SMT/ATF Episode 1: Greece

This is the article that started the whole series. I can’t remember exactly when it was originally posted, but I know the “first season” lasted for 12 episodes, one every week, all the way to the last week of 2011. I left the text unedited, even if it doesn’t make much sense out of the SMT context. I may come back and alter stuff if I find a serious reason for that, but for now this is enough…
–Tragon

 

This is an article about the weird cases of metal (and not only) music: those who were behind the scenes, never really getting as much of a hype but having a magnitude of their own, trying a different path and even pushing the envelope.

Big K gave me the idea for this article when he recently answered to some band and brought forth the issue of similarity and homogenization of today’s music. I personally feel that most modern bands don’t have a character. Over 90% of metalcore bands play the exact same things, are inspired by the exact same band(s) and if you make a compilation with a song from each one and put it in shuffle you can’t really tell which band is playing at any moment. Hopefully someone around these waters will find new inspiration in the following bands and, why not, invent a brand new genre…

 

Let’s take a closer look at Necromantia: a band that was formed by bassists and insisted on using distorted 8-string bass instead of guitars, or using whatever instrument they saw fit to create their atmospheres, even saxophones! They created some awesome black metal unlike anything you might have heard before. I think the first song I ever heard from them was “Spiritforms of the Psychomancer” but the song that still haunts me to this day is “The Arcane Light of Hecate”. Make sure to listen just after 2:25…

 

On Thorns I Lay is one of those bands that couldn’t sit too long in one genre. They started as eerie melodic death metal, close to the sound of Septic Flesh, but later they explored the waters of alternative metal mixing in some strings, with much success…

 

Ever thought what Septic Flesh would sound like if you strip them from all their –trademark– melodic death metal? Chaostar is a project of S.F. members doing exactly that. This is cinema material peeps!

 

Another band that has gone to great lengths but still remains a hidden treasure for a lot of people is Acherontas (formerly known as Stutthof). Their powerful and melodic black metal meshes well with the occult, promoting wampyrism and ancient Egyptian myths the proper way (THUNDERS and HAWKS and Ks and Js, you see what I did there). “Tat Tvam Asi” was just the –new– beginning…

 

One of the weirdest Hellenic acts is of course Daemonia Nymphe, who set to recreate the lost pagan music of ancient Greece. They created actual representations of the instruments the ancients used and released some of the most amazing music I have ever witnessed. It is no wonder that they are still unknown to the majority of Christian population of Greece, even after a lot of well-known singers (like Alkinoos Ioannides) participated in their songs, but they are respected by black metal fans all over the country (so much that Lord Impaler even made a tribute song to them called “Hymn To The Nymphe”), both because they are true and of course their origins…

 

So, what is the weird side of metal music in your countries?

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One thought on “SMT/ATF Episode 1: Greece

  1. This is like coming home! I thank you for putting this up again.
    I remember this series with pleasure, I just wished I had my original comments at hand. It would be funny to see what my thoughts was back then. My musical horizon was expanded to the extreme back then. From hardly listening to Black Metal, to now reviewing the genre. I can’t believe how my music taste has totally transformed and I thank YOU for that, you opened my ears to black metal. I clearly remember my first interaction with you, I complained about the length of Lord Impalers songs and that they might not appeal to a broader audience due to the that said length and the many transitions. I’ve since covered an 11 hours long song, not once, but twice in one session. All thanks to you!
    Enough of my ramblings, now I’m going to enjoy your recommendations again!

    Liked by 1 person

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