ABOUT

Thanks for visiting No Clean Singing.  Hope you won’t regret it.

This is a labor of love, sometimes a labor of lust. We could make money if we wanted to, probably enough to buy an extra shot or something oily and caffeinated the next morning, but we don’t advertise and we don’t take money from anyone else for anything. Life is already too cluttered.

We’ve been around since November 2009. When the site began, the name of it was serious. But as time has passed, my own tastes have broadened and other writers have joined us, and they’re even more open-minded than I am. Now, the name just confuses people, because sometimes we write about metal that includes actual singing instead of (or in addition to) growling, howling, and shrieking. But it’s kind of like if you named your kid Rufus. When she grows up, it confuses other people, but she is what she is and it might confuse people even more if you legally changed it.

So, we write about lots of music genres, 99% of it metal, and about 99% of that extreme metal. We call it like we see it, even when we’re cross-eyed. But we only write about music we like and want to recommend. If we don’t like something we just ignore it. If you’re looking for negative reviews, you’ll need to go elsewhere.

And that’s really all you need to know, though you can read a lot more below if you’re bored. Thanks again for visiting.

Signed,

Islander

MORE STUFF

Here’s a more elaborate (i.e., verbose)  explanation of what we’re about, who we are, what we try to do to for you — and what we want you to do for us.

First Principles (What We’re About — Or Used To Be About)

According to the Font of All Human Knowledge, “in philosophy, a first principle is a basic, foundational proposition or assumption that cannot be deduced from any other proposition or assumption.”  Here are the “first principles” for this site that we wrote when the site started in 2009 — though as you’ll see, some things have changed around here since then:

  1. Almost all “popular” music sucks.
  2. Metal doesn’t suck, unless it’s metal with clean singing, which mostly does suck.
  3. Some metal with clean singing doesn’t suck, but that’s an exception to the rule.
  4. Some metal with no clean singing also sucks, but that’s also an exception to the rule.

To elaborate (further):  In our evolution as metal fans, the original founders of this site reached the point where  we got upset when otherwise promising metal songs with good riffage and crushing drumwork were interrupted by an attack of clean crooning, particularly the breathy, whiny, upper-octave kind of excretions that used to characterize a lot of metalcore but still pops up in even the most unexpected places.  If you know what we mean, then you’ve come to the right place.

So, this site is mainly about metal music, but not all metal music.  What we mostly love and what we spend most of our time writing about is extreme metal, where harsh vocals tend to go hand in hand with harsh, aggressive, cathartic music. Purely instrumental metal, if done right, fits the NCS bill.

Within the realm of NCS Metal, we likes all kinds of shit.   We like brutal, old-school death metal, melodic death metal, tech death, grind, black metal, viking and folk metal, deathcore, progressive metal, djent, doom (even funeral doom is starting to grow on us) – and hundreds of other sub-genres that would be too boring to catalogue at length.  (Who thinks up all these genre classifications anyway?)  Your Authors have got their own individual preferences, but as a group we pretty much cover the waterfront.

Even from the beginning of this site, however, we’ve also liked some bands who punctuate their metal with clean singing (see First Principle No. 3 above).  We can’t just cast out groups like Opeth, Amorphis, and Mastodon (to name just a few), can we?

And we write about topics other than extreme metal, too.  More on that below.

Who We Are

The founders of this site — Islander, Alexis, and IntoTheDarkness — are three metalheads who live in the Seattle area.  Over time, Alexis and IntoTheDarkness have become scarce as writers for NCS. We still go to shows together, and still swap music, but the writing chores have fallen to a new cadre of scribes.

In addition to Islander, the regular writers are Andy Synn, who happens to be vocalist/lyricist for the UK metal bands Beyond Grace and Twilight’s Embrace and a resident of Nottingham, England;, BadWolf,who lives in Toledo, Ohio and also writes for Invisible Oranges under his real name; TheMadIsraeli, a guitarist and denizen of Tennessee; and DGR, who lives in Sacramento, CA and used to write for The Number of the Blog before it expired.  We also feature contributions by a large and ever-changing group of guest writers.

What We Do For You

We do our best to add posts to this site every day, weekends included — and so far we’ve missed only three days since this thing started in November 2009.  Some of these posts are regular features – reviews of new music releases and music videos, concert reviews, metal news, and random observations about the scene, among other things. Increasingly, we premiere conga and videos, too.

Every now and then (and with increasing frequency, given the tastes of the authors who replaced two of the founders), we write about Exceptions to the Rule (see First Principle No. 3). We also have regular features about forthcoming new albums and about things that are metal even though they aren’t music.

One of our main objectives is to introduce you to music you might not have heard or even heard about — music that may be flying under the radar or from unsigned bands just getting their start. For example, we’ve got an ongoing series called MISCELLANY that’s dedicated to music we’re hearing for the first time. Compared to other U.S.-based metal blogs, we also spend more than the average amount of time writing about metal from outside the U.S.

Because Islander lives in the Seattle area, some of what’s on this site is geared to what’s happening in the Pacific Northwest, but most of the content isn’t limited in that way.

Here’s one thing that will be Seattle-focused:  We’ve created a page called NW Metal Calendar, which will always be linked on the home page.  On this page we collect in one place a listing of metal shows scheduled in Seattle, and sometimes elsewhere in the Northwest – bands, dates, and venues – and we update it as we learn about new shows.

Our focus is extreme metal, but we care about other stuff too, and we’ll write (occasionally) about some of our other interests.  For example, we have an occasional feature called MOSH PIT which includes random observations about what’s happening in the non-metal world as well as opinions about the metal scene. Sometimes we share our answers to e-mails from people in Africa who are trying to give us money. Very rarely, we talk about movies.

And, as mentioned, we also have a long-running feature about things that we think are metal but aren’t music.  Surprisingly, it’s named “THAT’S METAL!” – BUT IT’S NOT MUSIC.

Our Philosophy

One thing you’ll notice pretty quickly is that we don’t publish negative reviews, and we very rarely publish any other kind of writing that slags bands or their music — though we do make an exception for big-name egomaniacs who can’t keep their mouths shut.  Dave Mustaine of Megadeth is a prime example. The reason we don’t publish negative reviews isn’t because we love everything. We just prefer to spend our time on music we can honestly recommend to you. The stuff we hear that we don’t dig we just pass on by without comment. And besides, extreme metal bands have a tough enough time without people like us shitting on them.

So, we try to keep the tone of the site positive — not gooey or stupid, just positive.

What We Want You To Do For Us

One thing that sets metal apart from most other music is the sense of community.   Let’s be honest:  most people hate extreme metal and can’t begin to understand why anyone likes it.  Fuck them. Everyone’s entitled to their opinion.  The fact that so many people form bands in this genre, record music, tour, and throw themselves body and soul into this scene despite the fact that the fan base is relatively tiny and there’s no money in it still blows our minds.  To use a cliché, it’s us against the rest of the deluded, rapacious, ass-sucking world.  Really.

We want to bring that sense of community to this site, and to do that we need to hear from you.  We want your comments.  We want to read what’s on your minds.  And if you’ll speak up, we’ll respond.  We always have, and we always will.

Credit Where Credit Is Due

There’s a shit-ton of metal blogs and web sites out there.  Most of them suck.  We may suck, too.  I’m sure you’ll tell us if we do.

But when we started NCS, there were two metal sites that definitely didn’t suck:  MetalSucks and Reign in Blonde.  We use the past tense here because RiB has been defunct for a while now, though of course MetalSucks has grown tremendously in readership and influence. Those two provided our inspiration when we started NCS.

Since we started this site, we’ve become fans of many other metal blogs in addition to the two that provided our initial inspiration.  They’re listed with links on the right side of every page, and we encourage you to visit them.

We also need to express our thanks to Professor D. Groverthe XIIIth, the creator of the sadly departed The Number of the Blog and an occasional contributor to this site, who generously created our site logo/header and background skulls just because he’s a good dude — and a guy with more graphic design talent than he will admit.

CONTACT INFO:  islander@nocleansinging.com

COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL POLICY:

No Clean Singing does not intend to violate any copyright laws. If you are a copyright holder of any content we have posted on the site, or you represent such a copyright holder, and you object to our display of content, please email us and we will immediately remove the file in question.

30 Responses to “ABOUT”

  1. skye says:

    i havent been abel to sing clearly my whole life but i do creat noise i think is some kinde of metal#
    ))NOISE+BEAT=MUSIC((({{>>>>– http://www.myspace.com/industreeallaceidtal >>visit listen,comment>>> http://www.reverbnation.com/idtal ????

  2. Jon Butlin says:

    Keep up the good work guys – great site!

  3. artisticdaz says:

    well, nice to see my video efforts are being put to good use..that’s been my whole intention since starting this entertaining venture!… I’ve consumed gallons of dog, spent loads of dosh and have thoroughly enjoyed the experience thus far…the future is unknown…my bank balance is hitting critical…but, the will is strong to continue!

    I’m a strong believer in live loud music…although, i do capture all genres, ages, talents and help those who can’t help themselves…my intention is to spread the word far and wide via my efforts through my you tube channel http://www.youtube.com/user/ARTISTICDAZ … and, so far it seems to be working…i feel now its time for me to reap some kind of rewards from my freely given energies over the past two years!…so, watch out keep your ear to the ground, cause i feel the time for my just rewards is just around the corner!…well, here’s hoping!

  4. yourrealfather says:

    You guys should name this site “Frontmen who cant sing” lol I have been into the most brutal black metal i can find forever. But after growing up i realized that being a one track minded dumbass had deprived me all these years of OTHER music besides redundant repetative metal! Its great to be a hardcore metal fan but dont play the victims. There is a reason popular music is popular. Because its catchy and obviously the more fans there are the better it is. All im saying is its OK to like other music besides the same old blaster beats! Maybe if you guys would pull your heads out of your asses and swallo your pride then you just might see! Its either that or you goset are closet goo goo dolls fans! Hail SATAN!

    • ElvisShotJFK says:

      Blaster beats? I bet those sound awesome.

      What’s a goset?

      Poplular music being popular has nothing to do with it. Just because there are more fans doesn’t mean shit either. By the way, most of the pop tarts out there (who are given the most attention and exposure) are not likely to be around in 5 or 10 years. Metal might not be as popular as it was oin the late 80′s through the mid-90′s, but a lot of those bands are still around. Why? The fans. We haven’t really moved on to the latest and “greatest” thing to hit the charts. Sure, things have changed a lot over the years, but a lot of bands we talk about now are probably going to be around for quite some time. In mainstream music, you’re not given taht kind of certainly. Hell, no one can give a guarantee to any on band or musician. But I think we have a better track record. And for every popular artist that does last beyond a couple albums or so, there are ten that don’t. And among those that don’t, there are some that are BETTER than the ones that are able to keep going.

      As for the frontmen that can’t sing, that depends on how you look at it – and the person in question. The best vocalists among the ranks of death and/or black metal (and all the related sub-genres and labels) are just as skilled as the good singers. And there are guys that are equally good on both sides; Mikael Åkerfeldt [Opeth], Jonas Renkse [Katatonia], Dan Swanö [Edge Of Sanity, tons of other stuff] and Manuel Munoz [The Old Dead Tree] all come to mind.

      I will agree, there is more than metal. Take some time to look around, you’ll find some non-metal talked about here, by Islander and those of use who’ve written guest posts. I can’t speak for everyone who writes for (or has written for) NCS, but I would think that we all have days when our musical tastes deviate from the norm. Metal may be what I listen to most, but I am also fond of video game music, middle eastern music and I think Azam Ali may be the best singer in the world today (if not, she should be considered one of the absolute best).

      But what do I know?

  5. dfojlasdfoj says:

    OP must really have a one-track mind. I feel sorry for you. You’re so insecure.

  6. Anon says:

    I really hope this website is a joke.

  7. no metalcore or deathcore says:

    by clean singing, do you mean “Into Glory Ride” era Manowar? anyways i think focusing on the vocals alone is bullshit but there’s lots of metal bands out there with awesome vocals; Find these albums and find out: Onward to Golgotha, Angelcunt: Tales of Desecration, Blasphemy’s Gods of War, Wisdom of Darkness, etc.

  8. theripper says:

    Ok I am going to say that if you don’t like extreme vocals than whatever that’s fine. On the other hand you fail to consider why a lot of bands use harsh sinister vocals in their music and its because evil music requires those vocals.Also whose to say a vocalist can’t clean sing and still sound evil or hateful I say that both ae relevant to the metal genre as a whole. I enjoy listening to black and death metal cause guess what the world is full of ugly shit and I hate the vast majority of the human race.At the same time I can sit back and listen to opeth or any of the bands from the 80s like maiden and judas priest but let’s face it we all realize that rob halford wasn’t talking about chicks in his songs.I think its like this do you prefer drinking beer or pounding a fifth of jack and snorting lines of coke off a hookers tits it depends on how hard you like it personally I enjoy both.

  9. Steven says:

    Soilwork??? Scary Symmetry?!!! -_- come on now……

  10. kcvlaine says:

    Open your fucking minds a little, jeez. The entire premise of this entire website is rubbish. The amazing thing about metal is that is the most intense music known to mankind, and this genre can shapeshift the way no other genre can, and incorporate all sorts of elements into itself 0 INCLUDING CLEAN SINGING. It seems you people are totally blind to this most amazing and unique quality of metal, and that’s very sad indeed. You’ve made some stupid excuses above to water down the message in the URL cuz you realized how foolish it is, and that’s sad as well.

    • Islander says:

      “Open your fucking minds a little, jeez.” Did that a long time ago. Where have you been?

      “The amazing thing about metal is that is the most intense music known to mankind, and this genre can shapeshift the way no other genre can, and incorporate all sorts of elements into itself 0 INCLUDING CLEAN SINGING.” Right.

      “It seems you people are totally blind to this most amazing and unique quality of metal.” Wrong.

      You might try actually reading our content for a few weeks and then make up your mind instead of judging our site by its name. Just a thought. You might start with the first post that appeared after you left this comment:

      http://www.nocleansinging.com/2013/02/27/byzantine-our-review-and-a-full-stream-of-the-new-album/

  11. Ania says:

    Your site is lovely btw, brought out a few good laughs and hell yeas from me. Lol
    To those opinionated fucks- music is really a subjective judgment, enjoy it, feel it, life wouldn’t be the same without it. Lol as for me am just discovering the greatness of Gojira and Death…..happy clap*

  12. Ania says:

    Your very welcome! Also Ur politeness is wicked refreshing! hey so am super curious now, and you guys could have discussed this already but has anyone else been way disappointed with the new wintersun album!?…I mean shit, I was so charmed by their first album release..so that I had it playing 24 hours a day for weeks at a time kinda thing… heh. So naturally I expected time I to blow my fucking mind all the more. :( but not even close…it just sounds so unevolved, and over produced. BOOO-URNS!!!!! Am I the only one that feels that??
    hahha this site is my new friend……yes its sad ..deal with it..muahaha
    Lol :D

  13. Ania says:

    Wait…now I feel like a shit head… ok no negative reviews…bands do have it hard enough..few of my buddies are struggling in the Toronto scene. Sorry,
    could be the insomnia talking……day 3 no sleep…I swear hearing things lol faaaaaaaack!! However at least I can continue my gojira binge.. soooooooo goood…head is exploding! :D

    • Islander says:

      You can’t go wrong with a blackout Gojira binge. And yeah, we don’t run negative reviews. If we listen to an album for possible review and don’t like it, we just move on to something else. The idea is to focus on music we want to recommend. But the fact that we don’t review something doesn’t necessarily mean we think it’s bad. We’re constantly flooded with new music and just don’t have the time to review everything we like. What we choose to write about is pretty random — each writer does what he wants.

  14. Ania says:

    I do really respect what you guys are doing here, definitely beats the toxicity and negativity brought into many other metal blogs, and sites. So high five and hugs.(not metal I know :D heh heh) Ok….hopefully my buttering you all up is incentive enough for you to please check out a buddies band at http://WWW.my hollow.ca. these are solid dudes that live and breath the music..they are wicked musicians and put on an amazing live performance. :) just want to help get there stuff out to the masses.
    Also, have you any recommendations of bands that have a similar sound to gojiras style? I’m hooked, I need more. :D

    • ElvisShotJFK says:

      I don’t know if you’re going to see this comment by coming back to this page or via subscribing, but just in case… I would recommend you check out Moth’s Endlessly In Motion.

  15. Ania says:

    Awe Ook hombres :) thanks anyways.

  16. xXx.Green.Eyez.xXx says:

    My discovery of this site makes me so happy. Metal is underappreciated, so it’s nice to find an entire blog dedicated to appreciating it. So thank you. *coughcoughINFANTANNIHILATORFORTHEWINcoughcough* xD

  17. iShred says:

    To elaborate: In our evolution as metal fans, the original founders of this site reached the point where we got upset when otherwise promising metal songs with good riffage and crushing drumwork were interrupted by an attack of clean crooning, particularly the breathy, whiny, upper-octave kind of excretions that used to characterize a lot of metalcore but still pops up in even the most unexpected places. If you know what we mean, then you’ve come to the right place. < damn! I feel you bro!

  18. ElvisShotJFK says:

    Who cares if it’s “No Clean Singing” and that there’s actually been a lot of stuff posted here that goes against the name? It’s kind of like Metal Sucks, which clearly doesn’t. Sure, NCS’ name may be a bit misleading, but there’s a reason for the name, even if things have changed around here a bit over the past few years.

  19. Jhan6120 says:

    Typical metalhead idiocy. This is why I no longer play metal. The fans are close-minded douchebags who consider their ignorance a virtue.

    • Islander says:

      If the name of our site provoked this reaction, I’d like to ask that you read some of our posts before swearing us off. You may still consider us idiots, but at least it would be based on something more than the site name. :)

  20. In a modern world where metal is getting the (false) negative rap (’cause face it, below the ignorant internet culture, we’re all a happy family, if not a bit dysfunctional, haha) due to forum trolls, “negative nerdies” masquerading as metalheads all over comment-sections far and wide, and genre/subgenre nitpickers that fight like metal knowledge is pokemon cards…I have found it increasingly difficult to find a webzine that I’m confident won’t send me facepalming so hard my hand goes through my head, all the while cussing incoherently like Yosemite Sam with tourettes…But NCS has impressed me. Not only have I looked over a huge bit of the articles and reviews, but the “about” section really made me feel a lot more at ease than most of ‘em out there. A hearty kudos for that. I recently erased my bookmarks of a lot of places I no longer feel comfortable…but your fine publication has found a home as one of the replacements. Thank you for being so damn positive (but like you said, “not gooey or stupid”) and definitelty entertaining and informative. Stay METAL.

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