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Epic metal (from greek ἐπικός and latin epicus, both meaning "story") is a term used to refer to metal bands that involve fantasy, history and mythology in their lyrics. Epic metal bands used to record concept albums featuring an epic storyline behind it. Epic metal bands are usually power metal or heavy metal bands, but epic black metal, symphonic, progressive and folk metal bands are not uncommon. Aliases for Epic metal include "fantasy metal", "battle metal", "barbarian metal" etc.
Epic metal has no certain music characteristics. Nevertheless, there are elements that common for epic metal releases. Usual arrangements include symphonic orchestations, choirs, use of traditional and/or classical melodies, that are used to inspire "epic feeling". See symphonic metal for details.
Epic power metal and heavy metal examples are Rhapsody, Blind Guardian, Therion, Manowar, HammerFall, Avantasia the metal opera, among others. Amorphis, Battlelore, Summoning and Bal-Sagoth may be examples of extreme epic metal.
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