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> Within Temptation - Symphonic/gothic Metal, Why aren't they at least charting in the U.S.?
Todd Simpson
post Feb 28 2011, 07:41 PM
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I've recently been getting in to the band "WITHIN TEMPTATION". They are considered "Symphonic/Goth/Fantasy/etc. Metal". Female fronted and similar to Lacuna Coil, and Epica Somewhat, and several other mostly European bands with a Heavy/Melodic/Symphonic, vibe and a Mezzo Soprano(ish) female lead singer.

Here in the U.S., the closest thing we have is probably Evanescence in terms of charting acts. Sadly, that's about the only one I can think of. This range is a bit softer than some of the stuff I usually listen (In Flames, Carcass) to but I continue to be impressed by the bands and the writing and the musicianship.

I have noticed that while there are several such bands in Europe, they barely make a dent in the U.S. market which is quite sad. We have plenty of Justin Beiber and Lady Gaga, but pretty much zip in terms of Symphonic/Gothic/etc. Metal. The bands we do have are very, very, underground.

I wanted to ask what you guys thought. Is it a cultural divide? Is it the classical/baroque european tradition that influences these bands and binds them to largely European audiences? Are they just not being promoted well state side, or is it beyond that?


Here is a Within Temptation video called Frozen from Black Symphony where they play with an orchestra. (Ala, Epica)


This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Feb 28 2011, 07:42 PM


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The Uncreator
post Feb 28 2011, 11:01 PM
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In the states Within Temptation is severely overlooked. The quality far surpasses that of Evanescence and their music is continuing to get better in my eyes. I have been a fan since I was 14 years old, for 7 years now and almost always have to pay $40+ to have their CD shipped to the states. And its well worth it. Black Symphony was one of the best live albums in decades.
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OzRob
post Mar 1 2011, 03:17 AM
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I don't know but my guess would be Europe has strong historic ties to classical/symphonic music with a rich heritage in architecture, political history, cultures, etc whereas America has more of a disposable consumption culture going on. Obviously, generalising is fraught with exceptions but that's how I see it.

I rarely listen to American music...only what I'm forced to by virtue of some of the work I do. But my playlists are thick with WT, Lacuna Coil, Delain, Nightwish, Therion etc.


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The Uncreator
post Mar 1 2011, 03:52 AM
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Good, truly original, creative American music can be so hard to find simply because they are drowned in a commercial sea of mediocrity, artists come and go, people don't care who they are really, they move from one number one hit to the next. Honestly, how many famous pop singers have an ENTIRE album of different, diverse, songs, and not just the one or two famous ones.

American music can be sad, but then again, we have spawned some of the best metal acts in history. Death, Suffocation, Cannibal Corpse, Obituary, all pioneers in their genre, then bands like Iced Earth who have risen to be one of the most acclaimed bands in their genre and in metal period.

Sadly though, spawned is past tense and not present. Not too many of these popping up, gotta look real hard to find them, but they are there.
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Gitarrero
post Mar 1 2011, 09:04 AM
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Very interesting topic. I gotta admit, though Todd told me several times, I couldn't quite believe that metal is really "underground" in the US and that it is a common misconception of americans that metal is only appreciated in europe. So I did a quick research...and you guys are totally right.
First, I checked Within Temptation. They managed to stay in the top 10 for album sales in Germany and the Netherlands with their last albums, they even made it to the top in the netherlands: http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Within_Temptation (sorry, it's german...)
I thought it was due to the genre, so I checked Arch Enemy, even though death metal is an even more special genre and "common" people are more likely to like symphonic metal than death metal. Well, Arch Enemy manage to climb into the top 20 in Germany when it comes to album sales, as well as in Sweden. In the US they barely make it into the top 100.
So I checked Blind Guardian. Their recent album made it to the second rank in the german album charts, it reached the top 10 in Austria and rank 14 in Switzerland. In the US the album ranked 108! In general, any metal band I checked went pretty high in the charts in their homecountry and in Germany, a little lower in Austria and Switzerland, but always pretty low )if they even make it to top 100) in the US. Even the US band Iced Earth makes it to the top 20 in Germany but barely into the top 100 in the US.
Looks like you guys are right...metal is much more appreciated in europe!
Funny thing that you compare Within Temptation and Evanescence...my Ex used to confuse these two bands, while I think they sound completely different smile.gif
As to why metal is more popular in Europe, I don't have a clue...


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Fran
post Mar 1 2011, 10:52 AM
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Not sure, as much as I like within temptation, if I had to judge by the crap they air on the radio over here, I wouldn't go as far as saying Europe embraces gothic metal or good music for that matter.


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Todd Simpson
post Mar 3 2011, 01:40 AM
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Thanks for the replies guys wink.gif Some great insight. Thanks for the research Christian! Seems dead on. I think Oz Rob has a good point also about the classical tradition in europe vs the states. While many killer Metal bands and various styles of metal practically originated here in the states (Florida Death Metal, California Thrash/Hardcore/SpeedMetal), I have yet to hear anything I could really compare to Within Tempation, or Therion on the radio. Even on the Rock stations. And those bands barely chart here while they do great in Europe. I really hope to see rebirth of Heavy music here in the states and it's just now starting to happen.

Radio stations here are actually playing old Metal bands again and some of the Heavier new bands as well. The audience hasn't gone away, it's just been sort of ignored. The underground scene is quite vibrant, I can't wait to see it gain a bit more momentum.

P.S.

I just got back from the iTunes store and there was not one review or rating on several top Lacuna Coil songs/vids. I gladly jumped in and gave them a great review and chastised my countrymen quite harshly for not doing so already. Here's hoping change comes sooner than later.

Todd

QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Feb 28 2011, 01:41 PM) *
I've recently been getting in to the band "WITHIN TEMPTATION". They are considered "Symphonic/Goth/Fantasy/etc. Metal". Female fronted and similar to Lacuna Coil, and Epica Somewhat, and several other mostly European bands with a Heavy/Melodic/Symphonic, vibe and a Mezzo Soprano(ish) female lead singer.

Here in the U.S., the closest thing we have is probably Evanescence in terms of charting acts. Sadly, that's about the only one I can think of. This range is a bit softer than some of the stuff I usually listen (In Flames, Carcass) to but I continue to be impressed by the bands and the writing and the musicianship.

I have noticed that while there are several such bands in Europe, they barely make a dent in the U.S. market which is quite sad. We have plenty of Justin Beiber and Lady Gaga, but pretty much zip in terms of Symphonic/Gothic/etc. Metal. The bands we do have are very, very, underground.

I wanted to ask what you guys thought. Is it a cultural divide? Is it the classical/baroque european tradition that influences these bands and binds them to largely European audiences? Are they just not being promoted well state side, or is it beyond that?


Here is a Within Temptation video called Frozen from Black Symphony where they play with an orchestra. (Ala, Epica)


This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Mar 3 2011, 01:47 AM


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Todd Simpson
post Nov 10 2011, 01:24 AM
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Very spiff Within Temptation Vid. One of my favs smile.gif Sadly, I"m not a feeling their most recent album. It seems a bit synth heavy for me, and more "pop". They were due for one of those, whaddyagonnado? Anyhoo, here's the HOWLING which was only available in the U.S. in one store (Hot Topic Clothiers) on an E.P. What a darn shame!



This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Nov 10 2011, 01:24 AM


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Ivan Milenkovic
post Nov 10 2011, 11:53 AM
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Great band, I've heard about them, and watched couple of videos, but never really got into them seriously. I'll listen to them a bit more, they have good style, and everything is quality made. You're right Todd, a bit too synth-heavy, but its' OK smile.gif


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Saoirse O'Shea
post Nov 10 2011, 12:46 PM
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QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Feb 28 2011, 06:41 PM) *
...

I wanted to ask what you guys thought. Is it a cultural divide? Is it the classical/baroque european tradition that influences these bands and binds them to largely European audiences? Are they just not being promoted well state side, or is it beyond that?


...


Perhaps.

Pierre Bourdieu wrote an interesting book some years back called ''Distinction: A social critique of the judgement of taste'. Whilst I'd hesitate to suggest that this work could be broken down in to suggesting National characteristics (not least as it could then stereotype) it does suggest how 'taste' might be structured, mediated, transmitted and influenced by cultural and social patterns and relationships.


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Todd Simpson
post Nov 12 2011, 03:40 AM
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QUOTE (Ivan Milenkovic @ Nov 10 2011, 05:53 AM) *
Great band, I've heard about them, and watched couple of videos, but never really got into them seriously. I'll listen to them a bit more, they have good style, and everything is quality made. You're right Todd, a bit too synth-heavy, but its' OK smile.gif


This song is not from the new album which is a bit "synth poppy" for me, but is from a previous release that was a bit more Guitar/Metal based. It does have some keyboards though, but done as symphonic elements which works for me smile.gif I have not posted a video of their newest album just cause I"m not feeling it. But the HOWLING is one of their best tunes IMHO.


QUOTE (tonymiro @ Nov 10 2011, 06:46 AM) *
it does suggest how 'taste' might be structured, mediated, transmitted and influenced by cultural and social patterns and relationships.


I'd have to agree smile.gif Those things are what I was sort of asking about. Given how vastly different european and american popular music charts look, there are some major differences at work. The Heavy Metal example is one that sticks out for me as I'm a Metal fan. Here Metal is sooooooooooo far undergound that it's not even funny. While in Europe a band like BLIND GUARDIAN will actually Chart! And sell records!

While I'm not interested in "stereotypes" I am interested in identifying contributing factors relating to certain apparent social / cultural trends and tastes. That's the core of what I've been trying to get at in this thread. It's a tough question and not much luck so far but hope springs eternal smile.gif



This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Nov 12 2011, 03:40 AM


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Sensible Jones
post Nov 12 2011, 04:04 PM
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Firstly, I didn't know this band so thanks for the H/Up Todd!
Personally I think there is a definite difference between American and European sounds, whether this stems from the history of Classical composing and civilisation I don't know, but a difference exists. As to why they are not receiving airplay and promotion that must surly be at the hands of their Record Company. Surprising as I noticed they're signed to Roadrunner which is not exactly a Back-room company!!!
smile.gif


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MonkeyDAthos
post Nov 13 2011, 06:29 PM
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i just have to say, that i love those guys; i actually have the deluxe edition of The Silent Force biggrin.gif just love them!!

This post has been edited by MonkeyDAthos: Nov 13 2011, 06:29 PM


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Gabriel Leopardi
post Nov 13 2011, 08:26 PM
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European Metal isn't popular nowadays in the USA. I think that this music is much more popular in some European countries. Here in Argentina there are fans but they aren't massive. Within Temptation plays for 1500 persons here...


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Todd Simpson
post Nov 23 2011, 12:36 AM
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QUOTE (Sensible Jones @ Nov 12 2011, 10:04 AM) *
Firstly, I didn't know this band so thanks for the H/Up Todd!
Personally I think there is a definite difference between American and European sounds, whether this stems from the history of Classical composing and civilisation I don't know, but a difference exists. As to why they are not receiving airplay and promotion that must surly be at the hands of their Record Company. Surprising as I noticed they're signed to Roadrunner which is not exactly a Back-room company!!!
smile.gif


Horns High! smile.gif \\m// I had never heard of them either until a while back when I ran across them on youtube while looking at Epica Videos. Didn't hurt that the lead singer was easy on the eyes, and then the music was cool as a bonus, score!

QUOTE (MonkeyDAthos @ Nov 13 2011, 12:29 PM) *
i just have to say, that i love those guys; i actually have the deluxe edition of The Silent Force biggrin.gif just love them!!


Good call! Here is a video off of the SILENT FORCE DVD.



This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Nov 23 2011, 12:37 AM


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The Uncreator
post Nov 23 2011, 01:30 AM
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Anyone watched the Black Symphony DVD?

AMAZING.

Also, one of Sharons son shares the same birthday as me, thus I should be allowed to meet her, flawless logic.
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Ben Higgins
post Nov 23 2011, 06:25 PM
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Yeah, they're a great band. My singer is a huge fan which is how I came to hear more of their stuff. Although I don't own any of their albums, maybe I should change that. smile.gif

Some very interesting points.. Metal in general struggles in the US because it's such a difficult market. Even big UK pop / indie bands couldn't break America so a relatively more 'niche' genre is really up against it. I won't even try to pretend to know how it should be done but with the US you either have to get to the kids by angering and scaring the parents into pushing you into the media and making you Public Enemy Number 1 (Ozzy, Alice Cooper, Marylin Manson etc..) or come up with a massive radio hit..



QUOTE (Sensible Jones @ Nov 12 2011, 04:04 PM) *
As to why they are not receiving airplay and promotion that must surly be at the hands of their Record Company. Surprising as I noticed they're signed to Roadrunner which is not exactly a Back-room company!!!
smile.gif


I didn't realise they were with Roadrunner.. it used to be a desirable label to be signed to as it it's roots were in underground metal bands like King Diamond etc.. but these days I fear it's just as bad as the rest and I see a lot of criticisim based around the bigwigs only giving their time to radio friendly sellers like Nickleback and ignoring more straight out metal bands, including those who have a decent pedigree like Megadeth. Of course it's a business and you're going to push the products that bring in the dosh but it doesn't bode well for a lot of bands signed to them.


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Todd Simpson
post Feb 10 2012, 01:05 AM
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Along the same lines as Within Temptation, I've recently started listening to a band called ELIS. They also have a great female vocalist or really a series of them. One of the best they had suddenly died ( very sad to find out as I was just getting in to them) here is one of my fav tunes of their's. Very cool voice and structure in the tune.

P.S. It's all in German! smile.gif



This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Feb 10 2012, 01:15 AM


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