Cradle Of Filth

Profile:
Cradle of Filth, formed in 1991, is a conglomeration of black metal and gothic metal, although their music has been somewhat difficult to classify. The group has progressed from a rawer, more traditional black metal sound to a fully orchestrated symphonic metal feel. Their music has often touched on gothic metal overtones, and has been both ridiculed and praised by critics. Most black metal fans criticise the group as coverage by Kerrang and MTV have brought them a much more mainstream and commercial image. Thus some black metal fans deem them "sell outs", while hardcore fans remain.

BIOGRAPHY:
After the band's formation and a period of rapid line-up fluctuation as four demos were recorded, Cradle of Filth signed to Cacophonous and released The Principle of Evil Made Flesh in 1994. After further member changes, the band released Dusk and Her Embrace, a critically acclaimed album that greatly expanded the band's fanbase throughout Europe and among black metal fans elsewhere. As the band became known for increasingly theatrical stage shows, Cruelty and the Beast was released to even greater acclaim, though sales were poor. The following year the band continued primarily on the touring route but did put out a DVD, PanDaemonAeon, and an accompanying EP, From the Cradle to Enslave, featuring the music from the production. One of the best-known and favourite songs the band has ever produced was the title track of the EP, "From the Cradle to Enslave."

Cradle produced their fourth full-length studio album the following year: Midian, named after the biblical city of monsters, was fittingly released on Hallowe'en night, October 31, 2000. Their style at this point was probably their most defined, with Paul Ryan joining the lineup on guitars, but their music was by no means mainstream, with titles such as "Lord Abortion," and yet another cult favourite, "Her Ghost in the Fog," which was featured in the soundtrack of the movie Ginger Snaps. Their music at this point was hard, but highly melodic and as usual, incredibly verbose and eloquent.

Following the moderate success of Midian they released a "transition mini-album," as lead singer and frontman Dani Filth later referred to it, Bitter Suites to Succubi. Besides the obvious pun, the album was a mixture of four new songs, re-recordings of three songs from The Principle of Evil Made Flesh, two instrumental tracks, and a cover of The Sisters of Mercy's "No Time To Cry." Though stylistically it is similar to Midian the album is regarded as a failure by most critics.

More line-up shifts followed. In 2003 they signed with Sony Music, and produced their fifth full-length studio album, 2003's Damnation and a Day, which was much less melodic black metal than symphonic metal with black undertones, or what is referred to as black symphonic metal. Though it disappointed some fans, this concept album, showing the events of the bible through the eyes of the devil, featured a 40 piece orchestra and 32 piece choir, and even more complex songs, both stylistically and lyrically. It also produced at least two videos on MTV2 - videos and MTV2 appearances being a rarity for Cradle of Filth.

Some claim that the band is no longer playing "true" black metal music. Whilst this is for the most part true, they still have black metal undertones in their music, and after leaving Sony near the beginning of 2004, claim their most recent album Nymphetamine (released summer 2004) as their return to actual black metal. Dani Filth says that it is half-way between Cruelty and the Beast and Dusk and Her Embrace.

Interestingly, it has been in hot debate since near the time Cradle of Filth became popular as to if they are true "black metal" or not. Comparing Cradle to most Norwegian black metal, they are completely different; this has led to them being deemed "melodic black metal," and generally the Norwegian black metal community shuns them as well as bands such as Dimmu Borgir that were brought into popularity following the pseudo-mainstream success of Cradle. Regardless of how "pure" their black metal sound is, most fans disregard the whole debate, as does Dani Filth. In his words, when asked to describe what kind of metal he thinks Cradle of Filth is, "Cradle of Filth is Cradle of Filth." Drummer Adrian Erlandsson describes Cradle of Filth as "Extreme Metal" and also disregards Cradle of Filth falling into the category of black metal due to the fact they sound nothing like bands such as Darkthrone, Immortal, Bathory, etc.
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  • Cradle Of Filth Discography

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Albums

Cradle Of Filth / Malediction - A Pungent And Sexual Miasma (Cass, Ltd)

Mortuary Music 1992

The Principle Of Evil Made Flesh

(15 versions)
Cacophonous Records 1994

Dusk And Her Embrace

(17 versions)
Music For Nations 1996

Cruelty And The Beast

(21 versions)
Music For Nations 1998

Midian

(16 versions)
Music For Nations 2000

Bitter Suites To Succubi

(10 versions)
Snapper Classics 2001

Live Bait For The Dead

(3 versions)
Abracadaver 2002

Damnation And A Day

(11 versions)
Sony Music UK, Sony Music UK 2003

Nymphetamine

(12 versions)
Roadrunner Records 2004

Thornography

(14 versions)
Roadrunner Records 2006

Eleven Burial Masses

(CD, Album, Ltd + DVD-V)
Peaceville 2007

Godspeed On The Devil's Thunder

(10 versions)
Roadrunner Records 2008

Darkly, Darkly, Venus Aversa

(7 versions)
Peaceville 2010

Evermore Darkly...

(3 versions)
Nuclear Blast USA 2011

The Manticore And Other Horrors

(5 versions)
Peaceville 2012

Midnight In The Labyrinth

(2xCD, Album, Ltd, Dig)
Peaceville 2012

Singles & EPs

Vempire Or Dark Faerytales In Phallustein

(11 versions)
Cacophonous Records 1996

Twisted Nails Of Faith

(3 versions)
Music For Nations 1998

From The Cradle To Enslave E.P.

(8 versions)
Music For Nations 1999

Her Ghost In The Fog / Dance Macabre

(CD, Single, Promo)
Music For Nations 2000

No Time To Cry

(2 versions)
AbraCadaver 2001

Nymphetamine

(CD, Promo, Single)
Roadrunner Records 2004

Devil Woman

(CD, Single, Promo)
Roadrunner Records 2005

Temptation & Dirge Inferno

(CD, Single, Promo)
Roadrunner Records, AbraCadaver 2006

Thornographic - Album Sampler

(10", Pic)
Roadrunner Records 2006