Metal Music Studies 101

This is a collection of weekly blog posts, each focusing on a different topic in metal studies. For instance, some of the topics include literature, drone metal mysticism, sexual violence, nationalism, and musicology.

Each post is 350-500 words length. The goal is to introduce the audience to metal music studies by sharing current research. Furthermore, the posts are meant to be entry-level, to introduce the audience to the research and to increase interest in metal music studies. Each post also provides music examples.

Recent posts

Black Metal in Turkey w/ Douglas Mattsson

Black Metal in Turkey w/ Douglas Mattsson

BLACK METAL IN TURKEY  Douglas Mattsson  “Black metal? We don’t have that in Turkey.” - The middle aged Turkish academic sitting across from me in a restaurant in Istanbul is not the first to have expressed surprise, even disbelief, when I told him about my topic of research. Although literature...

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Metal and Synthesizers with Fulya Çelikel 

Metal and Synthesizers with Fulya Çelikel 

METAL AND SYNTHESIZERS  Fulya Çelikel    As a metalhead and a metal musician, it has always amazed me that metal research that touches on organology (the musicological term for the study of musical instruments) is mostly on the electric guitar in some way. There is very little in terms of timbres...

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Ethno-journalism in Metal Research w/ Edward Banchs

Ethno-journalism in Metal Research w/ Edward Banchs

Ethno-journalism in metal research  My research has come about because I could not answer a simple question when I was in graduate school: What did I know about metal in Africa?  Though I was never educated to become a journalist, I have utilized a more journalistic approach in order to properly...

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Metal and Whiteness w/ Julian Schaap

Metal and Whiteness w/ Julian Schaap

METAL AND WHITENESS Julian Schaap ‘Music brings people together,’ as the common saying goes. In reality however, it often seems to do so by sticking to the different groups we find in society. For example, when one ventures into a metal music concert, chances are that the audience members are...

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MMS101: Decoloniality w/ Nelson Varas-Diaz

MMS101: Decoloniality w/ Nelson Varas-Diaz

DECOLONIAL METAL MUSIC IN LATIN AMERICA Nelson Varas-Díaz   “You want to make it sound like it came from a Latin American being,” said Luis, the lead singer of the Mexican band Acrania, as he explained why he integrated the trumpet and salsa arrangements into his death/thrash metal band. That...

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Heavy Metal Therapy w/ Kate E. Quinn

Heavy Metal Therapy w/ Kate E. Quinn

If you ask metalheads why they love heavy metal music you will get loads of answers: the energy of the music, the intensity, the loudness…  But there will also be quite a few who will say that metal saved their life, or keeps them sane.  Music is a great coping strategy for many people,...

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Metal and Reflexive Anti-Reflexivity w/ Keith Kahn-Harris

Metal and Reflexive Anti-Reflexivity w/ Keith Kahn-Harris

Metal has often been critically reviled, subject to prejudice and persecution. Metal’s pretensions to art are frequently seen as laughable. It’s understandable, therefore, that the first scholars to take an interest in metal, were keen to emphasise its ‘seriousness’ as a genre. Pioneering studies...

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Metal and Borealism w/ Ross Hagen

Metal and Borealism w/ Ross Hagen

Borealism is essentially a form of exoticism, building on Edward Saïd’s “orientalism,” a concept detailing how European artistic depictions of African, Asian, and Middle Eastern cultures tended to emphasize violence, “primitiveness,” and sensuality. It is one way we define ourselves collectively...

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Metal and Nationalism w/ Méi-Ra St. Laurent

Metal and Nationalism w/ Méi-Ra St. Laurent

Ah nationalism and metal music… There are thousands of examples of groups promoting their history and their culture in the lyrics of their songs by using their national language, on their album covers with beautiful pictures of their landscape, or even in their music by utilizing traditional...

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