As you may know, I recently put online a video that took me 8 months to make… no this is so not auto promotion but please check the youtube link here : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=76FNIkcgevk.
So to help in the building of my main character Mia Chlebek who is the singer and lead singer of a death metal band, I decided to make my own research about those rare creature of the Metal world, I said “RARE” because they really are, as we all know Metal music is not a girly girl world. So hopefully, in my post, I managed to capture all those death butterflies.
Before we start, I would like to warn everybody that Amy Lee from Evanescence is banned from that post, as pretty and talented as she is, Evanescence is certainly not Metal.
This was the closest attempt for me of Evanescence trying to do Metal music… and it stops here. Cristina Scabbia is also banned, even if she is musically more Metal but her voice is not what I call death metal.
Definitly not on my top10, and forget about Within temptation and Sharon Den Adel’s elder Sister Tarja, Ex-Nightwish… This is so not what my Top 10 is about. Let’s get a clearer definition of Death Metal Vocals maybe by the help of the best friend of everybody Wikipedia.
A Death growl, also known as Death Metal Vocals, Guttural Vocals, Death Grunts, Growled vocals, Unclean Vocals, Deadly Howls and Harsh Vocals among other names, is a vocalisation style usually employed by vocalists of the death metal music genres, but also used in a variety of heavy metal styles.
Death metal, in particular, is associated with growled vocals. Death metal, which tends to be lyrically and thematically darker and more morbid than thrash metal, features vocals that attempt to evoke chaos, death, and misery by being “usually very deep, guttural, and unintelligible.Natalie Purcell notes, “Although the vast majority of death metal bands use very low, beast-like, almost indiscernible growls as vocals, many also have high and screechy or operatic vocals, or simply deep and forcefully sung vocals.” Sociologist Deena Weinstein has noted of death metal: “Vocalists in this style have a distinctive sound, growling and snarling rather than singing the words. Making ample use of the voice distortion box.”
The progressively more forceful enunciation of metal vocals has been noted, from heavy metal to thrash metal to death metal.
“ To appreciate the music, fans first had to accept a merciless sonic signature: guttural vocals that were little more than a menacing, sub-audible growl. James Hetfield’s thrash metal rasp was harsh in contrast to Rob Halford’s heavy metal high notes, but creatures like Glen Benton of Deicide tore out their larynxes to summon images of decaying corpses and giant catastrophic horrors.”
Death growls are sometimes criticized for their “ugliness”. However, the harshness of death growls are in keeping with death metal’s abrasive music style and often dark and disturbing subject matter.
So nothing to do with the nice and lovely ladies above, All the singers of my top 10 often do both, clean and unclean singing, so you would understand more my choices. It’s like saying the love metal of HIM is actually metal…
>_> I just had a second thought, maybe I should nominate Ville Valo in the -could make it but can’t at the end- list below :
I discovered Exilia at the same time of Evanescence, Link Park… the Nu Metal’s glory hours. Macha voice is very unique, she is capable of doing a very clean vocal singing such as “Mr Man” one of my favorite song of them but no matter what she does, her voice always tends to be naturally rough. She didn’t make to the top because come on, that’s cheating… :P I still like them though so this is “Stop Playing God” for all of you who is reading it.
Lzzy Hales (Halestorm)
I already talked to you about this lady at the beginning of last year. Lzzy Hales has a very amazing and powerful voice, you don’t want to mess around with her, she could make you deaf and thank God, she didn’t try yet to do some Death Metal, I just can’t imagine the sound of her vocal. Again same as for Macha, this is cheating, she puts no effort on it and have all the goodness. So unfair, this is their latest video “I Miss The Misery”
Lusine “Lou” Gevorkyan (Tracktor Bowling)
Annamita Virosa’s blog is international, it’s not only based in one country, one sound, music language is universal and has no limits. Saying that, it reminds me a joke that someone told me before few months ago >_>, Dir En Grey “Good Foreign Band”… is that so hard to say “Japanese Band”, surely nobody will say that of “Korn”, this foreign band… anyway hope it makes you laugh, if not, then I don’t know. Back to Lou, her voice is amazing, even if you don’t understand russian, there are so much feelings and passion on it… you will understand the theme of the song, here is the beautiful almost like a movie type video of “Shrami”
Jyou (Exist trace)
I made a post about this band before and their second album… but still I can’t only hear very few of Jyou’s famous growling… but the few she did, was ok. Japanese singers are awful when it comes to growling, they really injure their voice. One minute of silence for the singer of D’espairs Ray, hope Hizumi will one day manage to get back his voice and reform the band… one day… one day… The reason why Exist Trace couldn’t go higher on my top 10 is for the below video, you can’t play Dark Music and have this song… this is just unforgivable
(it’s also about ginger… >_> urghh)
Maria Brink (In This Moment)
Maria brink was also the discovery of the year for me and she could make it to the top 10 too but unfortunately, there is only one song of In This Moment, I like. Come on, everybody should know it, she is screaming the word BLOOD for more than 300 times on it.
(Please can anyone feed that vampire lady of fresh blood!!!)
Yes, finally, we made it to the top 10, I know there are a lots of top 10 over the internet about Female Death Metal Vocals, and I don’t claim myself to actually know it all but I think the below explained a bit of where my musical sense comes from :), enjoy!
10 – Mikki (Galmet)
You all know the story, it’s a band that worth to be known but who is not because they are not American. Well, I’m here to show you the contrary because those Gothic Lolita chicks know how to make good Death Metal. So here they are with the a bit low budget “Rebirth” video.
P.S. : Yes, their bassist Sawa is also on Aldious another great all-female Metal band from Japan.
09 – Sandra Nasic (Guano Apes)
For those who doesn’t know Guano Apes, for me, it was one of the first band I listen to at the same time when Korn was getting famous, and the particularity of this band is of course the fierce lead singer, Sandra Nasic. She is to me, a bit of the pioneer of the genre, she screams a lot, she can also sing with a very solf voice (reference to the beautiful “quietly”). And of course being completely commercialized nowaday… (OH WHY, OH WHY…) so let’s begin at the starting point in 2006 when Guano Apes decided to be in Hiatus, just long enough for Sandra to make her rock solo album… then after discussion they got back together to make “Bel Air”, the worst ever album of Guano Apes, very rock with a tendency to Pop, I don’t know if it’s the producer who made them doing it because if you listen to some of the Demo versions, you can still feel the original energy of the band… but the album versions. OMG, this is so not Guano Apes for me. Anyway let’s enjoy one of their old time song “Lords Of The Boards”
08 - Lacey Sturm (Ex-Flyleaf)
Still don’t understand why she left Flyleaf… I mean, they were so good together. Back in 2009, a brazilian friend of mine, made me listen to that band that he described as “WOW”, I usually always hesitated to listen to some American band… especially Christians band, I’m not a very religious person but when I must say I was impressed by this lady. So here it’s the video of Flyleaf “I’m so sick”
07 – Maiko (Dazzle Vision)
Another Japanese band… after being a anti pro-american, you might think I’m a pro-japanese person now, you can’t win in any case, so let it be, I only like good music.
I discovered this band accidently on Youtube by looking for some videos of Exist Trace and I wasn’t into it at the beginning but after awhile, their songs caught my attention especially the voice of Maiko. How could a voice like this coming out of a such a little cute girl? Explain me that?
Well if you like anime and metal, you would be served and it doesn’t stop here, the sound of the band will get darker and darker as they are trying to reach their limits. If you want a taste of their Evolution, check their EP of the same name especially for the song “Over” and “Dilemma” which are my favorite :
06 – Virginie Goncalves (Kells)
Glory to my own country, finally a French band and of course, I have to add it to the top 10, I’m so racist, am I not? LOL
I discovered Kells by Eths (another great French band in the top 10, will talk to you about it later), as they made a duet together. I think Virginie Goncalves managed to succeed where Evanescence failed to do, Kells music is the perfect mixture between purity and brutality. There is no more to say, just to listen to the song below, you will understand everything (because it’s in english)
One last thing, if you like this band, please check also their song “On My Fate”, it will sum up perfectly what I said about the purity and the brutality.
05 - Otep Shamaya (Otep)
Otep Shamaya from Otep, you will guess the band is all about her Lol, it’s for me an amazing band, I didn’t have the chance to discover them when they were rising but it’s never too late. Otep Shamaya is very engaged in her opinions, she is vegetarian and I don’t want to say it because I think people sexuality is their own, not everybody ones especially when you’re an artist, so let’s say it, she is also an openly lesbian and same as most of the top ladies in that list defending the animal rights. She is also known as an artist, expressing her creativity in other domains than music such as poetries and illustrations, I must say, I really like the artwork of Otep’s album The Ascension, the only one I have of them.
Just to stay a bit longer in the mood of Kells, that’s the beautiful and very poetic “Ghostflowers” video from Otep.
04 – Alissa White Gluz (The Agonist)
Alissa is the beautiful lead singer of The Agonist
(another french speaker on the top, well except she is from Montreal, why oh why…). Alyssa doesn’t have her tongue in her pocket as we said in French, vegan, straight edge, against illegal music downloads, animal rights… Alissa is everywhere and she’s even have time to be friend with Bam Margera.
Even though, she was known to be in Canadian Idol? (This is a sort of deal breaker in the ruthless world of Metal) she managed to break through with her band. For me, she is has a real Death Metal Vocal and it’s sad to see that her clean vocal as a reminder of her debut in Canadian Idol. No joke, I remembered, the first review I read about The Agonist was horrible, the song “You’re coming with me” was almost described as Pop just because Alissa was actually singing on it…
Anyway below is one of my favorite video of them “Business Suits & Combat Boots” especially for the engaged lyrics and if you have time, please get yourself their latest album “Prisoners” which is by
03 – Morgan Lander (Kittie)
Another Canadians band, those ones don’t know how to speak french but they know how to speak Death, Heavy, Nu Metal whatever it is, their front woman Morgan is doing a great job at it. To me Kittie was the pioneer of the first full-female Metal band and they didn’t let down anybody
(who said you need to be a man to make Metal music!).At their start, their sound was very brutal but through the time, it gets somehow softer There is not much to say about it, you just have to listen to this amazing “Cut Throat” and GIRL POWER.
02 – Candice Clot (Ex – Eths)
Ok if Otep Shamaya was the pioneer in the genre in the US, and Sandra Nasic in Germany, in France, we do also except our one, is hotter. Candice Clot is for me, the first lady metal in France and I think for many french, she is still the spirit of the ultimate female Metal singer, if you watch “Clash” the teen french sitcom, you will notice how one of the character strangely looks like Candice, yes I am talking about Kelly Boitel, the young tattooist who is also the singer of an underground Metal band…
Anyway, let’s get back to her music, Candice lyrics made often referred to rape, bulimia, low self esteem… a bit normal in the world of Death Metal but if you understand french, I really advise you to check on her lyrics, they are to my eyes very poetic, I really enjoy Eths last album (with Candice as the singer still, she is now replace by Rachel Aspe), she really did an amazing piece of art with her band, her voice was not only brutal because she actually sings, if you listen to the acoustic version of Proserpina, you will understand that those guys know how music is and especially what is an acoustic version
(in the contrary of some other bands). Lyrically, III was inspired by Greek Gods, a lot of the song title is in old Greek and the bad point for me, she is singing in English… you can feel the need of money pushing by the record company…
I have a good memory of Eths, the first time, I listened to Eths was at my teenage, in an early morning before to go to school
(this could only happen in France) with that song “Crucifere” which was the best of their album “Soma” but my favorite of them is their last “III”, I just can listen to it over and over again.
01 – Angela Gossow (Arch Enemy)
I think you all guess it, there is no need to introduce this one, she was a journalist and now the lead singer of one of the most famous band of the genre and she is also the Female Death Metal Voice of a generation to me. So enjoy :