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Rate The Metal Genres

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Metal Forum hosts several genre specific forums. I'm interested in hearing from users about what their favourite genres actually happen to be. Even better, I would really like to see them ranked, because if there's one thing I like more than metal, it's lists. 

Requiem's Top 10 Metal Genres

10. Nu-Metal

By number ten, this could really be any of the remaining genres, like Groove or Industrial. I'd be dishonest, though, if I didn't admit to enjoying Korn, Deftones, and yes... even the Bizkits for a short time in the 90s... It still doesn't feel right praising this genre. Ok, moving on. 

9. Thrash Metal

Although there's a chasm between my affection for nu-metal and thrash, I'm sorry to say that thrash comes in at number 9. It's pretty good though, especially those 80s albums by Megadeth, Metallica and even the odd Slayer track. I also have a respect for the old German stuff, although as of this post I still need to buy some Destruction and Sodom. I tend to find most thrash a little empty of emotion and meaning, so if it's not super-catchy then it doesn't offer me much. A good genre, but not my first point of call. 

8. Death Metal

Death metal is in the same boat as thrash, but there are many more great examples for me. Morbid Angel, Dismember, Carcass (close enough) are all really cool, and any modern symphonic derivative, such as Septicflesh and Fleshgod Apocalypse - while not strictly death metal - still give this genre a boost in my mind. I do find 95% of death metal bands bewildering though and if I'm being honest, quite soulless. 

7. Power Metal

Obviously there's a lot of cheese out there, but bands like Blind Guardian, Rhapsody (both versions) and Nightwish (close enough) are fantastic bands. I wouldn't go too far out of my way for a random power metal purchase, but the cream of the crop is great. The older I get, the more accepting I am of 'fun'. I guess I'm mellowing. 

6. Hair Metal

Speaking of fun... This entry signifies some intense love starting up in this list for Requiem. Bands like Skid Row, Motley Crue, and the mighty Warrant will forever be some of my favourites. Gateway bands that are now - at least in my mind - cool again. The first Steel Panther album rocks too, let's be honest. I also really love the LA scene and enjoy hanging out at the Rainbow etc. This genre was a great moment of time from my childhood and a rocking one now.  

5. Traditional Heavy Metal

Yeah, what does this actually mean? I wanted a genre that represented Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, Dio etc so this is it. I really love these bands and their classic albums - who doesn't? There are also things about this 'genre' that don't appeal to me, but it's hard to argue with the greats and their incredible stories. 

4. Viking/Folk Metal

I really can't praise this genre highly enough. It merges my love of history with epic emotions and (sometimes) a narrative style of writing. Bands like Moonsorrow, early Tyr, Einherjer, Thyrfing and even Eluveitie offer me a lot. Then of course there are the first few Enslaved albums that are ultimately black metal based, but with fantastic viking atmosphere. There's also a little album called 'Hammerheart' that goes pretty good. 

3. Doom Metal 

Bit of merging goes on between doom and gothic for me, but they're good about here in the list. The Peaceville Three (Paradise Lost, My Dying Bride and Anathema in 1990-1995) are pretty untouchable. When you throw in some more funeral style stuff like Shape of Despair and Skepticism, this genre is crushingly emotional and existential. Other classics like Funeral's 'From these Wounds' are also nearly untouchable. 

2. Gothic Metal

Much maligned by the balls to the wall set, for me this is nearly as good as music gets. From traditional gothic metal bands like the beauty and the beast style of early Theatre of Tragedy and early Tristania, through to My Dying Bride and Paradise Lost's masterpieces such as 'Like Gods of the Sun' and 'Draconian Times' and the first four (and last two!) Cradle of Filth albums, this is an amazing genre. The more rocky end of this genre too, like To/Die/For, The 69 Eyes and the effeminate glories of HIM are also personal favourites. 

1. Black Metal

And here it is, number one. When I first heard black metal in 1995 with Satyricon's 'The Shadowthrone', I knew that "suddenly, life has new meaning" to borrow from 'Dunkelheit'. I had heard about the Norwegian dramas from about 1994 but hadn't heard the music, so there was already a great deal of romance and mystery attached to black metal, and the corpse paint and forest scenery of the pictures we saw intrigued and thrilled us. Of course, once albums like 'In the Nightside Eclipse', 'De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas' and 'Storm of the Light's Bane' were heard, there was no going back. Recent albums like Rotting Christ's 'Rituals' also keep the flame alive. This is the perfect genre and musical art form that expresses so much. Hail Euronymous. 666. 

 

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I don't listen to all of metal's sub-genres and haven't explored each one thoroughly so I would find it difficult to rank them. 

1. Gothic metal, by my own definition, is without a doubt my favourite sub-genre of metal. It's dark, passionate, and full of atmosphere. Many of my favourite bands and releases fall within the gothic realm. 

2. Black Metal would follow closely behind. There is no shortage of great releases so it's not surprising that it is the most prolific sub-genre within my collection. The variety found within black metal ensures that I will never get bored of it.  

3. Death metal is a style I certainly enjoy but often a lack of variety or memorability within albums can render this genre a distant third. Although I really like old school death metal, my death metal favourites tend to be the type of bands who incorporate outside influences much like Akercocke has previously done to give it a unique 'flavour'. 

As for the rest: I don't listen to much traditional doom metal but I really enjoy death-doom in the form of The Peaceville Three and, generally, bands who play in a similar vein. Traditional heavy metal and power metal possess some appeal and potential to win me over but it's a genre that I need to delve deeper into than just the handful of bands that I listen to. Folk and Viking metal can be hit and miss with me; usually fine if it is infused with black metal. Depending on definitions I don't mind some nu metal and even enjoy a couple of bands despite not liking a lot of the outward fronting and genre idiosyncrasies. I don't mind glam/hair metal from what I've heard but I've never bothered to really check it out beyond a couple of bands like Twisted Sister; I would expect that I wouldn't like a lot of it. I think thrash metal is alright but it's never held much appeal to me. I enjoy some Slayer but there's something about thrash in general, like some styles of punk, that is off-putting to me; perhaps it is the drumming that maintains too consistent a tempo and the frantic nature of the music that exudes a sort of sonic hyperventilation that is not compatible with me. 

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In terms of really broad genres, I'd rank them thusly from best to worst:

Prog

Power

Death

Doom

Black

Folk

Gothic

Trad

Thrash

Industrial

Sludge/stoner (I think I have liked maybe one band from this genre)

 

If I can be more specific:

Prog

Prog/power

Tech-death

Prog death

Prog black metal

Power

Dissonant death/black

Melodic doom

Traditional power

Doom/death

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On 09/10/2017 at 8:33 PM, Vampyrique said:

I don't listen to all of metal's sub-genres and haven't explored each one thoroughly so I would find it difficult to rank them. 

1. Gothic metal, by my own definition, is without a doubt my favourite sub-genre of metal. It's dark, passionate, and full of atmosphere. Many of my favourite bands and releases fall within the gothic realm. 

2. Black Metal would follow closely behind. There is no shortage of great releases so it's not surprising that it is the most prolific sub-genre within my collection. The variety found within black metal ensures that I will never get bored of it.  

3. Death metal is a style I certainly enjoy but often a lack of variety or memorability within albums can render this genre a distant third. Although I really like old school death metal, my death metal favourites tend to be the type of bands who incorporate outside influences much like Akercocke has previously done to give it a unique 'flavour'. 

As for the rest: I don't listen to much traditional doom metal but I really enjoy death-doom in the form of The Peaceville Three and, generally, bands who play in a similar vein. Traditional heavy metal and power metal possess some appeal and potential to win me over but it's a genre that I need to delve deeper into than just the handful of bands that I listen to. Folk and Viking metal can be hit and miss with me; usually fine if it is infused with black metal. Depending on definitions I don't mind some nu metal and even enjoy a couple of bands despite not liking a lot of the outward fronting and genre idiosyncrasies. I don't mind glam/hair metal from what I've heard but I've never bothered to really check it out beyond a couple of bands like Twisted Sister; I would expect that I wouldn't like a lot of it. I think thrash metal is alright but it's never held much appeal to me. I enjoy some Slayer but there's something about thrash in general, like some styles of punk, that is off-putting to me; perhaps it is the drumming that maintains too consistent a tempo and the frantic nature of the music that exudes a sort of sonic hyperventilation that is not compatible with me. 

I love your top two! 

 

On 12/10/2017 at 1:50 PM, Iceni said:

In terms of really broad genres, I'd rank them thusly from best to worst:

Prog

Power

Death

Doom

Black

Folk

Gothic

Trad

Thrash

Industrial

Sludge/stoner (I think I have liked maybe one band from this genre)

 

If I can be more specific:

Prog

Prog/power

Tech-death

Prog death

Prog black metal

Power

Dissonant death/black

Melodic doom

Traditional power

Doom/death

You love your prog!

I thought about breaking things down into smaller sub-genres like melodic death and stuff like that but in the end I aborted that idea in the interest of personal sanity! So it sort of meant that bands I really love like Amorphis didn't really come into play when thinking of list ranking. 

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Hmm well I'll have a go at this as well using the broader genres as my guidelines

 

10. Industrial

I'd have put nu-metal in this slot but don't believe it to be a legit metal sub-genre. So Industrial then. Yeah I care for practically none of what I've heard beyond Strapping Young Lad.

9. Progressive Metal

I started out with a bit of a taste for Prog but as time has passed it's really become quite uninteresting for me. Queensryche aside Future's End are the only pure prog band I still like.

8. Folk Metal

Again I had a bit of a taste for folk metal early on. Nowadays not so much but I do still enjoy enough bands, Orphaned Land in particular.

7. Power Metal

I like a few more power metal bands then the previous genres here. Blind Guardian, Nevermore, Persuader, to name a few.

6. Thrash Metal

Close run between thrash and power metal since my interest in thrash is waning significantly. For a bit of fun I still get into it but no longer have much drive to explore the genre.

5. Heavy Metal

I'm including the NWOBHM here because it is very much heavy metal. Sabbath, Priest, Maiden, Saxon, Accept, UFO, Mötorhead, Angel Witch, damn too many more to name.

4. Viking Metal

I don't have as much knowledge here but I love literally all the viking metal I've heard so far.

3. Black Metal

Can't get enough BM honestly. First and Second wave offer so much.

2. Death Metal

Yep if you know me now this is no surprise. The classic DM sound does so much for me. Some melodic death metal and tech-death also works wonders as does a bit of progressive death metal. Astonishing to think it wasn't six years ago I couldn't stand the genre.

1. Doom Metal

From the moment I started exploring the genre it became my favourite. I adore doom. The emotion it evokes, the atmosphere, the crushing riffs, the variety. So much to offer. Traditional doom, Sludge, Doom/Death, Black/Doom, Funeral Doom I can't get enough.

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