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Silencer is a controversial Swedish Depressive/Suicidal Black Metal band that was formed by guitarist and bassist Leere in Stockholm, Sweden in 1995, and was later joined by vocalist Nattramn. The band, which dissolved in 2001, is known for two things: 1) being one of the Trope Codifiers of the Depressive/Suicidal subgenre of Black Metal, and 2) Nattramn's absolutely unhinged vocals, which, instead of being standard Black Metal Harsh Vocals à la Darkthrone or Immortal, largely consist of agonized howls, gibbering, and whimpering in imitation of a mental asylum patient (fitting, as Nattramn himself has been known to struggle with mental illness). It is the latter aspect which makes the band so infamous, as they tend to divide metalheads into those who consider the vocals to be Nightmare Fuel incarnate, and those who consider them to sound completely ridiculous ("sounds like a dying cat" being a common accusation). Despite (or possibly because of) this controversy, and the fact that the band has only a demo and an album under its belt (both being titled Death - Pierce Me), Silencer has had a disproportionate amount of influence (and fame) within the metal community, for better or for worse.

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Band Members:

  • Leere (guitar, bass guitar; real name Andreas Casado) (1995-2001)
  • Nattramn (vocals and lyrics; real name Mikael Nilsson) (Unknown-2001)
  • Jonas Mattson (drums; studio member) (1998)
  • Steve Wolz (drums; studio member) (2001)

Releases:

  • Death - Pierce Me (demo) (1998)
  • Death - Pierce Me (2001)


Silencer contains examples of the following Tropes:

  • Axe-Crazy/Insane = Violent: Nattramn, at least according to the rumors about him; such rumors include him cutting off his hands and replacing them with pig feet, and him trying to kill a girl with an axe. However, both rumors are apparently false, as the picture that shows him with pig feet for hands is quite clearly faked and it was apparently his brother who attacked the girl, so it's unlikely that Nattramn truly fits these tropes (Though he was apparently committed to a mental hospital at one point).
  • Bedlam House: The band's aesthetic, both visually and musically. As mentioned above, the band apparently broke up when Nattramn was put in one of these, adding to the band's mystique.
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    • Nattramn's next project, Diagnose: Lebensgefahr, was recorded while he was spending time in a mental institution, so it's fair to say that this part of the band's legend is true.
  • Black Metal: Specifically Depressive/Suicidal Black Metal, of which the band is a Trope Codifier.
  • Careful with That Axe: One of the most infamous examples out there. Nattramn's psychotic howls are arguably the defining characteristic of the band's sound.
  • Despair Event Horizon/Driven to Suicide: The main lyrical focus of the band.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: On the Death - Pierce Me demo, Nattramn's vocals sound much more like conventional Black Metal vocals and the overall production is more in line with the typical Three Chords and the Truth minimalism of the rest of the genre.
  • Epic Rocking: Only one of the band's songs, the brief instrumental "Feeble Are You - Sons of Sion," is under six minutes in length. The longest is "The Slow Kill in the Cold", at 11:38, and the title track isn't far behind, at 10:35.
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  • Evil Is Deathly Cold: "The Slow Kill in the Cold."
  • Harsh Vocals/Metal Scream: Nattramn's vocals are a... unique take on type 3 of the latter trope, though he does perform more typical Black Metal vocals on "Sterile Nails and Thunderbowels".
  • Horrible History Metal: "I Shall Lead, You Shall Follow," a song that deals with Those Wacky Nazis and The Holocaust. It's somewhat ambiguous as to whether or not it's supposed to be sympathetic or just descriptive.
  • Inelegant Blubbering: Nattramn sometimes indulges in this. It's debatable as to whether it's actually scary or not.
  • Instrumentals: "Feeble Are You - Sons of Sion".
  • Misanthrope Supreme: The perspective of the band's lyrics.
  • Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: A fairly hard 10 to a low 11, with parts of some songs dropping to about 1 and the instrumental outro "Feeble Are You - Sons of Sion" being about a 2.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: From "Sterile Nails and Thunderbowels:"
    Leap
    LEAP
    LEAP from... LIIIIIIFE
    LEEEEEAAAAP
  • Scare Chord: At the beginning of the the song "Death - Pierce Me," there is an extended ambient interlude, likely there to lull the listener into dropping their guard before Nattramn's nightmarish howl shatters the calmness about two minutes in. They do this again later in the same track and near the end of "Sterile Nails and Thunderbowels."
  • Shrouded in Myth: Again, Nattramn, judging by the rumors floating around the internet about him. However, as noted above, those rumors are in almost all likelihood false.
  • Surprisingly Gentle Song: "Feeble Are You - Sons of Sion".
  • Trope Codifier: For Depressive/Suicidal Black Metal alongside Xasthur, Leviathan, and Bethlehem.
  • Three Chords and the Truth: A downplayed example compared to most members of their genre; the guitar- and drum-work on Death -Pierce Me is rather nuanced and competently played by Black Metal standards and the production is much cleaner than most Black Metal. Played straighter on the demo, though.

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