Peter Steele was perhaps one of the most intimidating and unique frontmen in all of metal – a towering figure, in black and green, long black hair and, to many of us, one of the most recognisable voices in the planet.
Type O Negative were a gothic doom metal band who mostly dabbled in themes of death, loss, lost love, and general spookiness – usually with a pitch black sense of humour, tongue planted firmly in cheek.
The melancholic riffs, piano-laden and gloomy, would often hit moments of genuine beauty. Powerful riffs, followed by gentler introspection, and then big, bombastic moments… This is a band who would run the gamut and hit every part of your soul in a different way ALL IN ONE FUCKING SONG.
And then there was Peter.
Peter Steele’s voice, as I mentioned earlier, is one of the most recognisable in metal and hard rock. A deep, ghoulish croon. Threatening yet comforting. And as his lyrics take you through sincere moments, pained exclamations, or cheeky one-liners, you can’t help but picture him with a slight smirk.
I’m listening to Type O as I write this (something I do with every band as I write about them), and the hairs on the back of my neck are standing up. It’s a song I first heard in 1999, and even now it affects me deeply. Of course, everything hits a little differently.
Just over ten years ago we lost Peter, and with him went Type O Negative. It is obvious by the yearly social media posts from his peers that he is still very dearly loved and missed.
The particular song I was listening to just now was “Everything Dies”.
Now, if you’re unfamiliar with Type O Negative, I’m sure you see a song called Everything Dies by a metal band and there’s some trepidation, but do me a favour and give it a go, and listen to the lyrics. What you’ll find is a somewhat tongue-in-cheek, yet sincere and actually quite beautiful ode to those who’ve left us.
Just like Peter did.