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EXPERIMENTAL/POST METAL

A Progressive Rock Sub-genre


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Experimental/Post Metal definition



Experimental Progressive Metal

Experimental progressive metal is a sub-genre of progressive metal characterized by the incorporation of innovative, eclectic elements, large-scale experimentation and the use of non-standard and unconventional sounds, instruments, song structures, playing styles, and vocal techniques. Experimentation in the music is a major criteria to define the genre where artists often add unique elements to the overall sound, while progressive metal usually has more focus on traditional metal instrumentation and higher levels of technical complexity.

It's nearly impossible to pinpoint the exact origin of Experimental Progressive Metal since experimentation is common in all music genres. Still it is clear that experimentation in the progressive metal sub-genre has slowly but steadily grown in popularity ever since its humble beginnings in the early 1980s.

Just like any other style, Experimental Progressive Metal has a few defining moments that have changed the rules for its sub-genre for years to come. Two of such moments are the releases of the debut album by MR.BUNGLE of August 1991 and its iconic follow up "Disco Volante" of 1995. MR BUNGLE became notorious for their heavy sound and mid-song shifts of musical style. The band has later spawned an array of established avant-garde side projects such as FANT‘MAS, SECRET CHIEFS 3 and ESTRADASPHERE but also inspired new Experimental Metal acts to take the music scene to new heights.
Another crucial artist in the development of Experimental Progressive Metal was the leading Avant Metal band of the 80s, CELTIC FROST. Their eclectic mix of Thrash, Doom, Symphonic and Goth Metal created a dark theatrical mystique that became a major influence among the experimental Extreme Metal bands of the 90s such as MY DYING BRIDE, ULVER, ARCTURUS among others. These bands served as an important source of inspiration for the experimental movement within extreme metal.

The bands listed under Experimental Progressive Metal have all, in various degrees, shed their extreme heritage in favor of embracing influences of the eclectic style going from art rock and ethnic up to free-jazz and even modernist music.

Art Metal
Art metal is a direct continuation of progressive metal but with the longing to expand the themes and styles of music while maintaining the technical complexity of the sub-genre.
These bands are more artistic than their progressive metal peers and tend to experiment, to a certain extent, but not as openly as the bands of the eclectic and avant-garde metal styles. Art metal comes in many shapes and forms. The virtuosity and complete unpredictability of DEVIN TOWNSEND, OSI and TOOL always manages to draw attention of both fans of traditional metal as well as the progressive music audience, while bands like ANATHEMA, DEADSOUL TRIBE and GORDIAN KNOT attract many fans of groove and atmospheric music into their vibrant soundscapes. Other notable acts include GREEN CARNATION, DARK SUNS and ANTIMATTER.

Eclectic Metal
These bands often add unconventional elements to their metal sound, whether it's experiments with various new sounds and styles that are otherwise uncommon in metal or by blending many styles, with metal being the referential core. Whether it's the ethnic elements of ORPHANED LAND's music that combines Middle Eastern folklore with the more traditional progressive metal sound or a completely unique mix of atmospheric, almost ambient, elements fused with metal that can be found in the sound of THE GATHERING, eclectic metal artists will always certainly bring a host of different styles and ideas to the table. Experimental metal can be found in numerous forms while featuring notable acts like INDUKTI, IN THE WOODS... and MAUDLIN OF THE WELL.

Avant-garde Metal
This style is generally considered to be more extreme in both its arrangements but most importantly extremely complex and unpredictable song structures. Compositions have the ambition of trying to breach boundaries of music and generally have significant experimental approaches to metal music. Most of this music borders on the realms of pure avant-garde while still maintaining a solid foundation in metal with technical instrumental prowess. Notable acts include UNEXPECT, EPHEL DUATH and VIRUS.


Post Metal

Post metal arose following the subsequent emergence of numerous newer, grittier metal genres like sludge, stoner, doom, and drone in the late 80's and early 90's, as well as the budding post-rock scene that emerged in the early 90's in Europe and North America. The scene's origins can be heard in several distinctly like-minded, moderately experimental groups in the early 90's, ranging from the noisy grind of GODFLESH, the sludgy, melodic, sometimes punk-like riffs of the MELVINS, and the proggy time signatures and grungy riffing of TOOL or HELMET, to the textural work of DON CABALLERO and the more melodic moments of early BARK PSYCHOSIS.

Arguably the first true and definitive realizations of post-metal emerged in the mid 1990's. The most concrete example was NEUROSIS, who moved farther away from their crust-punk origins and into more atmospheric territories with releases like Souls at Zero and Through Silver in Blood, the latter album in particular being regarded as one of the most definitive releases in the genre even to this day for its revolutionary blend of dark, spanning atmosphere and massively heavy sludge, something that would later come to define the post-metal genre as a whole (indeed, post-metal is often called "atmospheric sludge" as well). It wouldn't be until the early 2000's, however, that the genre's capacity would be fully realized, with releases like ISIS's "Oceanic", CULT OF LUNA's "Salvation", and PELICAN's "Australasia" paving the way for a true scene to emerge, and post-metal has since become a widespread phenomenon that has captivated the attention of many adventurous listeners worldwide.

Post-metal's unique sound is often very long and extremely drawn-out, utilizing oft-repetitive and simple riffs and guitar texturing to create massive buildups and musical climaxes. At times very emotionally evocative, it can be equally soft and soothing as it can be massively dense and crushing. Vocals are used sparingly, if at all (instrumental post-metal is a popular genre, with groups like PELICAN and RUSSIAN CIRCLES even achieving some degree of mainstream credibility), and when they are, they're usually gruff and barked as opposed to growled or screamed, a signature trait of the genre's hardcore roots.

Variations of Post-metal

While it should be noted that many post-metal bands have their roots in sludge metal, there are many post-metal bands that are rooted in other genres of metal. While post-sludge was an almost uniquely American phenomenon, a number of European doom-influenced post-metal bands have risen to fame, namely groups like ANATHEMA, YEAR OF NO LIGHT and CALLISTO; their slow-churning riffs and depressing mood of doom metal fit very well into the post-metal formula. These groups later gave way to more western post-doom-metal projects like JESU, GIANT SQUID, and MINSK.

A number of post-metal bands are significantly influenced by hardcore and post-hardcore, crafting the melodic elements of modern hardcore into their own brands of textural and atmospheric post-metal. This is exemplified by groups like ROSETTA, THE OCEAN COLLECTIVE, CAVE IN, MOUTH OF THE ARCHITECT and BURST.

A subgenre that has emerged to a considerable degree in the last decade is an amalgamation of post-rock and black metal. Black metal has traditionally not been a stylistic influence on post-metal over the years, but bands like ALCEST, FEN, AGALLOCH and ALTAR OF PLAGUES have used the more atmospheric qualities of black metal and the tremolo riffing and incorporated it with a shoegaze-like affinity for heavy, dreamy sounds and guitar effects to create a unique and evocative subgenre that shares many visional and sonic characteristics of post-metal. While the explosion of bands exploring this style is a rather recent phenomenon, there are some instances of this occurring very early in the lifespan of the post-metal genre as a whole. ULVER's debut could be seen as possibly the first album to fall under this definition. For clarification's sake, these post-rock influenced bands are placed in the post-metal subsection of ProgArchives as opposed to the black metal subsection of Tech/Extreme because they eschew much of the harsh tonalities, minor modes, and shrieking vocals of black metal and add a melodic and emotional aspect that makes it much more accessible than their progressive black metal peers in the tech/extreme section.

Today, the most popular post-metal groups are much of the genre's godfathers like ISIS, NEUROSIS, PELICAN, and CULT OF LUNA, though a number of newer bands have risen to fame in metal and prog circles within the last 5 years like INTRONAUT, ROSETTA, and THE OCEAN COLLECTIVE.


--- Definition by Alex and Kevin and the Progressive Metal Team, February 2012 ---

The Progressive Metal Team are: (9/10/2023)
Gordy
Cristi
Sebastian (Kempokid)
Brendan (Necrotica)

Experimental/Post Metal Top Albums


Showing only studios | Based on members ratings & PA algorithm* | Show Top 100 Experimental/Post Metal | More Top Prog lists and filters

4.22 | 1699 ratings
LATERALUS
Tool
4.22 | 751 ratings
PART THE SECOND
Maudlin Of The Well
4.27 | 172 ratings
IMAGINARY SONICSCAPE
Sigh
4.42 | 64 ratings
KHAOOOHS & KON-FUS-ION
Pan.Thy.Monium
4.20 | 425 ratings
THE MANTLE
Agalloch
4.18 | 708 ratings
TERRIA
Townsend, Devin
4.19 | 340 ratings
BATH
Maudlin Of The Well
4.16 | 752 ratings
JUDGEMENT
Anathema
4.14 | 640 ratings
ZILTOID THE OMNISCIENT
Townsend, Devin
4.18 | 214 ratings
THROUGH SILVER IN BLOOD
Neurosis
4.15 | 361 ratings
LEAVING YOUR BODY MAP
Maudlin Of The Well
4.18 | 174 ratings
SOMEWHERE ALONG THE HIGHWAY
Cult Of Luna
4.14 | 378 ratings
LIGHT OF DAY, DAY OF DARKNESS
Green Carnation
4.58 | 28 ratings
ALBA - LES OMBRES ERRANTES
Hypno5e
4.24 | 93 ratings
SOULS AT ZERO
Neurosis
4.41 | 43 ratings
FEA JUR
Lye By Mistake
4.13 | 283 ratings
PANOPTICON
Isis
4.24 | 77 ratings
WRITTEN IN WATERS
Ved Buens Ende
4.07 | 1034 ratings
∆NIMA
Tool
4.09 | 382 ratings
THE DEVIN TOWNSEND BAND: SYNCHESTRA
Townsend, Devin

Experimental/Post Metal overlooked and obscure gems albums new


Random 4 (reload page for new list) | As selected by the Experimental/Post Metal experts team

AND BLOOD WAS PASSION
Zebulon Pike
IN A FLESH AQUARIUM
Unexpect
BLESSED ARE THE BONDS
Pax Cecilia, The
METRIDIUM FIELDS
Giant Squid

Latest Experimental/Post Metal Music Reviews


 Alba - Les ombres errantes by HYPNO5E album cover Studio Album, 2018
4.58 | 28 ratings

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Alba - Les ombres errantes
Hypno5e Experimental/Post Metal

Review by arymenezes

5 stars HYPNO5E - ALBA ? Les hombres errantes

This review makes some general observations on the album, and henceforth comments track by track.

My first observation is about something I truly admire on a band: their ability to make an album different from their usual style. "Alba" is a symphonic prog effort, sometimes pastoral, sometimes eclectic. Radically distinct from their other releases, that are experimental/post metal.

There's this good distribution and precise amount of narration and singing, most of the part in english. But you'll also get plenty of spanish and french, and they do it splendidly, as on their previous works. But this time there's no screaming or throat singing anywhere, what is occasionally done on the other albums. With great sensitivity and maturity, the instruments give space to each other and to the vocals. Therefore, you can clearly here the notes and harmonies. The mood is very good or even brilliant on all compositions. The first track begins with acoustic guitar, narrations, and what seems as a cross between theremin and citar; maybe it's generated by a combination of charango and acoustic guitar, and/or by sound engineering. An amazing sound. When vocalist starts to sing, it's in english; not so incredible. The execution has a cadence that allows the listener to follow and absorb each note. A penetrating female lament appears. 7,5/10.

Spanish vocals introduce next track. The rythym is not so absorbing and memorable, it even gets a little repetitive. But singing is very intense. A fabulous tune on acoustic guitar is performed on the middle of the song. The end of the track presents a gloomy mood with narration in french. 6,5/10.

Third track has 2min. Develops smooth and slow tunes on the piano, and what seems some slide effects on guitar. Goes very deep on my heart. 9,5/10.

Track 4 presents what seems to be a double bass, with low/strong tones. An acoustic guitar with a metallic sound dialogues to a fabulous feminine narration, in spanish. Seems to evoke painful memories. When the second acoustic guitar comes along, they undertake a stimulating rythym. Unexpected changes of harmonies and tones happens, on all instruments. Drums here have more density and accelaration. 9/10.

Next track is not so creative and amusing as the two previous, and doesn't seem to fit very well as a continuation of the album. Considering the fact that this disc has an extention of 74 min, if this track was excluded (or properly edited/summarized and included on the previous track) it would maybe work better. 6/10.

What astonishing harmonies are performed on 6th track! It's even hard to describe, but I guarantee that you'll hear many switches, without startles, of harmonies and cadences. I can also add that they use all the string acoustic instruments, and their technique is at its peak on this part of the disc. The english vocals are even better. All this together, with a melancholic narration in spanish, doesn't let me no doubts that it deserves 10.

A latin flavour is present on 7th track. A gentle harmony, and measured notes make this 3min composition a counterpoint to the introspective and melancholic tone of many previous snippets. 7,5/10.

Next track sounds kind of post-rock. Some beatiful phrases on acoustic guitar, and an evolving drumming and singing delivers a pleasant mood to this song. 8/10.

Mixing electroacoustic music with acoustic guitar, the brief 9th track presents another facet of the band's creative qualities. 8,5/10.

Last track is the longest of the album. The introduction is performed only with an acoustic guitar and vocals. It's a bit repetitive and confusing. When some layers are added with other instruments, the phrasings and harmonies get a little better. From halfway onwards, acoustic guitar and drums get repetitive again. The end of this composition looks like another track. Making it sound awkward. 6/10.

For the originality of the proposal, centralizing the compositions on acoustic guitar, and the combinations it can get with drums and vocal, I'll add 0,5 to my final note. 4.8. on a five-star scale.

 Khaooohs & Kon-Fus-Ion by PAN.THY.MONIUM album cover Studio Album, 1996
4.42 | 64 ratings

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Khaooohs & Kon-Fus-Ion
Pan.Thy.Monium Experimental/Post Metal

Review by theaqua

5 stars Khaooos and Kon-Fus-Ion is an album that impresses me with its insane musical creativity, so comprehensive, so abstract, with so many strange ideas that come together that are somehow so cohesive and interesting, which continues the story of the previous albums about the fight between Raagoonshinnaah (the god of darkness) and his battle with Amaraah (the god of light), the first 2 songs, ''The Battle of Geeheeb'' and ''Thee-Pherenth'', are masterpieces, powerful and enigmatic, with a vast and adventurous composition which always explores new elements but never gets lost, absolutely incredible, ''Behrial'' is not an avant-garde and insane song as the previous ones, it is a repetitive but quite beautiful song and is a good contrast with the 2 previous songs, ''In Remembrance'' on the otherhand, is just 1 minute of nothing, but even so, it manages to be enigmatic and that's what makes me love this album so much, how unusual but so captivating it is, the unusual and complex compositions, the incomprehensib levocals, the alien atmosphere, a phenomenal album that deserves more attention.
 Pink by BORIS album cover Studio Album, 2006
3.92 | 5 ratings

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Pink
Boris Experimental/Post Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars Ranging from an opening post-metal sound to heavy psych turned up to 11 influenced by 60s acts such as Blue Cheer or Cream, BORIS continues their unique combination of sludgy riffs and drone doom feedback fuzz with several outros bringing the not-in-no-hurry drone doom band Earth to mind on their tenth album PINK. Apparently there are two versions of PINK. One from the Japanese label on Diwphalanx Records and the one I have from Southern Lord Records. They have different tracks lists with different running times but I believe they are the same tracks in Japanese and English and the ones with longer running times are just extended versions. They also have different album covers.

This album took on a more melodic songwriting approach than many BORIS albums have. The trio successfully added some catchy tunes to create their fuzzed out doomy atmospheric magic around. The songs range from spacy post-metal that is slow and breezy to super aggressive dissonant yet bluesy heavy psych. There is feedback galore amongst punky rockers and hypnotic repetitive riffs. The last track on my version "Just Abandoned Myself" is a staggering 18 minute plus drony, doomy delight that manages to incorporate the only Japanese sound on the whole album with a samisen or some other Eastern stringed instrument into the mix. If you are looking for some totally spacey, fuzzy and feedback sludge psych then you can't go wrong with PINK, yet another winner from BORIS.

Forging a melting pot that includes doom metal, sludge metal, stoner metal and even thrash metal styles mixed with ambient, post-hardcore, garage punk, noise prog, dream pop and post-rock, BORIS continued to up its game on PINK by finding a new way to add new elements to its basic drone metal recipe. PINK has become a cult classic and one of the more popular releases of the massive BORIS canon. A deluxe version exists with nine extra tracks called "Forbidden Songs." Given the spaced out intangible nature of much of BORIS' music, these tracks are hard to latch onto but provide a fascinating psychedelic construct fueled with guitar fuzz and various strains of metal heft. The album has been lauded and described as a burst of contagious energy fused with mesmerizing atmosphere. PINK remains a fascinating exploration of experimental from the early 2000s.

 Akuma no Uta by BORIS album cover Studio Album, 2003
3.88 | 5 ratings

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Akuma no Uta
Boris Experimental/Post Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars AKUMA NO UTA (The Devil's Song) is the 5th album by the Japanese band BORIS and my first taste of this drone / sludge / doom metal band. One of the most perplexing impressions of this album was that the cover looks exactly like folk singer Nick Drake's album "Bryter Layter" except bassist / guitarist / vocalist Takeshi is displaying his double-neck Ibanez. It is intended to be a tribute and not a parody yet it is rather ironic since the highly distorted sonic stew that BORIS presents is as far away from the placid acoustic folk of Drake as you can get. The cover of the very first issue was a simple white cover with a simple doodle but the US version with Takeshi is the more common one.

I find this to be an exciting album that takes you on a ride through all the styles of metal that BORIS had been dabbling with on previous albums. "Introduction" is the first track which at a staggering length of 9:44 reminds us of the ambient drone metal of Earth. It is an intricate little piece that has more fuzz than a peach orchard. The rest of the album finds the band taking their garage band versions of sludge and punk and post-rock to interesting distorted levels. BORIS really knows how to mix the laid-back with the energetic pieces and add enough diverse elements to make a satisfying album from beginning to end. I've only dabbled in their discography up to this point, but albums like AKUMA NO UTA certainly beckon further exploration, and for anyone who likes the fuzziest sonicscapes out there, look no further than BORIS.

The original album featured a white background with a cartoon insect doodle on Diwphalanx Records and then later was released with the better known Nick Drake parody cover on Southern Lord Records, which BORIS has been most prominantly associated with. By this time BORIS had become quite unique in how it blended droning with stoner metal, psychedelic rock, garage punk, noise rock and even heavy psych. One of the band's more popular releases AKUMO NO UTA has also become one of the best known examples of competent drone metal which can be quite monotonous and rather boring. The canon of BORIS is a mess with many items featuring the same title and many tracks showing up on various releases with different versions. On this one the "Intro" is a different take on the Southern Lord version.

 Absolutego by BORIS album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1996
3.91 | 3 ratings

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Absolutego
Boris Experimental/Post Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars True that Earth was first in creating the whole drone metal thing and others like Melvins and Naked City immediately followed in the wake but it was the Japanese noise worshippers BORIS who really created something special in the doom and gloom department with an amplifier feed back so fat it needs lyposuction and bass sound so deep it disturbs slimy earth worms. ABSOLUTEGO is the then quartet's debut album which originally came out on the Fangs Anal Satan label but has since been picked up by Southern Lord where it features a bonus track.

This entire album is basically one 60:15 long (65:34 on the ABSOLUTEGO+ edition) ripple through feedback and fuzz with a slow pulsating rhythmic march that sounds like a stoned Godzilla prowling the countryside looking for munchies as the feedback twists and morphs and extends to infinity and back to create quite disturbing sonicscapes that eke out all the dread and awe that this type of music was made for.

As the hypnotic rhythm marches on, the fuzz thickens and the percussion slowly evolves until around the half hour mark a cacophonous drum frenzy simulates the chaos of a falling building after a Japanese earthquake or something and then reverts back into the pacified feedback and fuzz march once again. Throughout the album the sounds are jarring and sound like the listener is under the rotating blades of a lawnmower on the verge of being ripped to shreds but never actually going there and only sustaining the impending doom to come.

This is definitely not for the faint of heart as there is no traditional song structure and is pretty much a parade through sonic torture of sort. As drone metal isn't my favorite type of metal on the scene there are some true standouts and this introduction to the Japanese noise scene combined with jarring metal sounds is one of the best out there. I recommend the edition with the bonus track "Dronevil 2" which is a mere 7:50 in length but adds a different quieter drone ending to the album that doesn't rely on fuzzy guitars and more on an undulating bass line that reverbs so low it sounds like the subwoofer is gonna explode.

Despite this release of one track that extends past the 60 minute mark, the band itself considers it a single and has been deemed as such. Personally anything over 30 minutes long is an album in my book!

 boris at last -feedbacker- by BORIS album cover Studio Album, 2003
4.93 | 6 ratings

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boris at last -feedbacker-
Boris Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Captain Midnight

5 stars LISTEN TO THIS ALBUM WITH HEADPHONES

Feedbacker is one of the many masterpieces by Japanese eclectic metal band Boris. Listening to this album feels like being lost in fog/ a wall of sound especially the intro track, the song being a 9 minute build up to the rest of the album it may seem long but it's worth it. Part 2 has a more traditional Post Rock type sound going on and one of the most emotional sounding guitar solos I've ever heard, at the 8:14 timestamp the guitar solo starts and man it's something, I'd say it's just as emotional as Watermelon In Easter Hay or Maggot Brain. Part 3 is a full on Punk song, a genre the band will experiment with every now and then. Part 4 goes for an almost Blackgaze sound before the fifth and final part that is just the ending track that calms the suite down. Really I don't know what else to say, this album is beautiful and is essentially a combination of all the bands previous sounds, if your new with Boris then I heavily recommend you start here

 Devolution Series #3 - Empath Live in America by TOWNSEND, DEVIN album cover Live, 2023
4.09 | 4 ratings

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Devolution Series #3 - Empath Live in America
Devin Townsend Experimental/Post Metal

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Honorary Reviewer

4 stars I have been a huge fan of Devin since the good old days of Strapping Young Lad, and there was a time 20 years ago when if you had the misfortune to take a trip in my car you would be blasted into submission by a combination of the latest of his solo albums and me raving about how he was a genius. The mad Canuck has certainly maintained my faith in him, and while his studio albums may not hit the mark quite as much as they used to, his live releases are always significant. I am sure I am not the only person who still regularly plays 'The Retinal Circus', as that for me was Devin at his most outrageous and over the top. These days he never rests, and it is not unusual for him to totally switch his band between tours, and for this one he was with Mike Keneally (guitars), Nathan Navarro (bass), Diego Tejeida (keyboards), Morgan Ňgren (drums) and Chť Aimee Dorval (vocals, guitars).

I always feel Townsend sounds so much better when he has a female singer to pitch against as his music is so bass heavy, and Dorval is an absolute delight ? while I admit I love Anneke Van Giersbergen, Dorval is a wonderful substitute. Her vocals combined with the keyboards, placed against the rhythm section and guitars work incredibly well. Devin is always determined to have fun onstage, which is the only reason to include "Why" in a set, as it sounds as if it belongs in a Disney musical as opposed to a heavy gig, and he loves getting the crowd to join in with their best death metal growls. After they complete "Hyperdrive", Devin announces he heard someone shout for "Earth Day", but the band don't know it. So he starts playing the riff, and the rest of the band just follow ? it may not be perfect but it sure is a lot of fun and one can just hear the smiles. One can imagine the band wanting to go onto the stage every night as they have no idea what is going to happen, and I am sure Devin does not know either.

What on earth is the semi-acoustic "Ih-Ah!" doing in a live set? Because it is a blast, that's why, and the whole gig is a mish mash of styles so why not go from the sublime to the ridiculous and play "Love?" from my favourite SYL album, 'Alien'? Exactly my thoughts as well, even though Morgan is admittedly not a metal drummer. Townsend says this was one of his favourite tours, and although he has released a load of live albums over the years, and this is this is the third in the Devolution Series alone, once can hear how much fun both the bad and audience were having on this one as it blasts, it rocks, and everyone smiles.

 Stone by BARONESS album cover Studio Album, 2023
4.06 | 19 ratings

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Stone
Baroness Experimental/Post Metal

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Heavy Prog & JR/F/Canterbury Teams

4 stars My first encounter with this hard-drivin' metal band that is currently (according to their Bandcamp bio) working out of Philadelphia. I agree with other reviewers that their album artwork--by band member John Baizley--is outstanding-- some of the best/most entertaining I've seen in the 21st Century!

1. "Embers" (1:01) very interesting and unique album opener! Acoustic guitars with choral vocals--sounding more like The Band or CSN&Y than I expected. (4.5/5)

2. "Last Word" (6:18) chugging metal with psychedelic engineering treatments. Reminds me of GRAND FUNK RAILROAD except on higher octane. You can tell that this is a well-oiled, well-gelled quartet. (I guess all those live performance dates really paid off!) Very interesting sound engineering choices--like with the drums and lead guitar. Less is more and yet the flange is ever-present, sneaking around in the background. Love it! Definitely feels like a blast from the past! Kudos to the team and their engineer/producer to go with these sound engineering choices. A top three song for me. (9/10)

3. "Beneath the Rose" (5:35) this one feels like a kind of TED NUGENT variation on Bono's performance in U2's "Bullet the Blue Sky"--at least for the verses. In the choruses the sound moves into a kind of cross between early URIAH HEEP and METALLICA's "Enter the Sandman." Nice vision and execution! The doubled-up guitar solo feels like a cross between THIN LIZZY and LYNYRD SKYNYRD. The final chorus spills over into Brit-territory--like The Clash or Judas Priest. (8.875/10)

4. "Choir" (4:06) bleeding over from the previous song, the guitars chug along as the continuous-play rolling bass note and straight-time drum race along. The vocals sound like some kind of channel of IGGY POP. I like the more nuanced, intermittent and atmospheric echo-guitar notes in the between-spaces. A very theatric, well-constructed and - executed song. Must be a crowd-pleaser in concert. (8.875/10)

5. "The Dirge" (1:19) another odd snippet that sounds as if it is more likely to come from Americana than metal. (4.3333/5)

6. "Anodyne" (3:20) To a person who's music ears were formed in the 1970s this sound palette sounds so right: none of the processing or compressing that is so common among post-1982 (enter the Computer/ Digital Age) bands and albums. Though this smooth hard rock song is smooth, it must be trying to rely more on its lyrics than previous songs cuz the music is less interesting--with less variation and development than I was expecting. (8.66667/10)

7. "Shine" (6:32) unfortunately, this rather straightforward "heavy metal" song sounds rather dull and elementary. Even the choruses and instrumental passages feel robotic and a bit "dialed-in." (8.5/10)

8. "Magnolia" (7:49) though I've been feeling this VANETA-vibe off and on throughout the course of this album, the opening 2:15 of this one carries a full-fledged imprint of that band. The song goes from waiting-at-the-curb to kick-it- into-gear at the 2:15 mark with some awesome multi-voice harmonic metal vocals over some pretty standard BLUE ÷YSTER CULT-like music. (Even the guitar solo in the sixth minute sounds 1970s). (Did they just say "flaming arrows"?!!) Still: it's a pretty damned-good song. (13.125/15)

9. "Under the Wheel" (6:11) I love the smooth-vocaled opening of this: so much potential energy present here just waiting to be released. And then they do! At 2:58 John Baizley unleashes a wicked-awesome vocal flight path (backed by some important seconds from Gina Gleason). Unfortunately, the song doesn't morph or develop much after that until the awesome spacey-fade. Still here we have another of my top three songs. (9/10)

10. "Bloom" (4:01) a gentle acoustic-guitar based song over which John and Gina sing the lead together, simultaneously, in harmony. Beautiful, smooth, laid-back harmonies. Nicely done. Great vocal performances. My final top three song. (8.875/10)

Total Time 46:12

I'm not sure how this band got categorized "Expeirmental/Post Metal" on ProgArchives cuz this all sounds quite rudimentary and retrogressive; perhaps their previous albums (with which I am unfamiliar) crossed into more experimental "post metal" territory.

Again, I want to commend the band on their choice to "real time"-record and render each song separately and uniquely. Exceptional cojones and will. (It really is so refreshing to hear new music that sounds like the old analog, pre- computer-manipulated music of my youth.)

B+/four stars; an excellent trip down a path that few 21st Century rockers are taking us down. Check it out for yourselves: highly recommended!

 Memorial by SOEN album cover Studio Album, 2023
3.54 | 31 ratings

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Memorial
Soen Experimental/Post Metal

Review by dilburt

4 stars Soen is one of the most highly skilled progressive metal bands in the world and with a unique and complex progressive metal style. Memorial is another great release by the band which includes the song 'Hollowed' featuring the Italian vocalist Elisa which is the first guest appearance I can think of for the band. This release follows the band's trend from Lotus and Imperial which was a bit of shift from the sound of Tellurian and Lykaia. Joel Ekelof's vocals are amazing with a huge range and varied presentation styles. Personally I don't see a much of a similarity with Tool other that at a technical level but if you like the sound of Opeth and other Swedish & Norwegian progressive metal bands like Leprous, Green Carnation, Pain of Salvation and Evergrey you should definitely give Soen's latest release 'Memorial' a listen.
 Heir to Despair by SIGH album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.93 | 24 ratings

BUY
Heir to Despair
Sigh Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Mirai Kawashima's come over a little Ian Anderson. Not to a full Jethro Tull-ish extent, mind - but there's an outbreak of flute and piccolo on this Sigh album that's just as interesting an addition to their sound as when Dr Mikannibal first brought her saxophone onboard. For a good long while, the sound of Sigh has been guided in part by the particular direction that Mirai's wanted to take his multi-instrumentalist experimentation in; just look at the credits for this and their past few albums and you'll see how much he's changed his portfolio from release to release. So the addition of flute this time around may sound like a small thing, but as an extra ingredient in Sigh's bizarre mashup of classic metal and black metal and progressive rock, it ends up being an interesting through-line which ties the album together.
Data cached

Experimental/Post Metal bands/artists list

Bands/Artists Country
*SHELS United States
0N0 Slovakia
11 AS IN ADVERSARIES France
19 A.D.D. United States
21 EYES OF RUBY Netherlands
THE 3RD AND THE MORTAL Norway
413 United States
5IVE United States
6:33 France
A((WAKE)) United States
AABSINTHE France
ABANDON Sweden
ABYSSE France
ACROSS TUNDRAS United States
ACT OF ENTROPY United Kingdom
ACYL France
ADMIRAL BROWNING United States
ADRIFT Spain
AETHERIA CONSCIENTIA France
AFTER MY OWN United States
AGALLOCH United States
AGES GONE Germany
AKPHAEZYA France
AKROMA France
ALASKAN Canada
ALCEST France
ALKALYS France
ALTAR OF PLAGUES Ireland
AMARA United States
AMATERAZU Portugal
AMBEON Netherlands
AMENRA Belgium
AMESOEURS France
AMIA VENERA LANDSCAPE Italy
AN ISOLATED MIND United States
ANATHEMA United Kingdom
ANCESTORS United States
AND HARMONY DIES Italy
ANGEL EYES United States
ANTIGUA Y BARBUDA Spain
ANTIMATTER Multi-National
ANUBI Lithuania
AORIA Sweden
APOCALIPSIS Mexico
APOCRYPHAL VOICE Finland
APOKATASTASIA Switzerland
APSE United States
ARCADE MESSIAH United Kingdom
THE ARKITECHT Mexico
ARKTIKA Germany
AS LIGHT DIES Spain
ASIDEFROMADAY France
ASPIRATION Norway
ASTROHENGE United Kingdom
ASTRONAUT DOWN United States
ASTRONOID United States
AT THE SOUNDAWN Italy
THE ATLAS MOTH United States
ATMOSPHERES Belgium
THE ATOMIC BOMB AUDITION United States
ATROX Norway
AU-DESSUS Lithuania
AUSSIT‘T MORT France
AUSTARAS United States
THE AXIS OF PERDITION United Kingdom
AZIOLA CRY United States
BACK WHEN United States
BAK Australia
BALOTHIZER Greece
BARONESS United States
BAT CASTLE United States
BATTLE OF MICE United States
BATTLEFIELDS United States
BAUDA Chile
BEAK United States
BEECHER United Kingdom
BEFORE THE EYEWALL United States
BEHIND THE SUN Israel
BEING United States
ADRIAN BENAVIDES United States
BIRUSHANAH Japan
BISON B.C. Canada
IVAR BJōRNSON & EINAR SELVIK Norway
BLACK MATH HORSEMAN United States
BLACK SEA Brazil
BLACK SHEEP WALL United States
BLACK VOMIT United Kingdom
BLACKWAVES Germany
BLINDEAD Poland
BLOOD & TIME United States
BLOODWAY Romania
BLOODY PANDA United States
BLUT AUS NORD France
BOBEL Costa Rica
BORIS Japan
BOSSK United Kingdom
BOTANIST United States
BRAIN TENTACLES United States
BRIDGES TO DREAMS Canada
BRÕI Brazil
BUILT-IN OBSOLESCENCE Italy
BUNKUR Netherlands
BURIED INSIDE Canada
BURN DOWN ROME United Kingdom
BURNSRED United States
BURWEED Finland
BUTTERFLY TRAJECTORY Poland
BUZZARD United States
CAŌNA United Kingdom
CALDERA France
CALLISTO Finland
CALYCES Greece
THE CANCER CONSPIRACY United States
CANDIRIA United States
CAPRICORNS United Kingdom
CAPTURE THE SUN United States
CARNIVAL IN COAL France
CARONTTE Spain
CATACOMBE Portugal
CAVE IN United States
CELEBRITY SEX SCANDAL United States
CELESTINE Iceland
CEMICAN Mexico
CEREUS Poland
CHASE THE SUNSET United Kingdom
THE CHRONICLES OF ISRAFEL Canada
CHRYST Austria
THE CIRCLE ENDS HERE Italy
CIRUELO CILINDRICO Spain
CLERIC United States
CLOUDKICKER United States
COALESCE United States
COLD BODY RADIATION Netherlands
A COLD DEAD BODY Italy
COLDWORLD Germany
COLONEL PETROV'S GOOD JUDGEMENT Germany
COME SLEEP Sweden
COMITY France
CONIFER United States
THE CONJURATION United States
CONSECRATION Serbia
CONSTELLATIA South Africa
CORMORANT United States
COSMONAUTS DAY Russia
COUNTERVELA Ireland
CRIB45 Finland
CRYPTIC RUSE United States
CULT OF LUNA Sweden
D.U.N.E. Italy
DAKRYA Greece
DAMASCUS United States
DARK CASTLE United States
DARK SUNS Germany
DARKESTRAH Germany
DARKHER United Kingdom
DARKSPACE Switzerland
DAUGHTERS OF FISSION United States
DAY WITHOUT DAWN United States
DE OMEGA United States
DEADBIRD United States
DEADSOUL TRIBE United States
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THE DEATH OF HER MONEY United Kingdom
DECLINE OF THE I France
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DEFYING Poland
DETERIOR United States
DEVIL SOLD HIS SOUL United Kingdom
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DIMLAIA United States
DIRGE France
DISAPPEARER United States
DIVINA ENEMA Belarus
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DOLDRUM United States
DOOM Japan
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DRAWN Norway
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DREARINESS Italy
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EARTH United States
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EBONY LAKE United Kingdom
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EIGENGRAU Denmark
EIGHT BELLS United States
EINNA France
ELLIPSIS France
EMPIRES United States
EMPTY YARD EXPERIMENT United Arab Emirates
ENDER New Zealand
ENDNAME Russia
ENPHIN / EX PH (MR. PETER HAYDEN) Finland
ENSEMBLE 1 United Kingdom
EPECTASE France
EPHEL DUATH Italy
EPISTASIS United States
EREBE France
ESCHATOS Latvia
ETERNAL DEFORMITY Poland
ETHERSENS France
EVIL INSIDE Spain
EX CURIA Australia
EX EYE United States
EXOTIC ANIMAL PETTING ZOO United States
EXTINCTION ALGORITHM Romania
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FAR AWAY France
FAWN LIMBS United States
FEN United Kingdom
FIFTH QUADRANT Sweden
FIRMAM3NT Spain
FLEURETY Norway
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FOLLOW THE WHITE RABBIT Russia
A FOREST OF STARS United Kingdom
FORMLOFF Norway
FOUNTAINHEAD Germany
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FROM OCEANS TO AUTUMN United States
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THE GABRIEL CONSTRUCT United States
GANON United States
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GARY SUICIDAL KIDS COMMANDO France
THE GATHERING Netherlands
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GHOSTBOUND United States
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GIRE Hungary
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HEIRS Australia
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HVōSCH Russia
HYDRA Mexico
HYPNO5E France
ICEBURN United States
IDENTIFIED United States
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IGORRR France
THE ILLNESS United States
IN THE WOODS... Norway
IN.OVO Canada
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IO United Kingdom
ION United States
IREPRESS United States
IRONWOOD Australia
IRREVERSIBLE United States
ISIS United States
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IZAH Netherlands
JAKEL Canada
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JEWY SABATAY Serbia
JUGGERNAUT Italy
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KA.MMEN / EX SEVENTH EVIDENCE Ukraine
OLIVER KAAH Finland
KAATAYRA Brazil
KAILASH Italy
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KARABOUDJAN Sweden
KAUAN Russia
KEELHAUL United States
KEKAL Indonesia
KEVEL Greece
KHANATE United States
KHEMEŌA France
KHEPRI United Kingdom
KHOMA Sweden
KH‘RADA United States
KHUDA United Kingdom
KICK THE BUTTERFLY Australia
KILTER United States
KINGDOM Belgium
KLABAUTAMANN Germany
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KONG Netherlands
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KORZO Ukraine
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L÷BO Portugal
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LOOK TO WINDWARD New Zealand
LORUS United States
A LOST STATE OF MIND United States
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LUCYNINE Italy
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LUMINOUS VAULT United States
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MADE OUT OF BABIES United States
MAHESH Chile
MAMALEEK United States
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MANES Norway
MANUSCRIPTS DON'T BURN Italy
MAR DE GRISES Chile
MARE United States
MARE COGNITUM United States
THE MASS United States
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THE MIRE United Kingdom
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MOANAA Poland
MOD FLANDERS CONSPIRACY United States
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MOMENTUM Iceland
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MONUMENTUM Italy
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MORNE United States
THE MORNINGSIDE Russia
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MOSE GIGANTICUS United States
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NIHIL Serbia
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NOVEMBRE Italy
NUCLEUS TORN Switzerland
NULL United States
O.L.D. United States
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THE OCEAN DOESN'T WANT ME South Africa
THE OCEAN Germany
OCOAI United States
ODE AND ELEGY United States
ODRADEK ROOM Ukraine
ODRAZA Poland
OHGOD! South Africa
THE OLD DEAD TREE France
OLD MAN GLOOM United States
OMB Israel
THE OMEGA EXPERIMENT United States
OMEGA MASSIF Germany
OMERTAH Ukraine
ONE STARVING DAY Italy
÷OOOOOOOOOO France
ORANSSI PAZUZU Finland
ORDO DRACONIS Netherlands
ORGAN: Norway
ōRKENKJōTT Norway
ORPHANED LAND Israel
ORTHODOX Spain
OSI United States
OSTROVA Spain
THE OTHER SIDE OF THE SKY United States
OTTONE PESANTE Italy
OUTOPSYA Italy
OUTRUN THE SUNLIGHT United States
OVERMARS France
÷XX÷ X÷÷X France
PAN.THY.MONIUM Sweden
PANOPTICON United States
PAPANGU Brazil
THE PAX CECILIA United States
PECCATUM Norway
PELICAN United States
PET SLIMMERS OF THE YEAR United Kingdom
PIKE Sweden
PINKLY SMOOTH United States
PLEBEIAN GRANDSTAND France
THE POSTMAN SYNDROME United States
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PRISMA Switzerland
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THE PROPHECY United Kingdom
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PSYKUP France
PULL DOWN THE SUN New Zealand
PYRAMIDS United States
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QUBE Poland
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RADIATION 4 United States
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ROSETTA United States
ROUTE NINE Sweden
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SOEN Multi-National
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SPACEKING Russia
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SUMAC Multi-National
SUMMIT Italy
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SWARM OF THE LOTUS United States
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SWITCH OPENS Sweden
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TELEPATHY United Kingdom
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VOID United Kingdom
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WHAT MAD UNIVERSE France
WHAT THE BLOOD REVEALED United Kingdom
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