Theory, Analysis, Study of Metal

Study of Metal
Posting Access:
All Members , Moderated
Welcome to a community devoted to learning about metal. Through vigorous analysis and academic discussions, we take a closer look at the music we love and become more familiar with it. Here we hope to learn precisely why specific aspects of musical passages move us. We can then take those techniques and apply them to our own compositions or just come to a greater enjoyment of metal by becoming more familiar with its intricacies.

Metal is frequently looked down upon by academics much the way that jazz was in the first decades of its evolution. This is largely because of the perceived musical illiteracy of metal musicians and the absence of a standard pedagogy within metal. This community was built with the idea that metal has limitless potential that can best be uncovered by applying the same discipline that has been used by centuries of classical musicians. If you believe that studying music theory will damage your perception of music or your creativity, I invite you to hang around for a bit and see if anything changes your mind.

A serious and objective attitude towards metal is encouraged here. Aesthetics are important to acknowledge but please do not simply claim that something "sucks" or "rules". If a piece of music moves you or disinterests you, state what elements of the music make this so. Positive and constructive debates will give us all new ideas to consider and will refine our familiarity with each discussed work.

In this community, knowing how to read music is not mandatory but it is definitely an asset. Many of the examples posted include staff notation but if score-reading is not your "forte," don't skip past an entry that uses it. Every pitch and rhythm does not need to be absolutely understood for the diagram that uses it to be of interest. Try to follow the rising and falling shape of the melodic line as you listen along to an mp3 or your cd and you'll be surprised by how much you can learn.

Metal musicians are some of the most technically proficient performers who continually push the limits of their instruments. This community exists in the belief that our understanding of the music itself should naturally follow. It is my hope that one day, we will have scholastic institutions devoted to the study of metal the way that jazz and classical musicians have schools for their arts.

Feel free to post any information that will give other members insight into the metal that you choose. Below are some suggestions for posts although other formats are welcomed:

-Listening guides with timed soundmarks
-Aesthetic critiques with specific timed soundmarks and reasoning behind your opinions
-Analyses of varying depths that may include structural, formal, motivic, harmonic, melodic, rhythmic, and/or expressive elements
-Insights into one’s own compositions and techniques
-Questions relating to theory within metal

It's a good idea to ask yourself before you post if you're being constructive and if others can learn from what you're writing. Do not post with malicious intentions and try to respond to others in an intelligent and positive manner. Basically, I don't want this community to turn into a bickering forum.

Responsible debate results in one of two conditions: establishing one's beliefs further or adopting better ones; either result is a win-win deal!

If you have any suggestions, concerns or questions that you do not want to publicize, I can be reached at punchmylabia@hotmail.com

musictheory is an excellent community for classical music and has been a large inspiration behind this community. Check it out if you have interests in classical.