Black metal. The most controversial of all the metal subgenres. Be it arson, national-socialistic views, suicide and even murder—black metal has seen it all. Yet amidst the craziness of the 90s and the (largely) Norwegian 2nd wave scene, there has been a certain staleness that has crept into the music. Satan just isn’t as cool, nor as much of a figure of defiance as he used to be. In that sense, black metal is having a bit of an identity crisis and it’s perhaps a fitting time to ask ourselves what black metal really is—from a more philosophical point of view. In this introduction/interview series we’ll be taking a look at some bands that are taking the idea of black metal and doing something fresh with it. At the end we may find some conclusions, but experience suggests we’ll just end up with more questions.Continue reading
Folk metal has a tendency to be an insular, European-centric genre, particularly so at the intersection of folk and black metal. But looking past the acts that have gained mainstream attention yields many and sundry iterations of folk metal as diverse as the cultures across the world that make them. Since 2008, Saudi Arabia’s AlNamrood have blended black metal’s staunch anti-religion focus and dark aggression with the folk melodies and instruments of their native Middle Eastern home. Ahead of the release of their newest album, 10 Years of Resistance, AlNamrood’s vocalist Humbaba was gracious enough to answer our set of Profile questions. Read on below the cut.