Deathcore

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Deathcore is an extreme metal fusion genre that combines musical elements of death metal and metalcore and sometimes hardcore punk. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] It makes use of death metal riffs and blast beats, as well as metalcore breakdowns. [6] [7] Deathcore gained most prominence within the southwestern United States, especially Arizona and inland southern California (mostly the Coachella Valley), which are home to many notable bands and various festivals. [8] [9] [10] [11]

Extreme metal is a loosely defined umbrella term for a number of related heavy metal music subgenres that have developed since the early 1980s. It has been defined as a "cluster of metal subgenres characterized by sonic, verbal and visual transgression".

Death metal is an extreme subgenre of heavy metal music. It typically employs heavily distorted and low-tuned guitars, played with techniques such as palm muting and tremolo picking, deep growling vocals, aggressive, powerful drumming featuring double kick and blast beat techniques, minor keys or atonality, abrupt tempo, key, and time signature changes, and chromatic chord progressions. The lyrical themes of death metal may invoke slasher film-stylized violence, religion, occultism, Lovecraftian horror, nature, mysticism, mythology, philosophy, science fiction, and politics, and they may describe extreme acts, including mutilation, dissection, torture, rape, cannibalism, and necrophilia.

Metalcore is a fusion genre combining elements of extreme metal and hardcore punk. The word is a portmanteau of the two genres. Among other styles blending metal and hardcore, such as crust punk and grindcore, metalcore is noted for its use of breakdowns, which are slow, intense passages conducive to moshing. Pioneering metalcore bands—such as Integrity, Earth Crisis, Converge and All Out War all of which had formed by 1991—are described as leaning more toward hardcore, with their style sometimes being called metallic hardcore, whereas later bands—such as Killswitch Engage, All That Remains, Trivium, As I Lay Dying, Bullet for My Valentine, and Parkway Drive—are described as leaning more towards metal. Pantera and Sepultura have been particularly influential to the development of metalcore in the 2000s, which saw many bands in the genre achieve commercial success.

Contents

Characteristics

Deathcore combines death metal characteristics such as blast beats, down-tuned guitars, tremolo picking, and growled vocals with metalcore characteristics such as breakdowns.[ citation needed ] The genre is usually defined by breakdowns and death metal riffs or metalcore riffs played in the usual death metal tuning. [6] [12] Like in other extreme metal fusion genres, deathcore guitarists down-tune their guitars to give their music a heavier sound. Deathcore bands may also employ guitar solos as well. [13] [14] [15] [16] [17] [18]

Death growl voice type

A death growl is a vocal style usually employed by death metal singers but also used in other heavy metal styles, such as metalcore. Death growls are sometimes criticized for their "ugliness". However, the harshness of death growls is in keeping with death metal's abrasive music style and often dark and obscene subject matter. The progressively more forceful enunciation of metal vocals has been noted from heavy metal to thrash metal to death metal.

Electric guitar electrified guitar; fretted stringed instrument with a neck and body that uses a pickup to convert the vibration of its strings into electrical signals

An electric guitar is a guitar that uses one or more pickups to convert the vibration of its strings into electrical signals. The vibration occurs when a guitar player strums, plucks, fingerpicks, slaps or taps the strings. The pickup generally uses electromagnetic induction to create this signal, which being relatively weak is fed into a guitar amplifier before being sent to the speaker(s), which converts it into audible sound.

Low growls and shrieked screams are common vocalizations. [6] [19] Some other techniques that deathcore vocalists have used include what is known as pig squeals. [20] [21] [22] [23] [24] Sung vocals in the genre are rare and most bands seldom if ever use them, but the idea has been experimented with by a few bands such as All Shall Perish (in the song "Awaken the Dreamers") and Oceano (in the song "Incisions"). [25]

Screaming (music) voice type

Screaming is an extended vocal technique that is mostly popular in "aggressive" music genres such as heavy metal, punk rock, and noise music. In heavy metal, the related death growl vocal technique is also popular. Intensity, pitch and other characteristics vary between different genres and different vocalists.

All Shall Perish American deathcore band

All Shall Perish is an American deathcore band from Oakland, California, United States, formed in 2002. Currently, the band is signed to Nuclear Blast and have released four full-length albums through the label. Their latest album, This Is Where It Ends, was released on July 26, 2011.

Oceano is an American deathcore band from Cook County, Illinois. Formed in 2006, the band signed to Earache Records and released their debut album, Depths on April 7, 2009. Their second album, Contagion was released on November 9, 2010. Their fourth album Ascendants was released March 23, 2015. Their most recent album Revelation was released on May 19, 2017. It was their first release with their new label, Sumerian Records.

History

Mitch Lucker of Suicide Silence performing in 2010. Suicide Silence @ Arena Joondalup (12 12 2010) (5273245862).jpg
Mitch Lucker of Suicide Silence performing in 2010.

The term deathcore was first used in reference to the style of music played by New York hardcore punk band N.Y.C. Mayhem in the mid–1980s. [26] By 1996, Nick Terry of Terrorizer magazine wrote: "We're probably going to settle on the term deathcore to describe the likes of Earth Crisis (as well as the more NYHC-ish but still as deathly Merauder)." [27] In spite of this, Antagony [28] [29] and Despised Icon are considered to be the pioneers of deathcore, [30] [31] However, both Antagony and Despised Icon have rejected the label. [29] [32] Nick Vasallo is credited as being the "father of deathcore" due to his work in Antagony and because they formed much earlier than their peers. [33] [34] Embrace the Eternal (1998) by Embodyment and Rain in Endless Fall (1999) by Prayer for Cleansing are known as some of the earliest albums that feature metalcore combined with death metal influences. [35] [36]

Straight Ahead (band)

Straight Ahead was an American straight edge hardcore punk band formed in Queens, New York in 1984, by drummer and vocalist Tommy Carroll, guitarist Gordon Ancis and bassist Tony Marc Shimkin.

<i>Terrorizer</i> (magazine)

Terrorizer is an extreme music magazine published by Dark Arts Ltd. in the United Kingdom. It is released every four weeks with thirteen issues a year and features a "Fear Candy" covermount CD, a twice yearly "Fear Candy Unsigned" CD, and a double-sided poster.

Earth Crisis is an American metalcore band from Syracuse, New York, active from 1989 until 2001, reuniting in 2007. Since 1993 the band's longest serving members are vocalist Karl Buechner, guitarist Scott Crouse, bassist Ian Edwards and drummer Dennis Merrick. Their third guitarist Erick Edwards joined the band in 1998.

Decibel magazine wrote that death metal band Suffocation were one of the main inspirations for the genre's emergence by writing: "One of Suffocation's trademarks, breakdowns, has spawned an entire metal subgenre: deathcore." [37]

Decibel is a monthly heavy metal magazine published by the Philadelphia-based Red Flag Media since October 2004. Its sections include Upfront, Features, Reviews, Guest Columns and the Decibel Hall of Fame. The magazine's tag-line is currently "Extremely Extreme" ; the editor-in-chief is Albert Mudrian.

Suffocation (band) American death metal band

Suffocation is an American death metal band formed in 1988 in Centereach, New York. The band consists of lead guitarist Terrance Hobbs, bassist Derek Boyer, rhythm guitarist Charlie Errigo, and drummer Eric Morotti. Suffocation rose to prominence of death metal and created a blueprint for the genre for the 1990s with their 1991 debut album Effigy of the Forgotten, and have released eight studio albums since formation. The band's raw death metal style uses growled vocals with a downtuned guitar sound, fast and complex guitar riffs and drumming, open chord notes, breakdowns, and a sophisticated sense of songwriting.

Deathcore also began to gain moderate popularity in the late 2000s (specifically 2006 and 2007). Notable bands that brought the genre in the highlight include Bring Me the Horizon and Suicide Silence. Suicide Silence's No Time to Bleed peaked at number 32 on the Billboard 200, number 12 on the Rock Albums Chart and number 6 on the Hard Rock Albums Chart, [38] while their album The Black Crown peaked at number 28 on the Billboard 200, number 7 on the Rock Albums Chart and number 3 on the Hard Rock Albums Chart. [38] After its release, Whitechapel's album This Is Exile sold 5,900 in copies, which made it enter the Billboard 200 chart at position 118. [39] Their self-titled album peaked at number 65 on the Canadian Albums Chart [40] and also at number 47 on the Billboard 200. [41] Their third album A New Era of Corruption sold about 10,600 copies in the United States in its first week of being released and peaked at position number 43 on the Billboard 200 chart. [42] Furthermore, Bring Me the Horizon won the 2006 Kerrang! Awards for Best British Newcomer after they released their 2006 debut record Count Your Blessings . [43] However, Bring Me the Horizon abandoned the deathcore genre after the release of this album. [44] San Diego natives Carnifex, witnessed success with their first album Dead in My Arms , selling 5,000 copies with little publicity. On top of their non-stop touring and methodical songwriting resulted in Carnifex quickly getting signed to label Victory Records. [45] Lastly, Australian deathcore band Thy Art Is Murder debuted at number 35 on the ARIA Charts with their album Hate (2012) [46] making them the first metal band to ever reach the Top 40 of this chart. [47]

Bring Me the Horizon British rock band

Bring Me the Horizon, often abbreviated BMTH, are an English rock band from Sheffield, South Yorkshire. Formed in 2004, the group now consists of vocalist Oliver Sykes, guitarist Lee Malia, bassist Matt Kean, drummer Matt Nicholls and keyboardist Jordan Fish. They are signed to RCA Records globally and Columbia Records exclusively in the United States. The style of their early work, including their debut album Count Your Blessings, has been described primarily as deathcore, but they started to adopt a more eclectic style of metalcore on later albums. Furthermore, their fifth album That's the Spirit marked a shift in their sound to less aggressive rock music styles. In addition, their sixth album Amo saw a shift into different genres, such as electronica, pop and hip hop.

Suicide Silence American deathcore band

Suicide Silence is an American deathcore band from Riverside, California. The band formed in 2002, and has released five full-length studio albums, one EP, and eleven music videos. They have received a fair amount of praise, being awarded the Revolver Golden God award for "Best New Talent" in 2009. The group currently consists of guitarists Chris Garza and Mark Heylmun, drummer Alex Lopez, bassist Dan Kenny, and vocalist Hernan "Eddie" Hermida.

<i>No Time to Bleed</i> album by Suicide Silence

No Time to Bleed is the second studio album by American deathcore band Suicide Silence. It was released on June 30, 2009 through Century Media Records. The album was released in five different editions; the standard version, the Exclusive Hot Topic Edition, the iTunes edition, the vinyl edition, and the Maximum Bloodshed Edition. Upon its release, it debuted at number 32 on the Billboard 200, selling 14,001 copies in the United States alone. It is Suicide Silence's most critically acclaimed album and was re-released as No Time to Bleed: Body Bag Edition on July 1, 2010, little over a year after the record's original pressing. This is also the first release to feature Dan Kenny on bass.

A variety of deathcore bands experimented with other genres into their music as influence as time went by. For example, early material by the band Fallujah was described as carrying deathcore and black metal influence respectively. [48] On the other hand, Emmure has been credited to be heavily influenced by nu metal [49] and was described as "the new Limp Bizkit". [50]

Criticism

Despised Icon is often regarded as one of deathcore's founding bands. Despised icon.jpg
Despised Icon is often regarded as one of deathcore's founding bands.

Deathcore has been criticized and looked down upon, especially by longtime fans of some other heavy metal subgenres. The reason for it is often its fusion of death metal with metalcore and use of breakdowns. [23] [24] [51] [52]

In addition to this, members of certain deathcore bands do not take a liking to being labeled "deathcore". In an interview with vocalist Vincent Bennett of The Acacia Strain about the deathcore label, he said "Deathcore is the new nu-metal. [...] It sucks. And if anyone calls us 'deathcore' then I might do something very bad to them." [53] While in an interview with Justin Longshore from Through the Eyes of the Dead about the deathcore label, he said "You know, I really hate that term. I know we've been labeled as that but I think there's so much more to our music than just a mixture of death metal and hardcore ( sic ) even though we incorporate those elements in our music. To me it seems that is just the new and fresh thing that kids are following." [54]

In November 2013, Terrorizer wrote "The term ‘deathcore’ is usually seen as a dirty word in metal circles" while interviewing vocalist Bryce Lucien of the Texas-based metal band Seeker. Lucien then stated: [55]

Much like what became of metalcore in the mid-2000s, deathcore is an often maligned term that can instantly diminish a bands credibility. What once conjured images of ridiculously brutal, unapologetically heavy bands like Ion Dissonance and The Red Chord now brings to mind bands full of twenty-year-olds sporting throat tattoos, matching black t shirts, and trying desperately hard to look tough while they jump in sync onstage.

In contrast, there seems to be bands that appear to be more lighthearted and less concerned over being described as deathcore. Scott Lewis of the San Diego-based deathcore band Carnifex started "We're not one of those bands trying to escape the banner of deathcore. I know a lot of bands try and act like they have a big problem with that, but if you listen to their music, they are very 'deathcore.' I know that there is a lot of resentment towards deathcore and kind of younger bands." [56] Also, in a 2012 interview, former Chelsea Grin guitarist Jake Harmond said: "Everyone likes to flap their jaw and voice their own opinion how 'embarrassing' it is to be in a band that can be labeled 'deathcore,' but honestly we have never given a fuck." [57]

See also

Related Research Articles

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The Acacia Strain American deathcore band

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Despised Icon Canadian deathcore band

Despised Icon is a Canadian deathcore band from Montreal, Quebec. Formed in 2002, the band is noted for the talent of its drummer, Alex Pelletier, whom makes frequent use of the blasting technique, as well as for its dual lead vocalists; Alex Erian and Steve Marois. Erian takes use of a mid-range growl technique while Marois performs high-pitched fry shrieks, deeper growled vocals and pig squeals.

<i>Count Your Blessings</i> (Bring Me the Horizon album) album

Count Your Blessings is the debut studio album by the English rock band Bring Me the Horizon. Recorded at DEP International Studios in Birmingham with producer Dan Sprigg, it was originally released in the United Kingdom on 30 October 2006 by Visible Noise. The album was later issued by Earache Records in the United States on 14 August 2007. Count Your Blessings was supported by the release of music videos for two of the album's tracks: "Pray for Plagues" on 4 June 2007 and "For Stevie Wonder's Eyes Only (Braille)" on 6 March 2008.

Winds of Plague band that plays punk rock

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<i>The Ills of Modern Man</i> album by Despised Icon

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Whitechapel (band) American deathcore band

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Carnifex (band) American deathcore band

Carnifex is an American deathcore band from San Diego County, California. Formed in 2005, they are currently signed to Nuclear Blast after having been signed to Victory Records. They have released six full-length albums and three EP's.

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Infant Annihilator are an English/American deathcore group based in Hull, East Yorkshire. The band was formed in 2012 by drummer Aaron Kitcher and guitarist Eddie Pickard. They are known for their technical, eclectic, parodistic, and brutal musical style; satirically graphic lyrical content and shock humour; and music videos that feature ribald themes. While members Pickard and Kitcher are England natives, their vocalist position has always been taken by an American. Their original vocalist Dan Watson recorded with the band via sending his vocals over the internet to the members, and their debut album with Watson was released in late 2012. However, the band recorded with their second vocalist in the same room. Their second album The Elysian Grandeval Galèriarch was recorded and mixed by Jesse Kirkbride at his home studio Kirkbride Recordings and was released in 2016.

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