Blackgaze is a genre that combines black metal elements with shoegaze elements. This is a list of good blackgaze bands. The bands are often mixed and hard to classify, and could go under the term post-black metal. My problem with the genre is that many bands tend to sound the same. If you have any tips, or want your blackgaze band included, hit me up in a comment!
Alcest is the obvious blackgaze choice, but they’re also a really good band with many quality albums in their discography. I have written a review of the “Kodama” album, and about the 10 best Alcest songs to start out with.
A Light in the Dark
Slightly romantic-sounding band with a more conventional melodic style than most bands in the blackgaze and atmospheric black metal spectrum. A lot of the melodies are very memorable and the songwriting is solid. A band worth checking out.
You can tell that Neige was in this band, because there are strong similarities to Alcest. The dreamy sound on the album is too inviting to resist no matter the familiarity.
An Autumn for Crippled Children
Not completely convinced by what I’ve heard from this band, but they are one of the most popular bands in the genre. Some nice melodies in there. The sound does suffer from typical one man project issues like plastic-sounding drums though.
Bloodbark is a fresh band on the scene, delivering quality atmospheric black metal. They have a slight Summoning influence, minus the fantasy associations, that matches up very well with the more traditional atmospheric black metal approach.
Deafheaven is a highly debated band, which many people either love or hate. I’m somewhere in the middle.
I am unfamiliar with this band except the 2018 release “Їм часто сниться капіж (They Often See Dreams About the Spring)”. It’s a solid piece of atmospheric black metal with a pagan edge. Certainly worth checking out, and good enough for me to get of my ass and listen to more of their albums.
Entropia is one of the least distinct bands on the list, but still a good one. Borrows a lot from the first two Alcest albums.
I enjoy Fen’s album “Winter”, but the super long songs made it hard for me truly get into it. Still a quality band in the style worth checking out.
Harakiri for the Sky
Popular blackgaze band with an interesting mix of music styles. More driving and less dreamy than most bands on this list. I find them slightly overrated, but still enjoyable.
Heretoir have a slightly more extreme take on blackgaze, almost sounding like progressive death/doom metal (think Enshine) at times. It often works well, making them one of my favorite bands in the style.
My cynic side suggests that Lantlôs mostly got popular since Neige was in the band for a few years. Still a pretty enjoyable atmospheric black metal band no matter what.
Freshly hyped band from Denmark. Deservingly so, because the new sound is a big step up from the previous releases, that were decent blackgaze.
Most popular blackgaze bands
Alcest (139 097 listeners)
Deafheaven (150 608 listeners)
Amesoeurs (81 207 listeners)
Les Discrets (80 238 listeners)
An Autumn for Cripped Children (30 030 listeners)
Source: last.fm “blackgaze” tag
An unknown blackgaze band with a nice atmosphere that I’ve come to appreciate. A solid amount of emotion in there makes Unreqvited a band worth checking out! One of the most underrated bands in the style(s).
An atmospheric black metal/blackgaze band from Jakarta, Indonesia of all places. Solid songwriting and atmosphere while lacking the originality to truly make it something special. There’s also a slight Primordial influence in places.
This band from Azerbadzjan has a romantic vibe to it, and utilizes lush keyboard layers. If you want to know more about Violet Cold, read my review of 2017 album “Anomie”.
White Ward is quite a unique-sounding band. They mix their blackgaze/atmospheric black metal sound with jazz saxophones. It sounds like it would never fit. Most times it is a surprisingly good combination.
Wolves in the Throne Room
One of the most popular atmospheric black metal. Garners a lot of polarizing opinions just like Deafheaven. Most of their music is above average for me, and I particularly enjoy the guest spots from Anna von Hausswolff on the latest album.
Soliloquium – Swedish doom metal
Not blackgaze by a long shot, but my band Soliloquium plays its own brand of progressive doom metal. Above is the song “Crossroads” from the EP “The Concept of Escape”. You’d make me a happy man if you checked it out!