(Guest writer Tyler Lowery has bestowed upon us another article, and this one is about instrumental metal.)
One of the biggest issues I had when I was first getting into extreme metal was the overbearing vocals in the music of many bands who were the front runners. The growling that my untrained ear misinterpreted as garbled cacophony kept me away from bands such as Necrophagist, Behemoth, and Napalm Death. From these bands I have now built a decent-reaching empire of extreme metal bands who I now thoroughly enjoy. However, it took me far too long to become accustomed to them as their vocal presentations distracted me from the excellence of their music as a whole.
As I began the perilous quest toward the seedy underbelly of the metal genres, I made my way through less than appealing bands who were heavy but not crushingly so. These days were tedious and often without reward. Eventually tiring of the hit-or-miss tomfoolery, I started dipping my toes in the vast waters of Death Metal.
To cope with the harsh vocals that consistently harshed (hardy har har) my buzz, I found bands who employed clean vocals, as a diversion from the constant battery of screeching and growling. Bands like Opeth and Between the Buried and Me helped create the groundwork for an appreciation of the extreme, but even still the music was sometimes overshadowed by the vocals. That being said, the next logical step was to remove vocals altogether, right?