Whenever it comes to pointing out the merits of heavy metal against the complaints of its (often repetitive) detractors, the connection between genre classics and lyrics (be it JR Tolkien, or even the Bible, if we think about it that way) is one that frequently comes up time and again.
In itself, this isn’t anything unique to metal – music as a whole constantly returns to this or other cultural forms to create its own concepts and direction, and the relationship between literature and music is only testament to the knowledge that art does not exist in a vacuum.
In the case of particular niche genres of extreme music like funeral doom metal, such a relationship makes for immensely dark sounds [best heard with the lights down if not switched off – Ann’s recommendation], as heard from the German band AHAB. To listen to an album of theirs is to feel dragged down into the bottomless pits of the ocean, owing to the grand role played by Moby Dick and other whaling adventures in their work.
I managed to catch guitarist Chris Hector, so he could tell me more about this relationship between music and words, and how it came to be for the newest record ‘The Giant‘.