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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Six Best Non-Metal Songs About Heavy Metal

Posted By on Tue, Oct 16, 2012 at 9:24 AM

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1. The Mountain Goats - "The Best Ever Death Metal Band In Denton" The Best Ever Death Metal Band in Denton by The Mountain Goats on Grooveshark

Most fans of The Mountain Goats know that John Darnielle is an authority on metal. He wrote a 33 ⅓ book on Black Sabbath's Master Of Reality, he had Morbid Angel guitarist Erik Rutan produce tracks on 2011's All Eternals Deck album for no apparent reason, and his best song to date is "The Best Ever Death Metal Band In Denton." The opening track on 2002's All Hail West Texas, the last album in The Mountain Goats' Sony Walkman lo-fi phase, discusses Cyrus and Jeff, two friends who make up the best ever band because they mean it. Hard. Too hard, maybe, as Cyrus gets sent away to a disciplinary school for his "prominent use of a pentagram." When the pair become separated, it stings harder than any breakup song I can recall. Darnielle romanticizes the adolescent purity of metal much like Wilco's "Heavy Metal Drummer," but his take is more pointed. "When you punish a person for dreaming his dream / Don't expect him to thank or forgive you / The best ever death metal band out of Denton / Will in time both outpace and outlive you," Darnielle sings, and then closes out with a chant of "Hail Satan!" What's so beautiful about "The Best Ever Death Metal Band In Denton," is that by the time Darnielle is praising the devil, you have no suspicion that he means it. But Cyrus and Jeff mean it. Even if they don't actually pledge allegiance to the dark underlord, even if this is an empty gesture only done because they think that's what death metal bands are supposed to do, they mean it. Hard.

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