» Blog Archive Four Heavy Non-Metal Artists You Need To Be Listening To -

king dudeWhether we like it or not, being “heavy” isn’t something exclusive to heavy metal music. Even in the genre, purists are still arguing what’s considered “true metal” and if it’s “extreme” enough to be metal, thus producing so much infighting on comment threads between black metal basement dorks and dads who haven’t listened to anything new in the scene if it doesn’t have a musician they know in it or doesn’t sound like an already existing band. There are, however, artists out there not remaining stationary in a genre, as much as a purist would like to hope they would, and as such in recent years there have been bands and musicians popping up that are incorporating metal elements into their music, be it small touches or the general aesthetic and feeling of the music being similar.

Anna von Hausswolff – Let’s get right to the weird stuff. On a scale, Sweden’s Anna von Hausswolff might not the weirdest we’ll have featured on here, but her atmosphere is an overwhelming part of her music that helps escalate her guitars to monolithic proportions. Pin-pointing von Hausswolff’s genre is not an easy task, however how her music is as experimental and heavy as it is atmospheric. With high gain guitar tones, a doom metal-inspired pacing, and soaring vocals to compliment it all, von Hausswolff could stand her own with the right line-up at a metal show.

KEN Mode – This one’s debatable, as KEN Mode are constantly seen in the metal community and lumped together with metal bands on websites. However, KEN Mode are a beast unto themselves. Being the hybrid of hardcore punk and noise rock influences, the band offer up a sludge metal presence that truly elevates the band to heavier and more extreme directions. Perhaps the most accessible for a metalhead to get into, KEN Mode are arguably more streamlined than the others on this list. That said, there’s zero-filler in their work, and every song lands the punch in your face you so desperately need.

Youth Code – Industrial and metal have always gone hand-in-hand with one another, but while industrial metal is the most immediate accessible option for a metal-loving person such as yourself, traditional industrial and EBM would catch one by surprise with how aggressive it is for being so synthesizer-based. To any industrial lover, this is obviously something to roll your eyes at, but your average metalhead would be surprised to find out that LA’s Youth Code are heavier than most bands in the scene today. The duo, consisting of Sara Taylor and Ryan George, are up there with nothing but synthesizers and harsh, screamed vocals and are outperforming many a band in any genre. Think of the most aggressive parts of Hau Ruck-era KMFDM, but then dial it up to 20 and have no fluff-pieces on any album.

King Dude – Satan and the occult imagery that comes with the Biblical figure is a commonplace thing in metal. Clearly King Dude did his homework, because occult-based lyrics, perverse lyrics, and black leather attire are what his music and image revolve around. If Johnny Cash sold his soul to the Devil and took cues from rock and folk artists, and had a tongue-in-cheek sense of humor, you’d have King Dude. Even still, King Dude has his own identity. Deep guitars, deeper vocals, and a dark sense of humor set King Dude apart from the pack, especially in more traditional music scenes.

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