Also known as "Industrial 2: Electric Boogaloo
". If you want to know what happened in the first one, click here
Anyway, assuming you're up-to-date on this... after Skinny Puppy
music a slight amount of recognition in not-underground-but-not-mainstream-either circles, a man named Al Jourgenson took note. He was a member of the Synth Pop
, and he was incredibly bored and contemptuous of the music his band was making. So, at some point, he rediscovered his old passion, the electric guitar, and decided to combine metal with this "industrial music" he'd heard so much about. And so, Ministry drastically changed their style from Synth Pop
to... industrial metal.
Ministry weren't the only ones who kickstarted the industrial metal genre, however. The German band KMFDM
were one other early pioneer (albeit less influential than Ministry), as was the British Godflesh
(who, while not as successful as Ministry, had a larger impact on the genre than KMFDM did). The genre really kicked off, however, when one man took note of all this and decided to get involved. This man was named Trent Reznor, and, having left his previous band, he decided to form a solo project. This solo project was called "Nine Inch Nails
", and had a similar musical style to Ministry except with more angsty lyrics, production wizardry, and, at first, slightly less metal content (but only on Pretty Hate Machine
; The Nineties
brought massive guitar assaults). Nine Inch Nails was the band that brought industrial music into the mainstream with their/his album, The Downward Spiral
, in 1994 (the album with that "I-wanna-fuck-you-like-an-animal" song which is known as "Closer" to some people
). Ministry also got a lot more recognition with their album, Psalm 69: The Way to Succeed and the Way to Suck Eggs
, in 1992.
And so, industrial became massively popular. One band, Marilyn Manson
and the Spooky Kids, opened for Nine Inch Nails and, thanks to Trent Reznor's mentorship (if that's a word), dropped the "and the Spooky Kids" bit and basically stuck with the name of its frontman. Thanks to that, people confuse the band with the guy. Initially, Marilyn Manson were (we're talking about the band here) very popular amongst goths, but in recent times have become a joke within the goth scene.
Industrial music, particularly Marilyn Manson, got more focus in the mainstream thanks to the controversy caused by the Columbine killings. The news spread rumours that the two teens responsible for the massacre were "convinced" to do it by Marilyn Manson's music. This idea kept spreading even after it transpired that the two teens listened not to Manson but to KMFDM and Rammstein, neither of whom were picked on as much. And, given that KMFDM and Rammstein are German
, you can guess what the next allegation that the press threw at these bands happenned to be
In recent times, industrial seems to have fallen out of favour. Ministry have broken up, Nine Inch Nails is/are moving in entirely different directions, Manson are jokes, so on and so forth. Only Rammstein seem to be that popular anymore. Newer bands seem to be moving towards the upgraded version of Electronic Body Music: Aggro EBM/Hellectro, unless they go in a similar direction as Rammstein
(though it was actually Oomph! that created Rammstein's style
) into the sub-genre of Neue Deutsche Härte
("New German Loudness")note
with bands such as Eisbrecher, Megaherz and ASP leading the way. This genre also seems to be the go-to genre for Gothic Metal
and Black Metal
acts to change to when they undergo a Genre Shift
, like Theatre Of Tragedy
, The Kovenant
and to an extent Cradle Of Filth
Oh, the music, right. Well, industrial metal is a fusion of industrial music and metal. It's characterised by frequent use of samples, synthesizers and keyboards, and repetitive guitar riffs. Vocals are often distorted, and drum machines are sometimes used. In the Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness
, industrial metal can gain its pride for being one of the very few genres that cover the entire scale, from a 1 to an 11. Bands that hover more on the electronic side (e.g. Nine Inch Nails and Ministry) tend to be softer, while the bands that have more metal influences (e.g. Rammstein and Fear Factory) go higher on the scale.
Notable industrial metal artists include:
- Aborym (Industrial Black Metal)
- Acumen Nation
- The Amenta (Industrial Death Metal)
- American Head Charge (Industrial Nu Metal)
- Anaal Nathrakh (Industrial Black Metal; also incorporate elements of Grindcore and Death Metal)
- The Axis of Perdition (Industrial Black Metal)
- The Berzerker (mixed with Grindcore)
- Blue Stahli
- Blut Aus Nord (Industrial Black Metal)
- Chimaira (mostly Groove Metal, Thrash Metal, and Metalcore, but the industrial influence is obvious on their first album)
- Crash (Also Thrash Metal and Groove Metal with Rap Metal influences)
- Daath (Industrial Groove Metal with Death Metal influences)
- Dead World
- Device (Supergroup with Disturbed's David Draiman and Dope's guitarist Virus)
- D'Espairsray (Industrial Hard Rock)
- Dope (also borders on Nu Metal)
- Econoline Crush
- Electric Hellfire Club
- Frank Klepacki
- Fear Factory (overlaps with Groove Metal and Alternative Metal, with some elements of Death Metal)
- Filter (formed by ex-NIN member Richard Patrick, basically Industrial Metal mixed with Post-Grunge)
- Front Line Assembly (typically Industrial (although they usually have one or two songs with metal guitar on each album) but their Millennium album is Industrial Metal)
- The Gazette
- God Lives Underwater
- Hanzel Und Gretyl
- Head of David
- Julien K (mixed with Synthpop)
- Killing Joke (Ur Example)
- The Kovenant (Industrial Black Metal after a Genre Shift)
- Lard (collaboration between Al Jourgensen and Jello Biafra)
- Marilyn Manson
- Mindless Self Indulgence
- Ministry (Trope Maker)
- Mortiis (After being dark ambient, and then borderline Synth Pop)
- Nine Inch Nails (Trope Codifier)
- Oomph! (Trope Maker and Ur Example of Neue Deutsche Harte)
- Orgy (they also border on Nu Metal)
- PAIN (Side project of Hypocrisy frontman Peter Tagtgren)
- Pigface (Supergroup)
- Pitch Shifter
- Powerman 5000
- Psyclon Nine (mixed with Black Metal)
- Rammstein (Trope Codifier of Neue Deutsche Harte)
- Revolting Cocks (Ministry side project, with a heavy emphasis on absurdist humour)
- Samael (Industrial Black Metal)
- Seraphim Shock
- Shining (Norway) (more than a slight case of Neoclassical Punk Zydeco Rockabilly, as they also incorporate elements of Progressive Metal, Black Metal, fusion jazz, and numerous other styles. Blackjazz marks the point where their material becomes consistently metal-oriented; before that, most of their material was acoustic jazz or progressive rock, although their live shows had always incorporated quite a lot of metal influence)
- Stabbing Westward
- Swans (Possible Ur Example)
- Strapping Young Lad (Industrial Death Metal)
- Theatre Of Tragedy (After a Genre Shift)
- The Project Hate MCMXCIX (Industrial Death Metal)
- The Birthday Massacre
- Treponem Pal
- Vertical Section
- White Zombie
- The Rob Zombie solo albums count as well
- The Young Gods (Swiss band around since The Eighties, cited by Nine Inch Nails and Ministry as an influence)
The Industrial Metal genre contains the following tropes:
- Alternative Metal: there's a lot of overlap between the two genres.
- Concept Album: not at all uncommon, surprisingly. Nine Inch Nails, Marilyn Manson and Fear Factory have all done more than one album of this type.
- Harsh Vocals: not universal, but pretty common in the genre, and done a variety of different ways- from Death Metal style growling to straight-up Careful With That Axe to electronically distorted weirdness.
- Mohs Scale of Lyrical Hardness: usually tends towards the darker end of the spectrum here, though some bands (ie KMFDM) have an evident sense of humor. Though even that tends to be somewhat towards the cynical end of the Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism...
- Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: falls all over the upper half of the scale, with 6-8 being typical (9-10 is primarily the domain of Death Metal and Black Metal -influenced bands). Some bands drop a bit lower from time to time as well, but not all that often.
- Music to Invade Poland to: another (false) accusation thrown at certain bands due to the band in question either being German or using totalitarian imagery in a subversive way. Or both, in the case of KMFDM.
- Nu Metal: some bands, like Dope, Orgy, Static-X and Powerman 5000, combine these two genres to some degree. Not surprising, since many Nu Metal bands were influenced by Industrial Metal to begin with.
- Sampling: very common, and, like in Industrial Music, more likely to be movies or found sounds than other songs, though the latter has been known to happen from time to time.
- Subdued Section: popularized in this genre by Nine Inch Nails, but common for many other bands in the genre as well.
- The New Rock & Roll: a number of bands in the genre got accused by Moral Guardians of being responsible for school shootings, suicides and the like, with Marilyn Manson being the biggest target of them all.
- Three Chords and the Truth: some bands favor simple riffs and rhythms. Also, solos are rarer than in most other subgenres of Heavy Metal, though not completely unheard of. However, the often dense production makes for an odd variation of this trope, and some bands (Nine Inch Nails, for example) make use of numerous tempo and time changes.
- Trope Codifier: Nine Inch Nails and to some extent Marilyn Manson and Fear Factory; Rammstein for the Neue Deutsch Harte subgenre.
- Trope Maker: Ministry and/or Godflesh; Oomph for the Neue Deutsch Harte.
- Ur Example: Killing Joke, Swans and The Young Gods can be thought of as this.