Dismember me

Published July 14, 2012 by Sandee

Gee Whiz!  I tell some people I’m a death metal enthusiast and they think it’s 80s hair metal music.  No, I’m afraid I don’t do 80s hair metal.  However, I do listen to a lot of old-school death metal.  I have a Mortician, Obituary and Nocturnal Dominion station on Pandora.  The music on either of these stations has similar elements to these primary groups.  Pandora has introduced me to a lot of new groups as well.  Pantera and Metallica are soft compared to this music, besides they’re also commercial.  Death metal can be progressive and very arty.  It’s nihilistic and iconoclastic with morbid undertones.  That’s so me.  It’s not a bad thing.  It’s severe and inaccessible to people who have certain musical expectations rhythmically or lyrically, etc.  Some of the lyrics are brilliant.  Some of the lyrics are vile and would be considered offensive for various reasons.  (I don’t listen to neo nazi black metal or far right metal.) Some lyrics don’t make sense but I don’t care, just as long as they’re screaming and beating me over the head.  I tend to glaze over what they’re saying in these cases because the abstract elements are too essential.  I was always into metal — except for those 80s hair bands.  I started with Led Zeplin, Black Sabbath, et al, but in the eighties I gravitated to independent stations and started listening to a segment called “Hell Hole,” and I was in Heaven.  The music was punk, death metal, gothic.  I never looked back.  I just like it hard.  What can I say?  I do listen to other music but death metal is church music to me.  The primal elements help my rage.  There’s also humor in this type of anti-music.  The screaming and growling is so refreshingly absurd.  I’ll be old listening to it.  I came home from the traumatic dental experience in excruciating pain and it so soothed the angst of the savage beast:

12 comments on “Dismember me

  • Ditto on the 80’s glam rock. Some people like to say it was so bad, it’s good. I like to say it was so bad, it’s worse. I’m not sure if I can get into much Death Metal. I like my metal to have a nice, understandable voice, Like Wait and Bleed from Slipknot. My cousin tried to get me into Cannibal Corpse and few others but I couldn’t handle it. I do like some newer stuff that might be comparable like Avenged Sevenfold, Killswitch Engage and Disturbed (I know, that’s pushing it.)

    • Whew! So glad you agree on the 80s metal. Funny, a guy got on the bus I was on today with a nicely designed Slipknot tee-shirt that I kept staring at. I Love Cannibal Corpse, but I could see how you’d have a hard time listening to it. They have one line I’d like to print on a tee-shirt — “I don’t want to hurt you, I just want to kill you” — love love love! I’ll have to check out the groups you’ve mentioned. I think I’ve heard of Killswitch Engage.

  • I really knew very little about death metal until I started reading your blog. Although I’m still not sure I know what exactly distinguishes death metal from other types of heavy metal. Where do groups like Disturbed (since Brother Jon mentioned them and I have some of their stuff) and Rammstein fall in the metal spectrum, are they on the death side or the ordinary metal side?

    • I love Rammstein — I have that album with Du Hast on it. Death metal is darker and a lot harder than ordinary metal. Gosh it’s so varied — and wonderful, death metal! The screaming, growling and talk of death, homicide, suicide, dismemberment and creative expressions of a pointless existence are what distinguishes it from lighter metal. Like I mention, there’s humor in the expression. “I’m not going to hurt you, I’m just going to kill you” — Cannibal Corpse — love it. Not all death metal deals with these themes, but for the most part it does. Sounds depressing I know. Surprisingly it enlivens me to no end. I think generally the harsh sound of it is what distinguishes it from ordinary metal. Now that you have me on the subject, I have to think about those differences more.

  • Death Metal always struck me as kind of a Tom Waits for the metalheads. It’s an acquired taste, but once you get it, you never go back. I admit, I’ve got a limited attention span for some of this (I wouldn’t mind some recs, though). But you’re right about the primal rage here. It’s really cathartic.

    • I wondered what your opinion of dm would be. It is an acquired taste — I never thought of it that way. It is indeed cathartic — I need it. Sometimes I experiment by listening to lighter music, thinking perhaps I’ve been mislead somehow — but I always come back. It’s been many years now — I can’t deny this is music made for me.

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