work by these guys.

 

Edited by Mamo

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I like me some Ghost Bath, especially the Moonlover album! ♥ Got to see them live when they toured with that, great show too.

 

Sadly I was completely turned off by the advance tracks I heard from their latest, so never checked it out...

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