The voice in a metal band works as an extra instrument. Especially in the extreme sound, where the singer moves between the soundscapes that the rest of the musicians create and expresses something special, different and on occasion horrifyingly unique. 

These occasions are rare and I am not sure if it’s due to a genetic error, traumatic childhood memories or just a broken heart. Nevertheless, in these instances the singers express themselves with such persuasiveness that we ought to wander, we the listeners and supporters of this music, why we love it. The answer is simple but not so original. The theatricality and performance of the singers can take the music into a whole new lever, with their delirium and inherent madness. If they weren’t singers then they would be inmates in a psychiatric ward. Maybe in Arkham.

1. Aldrahn – Dodheimsgard, Thorns, The deathtrip 

Diagnosis – Bipolar Disorder

His case is clinically extreme. He is aping impulsively, screaming and whispering about exquisite spiritual experiences and the eight limbs of Yoga. He shouts deliriously at every one crossing his path at the street and addresses higher entities when no one is paying attention to him. He lingers from certainty and self-esteem to complete self-destruction with masochistic delight. He is, simultaneously, the abuser and the abused, the narrator and the lead protagonist in a world that is hanging from a thin and fragile psychic thread. 

In his pellucid moments he appears to be normal, with the ability to communicate clearly and with vivid and well-constructed reasoning. But these are rare and brief occasions. In his visions, he sees himself being born from the trees as the fruit of humanity’s hatred. He despises conversing with others and prefers soliloquys after the night has fallen. He claims he feels safe among the creatures of the night.

2. V.I.T.R.I.O.L. – Anaal Nathrakh

Diagnosis – Multiple Personality Disorder

It is being said that he was found naked on the floor. He was sleeping in a pool of sweat and urine and the neighbors, after some clarification, described yesterday’s eventful night at their apartment block, as a quarrel between three individuals. 

According to their testimonies, and since no one has seen the other two, we believe that these three were friends who happened to have an intense disagreement. The subject of their disagreement cannot be clarified since the only words that the neighbors heard clearly were ‘lucidity’, ‘I deny’, ‘despair’, ‘craft’, ‘liar’ and others that mostly confuse rather than help. 

The only clue that helped in their testimony was the description of the voices tonality and quality. The first was clear and articulate. He spoke with confidence and clarity. The second was highly pitched and irregular. He sounded frenetic and it was impossible to make out any words. The third one was low and deep and it reminded them a demonized human being or some wild animal fighting for its life.

The only certainty on this case is that no one has ever seen them together. 


3. Arioch – Funeral Mist, Marduk

Diagnosis – Paranoid Schizophrenia – Messiah Syndrome

He is coming at our sessions voluntarily and seems confident. Up to this day, he hasn’t shown any desire to harm anyone, though there is some wariness concerning his true intentions behind his preaching. He can be found daily standing in front of the Great Hunger Temple and preaching about the truth.

I have to admit that I, myself, attended one of the congregations and I was impressed by his imposing presence. His devotees were enthralled by him and they were asking for his blessing. 

In our next session I will recommend that he stops his preaching for a few days. I am sure he will decline and this is my purpose. To see what is there beneath the mask. I just hope he doesn’t become dangerous or threatening to my well being.

His preaching sounds more like a teleological manifesto for the awakening and liberation of the faithful on the oncoming Maranatha, the coming of the savior. He claims he is the last of His prophets and it is his duty to prepare the ground for His arrival. He has gained a number of followers but they have never provoked the common feeling of safety. Their congregations seem more like a theatrical play of Dante’s Divine Comedy, rather than a holy devoutness and most of the attendees are there for the show. 

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