You know, whenever we run one of these I try to challenge myself by guessing what bands the entry might include. Sometimes I get some of it right; I never get it one hundred percent thoh, which is a good thing. You want musicians to surprise you and the ways in which we come to make our art can spring from many different sources. However, I don't think I would ever, in a million years, guess there would be so much Guns 'n' Roses on a list by Ahab, a band known for their crushing funereal doom.
Don't get me wrong, I love it, both for the surprise factor I mentioned above but also because I'm also a huge fan of the early Roses albums, specifically Appetite and Use Your Illusion. It was also fantastic to see all of the stalwarts of death, goth, and heavy metal represented here, showcasing one of the reasons I love Ahab's career: for the verastiltiy they are able to display while playing some of the most crushingly massive metal out there. Their new album, The Coral Tombs, is an excellent example, containing as it does absolutely filthy death metal growls, surging doom riffs, and heartbreakingly emotive cleaner sections.
Head on down below to read more about what makes this great band tick and don't forget to check out The Coral Tombs!
Daniel Droste (Vocals & guitar)
Hypocrisy - The Fourth Dimension / Amorphis - Tales From the Thousand Lakes
There are two records that really impressed me as a teenager. The first CD I ever bought was Guns 'n' Roses' Use Your Illusion I, followed by the rest of their discography, as well as albums by Metallica and Megadeth. The more bands I discovered in metal, the more I enjoyed listening to the extreme sub-genres and was finally introduced to death-metal by a friend of mine showing me Benediction's Dark Is The Season. I fell in love with 90s death metal, with Carcass being my favorite band back then.
I guess it was on MTVs Headbangers' Ball when I saw video clips of Amorphis and Hyporcisy, and those really blew me away. Death metal combined with atmospheric elements was something that really attracted me and I immediately had to order The Fourth Dimension and Tales From the Thousand Lakes at a local cd store. I had to wait four fucking weeks till my order finally arrived, but it was absolutely worth the wait. In retrospective I'd say that these two albums were my first inspiration that formed my wish to compose music, with Peter Tätgren's deep growls being the guideline for me developing death metal vocals.
Christian Hector (Lyrics & guitars)
Entombed - Clandestine
While Marty McFly and Nirvana got me into playing guitar, this is an album that blew my mind when I was 16 years old. That Boss HM2 guitar pedal sound was so extreme back then, that I instantly knew, this was the music I want to play. If you listen to Clandestine closely, you’ll find quite some great death-doom riffs and melodies on it. I guess it’s easy to recognize the reference to "Chaos Breed" in our song "Old Thunder", too.
The death metal of the early and mid 90s was very crucial for the development of my taste of extreme doom riffing. I have to mention some examples of the old songs here, that are essential: Morbid Angel’s "Blessed Are The Sick", Asphyx’ "The Rack", Benediction’s "Dark Is The Season", Paradise Lost’s "Crying for Eternity" or Dismember’s "Dismembered". One last honourable mention: My dad used to have a reel to reel player. On one of these reels the song "Sweet Leaf" by Black Sabbath was recorded, which I really liked as a little boy.
Stephan Wandernoth (Bass)
Well, I was tempted to list the band names from my youth. Guns'n'Roses and Metallica because of which I picked up a guitar. Or Sodom, whose record In the Sign of Evil was my first self-bought record. Or Entombed and Morbid Angel which opened new, more extreme worlds for me and which I still love. So, all in all kind of classics.
But then something else came to my mind. Namely, the band that for me personally are the saviors of metal. I had been very bored for a few years with the repetitive clichés and riffs and higher faster mentality in (mostly death) metal I loved so much. So I tried a lot of music away from metal until I discovered Gojira with The Link and From Mars to Sirius. Man oh man, what albums, thank you for restoring my faith in hard music back then, Gojira.
Cornelius Althammer (Drums)
There can't be any other album named except for Guns'n'Roses' Appetite for Destruction. At the tender age of nine I was confronted with this ugly bastard of Hard Rock, Rock'n'Roll and Punk.
From the first second of Slash's electrifying guitar intro to "Welcome to the Jungle” to the pictures of those savages inside the booklet, the whole package made it 100% clear that this is exactly my thing.
For sure we couldn't leave our relatives until my cousin had made a copy on tape for me. So, I listened to it for over a year on a daily base. On most days more often than once. Up to this day I can sing along all of Axl's lines and each note in any of Slash's solos.
My very first album I ever bought was Iron Maiden's Live after Death and then a ton of tape copies followed; Sepultura, Black Sabbath, Overkill, Testament, Manowar, Morbid Angel, Megadeth, Cannibal Corpse, Metallica, whom I discovered with their Black album; I didn't like it very much, though; even compared to my starting band Guns'n'Roses this one was lacking a ton of aggression, and I was used to death metal growls, already. I became a Metallica fan way later, when an older schoolmate (that's the way it always works, right?) gave me Kill 'Em All and Master of Puppets. Other bands include Autopsy, My Dying Bride and many more.
But the left hand path opened for me by the unmatched Appetite…. And to this day it hasn't changed: there's only one album that comes close to the spirit of Appetite…. And that's a way older album; AC/DC's Powerage has kind of a similar barefaced and dangerous vibe. …but my story with Powerage is a different one…