Monday, December 13, 2010

R.I.P. Chuck Schuldiner

Here we are, in the year 2010, at the doorstep of 2011, and extreme music is growing every single day. It is difficult to believe how far the music has come since the pioneers started playing something that was different, something heavier than everything else that was on the radio. As new music progresses and innovative subgenres are being formed every day, we must take time to remember the originators of metal. From the mainstream success of bands like Black Sabbath, Dio, Metallica, and Deep Purple, to the more underground bands of Death, Possessed, Venom, and Candlemass. Without albums such as Scream Bloody Gore, Seven Churches, Black Metal, and Epicus Doomicus Metallicus, we would not have death metal, thrash metal, black metal, or doom as we know it to be today. I am not saying that these were the be all and end all of those particular genres, but they were undeniably pivotal in the growth of extreme music. Many kids today are simply listening to music that has come out in the last ten years and not going back to discover where this music came from. Sadly, not all of these bands are around anymore because time does not always treat metal bands well. We lose legends such as Ronnie James Dio, Dimebag Darrell, and, the main reason I am writing this article, Chuck Schuldiner. December 13 marks the 9th anniversary of Chuck’s passing away due to cancer. As much as we portray these legends as god-like, we have to come back to reality to realize that they are very much mortal. Chuck has been called the Father of Death Metal for his innovations with his band Death, whose entire catalogue is celebrated in the metal community as some of the greatest contributions to music that we have. Even as the band moved into a more progressive sound, Death continued to show the incredible musicianship that death metal can possess. From Chuck’s vocals to his songwriting to his style of guitar playing, you can hear his influence in just about every death metal band today. It is highly doubtful that any band would say that Death has not been a source of inspiration to them as death metal would not exist in its state without them. Albums such as the aforementioned Scream Bloody Gore, Leprosy, and Human, paved the way for extreme music and their sonic faculties can be heard in so many different bands today. So today we take time to remember our fallen heroes and make sure to spin their records in order to pay homage to their legacies. We will continue to lose these legends that broke new ground in music and we will never get more music from them again. There will be countless articles written about them as time moves on but we need to remember them on a daily basis so that they will not simply be memories.

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