Songwriting Advice

Write A Metal Song

write a metal song lyric assistant

Metal music - a genre that encapsulates raw power, intensity, and emotion. Whether you're a fan of classic acts like Black Sabbath and Judas Priest or the modern metalcore and death metal subgenres, one thing is for sure - there's no music quite as exhilarating as a thundering metal track. If you've ever dreamt of penning your own headbanging anthem, you're in luck. Dive into the world of metal songwriting with Lyric Assistant, and unleash your inner rock star.

To write a metal song, several key elements must come together in perfect harmony. Here's a step-by-step guide to crafting a track worthy of the metal gods.

1. Choose your sub-genre

Metal is an incredibly diverse genre, ranging from the classic heavy metal of the 70s to the brutal intensity of death metal. Before anything else, decide which sub-genre best suits your artistic vision. Your selection will influence the lyrics, song structure, and overall vibe of your song.

2. Lay down the foundation

Metal is built on a solid backbone of powerful guitar riffs, a thundering bassline, and pounding drums. When composing your song, start with the main riff that will drive the track. Experiment with a mix of power chords, palm-muted chugging, and fast, intricate licks. Don't forget to add a catchy bassline and some high-octane drumming to really bring your song to life.

3. Song structure

Metal songs often employ a typical verse-chorus-verse structure, but don't be afraid to mix things up. Consider building tension with an atmospheric intro, mix in some guitar solos or instrumental breaks, and bring it all home with a powerful, unforgettable chorus. Be sure to keep things dynamic - alternating between heavy breakdowns and melodic passages is key to keeping your listeners engaged.

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4. Write the lyrics

Metal lyrics can be introspective, political, fantastical or downright dark. Draw inspiration from the things you're passionate about, and write lyrics that resonate with your emotions. Remember that metal is all about shedding light on the darker recesses of the human experience, so don't shy away from confronting weighty topics head-on.

Write A Metal Song Example: Blending Influences

Say you're a huge fan of thrash metal acts like Metallica and Megadeth but also admire the melodic sensibilities of bands like Iron Maiden. When crafting your metal song, you could create a high-speed riff-driven verse section with palm-muted chugging and fast-paced drumming while incorporating a melodic, harmonized guitar lead in the chorus. This fusion of styles will showcase your unique artistic perspective while staying true to the classic metal sound.

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So don't hesitate any longer - your metal masterpiece awaits. Unleash your inner rock star with Lyric Assistant, and join the ranks of the metal legends that inspire you. It's time to write the perfect metal song and conquer the stage.

Frequently Asked Questions

What defines a metal song?

A metal song is characterized by its heavy use of electric guitar riffs, powerful drumming, strong rhythmic bass lines, and often intense vocal styles. The song structure may include fast tempos, complex time signatures, and thematic elements that evoke intense emotions.

Do I need a band to write a metal song?

While having a band can provide a more dynamic creative process and help with performing the song, it's not necessary for the writing process. You can write metal music individually, using music composition software or acoustic instruments to sketch out your ideas.

What are some common themes in metal lyrics?

Metal songs often explore themes such as personal struggle, societal issues, mythology, history, fantasy, death, and the darker aspects of life. Lyrical content can be introspective or outwardly confrontational, depending on the subgenre and the artist's intent.

Can I use clean vocals in metal music?

Absolutely. Many metal subgenres incorporate clean vocals, including power metal, progressive metal, and some traditional heavy metal bands. The use of clean vocals is a stylistic choice and can add emotional depth and melodic contrast to the music.

How important are guitar solos in metal songs?

Guitar solos can be a central feature in metal songs, showcasing technical skill and adding to the song's energy and intensity. However, their importance varies among subgenres and individual artists—some songs may forego solos entirely in favor of riff-heavy compositions.

What equipment do I need to start writing metal music?

The basic equipment to start writing metal includes an electric guitar, a bass guitar, a drum kit (or drum programming software), and a means of recording your ideas. As you progress, you may wish to invest in amplifiers, effects pedals, and better recording gear.

How can I create memorable metal riffs?

Memorable riffs often combine groove, technical proficiency, and a unique character. Start by experimenting with different scales and modes, play with syncopation and timing, and draw inspiration from riffs that you find compelling. Revising and refining your riffs will help them stand out.

Is music theory important for writing metal songs?

Music theory can be quite helpful, as it gives you a framework for understanding how music works and can inspire new ideas. However, it's not strictly necessary—you can write great metal music with an intuitive understanding of melody, harmony, and rhythm.

Can electronic elements be incorporated into metal?

Yes, electronic elements are used in some metal subgenres, such as industrial metal, to create atmospheric textures or add an extra layer of sound. The combination of electronic and traditional metal elements can lead to innovative and exciting music.

What are some ways to create a darker atmosphere in my metal song?

To create a darker atmosphere, focus on minor scales, dissonant intervals, slower tempos, and heavy, down-tuned guitar riffs. Lyrically, exploring darker themes and using evocative imagery can also contribute to a gloomy mood.

How can I make my metal song stand out in the genre?

To stand out, focus on developing a distinctive sound and style. This could mean incorporating unusual instruments, experimenting with song structures, varying your vocal styles, or finding a unique lyrical approach. Originality and genuine expression resonate with audiences.

What role does the bass play in a metal song?

In metal music, the bass guitar forms a critical link between the rhythm and melody, often complementing the guitar riffs while providing depth and power to the song's foundation. In some subgenres, the bass also plays a leading melodic role.

Should I write lyrics or music first when composing a metal song?

This is a personal choice and can vary from song to song. Some songwriters find it easier to write music first and fit the lyrics to the melody and rhythm, while others prefer to start with lyrical ideas and build the music around them. There is no right or wrong approach.

How do different metal subgenres affect songwriting?

Different metal subgenres have distinct stylistic conventions that can influence songwriting choices. For example, thrash metal may prioritize fast tempos and aggression, while doom metal would focus more on slow, heavy riffs. Understanding the nuances of each subgenre can inform your writing process.

How can I improve my metal songwriting skills?

Like any craft, songwriting improves with practice. Continuously write, analyze, and edit your work. Study your favorite metal songs and artists to understand what makes them effective. Collaborating with others can also provide new insights and techniques.

Can I mix elements from different subgenres in my metal song?

Yes, mixing elements from different subgenres can create a unique and fresh sound. It's a way for artists to push boundaries and innovate within the genre. Be mindful of cohesion within your song to ensure the different elements work well together.

What makes a good metal song chorus?

A good metal chorus is typically memorable, melodic, and offers a contrast to the verses. It should encapsulate the song's main theme and have the power to evoke strong emotional responses. In metal, choruses often feature anthemic qualities that resonate with listeners.

What is the significance of tempo in a metal song?

Tempo is integral to the feel and energy of the song. Faster tempos are commonly associated with aggression and excitement, commonly found in thrash and speed metal. Slower tempos provide a heavier, more doom-laden feel associated with genres like doom metal or sludge metal.

Do I need to use distortion on guitars in metal music?

Distortion is a hallmark of the metal genre since it adds a gritty, aggressive texture to the guitar sound. However, clean tones are also used for contrast and dynamic variety, especially in passages that require greater emotion or clarity.

How can I ensure my metal song is cohesive?

Cohesion in a song can be achieved through repeating motifs, consistent thematic elements, and a clear song structure. Ensuring each section transitions smoothly to the next and relates back to your song's central theme will contribute to its overall unity.

Is there a specific song structure that metal songs must follow?

Metal songs do not have to follow a specific structure, though many fall into the typical verse-chorus-verse framework. Metal songwriters are free to experiment with unconventional song structures, as long as the resulting composition is effective in conveying the desired emotion and energy.

How can I add variety to my metal songwriting?

Adding variety to your songwriting can be done by experimenting with different tempos, time signatures, instrumental textures, dynamic changes, and vocal variations. Incorporating acoustic sections or employing unusual instruments can also bring refreshing changes to typical metal arrangements.

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About Toni Mercia

Toni Mercia is a Grammy award-winning songwriter and the founder of Lyric Assistant. With over 15 years of experience in the music industry, Toni has written hit songs for some of the biggest names in music. She has a passion for helping aspiring songwriters unlock their creativity and take their craft to the next level. Through Lyric Assistant, Toni has created a tool that empowers songwriters to make great lyrics and turn their musical dreams into reality.

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