19 Jul Episode 68 – The 6/8 Time Signature in Heavy Metal: Marching into Fire
The occasion of Radical Research’s 68th installment could have been marked in one way only – with a full-force exaltation of music’s deadliest, most head-snapping time signature, 6/8! On this episode, we survey a vast range of metal subgenres to demonstrate the ways in which artists as disparate as Realm, Order From Chaos, and Solefald have deployed 6/8 to maximum effect. Keep the ibuprofen and Ben Gay within reach. After 24 clips of the most lethal metal, you’re going to need some relief! 24 in 6/8!
Camel are the first rock band, in our awareness, to literally refer to the 6/8 time signature in song, with “Six Ate” from 1973’s Camel debut. There are probably earlier examples, but they aren’t Camel so fuck them.
We disagree on a few items in this episode (Canvas Solaris’s best album; best Dark Tranquillity album; Sinister in general). Stop the presses.
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Music cited, in order of appearance:
Iron Maiden, “The Duellists” (Powerslave, 1984)
Manowar, “Blood of My Enemies” (Hail to England, 1984)
Slayer, “Post Mortem” (Reign in Blood, 1986)
Holy Terror, “Damned by Judges” (Mind Wars, 1988)
Sadus, “Hands of Fate” (Illusions, 1988)
Blasphemy, “Darkness Prevails” (Fallen Angel of Doom, 1990)
Nocturnus, “Neolithic” (The Key, 1990)
Realm, “La Flamme’s Theory” (Suiciety, 1990)
Order From Chaos, “Power Elite” (Stillbirth Machine, 1992)
Sinister, “Cross the Styx” (Cross the Styx, 1992)
Loudblast, “My Last Journey” (Sublime Dementia, 1993)
Mercyless, “Travel Through a Strange Emotion” (Coloured Funeral, 1993)
Morbid Angel, “Lion’s Den” (Covenant, 1993)
Necrophobic, “Awakening” (The Nocturnal Silence, 1993)
Dark Tranquillity, “Away, Delight, Away” (Of Chaos and Eternal Night, 1995)
Dissection, “Retribution – Storm of the Light’s Bane” (Storm of the Light’s Bane, 1995)
Eucharist, “With the Sun” (Mirrorworlds, 1997)
Borknagar, “Colossus” (Quintessence, 2000)
Nocturnal Rites, “The Devil’s Child” (Afterlife, 2000)
Primordial, “Gods to the Godless” (Spirit the Earth Aflame, 2000)
Emperor, “Empty” (Prometheus – The Discipline of Fire & Demise, 2001)
Lost Horizon, “Heart of Storm” (Awakening the World, 2001)
Solefald, “Hyperhuman” (Pills Against the Ageless Ills, 2001)
Immortal, “In My Kingdom Cold” (Sons of Northern Darkness, 2002)
[outro] Manowar, “Bridge of Death” (Hail to England, 1984) Joey DeMaio around the twisted bend on the pitch-spattered bridge, playing bass guitar.
Episode 69 preview: Eucharist, “Dissolving” (Mirrorworlds, 1997)
Radical Research is a conversation about the inner- and outer-reaches of rock and metal music. This podcast is conceived and conducted by Jeff Wagner and Hunter Ginn. Though we consume music in a variety of ways, we give particular privilege to the immersive, full-album listening experience. Likewise, we believe that tangible music formats help provide the richest, most rewarding immersions and that music, artwork, and song titles cooperate to produce a singular effect on the listener. Great music is worth more than we ever pay for it.