Swedish metal on Twitter – another case of the Swedish death metal phenomena?

It may be a long way to the top if you wanna rock and roll, but the route is shorter if you want to get Twitter followers. At least if you are swedish and have a history with death metal.

Which swedish band have the most followers by far? If you are a mainstream metal bloke like me, you’ll be a bit surprised of the answer. Take a look at the chart below.

Measured 2020 10 10 – 2020 10 21,

But the most interesting thing with this is that Twitter is an other piece of evidence that it’s the swedish death metal bands, or at least bands with death metal roots, that really fascinates the worlds metal heads.

They even stand out if you compare with international big names in their genre, like for example still active bands like Cannibal Corpse (223 100 followers) and Obituary (140 100).

The whole list:

1. Amon Amarth447 5001 961
2. In Flames329 0007 567
3. Arch Enemy300 6007 219
4. Messhuggah242 5001 333
5. Opeth177 1001 417
6. Ghost143 2001225
7. Entombed142 000704
8. Sabaton114 90027 800
9. Hammerfall84 1008 100
10. Yngwie Malmsteen68 8009 499
11. Soilwork68 4002 514
12. Therion58 000446
13. Dark Tranquillity42 300310
14. Amaranthe34 1002 778
15. Pain27 500639
16. Avatar24 9001 137
17. Candlemass23 800415
18. Hypocrisy17 800410
19. Europe17 800626
20. Graveyard11 600677
21. At the Gates11 3001 630
22. Mustasch8 6641 300
23. Witchcraft5 645134
24. Pain of Salvation5 701212
25. Evergrey5 1276 127
Measured 2020 10 10 – 2020 10 21. Bands that obviously have stopped tweeting and or/bands that not have not obtained 5 000 followers are excluded. Haunted, Raubtier, Cyhra and Watain among others.

Regarding non kind-of-extreme metal genres, well, some seem to do ok, but it’s not a global mass movement of popularity, at least not on Twitter. It doesn’t help much that Yngwie tweet a lot of interesting guitar-stuff.

One exception seems to be the power metal band Sabaton. Power metal giants Blind Guardian has 94 100 followers, Kamelot 76 400 and Helloween 72 200 followers, but Sabaton has 114 000. (Well ok Hammerfall is quite strong as well).

What lies behind the successful strategy of Amon Amarth? Is it about popularity only or a smart twitter-strategy? After a bit of research I think it’s both: they are one of the most popular swedish metal bands on Spotify, and they tweet a lot – with lyrical excerpts, which they have in common with for example the other top three tweeters In Flames and Arch Enemy. (Isn’t that a promising observation for those that claim that young people doesn’t read anymore?) . And of course, they surf on the big wave of the neverending interest in vikings in the popular culture.

Twitter is of course only a snapshot of one of the sources and signs of global internet popularity. But take a brief look at Spotify-plays and you’ll see that there seems to be a strong correlation between twitter popularity and popularity in general.