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Friday, July 18, 2008

What Is a Metal Song That Makes You Think Of Someone, Good Or Bad?

A little class discussion today, folks. As I mentioned the other day on Whattya Listenin' to Wednesday, I assembled a two-disc pool of music that would hypothetically constitute a soundtrack to a possible film adaptation of a novel I've been working on. I had to laugh at myself for having very few metal songs on this thing, but the songs are appropriate and frequently heavy-toned or straight-up rockout cuts, and a lot of them remind me of the places I was at when I first heard them, who my friends were, who I was dating, what-not. I then began to think off-track about songs reminding me of past girlfriends which I felt best inflated a memory, good and sometimes bad.

For instance, U2's "With Or Without You" reminds me of my high school girlfriend, mostly because I hated it back then as a loudmouthed headbanger but ironically what was the big summer hit of 1987 would later end up being one of my favorite songs of the decade and I'm always reminded of that summer and of her when I hear it. Then I could choose Soundgarden's "Big Dumb Sex" for an ex-girlfriend who was the meanest bitch I've ever dated, the biggest tease I've ever known, and though I'm well over it, I continue to laugh at that song, knowing the foul-mouthed chorus was always ringing in the back of my head when I think of those angry three months I dated this psycho Goth chick. I could've picked a Cure song for her ("A Night Like This" comes to mind) but that would've been far too obvious...

If you're talking basic friendship, the Red Hot Chill Peppers' "Me and My Friends" is always one that always makes me smile, while Prince's "Damn U" will always be the song for my wife and I as we still giggle like idiots that something so soft, sweet and melodic could have such a persnikkety title.

But how about a metal song that reminds you of someone, something that has an indelible thread of attachment? I think of AC/DC's "Money Talks," a song I still think is boring, to an old girlfriend who wasn't bad at all (we just ended up not seeing eye-to-eye), and I laugh at how I grumbled to her constantly I felt that song, much less The Razor's Edge as a whole wasn't AC/DC at its best, but it was a monster hit and she loved it, so there you go.

I think of Cinderella's "Shake Me" for a long-lost comrade as another example. I could also think of a thousand songs that remind me of years spent as a teenager with Metal Mark and our lost headbanger-in-arms buddy whom I have no clue if he's even alive or not, but for them I'll pick Testament's "Over the Wall" since we once goofily had a three man mosh pit in a mall parking lot with Testament blaring out of my old piece of shit Escort one stupid Friday night.

I could go on and on about metal songs that remind me of people, but let's open the platform to you, faithful readers...


Ian Aiken said...

1. Walls of Confinement by NAPALM DEATH. This song reminds me of 1989, my junior year of high school, of always being stoned. I still remember one of my best friends at the time freaking out on this song. During school one day he walked past the room I was in 3 times. We didn't see him but we knew it was him because the teacher would be talking and all of a sudden we would hear out in the hall "wwwooohhh" (death metal low growl) and I'm not lying, each time the whole class, even the teacher, would just stare at me. That was in the day when nobody in the general public knew what death metal was and everyone just stared at me like "why is he doing that?" I just chuckled each time.

A couple of months later my best friend Chris and I were in Des Moines and we picked up the first DEICIDE tape. We had never heard them before but it was a tape that was on R/C records so it had to be good. This was back when R/C was THE death metal label. I remember being baked and riding home in the car with Chris. After Suicide Solution was done blasting at full volume, Chris and I just turned and looked at each other and grinned in approval of the new tape, after we peeled ourselves from the car seats.
The 7th Day of July 1777 by KING DIAMOND. I had always loved this album since it came out yet when my wife was pregnant in 1997 with our daughter, the doctor said she would be born around the beginning of July. I kind of half jokingly made a deal with my wife that if she was born on July 7th (1997) that we would have to name her Abigail and she said that would be fine. Well my daughter was born on July 7th 1997 yet my wife refused to name her Abigail because the story really freaked her out. So we named her Abilene instead after a YES song.

Ray Van Horn, Jr. said...

Ian, those are awesome stories, especially Abilene's back story! I'm picturing your friend death growling school. I had an ex-girlfriend who kept stalking me after she broke up with me, even showing up in my college class half asleep...everyone of course laughed at me, even though we weren't dating. For her, the song is easily Depeche Mode's "Strangelove," since it's appropriate and she and I used to sing it together on long drives while listening to Music For the Masses.

And yup, I do remember R/C being the go-to death metal label. Wasn't Holy Terror with them once?

Thanks for participating, BTW

Ian Aiken said...

I think that both Holy Terror albums were on R/C yet I'm not 100% positive. R/C was also the home to some good thrash from the 80's like Toxik, Paradox, and Razor

cjk_44 said...

my little contribution isn't so much about any one song but rather particular artists. but it fits the theme of what you're aiming for.

any song by Ozzy makes me think of my good buddy Kirk O. he's a huge Black Sabbath/Ozzy fan and we've always enjoyed listening to Ozzy together.

anytime i hear Rush i think of all my good friends who love Rush as the band seems to generate a lot of devotion. but the first person i think of is my wife - she hates Geddy's voice. i could play a new Rush song and she'll bob her head and the second Geddy sings she says "turn that shit off." kills me everytime.

Ray Van Horn, Jr. said...

cjk, wives are crazy like that...we had ex-neighbors who acted the same way, discounting Rush at wholesale because they didn't like Geddy's voice, never mind he can't shriek and wail like the old days anymore...thx for contributing

Ian, I haven't thought of Toxik in forever! Good blast from the past!