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MISFITS OF METAL: Exmortes

by Eli Kroes

For a genre comprised ENTIRELY of outsiders, it should be apparent that there is some pretty out-there stuff in the metal world. Here are some of my favorite metal musicians who are so weird they don't even fit into THAT scene...

Exomortes was a product of the early black metal movement. No, I'm not talking about the face-painted weirdos who currently dominate the genre, but the ultra lo-fidelity recordings of bands like Venom in the 80's. Basically, bands like this proved that ANYBODY could play metal...you didn't have to be super-fast on the guitar (or even know how to play one, really...) and you didn't have to sing high-pitched like an opera singer. 

Or, in Exmortes' case, you didn't even have to have a BAND. This is entirely the product of one man from the Netherlands. It sounds like he might have some drums, but who can really tell with the shoddy sound quality? He also chooses to use a predominantly clean guitar tone, which if you know metal, you'll know is basically wrong.

Then there's those 'vocals.' It sounds like a high school kid breathing inward and reciting 'dark' poetry about things like 'boiling blood' and forcing people to be silent.


I don't know much about Jan List, the man behind this project, but it seems his band was laughed at pretty regularly in their late 80's 'heyday.'  To me, the music isn't so much laughable as just plain strange. This is what happens when someone who is totally in love with music, but doesn't quite 'get' it decides to make albums. And we're lucky to have musical oddities like this.


Photo by Tim Parkinson.