Today’s top heavy metal bands are the bands I only dreamed about when I was a kid.
The Swiss band Eluveitie has been one my favorites for years, but their new album puts their old work to shame. The band now has nine members. The only original member is Christian Glanzmann, who does male vocals and plays the tin whistle. Previously, Anna Murphy, from Ireland, played the hurdy gurdy and did occasional female vocals.
Anna Murphy left to do a solo album and has been replaced by two different women. The Swiss singer Fabienne Erni is now the lead vocalist and Glanzmann is more of a backup singer. Michalina Malisz from Poland has taken over the role of hurdy gurdy player. Frankly, both of these women are also more attractive than Anna Murphy as well. I will say that Anna Murphy sings better on her solo album than she did on previous Eluveitie albums.
The name Eluveitie refers to the Celts who once lived in modern-day Switzerland. Eluveitie is a celebration of the ancient Celts. They even sing songs in reconstructed continental Celtic.
The Italian band Fleshgod Apocalypse is the band I had been waiting for since I was 12. All the elements that I thought was missing in the perfect metal band, Fleshgod Apocalypse finally completely. They are extremely skilled musicians playing true neo-classical masterpieces. Francesco Paoli, the drummer, may very well be the best drummer in the world.
Each album has only gotten better and better. The bands’ themes are rooted in Greco-Roman culture.
Finland is the only country in the world where heavy metal is the most popular form of music. Sitting at the top of the Finnish heavy metal throne is Amorphis. I saw this band live when I was in High School.
Amorphis has played every kind of metal there is. From Death Metal to Progressive metal. There is one constant that has remained. Amorphis has always drawn their lyrics from traditional Finnish folklore.
Many of their early songs are about the hardships of living in the extreme cold of Finland before modern technology existed. My favorite Amorphis song and video is called Black Winter Day. I even used to play this song on guitar. They have newer, better, fancier videos, but I still like this one old the best.
However, I will post one of their newer videos here, only because I think their newer stuff will have a much broader appeal.
Arkona is a Russian heavy metal band infused with traditional Slavic folk music and Slavic folklore. The lead singer goes by Masha Scream. Their albums feature tracks by dozens of different musicians playing different instruments and styles.
The lyrics are about Slavic folklore, holidays, traditions, and the old Slavic Gods.