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Get Sludged

A little history, a little bit of everything sludge.
1 predecessors


the bands, the albums, the influences that aided in birthing the genre
2Black Sabbath
Master of Reality


The most obvious predecessor simply because Black Sabbath was the first metal band and Master of Reality was their sludgiest, doomiest album.
3Saint Vitus
Born Too Late


The doom metal bands that followed Black Sabbath were also crucial, especially Saint Vitus and Wino (who continues to work with younger bands).
4Godflesh
Streetcleaner


Justin Broadrick (also of Jesu) took the influence of Swans' no wave, industrial-like sound and added steroids, resulting in one of the heaviest and slowest sounds ever.
5Black Flag
My War


One must remember that sludge metal does not just come from doom metal but also from hardcore punk. The significance of My War comes especially from the last three tracks, the longer, heavier, slower, and more experimental pieces that had great influence on bands like Melvins.
6 early days


Some of the earliest sludge bands to exist, with many of them coming from the NOLA scene down south.
7Melvins
Gluey Porch Treatments


Seattle - Most argued as the first true sludge band and sludge album, which was recorded in 1986 and released in 1987. Melvins have proven to be one of the most important metal bands because of their vast influence on just about every other band in the genre. Slow riffage and a dark atmosphere combined with hardcore punk elements gave birth to sludge metal.
8Eyehategod
Take as Needed for Pain


Another one of the earliest bands, starting up a few years after Melvins started releasing material and marks the NOLA scene as crucial. One of the most hateful bands.
9Crowbar
Crowbar


Another early NOLA band. Dark sludge that often had faster punk passages. Slightly more popular after support from Phil Anselmo (Pantera) and appeared on Beavis and Butthead.
10Neurosis
Souls at Zero


California - Neurosis not only gave rise to another subgenre but was also one of the earliest sludge bands, shifting from a crusty hardcore sound to an ambient-like sludge around '92.
11Acid Bath
When the Kite String Pops


One of the more versatile of the early bands and also close to the NOLA scene (though not from New Orleans).
12Buzzov-en
Sore


North Carolina - Influential band that kept many of the hardcore punk elements in their sound, making some songs much faster than other sludge.
13Grief
Come to Grief


Boston - One of the heaviest and slowest of the early bands.
14Harvey Milk
Courtesy and Good Will Toward Men


Athens, GA - Heavily Melvins influenced but was often slower and heavier. One of the weirdest and most experimental sludge bands, incorporating folk and even Leonard Cohen covers.
15Down
NOLA


The supergroup formed by Phil Anselmo (Pantera), Pepper Keenan (Corrosion of Conformity), Kirk Windstein (Crowbar), Todd Strange (Crowbar), and Jimmy Bower (Eyehategod). Mostly due to Pantera's popularity, Down became one of the more widely known sludge bands.
16Melvins
Houdini


Melvins deserves to be here twice. 1. They are considered the very first sludge band. 2. Houdini was the first mainstream exposure that sludge had, thanks to a relationship with Nirvana and other big grunge bands from Seattle in the early '90s.
17 the expansion


The development later on, with bands coming from other nations and incorporating other genres in the sound.
18Dystopia
Human = Garbage


sludge metal + crust punk + social issues = a very angry band
19Soilent Green
Sewn Mouth Secrets


NOLA band that mixed sludge, death metal, and grindcore.
20Iron Monkey
Iron Monkey


Great Britain - one of the earliest bands from somewhere other than America
21Corrupted
Se Hace Por Los Suenos Asesinos


Japan - one of the heaviest and slowest (and best) bands. Includes splits with Grief, Noothgrush, and various others from various genres.
22Earth
Earth 2


Seattle - the basic idea was Melvins.. but much slower, resulting in what is now called drone metal.
23Nadja
Touched


Canada - another drone band but with more ambient and shoegaze sounds, resulting in one of the densest and fuzzed out wall of sounds. Aidan Baker likes the term "dream sludge" for Nadja.
24Boris
Amplifier Worship


Japan - practically avant-garde, mixing everything from sludge, drone, stoner, dream-pop, hardcore, ambient, psychedelic, etc. and named after the Melvins song.
25Mastodon
Remission


Atlanta - though they aren't really a sludge band anymore, Mastodon is pretty much the most popular and mainstream band from the genre.
26 the rise of post-metal


Starting with Neurosis, post-metal has become as popular as sludge itself, especially over the last decade, being essentially the heavier cousin of post-rock rather than a direct mix of the two due to a focus on atmosphere and sound.
27Neurosis
Through Silver in Blood


Neurosis is the other band that gets two slots. Souls at Zero may have started post-metal but Through Silver in Blood perfected it.
28Isis
Oceanic


Before this, Isis mostly sounded like a child of Neurosis and Godflesh. With Oceanic, Isis became giants in the metal world and largely began a new surge in post-metal in the 2000's.
29Cult of Luna
The Beyond


Sweden - Cult of Luna developed nearly parallel to Isis, although taking some influenced, and are just as good (if not better).
30Callisto
Noir


Finland - Callisto may have started off sounding a little too much like Isis but they created something special with this album, being one of the more relaxing experiences out there.
31Amenra
Mass IIII


Belgium - dark and menacing
32Intronaut
Valley of Smoke


California - post-metal with jazz, prog, stoner, and even tribal sounds
33 let's get high


what happens if you mix sludge with stoner
34Weedeater
God Luck and Good Speed


North Carolina - formed after the breakup of Buzzov*en, I only listen to this while stoned.
35Bongzilla
Amerijuanican


Wisconsin - also featuring the same guy in Weedeater (and formerly Buzzov*en) on bass.
36Kylesa
Time Will Fuse Its Worth


Savannah, GA - mixing sludge, punk, stoner, and psychedelic.
37Electric Wizard
Dopethrone


England - you've got to include the Wizard. One of the heaviest bands ever.
38High on Fire
Blessed Black Wings


California - Matt Pike after he left Sleep (too far from sludge to include on this list) and happens to be a faster band.
39Ufomammut
Snailking


Italy - stoner/sludge on LSD
40 sludge, etc.


Various other sludge bands.
41Thou
Summit


Baton Rouge, LA - dark and intense with almost black metal vocals
42Cavity
Supercollider


Miami - heavy and sometimes faster
43Floor
Floor


Miami - made of some Cavity members, heavy but with poppy melodies
44Torche
Meanderthal


Miami - the band that resulted from Floor's split
45Black Cobra
Bestial


California - also from an ex-member of Cavity and a member of Acid King and surprisingly made of only a guitarist/vocalist and a drummer.
46Cough
Ritual Abuse


Virginia - dark and heavy
47Zoroaster
Dog Magic


Atlanta - heavy stoner/sludge
48Sunn O)))
Black One


Seattle - early albums were basically Earth worship but with Black One the duo created one of the darkest albums by mixing bleak chords with dark ambient and black metal.
49Moss
Sub Templum


England - "Moss is the moon falling on your face."
50Khanate
Khanate


NYC - sinister sludge/drone
51Burning Witch
Crippled Lucifer


Seattle - the precursor to Sunn O)))
52Clinging to the Trees of a Forest Fire
Songs of Ill Hope and Desperation


Denver - grindcore with sludge
53Noothgrush
Erode the Person


California - most similar to Grief's depressive sludge
54The Abominable Iron Sloth
The Abominable Iron Sloth


California - drop A riffs, shrieking vocals formed from Will Haven members
55Gaza
East


Utah - "To describe the sound of Gaza would be to imagine a severely acid-tripped offspring of Converge and Neurosis, combined with the worst of sludge and grind that produces an absolute mess of a being known as Gaza. "
56Baroness
First


Savannah, GA - newer stuff is not quite as sludgy
57Hell
Hell


Oregon - imagine Thou but possessed by demons
58Irreversible
Sins


Atlanta - one of the most underrated post-metal bands but sadly they broke up
59Knut
Terraformer


Switzerland - sludge and post-metal combined with heavy metallic hardcore
60Omega Massif
Karpatia


Germany - instrumental face melting
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