ABC of Metal Part 3 of 3

Nu Metal

ABC of Metal Part 2 of 3(2014)  From the mid-90s to about 2003, Nu Metal was the world's leading hype in rock and metal. It is due to it that after the less successful 90s new metal fans got into heavy music by discovering bands like Korn, Slipknot and Limp Bizkit. Nu Metal combines elements of metal with hip hop, which is reflected particularly in the rhythm, and Grunge, Industrial and Alternative. Bands around the turn of the millennium became increasingly more pop. Even though the word "Metal" is featured in new "Nu Metal" it must be said that this style lacks many elements of traditional metal. Almost never will you hear a guitar solo in a nu-metal song, even though the songs are very guitar-oriented. Also, the rhythm and a very demanding and versatile drumming is much more important than in the past with bands like Slayer, Motorhead or Judas Priest. Even if the Nu Metal was an extremely successful Metal genre, it could never really gain a foothold in Metal. Nu Metal was more of a mainstream music, although many bands like Coal Chamber, Downthesun, Spineshank or 40 Below Summer never reached the big breakthrough. The thrash metal band Machine Head changed their style quite abruptly in 1998 to Nu Metal and released a fairly successful album with "The Burning Red", which was received controversial by many old fans. It was easier for industrial metal band Fear Factory, whose two nu-metal albums "Obsolete" and "Digimortal" represent their most successful works. After or even during the trend many bands changed their musical style. Papa Roach developed gradually to a straight forward rock band, Lostprophets played pop-ladden Alternative Rock with their third album"Liberation Transmission" and Linkin Park opened towards electronic music.
10 important albums:

Progressive Metal:

Progressive Metal is a more sophisticated way of playing of Heavy Metal and takes influences from Progressive Rock and bands like Rush, Genesis or Pink Floyd. In addition to challenging and often quite long songs, also the mood and atmosphere of the song - or the entire album, if it is a concept album, which is quite typical for this genre - are very important. The instrumentation in Progressive Metal is quite versatile and definitely very demanding for the musician himself. This is also the main criterion to put a band into the progressive metal genre. In addition, it can be experimented in progressive metal since the genre boundaries are not quite as tight as they are in other styles. Bands like Queensryche, Dream Theater, Fates Warning or Crimson Glory even experienced small to medium sized successes. Especially Queensryche achieved even gold and platinum awards with their demanding, yet radio-friendly sound. 1990 album "Empire" even reached triple platinum status for more than three million units sold in the United States. Progressive Metal influenced other genres such as Death Metal. Opeth have found their own niche between Death Metal and Progressive. The Swedes Meshuggah work a lot with intricate rhythms and expansive songs, but never forget the heavyness. The thrash metal band Metallica has always had a number of complex songs on their albums. An offshoot of the Progressive Metal is Mathcore which descrbies very technical and complex Metalcore or Hardcore. Bands like The Dillinger Escape Plan, Converge or Botch are examples for this genre whose short songs expel much aggression and technical finesse. More recently bands like Between The Buried And Me or Mastodon could stir up a lot of dust, even though these two groups came from the (technical) Metalcore or the Sludge.
10 important albums:

Thrash Metal:

Thrash Metal is probably one of the most popular and most successful varieties of Metals. Bands like Metallica, Slayer, Anthrax, Megadeth, Pantera or Testament were all quite successful. Thrash metal emerged in the early 1980s in Southern California by the surroundings of the band Metallica, which involved bands like Megadeth, Slayer and Exodus through lineup changes. Thrash Metal was influenced by bands such as Motörhead, Iron Maiden, Mercyful Fate, Venom, or even the punks Sex Pistols. In the 80s, particularly Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer and the New York band Anthrax were able to achieve significant commercial success. Therefore, these four band are also called the "Big 4". But groups like Exodus, whose debut "Bonded By Blood" is regarded as one of the Thrash Metal classics, Testament, Overkill, Annihilator or Forbidden released genre classics. In Germany Thrash was not long in coming and Kreator, Destruction and Sodom are regarded as the top three of German Thrash Metal. In Brazil two bands formed who also kicked up the thrash scene in the form of Sepultura and Sacrofago. Sepultura struck into mainstream in 1996 with their album "Roots" - if only very briefly. They could not match up however with the success of Groove Metal band Pantera. Their album "Far Beyond Driven" was the most brutal album to enter at # 1 on the U.S. Billboard charts until then and maybe even to this day. At the time, the Big 4 have, however, already gone more mainstream and Metallica with their self-titled album released not a thrash album, but one of the most successful rock / metal albums of all time. This was followed by two solid hard rock albums in the '90s. At the time Slayer found back to heavyness by adding a significant hardcore influence to their music. Megadeth and Anthrax pursued a similar path as Metallica and were now more likely part of the Heavy Metal genre than thrash metal, even if the last albums of the bands represented a return to old deeds. In recent years, a thrash revival came on that joins 80s Thrash with Hardcore/Punk. Bands like Municipal Waste, Toxic Holocaust and Gama Bomb are becoming increasingly popular.
10 important albums:

Text by © Berning and Eschenbach