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Ever heard of Pirate Metal? Check out these genre-pushing bands!

Posted on 4 m read

Written by Marko Galic

I have been listening to music since I was seven years old. I vividly remember the first song I ever heard: “Kad Bi Bio Bijelo Dugme” by Bijelo Dugme. It is a 70’s prog-rock masterpiece. From that day, I fell in love with music. Do you know what the best thing is about music? When you stumble upon something that you have never heard of before; something special done only by that artist. Today I will show you five bands that pass as a certain genre, but can be considered “outsiders” of that genre. Basically, they are their own sub-genre. This list is in no particular order.


Alestorm is a heavy metal band originally from Perth, Scotland. Now you are probably wondering, what is weird about this band? Their style of metal is called “pirate metal”. Yes, you read that right! And yes, it is absolutely amazing. Their music is type of music you would expect from Jack Sparrow if he formed heavy metal band. Everything they sing about is pirate-themed. Sometimes it’s about drinking, sometimes keelhauling. They are performing on Warped Tour this year. These guys are amazing live. Trust me, you will thank me later.


If you want your future children to grow up metal heads, then Hevisaurus is perfect band for you. Hevisaurus is Finnish heavy metal band whose music is aimed at children. The band members typically wear dinosaur costumes, which is totally metal. Their sound is not as heavy as generic metal, so it is perfect for younger music listeners.

Van Canto

While reading this article, I assume you may have come to the conclusion that heavy metal is very weird genre. Well, it’s about to get weirder. Up next is a metal band where everything is done by only vocals and drums. Meet Van Canto, a German a-cappella band. They were formed in 2006 and at this moment, are composed of five singers and one drummer.  Two out of five vocalists perform lead vocals while the other three use their voices to imitate the sound of guitars, drums etc. Guitar solos are even imitated with the voices of three singers, which is pretty killer. At first listen, their sound may come off as funny, but believe me when I say I had same reaction. Once you give them honest listen you will realize how talented these guys are.

Before I start talking about last two bands I need to explain a few things so you can fully understand what they’re about. To get started, let’s go back to the Ottoman Empire. It ruled over a big part of Southeast Europe for long period of time. Their influence can be found in almost everything, especially in music.  What electric guitar is for rock music, accordion is for traditional music of most of Southeast Europe.  Traditional music of Southeast Europe, if described in more technical ways, is music where a lot of melodies are written in thirds. Now that you have a basic understanding of how the music of Southeast Europe sounds, we can get back to last two bands.


Brkovi are a Croatian punk band from Zagreb, formed in 2004. They call themselves Turbo punk folk wellness and spa because their music at its core is punk but mixed with turbo folk, while wellness and spa is because of their live shows. Their live shows are very energetic, and once you go there you can be 100% you will feel like you spent two hours in very exclusive spa because you will be covered in sweat. Believe me, I saw them live a few weeks ago and that is exactly what happened. It was totally worth it because they are amazing live. 

Dubioza Kolektiv

Dubioza kolektiv, also known as Dubioza, is a band from Bosnia and Herzegovina known for their fresh take on hip-hop, reggae, dub, rock and Bosnian folklore. So far in their career they have released seven albums. Some of their albums are in Bosnian, while othere are in English (Wild Wild East and Happy Machine.) In 2008 they released their politically-charged breakthrough album Firma Ilegal, which made them household name in the Bosnian music scene. Fun fact, Firma Ilegal was first album I have ever bought and to this day it is one of my favorite albums of all time. Their sound not only changes from song to song, but sometimes it even changes during the same song. “Take No Escape” is a great example for this, having elements of punk,ska and Bosnian traditional music incorporated. On paper this combination should not work, but for some reason it works very well. 

What is the oddest genre you’ve listened to?

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