Djent

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Djent (/ɛnt/) is a subgenre of progressive metal,[1][2] named for an onomatopoeia for the distinctive high-gain, distorted, palm-muted, low-pitch guitar sound first employed by Meshuggah.[3]

Development[edit]

Fredrik Thordendal, the guitarist of Swedish band Meshuggah, is considered the originator of the djent technique.[3] However, the band did not coin the term itself; the djent scene developed from an online community of bedroom musicians, including Misha Mansoor, whose success with Periphery brought djent "from the virtual world into the real one."[3] In a 2018 interview by Rauta, Meshuggah guitarist Mårten Hagström apologized for the band's role in creating the djent genre.[4] Other bands important in the development of the style are Sikth, Mnemic, Animals as Leaders,[2] Tesseract,[5][6][7] and Textures.[8]

The scene has grown rapidly,[9] and members of the original online community, including the bands Chimp Spanner, Sithu Aye, Gizmachi, and Monuments, have gone on to tour and release albums commercially.[3][10] Other bands that often use djent include A Life Once Lost,[11] Veil of Maya,[12] Vildhjarta,[13] and Xerath.[14] Born of Osiris have also been described as being inspired by the djent movement.[9] Furthermore, Hacktivist[15][16] and DVSR[17] are djent bands that use rapping as primary vocal style.

Characteristics[edit]

Djent as a style is characterized by progressive, rhythmic, and technical complexity accompanied by a dense layer of polyphonic groove. An example is the song CAFO by Tosin Abasi.[7] It typically features heavily distorted, palm-muted guitar chords, syncopated riffs,[3] and polymeters alongside virtuoso soloing.[1] Another common feature is the use of extended range seven-string, eight-string, and nine-string guitars.[18]

Reception[edit]

Some members of the metal community have criticized the term "djent", either treating it as a short-lived fad, openly condemning it, or questioning its validity as a genre. But other bands such as Tesseract and Animals as Leaders have gained positive reviews, such as awards and highly acclaimed albums. Post-metal band Rosetta is noted as saying, "Maybe we should start calling doom metal 'DUNNN'."[19] In response to a question about 'djent', Lamb of God vocalist Randy Blythe stated in 2011, "There is no such thing as 'djent'; it's not a genre."[20] In an interview with Guitar Messenger, Periphery guitarist Misha Mansoor said:

I was looking for gear that was djenty. I was like: ‘Are these pickups djenty?’ For some reason it caught on, but completely in the wrong way, because people think it's a style of music and they think it's a style of music I play.[21]

In a later interview with Freethinkers Blog, Misha Mansoor stated that he felt djent had become "this big umbrella term for any sort of progressive band, and also any band that will [use] off-time chugs [...] You also get bands like Scale the Summit [who are referred to as] a djent band [when] 80% of their stuff sounds like clean channel, and it's all beautiful and pretty, you know [...] In that way, I think it's cool because it groups really cool bands together [...] We are surrounded by a lot of bands that I respect, but at the same time, I don't think people know what djent is either [...] It's very unclear." Later in the interview, he stated, "If you call us djent, that's fine. I mean, I would never self-apply the term, but at the same time, it's just so vague that I don't know what to make of it."[22]

Tosin Abasi of Animals as Leaders also takes a more lenient view of the term, stating that there are specific characteristics that are common to "djent" bands, therefore implying legitimate use of the term as a genre. While stating that he personally strives not to subscribe exclusively to any one genre, he makes the point that a genre is defined by the ability to associate common features between different artists. In this way, it is possible to view djent as a genre describing a particular niche of modern, progressive metal.[23]

List of artists[edit]

Band Country of origin Active References
After the Burial U.S. 2004–present [24]
The Afterimage Canada 2012–present [25]
Animals as Leaders U.S. 2007–present [2][24]
Born of Osiris U.S. 2003–present [24]
The Contortionist U.S. 2007–present [26]
Elitist U.S. 2010–2015 [27]
Erra U.S. 2009–present [28]
Fellsilent U.K. 2003–2010 [29]
Forevermore U.S. 2009–present [30]
Hacktivist U.K. 2011–present [16][15]
Intervals Canada 2011–present [31]
Invent, Animate U.S. 2011–present [32]
Meshuggah Sweden 1987–present [24]
Monuments U.K. 2007–present [29]
Periphery U.S. 2005–present [2][3]
Scale the Summit U.S. 2004–present [24]
Skyharbor India 2010–present [33]
Tesseract U.K. 2007–present [2][5][6][7][24]
Textures Netherlands 2001–2017 [8]
Veil of Maya U.S. 2004–present [24]
Vildhjarta Sweden 2005–present [24]
Volumes U.S. 2009–present [24]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Bowcott, Nick (26 June 2011). "Meshuggah Share the Secrets of Their Sound". Guitar World. Future US. Archived from the original on 17 May 2016. Retrieved 17 October 2011.
  2. ^ a b c d e Angle, Brad (23 July 2011). "Interview: Meshuggah Guitarist Fredrik Thordendal Answers Reader Questions". Guitar World. Future US. Retrieved 17 October 2011.
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Djent, the metal geek's microgenre". The Guardian. 3 March 2011. Retrieved 26 June 2011
  4. ^ "MESHUGGAH's MÅRTEN HAGSTRÖM On 'Djent': 'We're Very Sorry For Creating That Genre; We Didn't Intend To — Our Bad'". Blabbermouth. Retrieved 23 July 2018.
  5. ^ a b GuitarWorld Staff Member (16 March 2011). "TesseracT Unveil New Video". Guitar World. Future US. Retrieved 17 October 2011.
  6. ^ a b Rivadavia, Eduardo. "One". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 17 October 2011.
  7. ^ a b c Rivadavia, Eduardo. "Concealing Fate". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 17 October 2011.
  8. ^ a b Bland, Ben (3 October 2011). "Textures - Dualism (Album Review)". Stereoboard.com. Retrieved 17 October 2011.
  9. ^ a b Colgan, Chris (24 June 2011). "Born of Osiris: The Discovery". PopMatters. Retrieved 19 October 2011.
  10. ^ "TESSERACT's ACLE ON THE BIRTH OF TESSERACT AND THE DJENT MOVEMENT". Metalsucks. Metalsucks. 2010-10-06. Retrieved 2014-11-09.
  11. ^ Debenedictis, Matt (23 February 2011). "A Life Once Lost Took 'an Outsider's Point of View' During Time Off". Noisecreep. AOL. Retrieved 17 October 2011.
  12. ^ Heaney, Gregory. "[Id]". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 17 October 2011.
  13. ^ Hart, Josh (6 October 2011). "Vildhjarta Unveil New Album Details, Post Teaser Video". Guitar World. Future US. Retrieved 17 October 2011.
  14. ^ Rivadavia, Eduardo. "II review". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 17 October 2011.
  15. ^ a b Rosenberg, Axl (17 October 2011). "Djent-rappers Hacktivist Kind Enough to Put the Word Hack Right There in the Name". MetalSucks. Retrieved 1 May 2015.
  16. ^ a b Islander (9 November 2012). "Hacktivist". No Clean Singing. Retrieved 1 May 2015.
  17. ^ CroOZza (25 November 2013). "DVSR - Got-Djent.com". Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  18. ^ Kennelty, Greg. "Here's Why Everyone Needs To Stop Complaining About Extended Range Guitars".
  19. ^ "What is your opinion of Djent?". Rosetta band. Retrieved 29 November 2011.
  20. ^ Blythe, Randy. "Lamb of God's Randy Blythe on Djent". smn news. Retrieved 29 November 2011.
  21. ^ Mansoor, Misha. "MARC OKUBO (VEIL OF MAYA) & MISHA MANSOOR (PERIPHERY) INTERVIEW". guitar messenger. Retrieved 7 March 2012.
  22. ^ "Periphery interview part 3 of 3." FreethinkersBlog. 19 Feb. 2012. Web. 28 Aug. 2013. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8bE0Q_9nQ9U>.
  23. ^ Abasi, Tosin. "Tosin Abasi's Opinion of Djent". Retrieved 2017-10-20.
  24. ^ a b c d e f g h i DEITERMAN, COREY. "What the Hell Is Djent Metal Anyway?". Houston Press. Retrieved 28 June 2018.
  25. ^ "The Afterimage". Tragic Hero Records. Retrieved August 4, 2018.
  26. ^ DF, Anso (October 9, 2014). "Djent Won't Djie: Periphery, The Contortionist Live Stream Today". Metal Sucks. Retrieved March 2, 2017.
  27. ^ Lake, Daniel. "Catch Bastard Feast in the Act with Osculum Infame". Retrieved 28 June 2018.
  28. ^ Dodderidge, Tim (Feb 11, 2015). "Interview: Erra". Mind Equals Blown. Retrieved Dec 11, 2017.
  29. ^ a b NEILSTEIN, VINCE. ""MAP OF DJENT" SHOWS NEW "BIG FOUR"". Retrieved 28 June 2018.
  30. ^ Lake, Nate. "Forevermore - Telos". HM Magazine. Retrieved November 18, 2016.
  31. ^ Delano, Chris. "STAFFThe Rise of Jazz Fusion Djent". Retrieved 28 June 2018.
  32. ^ Boehmer, Dominik. "REVIEWSREVIEW: Invent, Animate – "Stillworld"". Retrieved 28 June 2018.
  33. ^ "Skyharbor - got-djent.com". got-djent.com. Retrieved 25 January 2018.