Thumbs up: +15
The title pretty much says it all. This is the strangest of the strange for this year. No albums that just recycle the same old ideas over and over again, no overhyped albums, and no over-commercialized bands. Just albums from the depths of the 12th dimension that sodomize your mind and make you ask what the hell you just heard. Some of these releases can definitely be regarded as "Avantgarde," while others are more rooted in a pre-established sound but just sit very left field within their genre as a whole. Includes some nonmetal and some non-MS albums. Recs are welcome, but keep em strange!
*In order by release date.

Created by: Apothecary | 24.03.2014



1. Alkerdeel - Dyodyo Asema [Collaboration]
What do you get when two of the filthiest projects in existence (the other being Mories' deranged Gnaw Their Tongues) get together for a 20 minute track? The soundtrack to your nightmares. Beware: this is the monster in the closet your parents warned you about. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lYM0ygH_fzk
2. Dahakara - Evil Of All Decades
Turkish instrumental black metal, with a heavy ambient edge. But not "ambient black metal," in the traditional, perhaps "pretty" understanding of the label, this album's very dark, haunting, and surreal. Honestly not too far off base with its delivery, but certainly interesting and unique nonetheless http://dahakara.bandcamp.com/album/evil-of-all-decades
3. Murmur - Murmur
Perhaps not as strange as some other picks on here, but definitely unique for its genre. Aggressive, yet technical black metal, with some jazzy drumming and charismatic clean vocals to top it all off. A very good representation of BM's growing shift towards experimentation and often unexpected fusion with other genres. http://seasonofmist.bandcamp.com/album/murmur
4. Hail Spirit Noir - Oi Magoi
Creepy, trippy, fun as fuck, and in some ways even better than the debut. Digs even deeper into strange psychedelic territory than Pneuma, and I think can at some points definitely be considered as Avantgarde. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oOQhnQerRfo
5. Atomic Ape - Swarm
Led by Estradasphere guitarist Jason Schimmel, this offshoot of the band is a delightful journey through experimental rock landscapes. With a great compositional structure, and featuring a huge amalgamation of instruments including sax, trumpet, bassoon, clavinet, harpsichord, and more, this is fusion at some of its finest. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OcacnPwwe3M
6. Los Random - Pidanoma
Argentinian progressive metal... or is it? No Dream Theater imitation, no djent/mathcore bullshit, these guys challenge the modern understanding of prog metal with force, using eerie spoken word, strange synth effects, and overall random (see what I did there?) song structures to great effect. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N7aDubIslKc
7. Blut Aus Nord - Debemur MoRTi
Described as a cross between The Work Which Transforms God and MoRT, this EP is brief, but still delivers everything you'd expect from the group at this point into their career: dissonant, spine-tingling horror, in its purest form. http://dmp666.bandcamp.com/album/debemur-morti
8. Pryapisme - Blastbit Rococollider
This one's pretty cool because the riffs and melodies going on here SOUND metal, but they're played with a bunch of electronic, digital-esque instruments. If Timothy Leary had composed a soundtrack to a video game, this is probably what it would've sounded like. http://pryapisme.bandcamp.com/album/blastbit-rococollider
9. Current 93 - I Am The Last Of All The Field That Fell: A Channel
The one man experimental project of Englishman David Tibet, this a prog rock feast of a most tasty type. Follows suit with Atomic Ape in regards to its vast array of instrument use: there's organ, sax, bass clarinet, flute, and of course, David's excellent vocals, which have quite the impressive range. https://current931.bandcamp.com/album/i-am-the-last-of-all-the-field-that-fell-uk-version
10. Sunn O))) - Terrestrials [Collaboration]
Sunn O))) and Ulver have both pushed limits within their genres in recent years, both becoming well respected for it, so this joint effort only seems natural. Exactly what you'd expect: the dark, drony atmosphere of Sunn O))) meets the electronic and pyschedelic vibe of modern Ulver. Total daze music. http://sunnulversl.bandcamp.com
11. The Cosmic Dead - Easterfaust
The Cosmic Dead have brough instrumental psychedelic rock back into form in the past few years, albeit with their own signature twist. This new album is a trippy journey through spacey atmospheres, strange layered vocals, and some mellow grooves maaaaan. Turn on, tune, and drop out! http://thecosmicdead.bandcamp.com/album/easterfaust
12. Lux Occulta - Kołysanki
Wait, is this the same Lux Occulta that did Dionysos and My Guardian Anger? Indeed it is. But this album bears little if any resemblance to their pre-established trademarks, and is instead a loosely structured journey through electronic effects, neoclassical guitar, and an almost jazzy element in its tribute to Polish folk music. http://luxocculta.bandcamp.com/album/ko-ysanki
13. Terra Tenebrosa - V.I.T.R.I.O.L. - Purging The Tunnels
According to The Cuckoo, this EP is some leftover stuff from sessions from the previous two albums, hence the title. Explores some more aspects of the bands bizarre personality, with a bit of a different tinge to the vocals, but still eerie and surreal as always, with a great balance between the ambient and harsher elements. http://trilambrecordings.bandcamp.com/releases
14. Cloak Of Altering - Plague Beasts
Come on, it's Mories. If you're expecting any sense of normalcy or musical guidelines here, then shame on you. http://crucialblast.bandcamp.com/album/plague-beasts
15. Surachai - Ritual
Take an alien, have him learn the language of an obscure African tribe, and them have him sing in it while playing a keyboard. Then, play that recording backwards, and that's something close to what you get from this album. Electronic madness. http://surachai.bandcamp.com/
16. Wolves In The Throne Room - Celestite
The Weavers throw a radical curveball at us here with a major departure from their black metal sound, in favor of an instrumental, synth-fueled ambiance accompanied by horns and other effects. The lack of any metal elements in a way makes this release sound somehow more genuine and pure, a full embrace of all the tricks and sounds that gave the band their transcendental edge in the past, and if feels as though it's something the brothers had been wanting to do for a long time.
17. Botanist - VI: Flora
One man eco terrorist hammered dulcimer black metal. As good as it sounds.



Disclaimer: All top lists are unofficial and do not represent the point of view of the MS Staff.
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Comments

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Alex Fenger - 24.03.2014 at 13:36  
I like seeing a year list that actually has descriptions rather than arbitrary scores from 1 - 10. Will definitely be following this
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 13:53  
Wow, you're really milking this "avantgardist" thing a bit

This'll be you after 6 months.

Marcel Hubregtse - 24.03.2014 at 14:23  
Wouldn't call the Alkerdeel Gnaw Their Tongues collaboration avantgarde at all.
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 15:50  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 13:53

Wow, you're really milking this "avantgardist" thing a bit

It won't get overdone because I'm pretty much the only Staffer (maybe Craig a bit too) who has such tastes. And if you really want to blame any one person, blame mz, as he kinda started it with mocking me on that Memoria Vetusta III thread like "The Avantgardist is excited for a generic meloblack album? "
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 15:51  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 15:50

It won't get overdone because I'm pretty much the only Staffer (maybe Craig a bit too) who has such tastes. And if you really want to blame any one person, blame mz, as he kinda started it with mocking me on that Memoria Vetusta III thread like "The Avantgardist is excited for a generic meloblack album? "

Until you renounce BaN's old and inferior ways you will never be a true avantgardist
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 15:52  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 15:51

Until you renounce BaN's old and inferior ways you will never be a true avantgardist

I did put Debemur MoRTi in here, didn't I?
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 15:53  
Written by Marcel Hubregtse on 24.03.2014 at 14:23

Wouldn't call the Alkerdeel Ganw Their Tongues collaboration avantgarde at all.

It's experimental black/sludge/noise, and "experimental" is pretty much synonymous with avantgarde.
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 15:53  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 15:52

I did put Debemur MoRTi in here, didn't I?

John Cage wouldn't accept such a token offering
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 15:56  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 15:53

John Cage wouldn't accept such a token offering

Of course he wouldn't, he's dead.
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 15:57  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 15:56

Of course he wouldn't, he's dead.

For such a spiritual person I'm appalled by your limited vision where death is concerned
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 16:01  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 15:57

Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 15:56

Of course he wouldn't, he's dead.

For such a spiritual person I'm appalled by your limited vision where death is concerned

Did I say he wasn't coming back? Joe, plz, we all know he's floating in the Fifth Bardo among Wrathful Buddhas and the Three Heavenly Jewels at the moment, ready to be reincarnated in the body of your future baby. So when that little guy pops out, ask him what he thinks of this list, first thing.
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 16:03  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 16:01

Did I say he wasn't coming back? Joe, plz, we all know he's floating in the Fifth Bardo among Wrathful Buddhas and the Three Heavenly Jewels at the moment, ready to be reincarnated in the body of your future baby. So when that little guy pops out, ask him what he thinks of this list, first thing.

The most unbelievable part of this sentence is that I will ever have a child haha. Little bastards.
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 16:08  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 16:03

The most unbelievable part of this sentence is that I will ever have a child haha. Little bastards.

But it's not your plan, it's Nirguna Brahman's
(I hope you see what you started with that spiritual comment)
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 16:11  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 16:08

But it's not your plan, it's Nirguna Brahman's
(I hope you see what you started with that spiritual comment)

As long as I don't have to clean up its faeces or take it to the park then I'm fine with that
Marcel Hubregtse - 24.03.2014 at 16:14  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 15:53

and "experimental" is pretty much synonymous with avantgarde.


that's really extremely stretching it.
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 16:15  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 16:11

As long as I don't have to clean up its faeces or take it to the park then I'm fine with that

Of course not, we have these things to do that.
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 16:16  
Written by Marcel Hubregtse on 24.03.2014 at 16:14

Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 15:53

and "experimental" is pretty much synonymous with avantgarde.

that's really extremely stretching it.

Really? What's the difference then?
Marcel Hubregtse - 24.03.2014 at 16:17  
Avantgarde means it's new and crosses and breaks boundaries whereas even though something is epxerimental it doesn't have to be. And tbh I wouldn't even call the Alkerdeel Gnaw Their Tonges cxollaboration experimental either.
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 16:24  
Written by Marcel Hubregtse on 24.03.2014 at 16:17

Avantgarde means it's new and crosses and breaks boundaries whereas even though something is epxerimental it doesn't have to be.

Nah man, I would say there's really no clear demarcation line between the two. For example, I've heard Botanist and The Meads Of Asphodel both referred to as "Experimental black metal," and I've just as equally heard each described as "Avantgarde metal" as well. You said Avantgarde means it's new and crosses/breaks boundaries, but that if something is experimental, it doesn't have to be. I don't really understand this. The very definition of "experimental" is pretty much exactly what you defined Avantgarde as.
Marcel Hubregtse - 24.03.2014 at 16:29  
But there is nothing exprimental or new or boundary breaking/crossing on that Alkerdeel Gnaw Their Tongues release
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 16:32  
Probably the best and most simple sentence to describe the difference:

Quote:
very generally, avant-garde music can be viewed as occupying an extreme position within the tradition, while experimental music lies outside it (Nicholls 1998, 318).



In reality the GTT / Alkerdeel collab is not doing anything that hasn't been done before. It's neither creating new genres or is it really pushing the whole drone / dark ambient ideal in any direction. Just because something is difficult and unpalatable doesn't mean it's instantly experimental or avant-garde.
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 16:39  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 16:32

In reality the GTT / Alkerdeel collab is not doing anything that hasn't been done before. It's neither creating new genres or is it really pushing the whole drone / dark ambient ideal in any direction. Just because something is difficult and unpalatable doesn't mean it's instantly experimental or avant-garde.

What were Ihsahn and Vulture Industries doing in our Avantgarde nominees for last year then, hmm?
Not saying they belonged in there in the first place, but please: where exactly is the standard of weirdness a band must measure up to to be considered as "Avantgarde"? How weird do you have to be? Does it literally need to be something that's never before been heard or thought of, as you implied? Because if that's the case, that would essentially invalidate ALL the albums I've put in here, since all of them have influences from pre-established forms of music in some way or another.
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 16:42  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 16:36

What were Ihsahn and Vulture Industries doing in our Avantgarde nominees for last year then, hmm?
Not saying they belonged in there in the first place, but please: where exactly is the standard of weirdness a band must measure up to to be considered as "Avantgarde"? How weird do you have to be? Does it literally need to be something that's never before been heard or thought of? I've yet to get a solid answer on this from anyone.

If something is distinctly unusual but can be traced back to a specific set of rules and structures (i.e. genre) then it could be considered avant-garde. If, however, its form and style is almost or completely beyond recognition and categorisation then one could call it experimental.

I mean really you couldn't call that Pyrapisme record avant-garde because it's clearly and distinctly chip-tune, and a pretty standard version of it. Much like GTT / Alkerdeel could be found in other bands in a similar way.

You should probably realise that avant-garde music and avant-garde metal are not really the same thing anyway. Avant-garde metal seems to have taken on certain characteristics and genre traits, which is kind of ironic and paradoxical really considering its original definition's implications.
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 16:55  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 16:42

You should probably realise that avant-garde music and avant-garde metal are not really the same thing anyway. Avant-garde metal seems to have taken on certain characteristics and genre traits, which is kind of ironic and paradoxical really considering its original definition's implications.

Agreed. Sometimes I hear proclaimed "Avantgarde black metal" bands or "Avantgarde death metal" and they have more in common with the actual genre than with anything else, so I find myself sitting brain-boggled like "how the hell is this Avantgarde?" Like I said though, I'm not going to get too specific on what qualifications merit an "Avantgarde" definition. And really, if you do, you're just gonna kill yourself thinking "oh no, this band sounds too much like ____, they're not Avantgarde." It's almost IMPOSSIBLE to find a band that's doing something NO OTHER band has done, and that doesn't have some type of prior influence in one way or another. So I'm keeping this list broad. Not to the point of adding in anything ridiculous like Morbus Chron or that Aenaon album, but within a general confine of "this doesn't sound like anything else being put out at the moment." Ya feel me, G?
Marcel Hubregtse - 24.03.2014 at 17:00  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 16:55

Not to the point of adding in anything ridiculous like Morbus Chron ...


You might as well put it in this list since you do have the Alkerdeel Gnaw Their Tongues collaboration listed
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 17:04  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 16:55

Agreed. Sometimes I hear proclaimed "Avantgarde black metal" bands or "Avantgarde death metal" and they have more in common with the actual genre than with anything else, so I find myself sitting brain-boggled like "how the hell is this Avantgarde?" Like I said though, I'm not going to get too specific on what qualifications merit an "Avantgarde" definition. And really, if you do, you're just gonna kill yourself thinking "oh no, this band sounds too much like ____, they're not Avantgarde." It's almost IMPOSSIBLE to find a band that's doing something NO OTHER band has done, and that doesn't have some type of prior influence in one way or another. So I'm keeping this list broad. Not to the point of adding in anything ridiculous like Morbus Chron or that Aenaon album, but within a general confine of "this doesn't sound like anything else being put out at the moment." Ya feel me, G?

In its most literal form avant-garde and experimental are probably closer linked to a temporal concept than it is to a stylistic one because they contain no specific rules and regulations but rather are governed by the time and circumstance in which they appear. In reality you couldn't call that BaN EP avant-garde because you can find pretty much everything there on BaN's The Work.. album, which is over 10 years old now. Avant-garde just seems to be a useful tool to describe certain metal band's playing style, usually when full of dissonance and bands that have a sound are from what people consider comfortable. Doesn't mean it's accurate, but that's semantic change for you
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 17:06  
Written by Marcel Hubregtse on 24.03.2014 at 17:00

Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 16:55

Not to the point of adding in anything ridiculous like Morbus Chron ...

You might as well put it in this list since you do have the Alkerdeel Gnaw Their Tongues collaboration listed

You've bullied me into adding/omitting certain things from my lists before, not this time!
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 17:14  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 17:04

In its most literal form avant-garde and experimental are probably closer linked to a temporal concept than it is to a stylistic one because they contain no specific rules and regulations but rather are governed by the time and circumstance in which they appear. In reality you couldn't call that BaN EP avant-garde because you can find pretty much everything there on BaN's The Work.. album, which is over 10 years old now.

That's pretty much what I was trying to tell Marcel, but good luck with that
As for Blut Aus Nord, I think that EP's comparison to TWWTG doesn't really matter, because they still more or less created that style of playing. For example, you're not going to say a current Mories album isn't Avantgarde because it sounds like one of his previous ones, are you? Even if it does, who cares? If something has enough of a distinction of style and rejection of genre to the point that few (if any) other people are imitating it (which both Debemur MoRTi and TWWTG do), I would consider it as Avantgarde.
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 17:23  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 17:14

That's pretty much what I was trying to tell Marcel, but good luck with that
As for Blut Aus Nord, I think that EP's comparison to TWWTG doesn't really matter, because they still more or less created that style of playing. For example, you're not going to say a current Mories album isn't Avantgarde because it sounds like one of his previous ones, are you? Even if it does, who cares? If something has enough of a distinction of style and rejection of genre to the point that few (if any) other people are imitating it (which both Debemur MoRTi and TWWTG do), I would consider it as Avantgarde.

The problem arises though when bands do start to do the same thing. Take Merzbow for example. He has over 300 albums to his name, virtually all of them noise. There's not much arguing that noise as a concept is about as far from musical convention as one could get but after 300 white noise albums are you still going to call him avant-garde? I personally wouldn't. Mories still displays stylistic variation, especially across his many projects so could still be called an avant-garde musician but calling something avant-garde just because it's dissonant, noisy or unpleasant to 99% of the population isn't necessarily the best way to describe something (even pleasant stuff could be avant-garde I would think). Sometimes it's better to describe the sound and style, rather than where it is as a genre on the spectrum of listenability.
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 17:30  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 17:23

Sometimes it's better to describe the sound and style, rather than where it is as a genre on the spectrum of listenability.

I would suppose it's all about balance then when it comes to judging this originality/Avantgarde factor: judging the album in question against the band's discography as a whole, but also in terms of how it compares against other music in general.
IronAngel - 24.03.2014 at 18:07  
I would just go with "weirder than average" music.

My approach to the ambiguous labels is a little different. Insofar as you really want to say something is experimental or avant-garde (rather than just lumping it conveniently with similar, so-described acts), you ought to look at the method and intention of the artist, and possibly their historical context.

"Experimental" suggests there is some kind of experimentation going on. It doesn't mean it has to flaunt all that's familiar, but it approaches the tools and resources with the purpose of experimenting. If I wanted to see what kind of music I could create by sticking microphones in an anthill, that's clearly an experiment (already done); but if I wanted to take some recent studies on neuropsychology and programming and see if I can use their results to have a computer generate music that appeals to the greatest number of unmusical people on the basis of biological and cultural preferences, that might be just as much of an experiment - despite the fact that it might sound a lot like Kenny G or Elton John. It need not be anything as weird as that: any artist stepping out of their comfort zone to see if they can create something different is experimental for them, and if others recognize it as unusual it could be called "experimental" proper.

"Avant-garde" on the other hand would be something that either considers itself to be at the forefront of progress and intentionally wants to push the envelope, or that is historically recognized as having heralded a new movement. The two overlap a lot, and I am not sure if you can be avant-garde without being at least a little experimental (because, if you're doing something new, you really can't know what you'll come up with before you do the experiment), but there's a clear difference between what the terms convey. I suppose you could also be experimental without being avant-garde if you were experimenting in a very personal sense ("Hey, we're a black metal band but I wonder if we could also do tango") or if you're just combining elements or composing music in a methodical, experimental way without the intention of coming up with any new style of music. ("Hey, I wonder if I could sample Bathory and David Guetta in a pattern that follows the Fibonacci sequence - not that it will ever have wider implications.")


In other news, Current 93 is cool but it's not even "barely metal at all"; to my knowledge, they've never been associated with metal in any personal or accidental, let alone musical way so the description is a bit misleading. Experimental perhaps, but primarily a neofolk/avant-folk band. You should absolutely keep it on your list, of course. They've done better albums, but this has creepy goodness too.
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 18:15  
Written by IronAngel on 24.03.2014 at 18:07

"Avant-garde" on the other hand would be something that either considers itself to be at the forefront of progress and intentionally wants to push the envelope, or that is historically recognized as having heralded a new movement. The two overlap a lot, and I am not sure if you can be avant-garde without being at least a little experimental (because, if you're doing something new, you really can't know what you'll come up with before you do the experiment).

Thanks for the input dude, that's what I was trying to say before basically. I suppose "experimental" could be seen as a little more genre-adhering, but it depends on the circumstances. For example, "experimental black metal" could be (as you suggested) BM that fools around with a few odd instruments and song structures here and there, but still more or less retains the BM core. "Avantgarde" meanwhile, to me, suggests a more randomized composition that either hasn't been heard before, or is extremely rare.
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 18:25  
The problem with adhering to that way of looking at it is that it's not very useful. It's easy to say that someone might "experiment" within music that they create, but that doesn't really apply to a more broad perspective. When Behemoth changed their sound from black to death metal they were experimenting with new things that were unique to them, but you would never regard their post-death metal stuff as experimental music.
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 18:27  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 18:15

"Avantgarde" meanwhile, to me, suggests a more randomized composition that either hasn't been heard before, or is extremely rare.

But that doesn't explain the contents of this list then, which are all relatively conventional when broadly compared
IronAngel - 24.03.2014 at 18:30  
Well, I do not think you can separate the two purely on aesthetic/formal grounds. The exact same piece could be composed independently in 1950 by some frustrated intellectual who wanted to shake the stagnant values and preferences of his time, and by a guy in his bedroom in 2000 wanting to test a cool idea and see how it works. In the former case, it would be avant-garde, whereas in the latter it would just be experimental if even that (depending on whether it has since then become a very conventional style).

I am sure there are other perspectives, but what I was trying to say (and what I think is reasonable) is that we stick to meaning of the words. If you compose a piece with the intention of experiment and see what happens, whether the outcome is noisy and random or harmonious and systematic, you're making "experimental music." If you are intentionally shaking the norms of modern music and society, pushing against the grain, if you want to set the bar for future art, you're at the "avant garde" of music (in your dreams, anyway). Two pieces could sound very similar and still not meet these "intentional" criteria of experimental and avant-garde.

Avant-garde is a somewhat clunky term anyway since it comes from "high culture" and modern/post-modern art criticism, as far as I know. It can apply to some metal artists, but most of them are just dicking around without the ideological context.
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 18:33  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 18:27

Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 18:15

"Avantgarde" meanwhile, to me, suggests a more randomized composition that either hasn't been heard before, or is extremely rare.

But that doesn't explain the contents of this list then, which are all relatively conventional when broadly compared

I told you before I'm keeping this broad. I'm not going to stress myself out asking "does this band sound like any other band in existence?" just because some people say "they're really not doing anything new." You have to look at this from a matter of perspective. I don't care if there are other bands that sound like Blut Aus Nord, Random, Sunn O))), etc: the point is they're few and far between, and the styles that these bands exemplify are still not very widely employed. Can you find me a band that's 100% original and doesn't sound like anything else in existence? I doubt it. This is a guide to the weirder albums of 2014. I thought that would've been clear from the title and description, but apparently not.
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 18:33  
Written by IronAngel on 24.03.2014 at 18:30


Avant-garde is a somewhat clunky term anyway since it comes from "high culture" and modern/post-modern art criticism, as far as I know. It can apply to some metal artists, but most of them are just dicking around without the ideological context.

Well this is generally why avant-garde seems to be a bit of a misnomer within metal as it's acquired certain key, if vague style characteristics. It's become somewhat of a borrowed term to describe a sound that certain bands have.
IronAngel - 24.03.2014 at 18:34  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 18:25

The problem with adhering to that way of looking at it is that it's not very useful. It's easy to say that someone might "experiment" within music that they create, but that doesn't really apply to a more broad perspective. When Behemoth changed their sound from black to death metal they were experimenting with new things that were unique to them, but you would never regard their post-death metal stuff as experimental music.


Yeah. I would say that's one legitimate sense of the term - you could say that they are experimenting with their music, and I would have no qualms about writing that "Behemoth's new album marks an experimental new phase for the band." What counts as "really" experimental with respect to the rest of modern music obviously depends on time and place, so I guess some kind of audience recognition of their new style as entirely unusual, or conventional and just new for them, would determine whether they're called experimental music proper, or not.

I would not use either avant-garde or experimental as "real", substantial genre tags in any case. I use them because they're sometimes convenient, but they are really not comparable to "power metal" or "post-death metal." So really, I don't think it's a problem that the terms remain vague and somewhat unhelpful.
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 18:36  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 18:33

I told you before I'm keeping this broad. I'm not going to stress myself out asking "does this band sound like any other band in existence?" just because some people say "they're really not doing anything new." You have to look at this from a matter of perspective. I don't care if there are other bands that sound like Blut Aus Nord, Random, Sunn O))), etc: the point is they're few and far between, and the styles that these bands exemplify are still not very widely employed. Can you find me a band that's 100% original and doesn't sound like anything else in existence? I doubt it. This is a guide to the weirder albums of 2014. I thought that would've been clear from the title and description, but apparently not.

I'm not disputing that, it's just you added to it by saying that bands like the ones mentioned are "randomized" and extremely rare, which I don't think they are. They're unusual and / or somewhat difficult for that average. I understand that you're using the "avantegarde" trope as more of an affectation here, but the topic of what is and isn't avant-garde did come up and was still in discussion =P
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 18:44  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 18:36

I'm not disputing that, it's just you added to it by saying that bands like the ones mentioned are "randomized" and extremely rare, which I don't think they are. They're unusual and / or somewhat difficult for that average. I understand that you're using the "avantegarde" trope as more of an affectation here, but the topic of what is and isn't avant-garde did come up and was still in discussion =P

It's so hard to define I've virtually given up at this point. The genre founds itself on the idea of its bands experimenting and sounding unalike, so there's no universal standard for which to say "this is what a band has to do to be considered Avantgarde." I changed the title of this list and added in some disclaimers, I hope that'll clear up what I'm trying to accomplish here more.
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 18:49  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 18:44

It's so hard to define I've virtually given up at this point. The genre founds itself on the idea of its bands experimenting and sounding unalike, so there's no universal standard for which to say "this is what a band has to do to be considered Avantgarde." I changed the title of this list and added in some disclaimers, I hope that'll clear up what I'm trying to accomplish here more.

Well that's what I was saying earlier, that it's not really about defining a style, but rather defining what it isn't, and what space in time it's doing it in. Ultimately it's pointless to overthink it because the frames of reference are all disparate, and cross-examination between avant-garde in its other forms with avant-garde within metal seems a little pointless, as avant-garde metal is still working within a metal framework.
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 18:52  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 18:49

Ultimately it's pointless to overthink it because the frames of reference are all disparate, and cross-examination between avant-garde in its original forms with avant-garde within metal seems a little pointless.

I agree, but then you and Marcel did start overthinking it with comparing the bands in here to other ones
Keep it simple: part of the beauty of Avantgarde art to me is that it can't be overanalyzed too much.
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 18:56  
Written by Apothecary on 24.03.2014 at 18:52

I agree, but then you and Marcel did start overthinking it with comparing the bands in here to other ones
Keep it simple: part of the beauty of Avantgarde art to me is that it can't be overanalyzed too much.

Well I kept it pretty simple with my original quote which I still think succinctly sums it up, but you wanted further elaboration
Mr. Doctor - 24.03.2014 at 18:57  
All I can say is... I'm going to fucking laugh when I see Che and Marcel discussing during our Roadburn visit. I should get popcorn.
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 19:00  
Written by Mr. Doctor on 24.03.2014 at 18:57

All I can say is... I'm going to fucking laugh when I see Che and Marcel discussing during our Roadburn visit. I should get popcorn.

Pop-art popcorn, with melting clocks dripping off them but instead of eating them you put them in each other's ear holes whilst citing Codex Seraphinianus in reverse.
Mr. Doctor - 24.03.2014 at 19:02  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 24.03.2014 at 19:00

Written by Mr. Doctor on 24.03.2014 at 18:57

All I can say is... I'm going to fucking laugh when I see Che and Marcel discussing during our Roadburn visit. I should get popcorn.

Pop-art popcorn, with melting clocks dripping off them but instead of eating them you put them in each other's ear holes whilst citing Codex Seraphinianus in reverse.


Can I wear a bunny suit while doing that?

Your post made me think of this.
!J.O.O.E.! - 24.03.2014 at 19:03  
Written by Mr. Doctor on 24.03.2014 at 19:02

Can I wear a bunny suit while doing that?

Yes

Quote:
Your post made me think of this.

Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 19:06  
Written by Mr. Doctor on 24.03.2014 at 18:57

All I can say is... I'm going to fucking laugh when I see Che and Marcel discussing during our Roadburn visit.

I doubt if either of us will get out alive
mz - 24.03.2014 at 21:03  
Hey don't blame me
On a serious note, HSN's album was a little disappointing for me. With their debut, they sounded like a bounch of teens making fun of everything. On Oi Magoi, they are too mature for their own good.
Apothecary - 24.03.2014 at 22:36  
Written by mz on 24.03.2014 at 21:03

On a serious note, HSN's album was a little disappointing for me. With their debut, they sounded like a bounch of teens making fun of everything. On Oi Magoi, they are too mature for their own good.

I'll agree that it's overall more mature than Pneuma, but I wouldn't say too much so for it's own good. I don't know, I guess I just see a more refined sense of songwriting in what you see as "maturity." It feels like they've grounded themselves more. I do admittedly miss the silly humor of Pneuma though, I can agree with you on that. As much as I liked Oi Magoi, I wish there had been some moments on it akin to "KILL YOUR MOTHER WHILE YOU'RE STILL IN HER WOOOOOOMB!"

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