If you like long, drawn out songs played in a very slow tempo, funeral doom metal is for you. The definition of funeral doom is a crossover between death/doom metal and funeral dirge music. Don’t expect much instrumental action, the focus will be on creating a depressive mood at all times.
Personally, I’m not as sold on the funeral doom style as traditional death doom metal, but some bands, albums and songs are certainly good enough to get me going. This my guide to the funeral doom style. Tell me if I’m missing out on any good bands!
Essential funeral doom bands
- Eye of Solitude
- Mournful Congregation
- Shape of Despair
Best funeral doom albums to start with
Clouds – Departe
Clouds combines the long, slow funeral doom metal tendencies with soaring melodic death/doom metal. The songs are monumentally sad, and we’re treated with guest vocals from Jon Aldara (Hamferd, Barren Earth) and Pim Blankenstein (Officium Triste). It’s also a good transition for a death/doom metal fan who’s not completely into funeral doom yet. If you want in-depth information, read my “Departe” review right here on the site.
Doom:VS – Dead Words Speak
Doom:VS is the solo project from Draconian’s guitarist Johan Ericson. The song “Dead Words Speak” is one of my favorite doom metal songs, and it showcases what this album is about. The songs are slow and dirgey, and Johan’s clean vocals are truly tormented. It’s an excruciatingly sad album, and a good representation of the funeral doom genre. This project outshines Draconian by far in my book.
Skepticism – Alloy
Skepticism is a true funeral doom metal band, complete with organs and moods more suiting for a chapel than a metal gig. Their sound is a bit too far from “normal” death/doom to be completely enjoyable for me, but if I would define funeral doom with one band it would probably be Skepticism.
Most popular funeral doom metal bands
Shape of Despair (60 342 listeners)
Ahab (53 286 listeners)
Esoteric (51 309 listeners)
Evoken (42 596 listeners)
Skepticism (34 230 listeners)
Source: last.fm “funeral doom metal” tag