Traditional doom metal

Traditional doom metal is one of the old school doom metal styles, along with stoner doom metal and epic doom metal. Traditional doom has a 70’s heavy metal influence. This 70’s heavy metal influence is more amplified and extreme in traditional doom. Don’t miss the guides to death/doom and black/doom if you’re into the more extreme side of metal.

5 traditional doom metal essentials

If you’re too lazy to read the whole thing, just check out these bands:

  • Black Sabbath (duh!)
  • Candlemass
  • Pallbearer
  • Trouble
  • Warning

Mandatory traditional doom metal bands

This is the list of historically interesting or simply awesome traditional doom metal bands.

Black Sabbath

Black Sabbath is obviously the essence of doom metal and also the original traditional doom metal band.


Candlemass built on the original Black Sabbath sound with 1986’s “Epicus Doomicus Metallicus”, creating a whole different beast. Equal parts sorrowful and heavy, it’s easily one of the most important, not to mention best, doom metal records. Candlemass also went to pioneer epic doom metal when Messiah Marcolin took over and vocals and added a more power metal-influenced flair.


Unsure where to put Krux, but traditional doom metal makes more sense than epic or stoner for sure. Leif Edling (Candlemass) side-project featuring Mats Levén (before he also joined Candlemass) on vocals. The first two albums are quality doom with focus on simple, heavy riffs. The third album ventures in a more experimental direction.

Monolith Cult

Quality doom from Transcending Records. The focus is on huge riffs, which is always appreciated. Strong Candlemass influence which is rarely a bad thing.


Pallbearer plays a light, melodic form of sorrowful traditional doom metal. Very heavy on the emotional impact and strong lead guitars and vocals. Also a band with material that grows on repeated listens.


Legendary band as famous for their music as their front man’s crazy antics. I haven’t been sold on Pentagram, but most doom metal fans worship them.

Saint Vitus

Another legendary traditional doom metal band with a legendary front man that I haven’t gotten into.

The Obsessed

Heavy doom metal in the traditional style featuring Wino from Saint Vitus


No doom metal list without Trouble. They were around very early and created some of the genre’s most influential albums.


Legitimately some of the saddest music out there, along with singer Patrick Walker’s other project 40 Watt Sun. I prefer the more contemporary 40 Watt Sun sound, but Warning is quality doom metal as well.

Witchfinder General

This is way too 70’s influenced for me but I can see why people dig it. Very true to the old school metal basics.

Soliloquium Swedish doom metal on Bandcamp

Read more:

Full doom metal genre guide ->
10 essential death/doom metal albums ->
Epic doom metal ->
Funeral doom metal ->
Stoner doom metal ->
Soliloquium, Swedish doom metal ->