My story of a metalhead started when I discovered the Finnish metal band Nightwish. I simply fell in love with their music, which made me more curious about other metal bands. That's how I discovered metal.
There was, however, one particular sub-genre which captivated my attention the most: symphonic metal. It had everything I loved - heavy riffs, orchestra, and catchy melodies (although sometimes too catchy to my liking as I love complex compositions, which symphonic metal bands' songs don't always have). I still love these elements in music, but the more symphonic metal bands I knew, the more I actually realized that most of these bands are pretty much the same in some aspects, and as I grew up and discovered more bands and sub-genres, the mutual similarity of some bands started to get boring (maybe I could even say it started to be annoying).
But don't get me wrong - I haven't given up on the symphonic metal, I have only become a bit picky (well, maybe more than just a bit). Of course, there are also great symphonic metal bands which are really original and unique, but most of these bands are not strictly symphonic metal - they use elements of other genres or subgenres and they do not restrict themselves to the metal genre only. What makes them stand out is that they're not afraid to do some experiments. There are, however, a lot of absolutely stereotypical symphonic metal bands that sound really the same and that's what I want to dedicate this article to. So let's see what bothers me about this metal subgenre the most...
1. Lyrical themes
If you want to play in your own symphonic metal band, you have to find some good lyrical themes for your music, otherwise you can't simply catch people's attention, which in other words means: no fans for you, loser! A good choice of lyrical themes for a symphonic metal band's music is usually a combination of any dark themes like sorrow, anger or hate, pain, death, loss, loneliness or sins (possibly all the seven deadly sins) and, of course, also darkness itself. It simply has to be dark. Get it? DARK!
And if you want a little change sometimes, you can also choose from less dark themes, like for example: love, innocence and maaaayyyybe (but just maybe) nature and wilderness. But don't change themes of your music too often. If you do feel the pressure still because you want your songs to be a bit varied, combine the less dark themes with the darker ones like this for example: A song about love can be combined with death, loss, loneliness, sorrow and pain, so the story line of the song could be "I lost my beloved one, because he died and now I feel lonely, sad and psychically hurt". Emotions are desperately needed. And don't forget to make it sound really poetic.