Why is Swedish metal so melodic? That's the question we propose in Ep. 13 on Loudwire's ongoing video series, "50 Years of Heavy Metal."

Helping to answer that question are Anders Fridén and Björn Gelotte of In Flames, Opeth's Mikael Åkerfeldt, Trevor Strnad and Brandon Ellis from The Black Dahlia Murder and Cattle Decapitation's Travis Ryan. After exploring the Big Bang moment that largely explains the prevalence of so much melody in Sweden's metal scene, we go further into the development of two opposing styles that melded to create melodic death metal — a carryover from that moment of awakening alongside emerging trends at the time.

Akerfeldt and the members of In Flames recall a nationally televised concert that changed their lives, as well as the eventual trajectory of metal's evolution, forever. It's an eye-opening look into how something as simple as melody could come to define an entire country's output of one musical style.

As melodic death metal began to spread worldwide as various record labels latched onto that early extreme metal scene in the Gothenburg and Stockholm strongholds, the impact of these local groups spread quickly on a worldwide scale. Without it, metalcore as we know it in the 21st century simply would not exist.

Watch the full episode at the top of the page.

The Best Death Metal Album of Each Year Since 1985