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A form of music that developed in the mid 1980's from thrash. Possessed recorded a song entitled "Death Metal" in 1984, which would appear on their debut album Seven Churches in 1985. Other bands such as Aggression, Death, Necrophagia, Nun Slaughter, Slaughter Lord and even Slayer contributed to the movement. What defined death metal was the fact that it was basically an exaggerated form of thrash--everything from the vocals (which transformed into a mix of growling, grunting and rasping) to the drumming was made harsher and heavier than before. The music itself became somewhat anti-rhythmic, and in some cases experimental (as seen with Darkthrone's Goatlord album, or the modern technicality of Necrophagist). The first bands to really modernize the movement included Autopsy, Cannibal Corpse, the virtually unkown Necrovore, Morbid Angel, Obituary, and Ripping Corpse, among others. Death metal could range from the blood and gore horror imagery of Cannibal Corpse, to the satanic overtones of Deicide, to the political statements carried by Dying Fetus. Some criticize death metal as they feel the musicians do nothing but randomly band their instruments. Nothing could be further from the truth--listen to Morbid Angel's album Covenant, for instance, or Cannibal Corpse's Gore Obsessed, to get a better perspective on the scene.
Older Sepultura is a mix of death metal and thrash metal, commonly referred to as death thrash.
by Goatlord April 30, 2003
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Originally a sub-genre of thrash metal pioneered by Possessed but made better by other band Death and Morbid Angel. The genre involves highly distorted, fast-paced guitars, blast beating drums and vocals that are unintelligible or make lyrics hard to understand.

Today there are several sub-genres of death metal. Technical death metal focuses on having complex leads and song structures. Brutal death metal is all about pushing death metal past the boundaries in speed and aggression. Melodic death metal has higher pitch vocals and melodic guitars. Deathgrind fuses the complexity of death metal with the speed and aggression of grindcore. Death/doom fuses the double bass drumming and growling vocals of death metal and the slow tempo and pessimistic mood of doom metal. And deathcore mixes the gore of death metal with the core of metalcore to get a genre even more gay and worse than metalcore.
Traditional death metal: Death, Morbid Angel, Deicide
Technical death metal: Cryptopsy, Psycroptic, The Faceless
Brutal death metal: Suffocation, Aborted, Dying Fetus
Melodic death metal: In Flames, Dark Tranquillity, At the Gates
Deathgrind: Pig Destroyer, Misery Index, Cattle Decapitation
Death/doom: My Dying Bride, Paradies Lost, Anathema (early)
Deathcore: Bring Me the Horizon, Job for a Cowboy, Suicide Silence

Death metal is the most awesome genre ever. Too bad that everyone else besides 2 other people are scenes who listen to metal/deathcore and would probably melt under the intensity of death metal. I say "GORE NOT CORE" to them.
by I R ROJA February 20, 2009
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Death metal is a subgenre of heavy metal generally involving low tuned guitars played with tremolo picking and many solos, double kick or blast beat drumming techniques, minor keys or atonality, and rapid time signature changes, chromatic chord progressions, and intricate song-writing. Death metal is the most underrated and underappreciated genre in music, with many of the most famous bands full of world class musicians that taught at the most prestigious music schools in the world. The best aspects of every genre of music (new wave of British heavy metal, classical musical, thrash metal, grindcore, black metal and jazz) can be found in death metal albums articulated in a more intelligent and enjoyable manner than in the aforementioned genres. Examples are Atheist's take on jazz, Arghoslent's NWOBHM riffs, Necrophagist's Beethoven-influenced riffs, and Appalling Spawn's grindcore elements. Death metal produces the most thought-provoking and intelligent lyrics of any genre as referenced below.
Guy 1: Why do you think death metal appeals almost exclusively to very intelligent people?
Guy 2: As illuminated in the documentary The Boy With the Incredible Brain, many very high IQ people think in terms of shapes and music that forms shapes. It is not hard to understand why the ebb and flow of death metal riffs appeal almost exclusively to very intelligent people who sense and recognize the shape and contours of the very intricate and highly educated music that is death metal.

Guy 1: What are some death metal songs which shed light not only on natural aspects of the human condition, but more generally on important societal problems directly connected to people's thinking?
Guy 2: Enthralled in Essence (Atheist), Slaughter of Innocence, Demise of the Clone (Suffocation), Mirrors of Reason (Monstrosity), Omnipresent Perception (Beyond Creation), Dethrone the Hypocrites (Anata), Closeminded Failure (Solstice), The Truth About Lies (Krabathor), Lack of Comprehension (Death), Scavenger of Human Sorrow (Death), The Sadistic Motives Behind Bereavement Letters (Arsis) and Shallow Disbelief (Experiment Fear) all have very intelligent messages meeting your requirements.
by Eric Kazinsky February 12, 2015
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Death Metal is a genre of metal composed of blastbeats, crunchy and technical guitar riffs, intricate bass lines, and usually gutteral vocal styles. Death metal uses these all and is uncomprehendable to all people without a musical background. The complexity overloads most peoples minds, they can only settle for simple things like "tappin that ass!!" Death metal is one of the most unapriciated forms of metal because of its complexity and its technicality. This is also the metal that scares preps into thinking metalheads are goths.
Cannibal Corpse, Dying Fetus, Deicide, Napalm Death, Nile, Cattle Decapitation, Bloodbath, and Opeth are all Death Metal bands
by Dauthi November 03, 2006
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A brutal sub-genre of heavy metal. Misplaced anger is often put towards this genre by ignorant people who think jazz is really avant-garde.

Death metal usually includes but is not limited to fast riffage, growling vocals, and blast beats. Modern death metal has some grindcore influence. Yes, it does take talent to vocalize like that. Record yourself "growling" and let's see how professinal you sound.
Death metal bands: Morbid Angel, Severed Savior, Dying Fetus, Misery Index, Massacre, Immolation, Suffocation, Malevolent Creation, Impaled, and many more.

The following band is not death metal: Slipknot. Slipknot is mallcore. Deal with it.
by lover of all heavy metal September 13, 2003
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Actually, Death Metal isn't simply about satan/death/killing ect. Grindcore/death metal masters NAPALM DEATH have had a long history of political statments in thier music. The afformentioned Satan enlightens and brings forth religious ideas and concepts. In reality, Death Metal can be inteligent. However, bands like Obituary and Cannibal Corpse stay true to the no-brains-kill-em-all style, (good fun) but try not to tar all music of one genre with the same brush.
I so wish your thinking power wasn't fueled by ignorance.
by Misery_Emperor. October 15, 2003
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one of the many forms of "extreme metal" alongside genres such as black metal and grindcore, death metal is characterised by heavily downtuned and distorted guitar riffs, extremely fast drumming (drum patterns such as blastbeats are often used, and harsh, guttural low pitched vocals, occasionally alongside high pitched screaming.

death metal comes in many sub-genres: brutal, technical, blackened, melodic, deathcore, etc etc, with the most "mainstream sound" coming from more melodic bands such as in flames or arch enemy.

brutal is a genre that is commonly associated with bands such as cannibal corpse, hate eternal and devourment. this is arguably the most heavy form of death metal with heavily downtuned guitaring, frequent blastbeats and extremely harsh guttural vocals. subject matter ranges from rape to necrophilia and everything in between.

technical/progressive death metal is a subgenre most commonly recognised by its extremely technical guitaring, with frequently changing song structures and uncommon time signatures. Examples include Necrophagist, Cryptopsy and to some extent Opeth.

Blackened death metal is a sort of fusion between death metal and some of the more melodic aspects of black metal, aswell as the subject matter such as satanism, the occult and general evil. Some early influences to the subgenre include deicide, immolation aswell as black metal bands such as marduk, bathory, burzum and mayhem, and prime examples of the subgenre are bands such as Behemoth, belphegor and zyklon.

melodic death metal is a fusion of heavy metal, death metal and other musical genres. The genre includes less harsh vocals although guttural growls are used sometimes, as well as blastbeats and uses downtuned/ distorted guitars less liberally. Started in scandinavia, or more specifically Gothenburg, Sweden, with the first bands that dubbed the genre as the "Gothenburg Sound". Pioneers of the genre are namely in flames and at the gates, and other examples include dark tranquility, amon amarth, arch enemy, entombed and nihilist.

deathcore is a fusion between death metal and "metalcore". As metalcore became more popular thanks to bands such as killswitch engage, other bands began to fuse metalcore already heavy aspects with a more death metal orientated sound; for example job for a cowboy. Many deathgrind bands are confused for deathcore.

deathgrind is a fusion between death metal with certain aspects of grindcore, such as the high pitched screaming, complex song structures and irregular time signatures. Some examples of deathgrind include cephalic carnage, pig destroyer, rotten sound and annotations of an autopsy.

notable death metal albums include:
Cannibal corpse- tomb of the mutilated/gallery of suicide
Arch Enemy-Wages of Sin
Hate Eternal- I, Monarch
Carcass- Necroticism: Descanting the Insolubrious
Deicide- Self Titled
Cephalic Carnage- Conforming to Abnormality
Job For A Cowboy- Doom
Annotations of an Autopsy- Before The Throne Of Infection

and many, many more
by KieranDoyle June 17, 2008
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