Metal Music has diversified in so many ways that there is a niche for every taste. If you like Lord of the Rings then listen to Blind Guardian. If you like tales of pirates then listen to Alestorm. There is a band out there singing about something that will be to your interest, especially if you are a heavy reader of fantasy, science fiction and mythology.
Lair of the Minotaur is not a new band, but they are new to me. I discovered them with my monthly download off of emusic.com. After the first listen I was already hooked. Ultimate Destroyer from 2006 is a collection of thrash/death metal with themes of Greek Mythology. Song titles include “Behead the Gorgon” and “The Hydra Coils Upon This Wicked Mountain.” The music itself is rich in time changes, vocal changes and crunchy guitars. My main complaint about death metal is that it can often all sound the same so those who are creative enough to distinguish themselves in an overcrowded genre have my attention. I especially like the mixing of vocals where the singer doesn’t simply growl incoherently but provides different ranges of what their voice can do.
For Freethunkers into metal and mythology, the lyrics are wonderfully dark with ancient images of fanciful creatures of imagination like the classic Gorgon:
She was a beautiful maiden
Until she lay in the goddess shrine
Athens swore revenge on Medusa
With repugnant tusks of a swine
Locks of snakes drape over her head
Brazen hands and golden wings
Demoness of the grotesque
Into her grave, you feel it in your being, you slave
Eternal pain, your essence fades away, today!
War starved gorgons
Serving death to all
Perseus shall be slayer
Her head will fall…down
Laying waste to the countryside
No living thing can behold her stare
See your last breath in her eyes
Men of stone adorn her lair
BEHEAD THE GORGON!!!
Now certainly, Lair of the Minotaur is not fine literature in song–it is inspiration drawn from the Greeks. But it is very satisfying–highly recommended. I included a video below for the song “War Metal Battle Master” from the album of the same name. According to Wiki, this appeared on MTV’s Headbanger’s Ball in a highly edited version. It’s a bit over the top, but let’s realize that so were the Greeks back in the day.