VIRGIN BLACK
Gothic Metal / Death-Doom Metal • Australia

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Virgin Black is an australian gothic doom metal band. Formed in Adelaide, Australia in 1995.

After series of demo recordings in 1995/1996, the group began gaining international recognition with 1998's "Trance" EP, eventually signing with The End Records a year later.

Boasting a complex, cinematic sound, both gothic and metallic in nature, their debut album "Sombre Romantic" followed in 2000 and saw their core line-up augmented by choirs and string sections in the studio, the better to embellish their grandiose mood metal.

The second album "Elegant...and Dying" is creating a sad, epic but romantic sound. The extremely emotional arrangements are further enhanced by Rowan London's unique mournful yet poetic singing style. The songs are presented with numerous angles and at times coming out as soundtrack scores, at others as classical compositions or even as subtle weeping lullabies that make the music as dynamic as it is dark and
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Sombre RomanticSombre Romantic
The End Records 2002
Audio CD$6.92
$7.98 (used)
Requiem: FortissimoRequiem: Fortissimo
The End Records 2008
Audio CD$7.27
$1.99 (used)
Requiem: Mezzo ForteRequiem: Mezzo Forte
The End Records 2007
Audio CD$6.73
$2.49 (used)
Elegant...and DyingElegant...and Dying
The End Records 2003
Audio CD$11.98
$4.99 (used)
Requiem: Mezzo Forte by VIRGIN BLACK (2007-04-03)Requiem: Mezzo Forte by VIRGIN BLACK (2007-04-03)
The End Records
Audio CD$23.67
Sombre Romantic by Virgin Black (2002-02-12)Sombre Romantic by Virgin Black (2002-02-12)
The End Records
Audio CD$32.15
Elegant...And Dying by Virgin BlackElegant...And Dying by Virgin Black
Massacre Records
Audio CD$42.82
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VIRGIN BLACK Discography

VIRGIN BLACK albums / top albums

.. Album Cover 3.94 | 5 ratings
Sombre Romantic
Gothic Metal 2001
.. Album Cover 3.79 | 8 ratings
Elegant... and Dying
Gothic Metal 2003
.. Album Cover 3.33 | 7 ratings
Requiem: Mezzo Forte
Gothic Metal 2007
.. Album Cover 2.16 | 6 ratings
Requiem: Fortissimo
Death-Doom Metal 2008

VIRGIN BLACK EPs & splits

.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Australian Metal Compilation IV - Falling on Deaf Ears
Gothic Metal 1996
.. Album Cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
Trance
Gothic Metal 1998

VIRGIN BLACK live albums

VIRGIN BLACK demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Virgin Black
Gothic Metal 1996

VIRGIN BLACK re-issues & compilations

VIRGIN BLACK singles (0)

VIRGIN BLACK movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

VIRGIN BLACK Reviews

VIRGIN BLACK Requiem: Mezzo Forte

Album · 2007 · Gothic Metal
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progshine
Australian Gothic Metal... those words alone should have been enough for me to know I should move away from such a band like Virgin Black (what a fantastic and original name, right!?)!

Gothic Metal for me is the most unbearable atrocity that music, and Metal, has ever invented. The guy who decided that it was a good idea to join Heavy Metal with classical music, 'erudite' singers (read erudite with a lot of irony) and the whole 'Goticity' thing should burn at the stake.

But I must say that "Requiem: Mezzo Forte" is not the worst record I've ever heard in this genre (the title goes to anything Leaves' Eyes has ever recorded), being very well produced and full of interesting moments. Truth is that the album has very little Gothic Metal in it, it's more like something Therion would do, more Symphonic Metal with Doom Metal blasts I guess. But there is just no way, in the end, that this is any good in the end. You listen to it and it doesn't make you listen again, ever!

This style of Metal just doesn't do anything for me. What fans of the genre take for beauty I see only nonstop boredom. But I recognize the Australians' effort and maybe fans of the genre will like it.

VIRGIN BLACK Requiem: Mezzo Forte

Album · 2007 · Gothic Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Warthur
Virgin Black's sound on this first entry in their Requiem trilogy is mostly rooted in gothic metal - song titles like Lacrimosa (I Am Blind With Weeping) are the big clue there - with elements of doom metal and symphonic metal skillfully woven into their sound. The end result is somewhat more progressively flavoured than gothic metal typically gets, and the band show excellent taste in how they integrate the orchestra and choir they are backed by here into their sound. "Symphonic doomy gothic metal" is a very specific niche to try and capture, but Virgin Black do an excellent job of it.

VIRGIN BLACK Requiem: Fortissimo

Album · 2008 · Death-Doom Metal
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Conor Fynes
'Requiem Fortissimo' - Virgin Black (3/10)

While it might not be the most inspiring word-of-mouth introduction for a band to hear your friend tell you to give 'one of the worst albums he has ever listened to' a try, but as always, music is a very subjective experience and I like to treat it as such. While there are aspects of music that appeal to a majority of people, there will always be pieces of music that some may hate, and others love depending on their outlook and ear.

'Requiem Fortissimo' may well be one of those albums that could be perceived as a total masterpiece by one with an ear attuned enough to doom metal to appreciate it. While I have dabbled in the realm of doom before (from the likes of early Anathema and Katatonia to Shades Of Despair and Draconian) I've been able to see real beauty in some of the music the genre spits out, but above anything, its a real hit-or-miss deal. If something doesn't work, it really won't work. 'Requiem' definately had alot of thought put into it, but in the end; a few shortcomings in the work truly mar what might have been a landmark doom record.

When I speak of the 'thought' and effort put into the making of it, its important to know that the band went as far as to enlist the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra (generally perceived to be Austrailia's flagship philharmonic) and choral sections to add to the sound. While this does certainly make 'Requiem' a much more worthy venture than other albums I've listened to, the rest of the mix hurts the orchestration alot. The guitar riffs are generally unimaginative save for a few precious arrangements, and the growl vocals are truly atrocious. While there are a few soprano operatic sections, and parts where the orchestra has room to breathe, these sections frankly aren't worth going through all of the monotonous guitar drone and grunting to get to them.

While it might be a suitable backdrop for a wintery, frostbitten evening, this depressing and dissapointing opus from Virgin Black will not appeal to many outside of the doom metal circle. I for one, can find stuff to appreciate here, and it's certainly not the worst album I've ever heard, but I would much rather delve into a more fulfilling record then this; as there are plenty out there that trump over this one.

VIRGIN BLACK Elegant... and Dying

Album · 2003 · Gothic Metal
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bonnek
Virgin Black’s second album is a 75 minute opus that should convince any remaining doubts that they mean business, big epic melodramatic business.

The result is still very satisfying but it’s become a less versatile album then the debut. It is quieter and more coherent but only seems to explore its dramatic Goth potential. The metal and progressive sides of the music have become less prominent. As it turned out, alternating metal-styled albums with more laidback material turned out to be something of a career choice for Virgin Black, quite similar to the US goth metallists of Christian Death, who must have been an obvious point of inspiration.

There are great pieces of music where looming doom-riffs and spacey blues guitar leads provide memorable moments as on The Kiss of God's Mouth and Cult of Crucifixion. But with only one mood to sustain for 75 minutes, the album is too long. The operatic 20 minute musical drama of Everlasting goes entirely over all bombastic peaks reached by other Goth bands before them. Quite an achievement that is. And they manage to do it while maintaining a really spooky and chilling atmosphere.

Virgin Black is a great band with more talent then 20 random Goth bands put together. Their inclusion of operatic metal and ambitious drama might sure make them an interesting listen if you’re attracted to the idea of progressive Goth rock. To be checked by lovers of Type O Negative, Therion and My Dying Bride.

VIRGIN BLACK Sombre Romantic

Album · 2001 · Gothic Metal
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bonnek
Virgin Black’s debut does exactly what the album title promises. They are clearly deep in mourning and decadently romantic. Their music is hard to put into just one category, there are elements of goth, black and doom metal, but also soft acoustic guitat parts, mostly melodic and slightly operatic vocals, beautiful bluesy guitar solos, symphonic keyboards and melodious pianos.

Because the music is hard to describe, I need to refer to other bands to draw similarities. A first is My Dying Bride from around their second album Turn Loose The Swans. Virgin Black improves that sound with better vocals and great Gilmouresque guitar solos as on Museum Of Iscariot. A second reference would be Therion. The second track Embrace for instance features a choir introduction that sounds just like Therion on a particularly drowsy day. Also Agalloch can be mentioned. On Drink the Midnight Hymn Virgin Black bring an operatic version of a similar type of epic black metal. Also the overall sound is quite similar to Agalloch’s albums. The integration of moody acoustic pieces and ambient experimentalism adds Ulver to this extensive list of references.

The songwriting is excellent throughout and with the extensive range of styles it makes for a varied and dynamic album. Fans of the bands listed shouldn’t hesitate, and others shouldn’t turn their backs too quickly neither. This music incorporates many forms of modern metal but it can hardly be tagged extreme. Instead it’s heavy, dark, melodic and very moving.

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