• 'Death – Pierce Me': A case study considering a Freudian repetition-compulsion view in depressive suicidal black metal

    M.Selim Yavuz (see profile)
    Music and Sound
    Heavy metal (Music)--Instruction and study, Popular music
    Item Type:
    Conference paper
    Conf. Title:
    Westminster-Goldsmiths Symposium for Student Research in Popular Music
    Conf. Org.:
    University of Westminster
    Conf. Loc.:
    London, United Kingdom
    Conf. Date:
    24 June 2015
    black metal, black metal theory, metal music studies, Black Metal Theory, Metal Music Studies, Popular Music Studies
    Permanent URL:
    In the post-modern era, the domination of repetition in aesthetics allows for deeper meaning to be conveyed with limited musical material. The repetition, within Sigmund Freud’s interpretation in Beyond the Pleasure Principle (1920), becomes a ‘repetition-compulsion’ that resonates beyond the aural recurrences. Obsession inherent in depressive suicidal black metal (DSBM) music may be explored under this heading. Richard Middleton asks ‘why do listeners find interest and [‘]pleasure[’] in hearing the same thing over again?’; motivated by this question, the proposed paper explores a case from DSBM, the band Silencer from Sweden, and the implications of Nattramn’s preoccupation of death in the act’s only album Death – Pierce Me. This album, and more generally DSBM elucidate the Freudian idea well, as DSBM seeks to express death and death-related notions in the music. Moreover, the manifestation of compulsion may be construed either as a binding, or a movement in time happening ‘back and forth’ in a Kierkegaardian sense, appropriately tying a musical structure together. The proposed exploration results in a closer view of repetitive qualities in Silencer’s music from musical and psychoanalytical standpoints as well as aesthetics, considering compulsion as a musical tool.
    Last Updated:
    6 years ago
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