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BEHEMOTH's NERGAL Thinks Heavy Metal Records Are Becoming Too Polished

"Every fucking click, every kick, every snare drum, every part of the record is exactly the same."

A photo of Behemoth frontman Nergal

In a recent chat with the Australian site Heavy, Behemoth frontman Nergal shared his opinion on what he sees as metal becoming too technically polished.

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About the band's latest LP, Opvs Contra Natvram, Nergal said the band tried as hard as possible to capture an organic vibe on the record. But beyond that, Nergal had some harsh critique on tap regarding what he's listening to these days. "Ninety-nine percent of the records, they sound robotic. Every fucking click, every kick, every snare drum, every part of the record is exactly the same.

"Every band these days, you talk to every band, and every band — literally — heavy metal band, thrash, death, whatever, says, 'Oh, we managed to get that organic sound.' And then I go and listen to those records and I'm, like, 'There's nothing organic about this record.'

He continued, saying that "'Organic' is when music fluctuates, when there's dynamics, when it goes up and down… These days, you can fucking perfect things to the point that you cannot fucking listen to it, because the perfection makes things boring, imperfect and a whole lot uninteresting. Live, it's not perfect; that's why it's so fucking exciting.

"So why make things that are just so fucking polished? I don't get it, especially in extreme metal music. It's gotta be fucking weird, it's gotta be dangerous. Where is the danger factor? So I really wanted to bring the danger factor back to our music. It was present, but maybe this is the record [where] it's the most present ever."

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For my money, I'm with Nergal. With few exceptions, I like to feel as though the band is there in the room with me when I listen to an album. With heavily produced music, or very polished recordings, it is hard to conjure up that aura that is, as Nergal notes, the essence of a live show. Of course, everyone's taste is different. But even still, I think Nergal is on to something here.

So it's probably safe to assume that whatever Behemoth is working on for 2023 probably won't be too polished, right?

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