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Top ten black metal bands – by Gaye Advert

Gaye Advert pictured above….

1. Gorgoroth

Gorgoroth have had many line up changes and periods when various members were in prison, but their albums have been consistently good over the past 16 years, and their live shows have been pretty spectacular. Recommended track  Sign of an Open Eye.

2. 1349
Named after the year that the plague hit Norway, 1349 are a band from Oslo, formed in 1997, whose music is a total barrage of brain scrambling pure black metal (apart from 2009’s Revelations of the Black Flame, which went off in a more atmospheric direction). Their drummer, Frost, is better known for being in Satyricon, and is possibly the best drummer ever. Hellfire is their best album. Again, an intense experience live. Recommended track ”“ Nathicana.

3. Mayhem
Probably the most notorious band in black metal. Formed in Oslo in 1984, one singer committed suicide, the guitarist was murdered, churches were burned down, and they still managed to come up with the classic album De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas and they still have a punishing tour schedule. Recommended track ”“ Deathcrush.

4. Darkthrone
Formed in 1987, Darkthrone made melodic and necro sounding classic black metal albums until a few years ago when they went in a more punk direction. 1994’s Transilvanian Hunger is a high point. They have refused to play live for many years, and are totally opposed to slick studio techniques and copyists. Recommended track ”“ In the Shadow of the Horns.

5. Ragnarok
Ragnarok formed in 1994 but only the drummer is original, the current line up is only about 2 years old, but they are a good live band and last years Collectors of the King is a cracking album full of good tunes. Recommended track ”“ Resurrection.

Part 2 of Gaye Advert’s top 10 black metal bands (numbers 6 to 10) is here…

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  1. Awesome list, although I wouldn’t have included Ragnarok because Ulver deserve a place in there. Bergtatt and Nattens Madrigal are Black Metal masterpieces!

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  5. What a f***ing old racket! Sounds like someone trying to start a car, magnified by 10,000. Surprised to learn Gaye likes this nonsense… Often see her around at shows of a more stylin’ type. But yes she does do some rather nifty art, and has clearly kept the faith without damaging her legacy on the (generally) tired reunion curcuit.

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  7. Black Metal is one of the most facinating genres of music ever. It constantly evolves, mutates and develops. Here in the UK we are certainly holding our own against the Scandanavians who pioneered the sound all those years ago.

  8. I have a love/hate thing with black metal…I love the aesthetics and the music but hate the tolerance and even promotion of right-wing ideology. I’m not saying all bands and fans are raging nazis, but, y’know, there’s a big ‘complicit via acquiescence’ thing that spoils it for me

    I’ve heard some terrible things about Watain recently concerning their abhorrent treatment of a fan, which is a pity cos I liked their music…

  9. Thanks a lot Gaye for posting this list as for the 1st time I was to listen Black Metal and songs recommended by you were really awesome especially “Sign of an open eye”.

  10. From the descriptions, it seems you are judging by hype/historical context, rather than compositional value. This is a standard list of bands that were relevant 20 years ago, for which anyone now that truly possrsses knowledge about black metal would dismiss with distain and boredom.

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