#1
You've heard it many times. "this album is a CLASSIC you HAVE to listen to it!" Is there a line drawn between a good or great album vs a classic? I'd consider some early bands like cannibal corpse to have some good material, but I don't view them as classics. They are one of the most popular death metal bands of all time, and have influenced a number of bands.

So what some important features to be cnsidered a classic album? What are some albums you think should be classics?
#2
My designation for 'classic' I think basically amounts to 'if you have not heard this album, you are obviously new to the genre'. So by this metric, I might designate something like Demigod - Slumber of Sullen Eyes a classic.

Of course it needs to be actually good as well.

Another way would be what happens when I revisit it. If I listen to it a couple of times then forget about it again, it probably isn't a classic. But if I binge on it endlessly for weeks/months then it very well could be a classic.

Another way is a classic is a kind of yardstick of the genre, an album that all other albums in that genre should aspire to, or that is heads and shoulders above the bulk of its genre in terms of quality. This is why, as I said at the start, 'if you have not heard this album, you are obviously new to the genre'.

Slumber of Sullen Eyes might be a 'cult classic' or 'underground classic' more than an 'actual' classic. It clearly doesn't have the same status as Altars of Madness or Legion, but it is definitely brilliant, unique and with endless staying power. Also, unmissable to anybody serious about old school death metal. I'd throw stuff like Rottrevore - Iniquitous and Infester - To the Depths in this category as well.
O what a disgrace if such a despised and base race, which worships demons, should conquer a people which has the faith of omnipotent God and is made glorious with the name of Christ!

The music winners listen to
#3
My definition of a classic would be something you like to revisit over time with the same intensity and enjoyment...of course we always keep looking for new material as well as older, unknown stuff but a classic is something that comes first to your mind when you think of a particular band,genre or mood. Every time you hear it, it makes you smile (or angry/sad) or basically stirs up some kind of strong emotion.
#4
To me, it's really just a combination of influence and quality, and it's something that sticks with most people for a long time. I think of Hell Awaits as the epitome of a "classic." Obviously, that album and Slayer in general were massively influential, and every extreme Metal band I've ever heard owes something to Slayer. But beyond that, it still manages to be on a completely different level from most albums. You can listen to it multiple times in a row and pretty much never get sick of it. It's crafted masterfully, it's powerful, it's evil, and everything about it is unique, iconic and amazing.

But with that said, I might consider an album like His Majesty at the Swamp to be a personal classic, but I wouldn't put the album on the level of a "true classic" like Hell Awaits or even Hvis Lyset Tar Oss. It's just an album I really love, and sticks with me.
Last edited by Ironic Maiden at Sep 7, 2016,
#5
An album that exemplifies all the core attributes of a genre and/or lays the groundwork for a new genre and has a measurable or observable legacy
Who are you? The prince of darkness? Don't you have any friends?


#6
I guess I'm a fgt and think most of my fav albums should be considered classics lul [though a bunch of them are haha]
though I personally don't particularly give a crap about influence just quality and perhaps originality
#7
Quote by Kytokinesis
An album that exemplifies all the core attributes of a genre and/or lays the groundwork for a new genre and has a measurable or observable legacy


This, essentially.

Onward To Golgotha, Keepers Of The Seven Keys, Transilvanian Hunger, and Ride The Lightning are all classical albums in metal not because I love them but because they created a sound that helped progress the form of music and has stood the test of time. I don't really consider albums I really like to be classics just 'cause I like them, if that were the case then God Was Created is the ultimate classic and should be loved by every metal fan, but that would be a totally useless metric to call something a "classic".
#8
I make classic albums.
There's no such thing; there never was. Where I am going you cannot follow me now.
#9
Quote by Kytokinesis
An album that exemplifies all the core attributes of a genre and/or lays the groundwork for a new genre and has a measurable or observable legacy


Kyto you have become such a quality poster.
A heathen, conceivably
but not,

I hope,
I’m not ashamed to be white
Vi doede ikke... vi har aldri levd
Barbarism is the natural state of mankind
Civilization is unnatural

It is a whim of circumstance
an unenlightened one
#10
Quote by VampireGoldfish
Kyto you have become such a quality poster.

I appreciate that VG. I wonder sometimes... For reasons I'll briefly go in to in the lurking thread here shortly.
Who are you? The prince of darkness? Don't you have any friends?


#11
I appreciate your posts Kyto, so don't question it. You're consistent with replies and give genuine input. What's not to like?
#13
It depends on what kind of classic we're talking about.

An album that I consider classic would be one that I listened to while doing something that I enjoy/enjoyed (Nocturnal Rites's Lost in Time collection while I played Guild Wars way back), or that I listened to extensively during a time in my life that I look back on fondly (Nightfall in Middle-Earth when I was ~13 and driving around Quebec City on vacation with my parents).

A classic in the genre to me has to be one that when you first hear it, you know exactly what it is; Nordland when the main riff breaks. It also has to feel like you are listening to something special (which is hard to tell during first listens) and make you want to write music just like it, even if you have no experience in that genre. With that said, there are few 'Genre Classics' to me. Twilight of the Gods, NiME, Dol Guldur, Street Child, and a few others that come to mind are the only ones that fit my description to me.
Quote by NotFromANUS
"Don't brutal your sister, Timmy!"


last.fm
#14
To me, a 'classic' metal album would be one that is an exceptionally proficient example of the genre or sub-genre it is part of, whether that be due to quality aesthetically, composition-wise, innovation-wise etc. etc. It doesn't necessarily have to tick all of these boxes (although more boxes ticked the better). Also, whilst not needing to be totally innovative and original, I'd still say that a classic needs to have some distinctive personality of it's own which separates it from the legions of other metal albums out there. I'll give some examples of what I feel are classics below:

- Lykathea Aflame: Elvenefris - It would make sense to compare Lykathea Aflame to Worm-era Cryptopsy; both share the unrelenting tin-can blast beats accompanied by riffs formed from streams of unending tremolo-picked phrases. However, LA swapped out Cryptopsy's 'brutal' note choices for major scale-based motifs that evoke feelings of wonder and flight within the listener, although they do play more sinister sounding riffs on occasion. As well as this, LA added ambient and clean guitar passages to further increase Elvenefris' uplifting atmosphere. I feel this is a classic due to both a degree of aesthetic uniqueness and innovation that few others in the metal scene so in a similar manner. However, now is the time to bring up my point about not ticking all the boxes; Elvenefris lacks somewhat in the composition department due to song structure being a rapid-fire alternation between calm and aggressive for the most part. I feel that if LA had changed the formula about from time to time then Elvenefris would be even better than it already is.

- At The Gates: The Red In The Sky Is Ours - I'm assuming that everyone here knows how good this album is and why it's so good, so I'll be even more concise here. At the individual riff-level, AtG create melancholic phrases that piece together with other phrases, but to me the magic is really to do with how these riffs are put together in song. At the song level, each motif feeds into another to create a 'story' if you will, where both repetition and the introduction of new ideas work to propel the narrative further forwards. Notice how AtG manage to evoke a similar breadth of emotions that LA did but without any aesthetic deviations from the standard extreme metal set-up of guitar-bass-drums-harsh vox (with the exception of the violin, which is used extremely tastefully)
#15
A classic album was just as good 10 years ago as it will be 10 years from now.
Free your mind and your ass will follow
The kingdom of heaven is within
Open up your funky mind and you can fly

Sumdeus
#16
Quote by severed-metal
I'd consider some early bands like cannibal corpse to have some good material, but I don't view them as classics.

Good thread idea bro. I don't have time to reply to your actual question but I just wanted to weigh in on what I believe to be a classic album by Cannibal Corpse:

The Bleeding.
Last edited by Spidey93 at Aug 1, 2017,
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