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Doom metal is an extreme form of heavy metal music that typically uses slower tempos, low-tuned guitars and a much 'thicker' or 'heavier' sound than other metal genres. Both the music and the lyrics intend to evoke a sense of despair, dread, and impending doom. The genre is strongly influenced by the early work of Black Sabbath, who formed a prototype for doom metal with songs such as "Black Sabbath" and "Into the Void". During the first half of the 1980s, a number of bands from England (Pagan Altar, Witchfinder General) and the United States (Pentagram, Saint Vitus, Trouble) defined doom metal as a distinct genre.


Sub-genre collaborators (+ child sub-genres and shared with Stoner Metal and Drone Metal):
  • Nightfly (leader)
  • MorniumGoatahl

doom metal top albums

Showing only albums and EPs | Based on members ratings & MMA custom algorithm | 24 hours caching

SAINT VITUS Die Healing Album Cover Die Healing
4.67 | 11 ratings
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TRIPTYKON Melana Chasmata Album Cover Melana Chasmata
4.54 | 14 ratings
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PENTAGRAM Review Your Choices Album Cover Review Your Choices
4.62 | 7 ratings
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CELTIC FROST Monotheist Album Cover Monotheist
4.34 | 39 ratings
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WARNING Watching From a Distance Album Cover Watching From a Distance
4.50 | 10 ratings
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THE RUINS OF BEVERAST Exuvia Album Cover Exuvia
4.52 | 9 ratings
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PARADISE LOST Medusa Album Cover Medusa
4.39 | 20 ratings
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CANDLEMASS Nightfall Album Cover Nightfall
4.32 | 48 ratings
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REVEREND BIZARRE In the Rectory of the Bizarre Reverend Album Cover In the Rectory of the Bizarre Reverend
4.44 | 12 ratings
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MY DYING BRIDE The Dreadful Hours Album Cover The Dreadful Hours
4.35 | 26 ratings
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TROUBLE Run to the Light Album Cover Run to the Light
4.46 | 10 ratings
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SKEPTICISM Stormcrowfleet Album Cover Stormcrowfleet
4.43 | 11 ratings
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This list is in progress since the site is new. We invite all logged in members to use the "quick rating" widget (stars bellow album covers) or post full reviews to increase the weight of your rating in the global average value (see FAQ for more details). Enjoy MMA!

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MY DYING BRIDE Macabre Cabaret

EP · 2020 · Doom Metal
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"Macabre Cabaret" is an EP release by UK doom metal act My Dying Bride. The EP was released through Nuclear Blast in November 2020. It´s the follow-up release to My Dying Bride´s 14th full-length studio album "The Ghost of Orion" from March 2020. The "regular" version of the EP features 3 tracks, while the 12" vinyl version features the bonus track "Orchestral Shores (Buiksloterkerk Cathedral Mix)".

"Orchestral Shores (Buiksloterkerk Cathedral Mix)" is a slow and melancholic atmospheric track dominated by vocals, keyboards, and acoustic guitar and the track comprises vocals/lyrics and instrumental elements from the two tracks bookending "The Ghost of Orion (2020)": "Your Broken Shore" and "Your Woven Shore". The three remaining tracks on the EP are new originals exclusive to "Macabre Cabaret". The 10:00 minutes long title track and "A Secret Kiss" are both melancholic doom/death metal tracks in a similar style to the material on "The Ghost of Orion (2020)", but "A Purse of Gold and Stars" is a subdued melancholic and atmospheric track. It´s Stainthorpe showing his most gentle poetic side predominantly accompanied by keyboards.

The EP features a similar sounding production to the sound production feautured on "The Ghost of Orion (2020)", and while I´m not sure if it´s true, the material on "Macabre Cabaret" could well have been written and recorded during the same period as the material on the preceding album release. They don´t really feel like leftover tracks though, and "Macabre Cabaret" is definitely what I would call a high quality release and well worth having if you enjoyed "The Ghost of Orion (2020)". A 3.5 - 4 star (75%) rating is deserved.

SLEEP Volume One

Album · 1991 · Doom Metal
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siLLy puPPy
Initially formed as Asbestosdeath by the trio of Al Cisneros (vocals, bass), Chris Hakius (drums) and Tom Choi (guitars), the band that would become SLEEP released two EPs under that moniker before ultimately losing Choi who would go on to form bands like Noothgrush and then adding guitarist Matt Pike for changing its name to the more familiar one. In the beginning, Asbestosdeath was an extreme sludge metal band much more in the vein of Eyehategod than the fuzz maestros that cranked out such classics as “Sleep’s Holy Mountain” and “Dopesmoker” but during this intermediate stage SLEEP retained some of the sludge magic mojo while steering its sound more into a plodding doom metal band with sludgy accoutrements.

The band’s two EPs as Asbestosdeath only featured four tracks and all of them were reworked and re-recorded to fit into the band’s doom metal sound that was released with five new tracks on SLEEP’s debut album VOLUME ONE which came out the following year in 1991. Unfortunately Justin Marler would soon depart the world of music to start a life as a monk but stuck around long enough to participate in this album which is SLEEP’s only one to feature four members instead of the power trio they are known to be on future releases. This album found two simultaneous releases with the vinyl appearing on the Very Small label and the CD on Tupelo.

For anyone familiar with the stoner metal fuzz of the band’s later albums, this debut may come as quite a surprise as it is much more focused on the compositions rather than a meditative fuzz frenzy that would soon follow. In the album’s near 46 minute run the procession of the tracks range from quite and completive to furious and angst ridden. The opening chants prognostic the medicative route the band would soon embark upon but the music soon becomes choppy jagged guitar riffs tamed into doom ridden chunks although the sludge distortion and screamed vocals remains on VOLUME ONE.

While the riffs often have a Black Sabbath feel to them, the Eyehategod sludge methodology is also present and SLEEP finds itself in between the two styles somewhat equidistantly with moments of one aspect or the other dominating. There are also breaks that find bass led grooves lead the guitar and drums into complex almost progressive interludes and the vocals calm down to weird narrative prose. The album is well paced as the moments of slower pastiches mixed with the rampaging metal heft are perfectly nurtured for all the right effects to unleash. The dueling guitars may not seem prominent but adds an interesting off-kilter counterpoint to the overall mix. The drumming is often simplistic as in some sludge metal but Hakius also provided some stellar workouts including interesting cymbal action.

VOLUME ONE doesn’t seem to get nearly as much love as SLEEP’s following stoner metal releases but i find this to be one compelling slab of molten metal madness that perfectly fuses the best of sludge metal with the traditional doom styles of the 70s. The musicians are all top notch and throw in some excellent technical workouts from time to time between the plodding slow paced procession throughout the album. The tracks aren’t at all predictable with meandering riffing styles generating a series of unexpected deviations from a simple chord dominated style of doom metal. IMHO this one is woefully under-appreciated as doom metal aficionados seem to write SLEEP off as a stoner metal band and for some reason the stoner crowds don’t find this one to be very compelling. In many ways i find this debut to be the most interesting SLEEP album of all although i have to admit i’m a sucker for that fiery fuzz that follows.


Album · 1989 · Death-Doom Metal
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Formed in 1986 in the southern city of Gouda in the Netherlands, the band SEMPITERNAL DEATHREIGN was formed by the three cousins Frank Faase (vocals, guitar), Victor van Drie (bass) and Misha Hak (drums) who started out playing extreme thrash metal influenced by early 80s bands like Venom, Exodus, Metallica and Slayer but also took a liking to the Teutonic thrash scene fronted by Destruction, Kreator and Sodom.

Having taken an interest in the slower more plodding styles of doom metal from bands such as Trouble, the band adopted those slower sounds to their style while taking their thrash skills into the nascent recently birthed world of death metal making SEMPITERNAL DEATHREIGN one of the very first death-doom metal bands and the first to release a full album of this style with its 1989 release THE SPOOKY GLOOM. A few other bands were flirting with this style two and did release some demos before though.

This band only existed for four years and disbanded in 1990 leaving this sole album as its mark on the metal history timeline. Unfortunately drummer Misha Hak left before this album was recorded and the band was reduced to a duo but session musician Remo van Arnhem sat in to contribute the percussion parts. Van Drie also adds a few barely audible piano parts here and there but basically this album featured a mix of rampant death metal bombast which alternated with slower plodding doom metal motifs.

The album featured six tracks with a running time of 35 plus minutes and featured the earliest example of lengthy sprawling doom metal tracks with “Devastating Empire Towards Humanity” which was just shy of the eleven mark, a playing time which was still somewhat rare for metal but with Metallica’s “And Justice For All” opening the doors for lengthier metal tracks, by the end of the 80s it was becoming more acceptable to experiment with such drawn out composiitons.

While considered among the first death-doom metal acts, unfortunately the quality of THE SPOOKY GLOOM didn’t result in the best the sub-genre has to offer with many more skilled bands such as diSEMBOWELMENT, My Dying Bride, Katatonia and Evoken taking the stylistic hybrid to more interesting heights in the 90s and beyond but nevertheless SEMPITERNAL DEATHREIGN successfully cross-pollinated the two metal styles fairly successfully.

This was a decent beginning for death-doom but THE SPOOKY GLOOM was marred by a shoddy production job as well as a somewhat amateurish attempt of delivery and although this Dutch band was fairly crafty at alternating the faster death metal moments with slower chugging doom metal, the two styles hadn’t quite gelled together seamlessly yet and the vocal style of Frank Faase (i believe) is a bit goofy reminding me of Exodus’ first singer Paul Baloff who sounded like a tortured clown. Not a bad beginning and well worth the time to check it out but unfortunately in the case of death-doom metal, first doesn’t come close to most interesting.

EA Ea Taesse

Album · 2006 · Funeral Doom Metal
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While the band name EA may sound like a really lame name for a metal band, it all starts to make much more sense once you discover that the term was borrowed from an ancient deity of Babylonian mythology which when taken into consideration with the lengthy dreamlike funeral doom metal that this band cranks out. EA is a band of mystery with absolutely no information to be found due to the band’s desire to remain in complete anonymity and let the music speak for itself. While there is speculation that this band is actually from Russia, on its Bandcamp site it lists Cody, Wyoming as its place of origin but it has also listed Antarctica thus adding more enigmatic uncertainty to anything about his band at all.

One can only go by what the band claims itself and it seems that EA relies on ancient sacred texts written in a dead language for inspiration and crafts a musical vision that is purportedly interpreting the voices of the ancients that have finally reached us through the centuries. Whatever the case EA formed in 2005 and released its debut EA TAESSE which is a 54 plus minute song split into three parts. The basis of this funeral doom metal like bands such as Esoteric, Shape Of Despair and others is a slow plodding display of sustaining guitar drones that take on a dirge-like procession accompanied by the punctuated beats of drums. EA is exceptionally talented at crafting an atmospheric counterpoint which is where the true diversity of the album resides.

In addition to the plodding guitar distortion, EA employs classical piano runs, synthesized ambience and choir melodies which give the overall music a melodic melancholy that goes above and beyond the duty of the average funeral doom metal band. Although this gives EA TAESSE the feeling that it is really a dark ambient album with metal accoutrements instead of a bonafide extreme metal release, it nevertheless is quite effective in crafting some of the most ethereal and surreal sounds laid out in a doom metal procession regardless of subgenre nomenclature. One could even go as far as calling this symphonic funeral doom metal and that would probably be the best description of it. Despite the extreme slow plodding of the guitar riffs that include a soaring lead as well as a bass driven chord sustain, the tempo does pick up from time to time with heavier emphasis on the bass and drums but the atmospheric river of melancholy remains steadily perched above the metal content to infuse an impending sense of dread.

Like any music of this type, you really have to be in it for the long haul and have no expectations of head banging fury or be in a hurry to rush through it. This is music that oozes into your soul and slowly coats it with an emotive cloak of atmospheric awe. While mostly instrumental, growly vocals do emerge from beneath the guitar fuzz and atmospheric ambience but overall vocals are quite rare save the incessant choir melodies that anchor the melodic constructs to the rhythmic dirges. In between the long haul of epic riffs and emotive oversoul themes are acoustic insertions, melodic guitar leads that soar like a drifting glacier as well as moments of pure ambient music and horror elements. There are also speculations that due to the fact that EA sounds similar to the Russian Melodic Death Doom act Откровения Дождя (known to non-Russian speakers as 'Revelations of Rain’), that at the very least there could possibly be some members involved in this project.

Whatever the case regarding this mysterious band’s identity and whereabouts, one thing is for sure and that is that EA delivers a satisfying 54 minutes plus of quality atmospheric funeral doom metal laced with haunting melodies and dirges of doom sounding unlike any other in the field. Although it’s tempting to lump all such funeral doom acts in the same category, it’s really the subtleties that make or break such acts as the tightrope tension walks are what make it a compelling listen or simply one that irritates to high heaven. Personally i find EA TAESSE to live up to the hype that it exudes an epic timeless feel that very well could be the voices of the ancients channeled through modern day musicians. At the very least, what a cool gimmick! EA has released so far 5 albums but this is perhaps the best as it perfectly exemplifies some strange ancient Babylonian ritual that has been all but lost in time.

CANDLEMASS Tales of Creation

Album · 1989 · Traditional Doom Metal
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Tales of Creation is the last of Candlemass’ original golden era of albums, and what a fine way to conclude Messiah’s (first) run with the band. The album is a concept album of sorts, focusing on creation, loneliness, introspection and self-love. It may not have a direct overarching story, but there are call-back moments throughout that connect the dots.

Musically, it sounds rather identical to the previous two albums. Every song is strong, aside from the short segues there are no weak moments. Messiah’s voice is in top form, and Leif’s slow, melodic yet sludgy riffs are on point. You can’t expect anything new here, but you can expect another top notch Candlemass album.

doom metal movie reviews


Movie · 2004 · Death-Doom Metal
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Considering this was actually released on VHS in 1990, Paradise Lost must surely overestimate the passion and loyalty of their fan club. Filmed in Bradford in 1989 to coincide with the band’s debut album, this is a 30-minute video of the band playing on stage. They barely move around, you barely see glimpses of the crowd, and in fact, you barely see vocalist Nick Holmes’ face due to his shaggy hair constantly covering it.

I’m not really a fan of their earlier, death metal growly material anyway, but even if I was, this video isn’t enjoyable or interesting to watch at all. Re-released in 2004 on DVD, this isn’t worth the 50p I spent on it if not for the fact that I do, in fact, actually like this band, and have a compulsive obsession to own everything a band puts out.

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