Is there a worse holiday than Valentine’s Day? I’m pretty sure there’s not, but then again, I’m a black shirt, combat boot kind of guy. Expression of romantic sentiment doesn’t come easy for most of us metal heads but fret ye’ not emotionally challenged, that’s why God created the mix tape (or now, the cursed playlist, but we’ll save that soapbox for another time). Even the most moshing Metal heads have mellow moments and these hard and heavy songs of love, lust, longing and loss are my personal choice of the best romantic Metal and Rock songs – just the thing for expressing love and affection on Valentine’s Day, weddings or any other romantic occasion! Why spend hours groping for just the right words when somebody more talented can do it for you in the form of a song? Some even do it in the form of metal songs!
They say “music is the food of love” and rock music is no exception! My list of love songs includes rock power ballads from some of the best known bands and artists in the genre of Metal and Hard Rock. These emotional Metal and Rock love songs are perfect for wedding music and “first dance” songs, Valentine’s Day, smoochy nights or any other romantic occasion…or even just for making you feel better whilst crying into your beer if a relationship didn’t work out! Why say it with flowers when you can crank up the volume and rock out with some romantic riffing!
So our gift to you my fellow heathens and cretins is this: to celebrate this most asinine of all holidays, here is a list of the best metal/rock love songs ever recorded (in no particular order).
- Love You to Death by Type O Negative – As per usual, the lyrics dwell on themes of lust, love, and sexual perversion, but without the over-the-top mockery of Slow Deep and Hard, or the often cliched goth stereotypes of Bloody Kisses. They read like the delusional writings of a lovesick psychopath, pining for morbidly erotic pipe dreams, rather than the work of a satirist or a gothic romance author, and while I’m sure none of this sentiment actually belonged to Peter Steel or anyone else in the band, the way it’s written and performed feels incredibly down-to-earth.
- This Love by Pantera – As the lyrics point out, he wasn’t in love. (“If ever words were spoken painful and untrue, I said I loved but I lied”) Although he’d initially thought that she was the kind of girl he was looking for, probably because she was good looking (in my life all I wanted was the keeping of someone like you) but he was sorely mistaken. (“As it turns out deeper within me love was twisted and pointed at you”) He expressed remorse that his change of heart hurts her (“and sometimes I feel so sorry, I regret this, the hurting of you” In reality, she made him miserable to the point that suicide looked like a good alternative to staying in the relationship. (“But you make me so unhappy; I’d take my life and leave love with you”)
- I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing by Aerosmith – “I Don’t Want To Miss a Thing” by hard rock legends Aerosmith was originally featured in the 1998 film Armageddon but went on to be a massive hit all over the world. “I Don’t Want To Miss a Thing” is a hugely popular first dance song at the weddings of Rock and Metal fans (yes, naturally whenever I get married, we would shuffle round the floor to this one!).
- Love Song by Tesla – A power ballard full of hope and optimism for those suffering from a broken heart from Californian rockers Tesla from their 1989 album ‘The Great Radio’
- Somewhere by Within Temptation – Dutch symphonic metal band Within Temptation is fronted by one of the most beautiful vocalists in metal, Sharon den Adel. “Somewhere” is a bittersweet song that speaks to the hope that love instills both in this world and the next. This live version also features Anneke van Giersbergen (former front woman for progressive metal outfit The Gathering) who just adds to the hair rising beauty of this song.
- Swing Life Away by Rise Against – “We live on front porches and swing life away. We get by just fine here on minimum wage. If love is a labour, I’ll slave till the end”
- Nothing Else Matters by Metallica – Hetfield explained this song to Mojo magazine in December 2008 that after penning this love ballad, he was initially concerned about playing it to the rest of the band. He explained: “At first I didn’t even want to play it for the guys. I thought that Metallica could only be the four of us. These are songs about destroying things, head banging, bleeding for the crowd, whatever it is, as long as it wasn’t about chicks and fast cars, even though that’s what we liked. The song was about a girlfriend at the time. It turned out to be a pretty big song.” It’s about being on the road, missing someone at home, but it was written in such a way, it connected with so many people, that it wasn’t just about two people, it was about a connection with your higher power, lots of different things.
- Love Me Forever by Motorhead – “Love me forever, or not at all, End of our tether, backs to the wall, Give me your hand, Don’t you ever ask why, Promise me nothing, live ’till we die,”
- Mama I’m coming Home by Ozzy Osbourne – Hey! There’s no better time to tell your mama how much you love her than on Valentine’s Day. Even the Prince of Darkness knows this.
- Take It Out On Me by Thousand Foot Krutch – “This is a Metalcore song written from the perspective of talking to someone that you love, whether it is your best friend, your wife or someone in your family. People keep a lot of emotions bottled up such as anger, pain and a lot of these emotions could be dealt with it in a healthier way. This song is talking about putting all that on the singer. This is true love…”
- Wonderwall by Oasis – “It’s like looking for the love of your life, and you’re trying to find her, that bitch, and you finally find her. She’s your Wonderwall.”
- My Heartstrings Come Undone by Demon Hunter – Love comes in all different shapes and forms and is often inseparable from our faith and a higher power. This acoustic version takes it to a whole new level.
- Valentine’s Day by Linkin Park – The song is about separation from a loved one, and thus having to spend the Valentine’s Day in solitude. Themes of the song include burial and death. Chester lost his dad, so it is similar, in a sense of knowing how it feels to lose a loved one on Valentine’s Day. So it could also pass as a song for the loss of a loved one.
- Ohne Dich (Without You) by Rammstein – “Ohne Dich” (which means “Without You”) is a hauntingly beautiful Ballard of lost love sung in German by the awesomely versatile “Neue Deutsche Harte” band Rammstein from their 2004 album, “Reise Reise”. I make no secret of the fact that I think Rammstein are one of the best German bands on Planet Earth and this song gets me every time…and the video is an uplifting little tale of brotherly love! (…oh yeah, and I have a kind of “romantic mental connection” with Rammstein myself).
- Still Loving You by Sonata Arctica – This is one of those occasions where a cover version is better than the original! “Still Loving You” by Finnish metal band Sonata Arctica is a majestically ballsy cover of the Scorpions classic. Full of stirring riffs, manic laughter and pomp, this anthem will strike a chord with anyone who has ever messed up a relationship – power metal at its best!
- Angel by Judas Priest – The band Judas Priest is one of my favourite English metal bands. They can do no wrong in my eyes and while most of their songs are very much on the HEAVY side of Metal, they have a sensitive side and when they show it, the result is something as beautiful as this love song… “Angel” is from Priest’s 2005 album “Angel of Retribution”.
- You Are So Beautiful by Escape The Fate – This Metalcore song, I believe, is about a relationship basically boy falls in love and is scared of the way he feels about this girl. He is saying that this girl affects him more than any other girl, she has the qualities to make him fall in love with her.”You are the kind of girl that has the chemicals that makes me fall in love”.
- Sweet Child O’ Mine by Guns ‘N’ Roses – History has it that this song was one of those things that just happened by accident. The famous Slash intro riff was the product of a jam session warm up which grew into one of the greatest hard rock songs ever written. The lyrics were written by Axl Rose and based on his relationship with his girlfriend Erin Everly. “Sweet Child O’ Mine” by Guns N’ Roses from their classic 1987 album “Appetite For Destruction” is one of my personal top 20 best Metal/Rock love songs ever!
- Fuck Her Gently by Tenacious D – The vulgarity of the lyrics is contrasted by the low-key acoustic ballad style of the song. The singer contends that he is speaking “for the ladies”, but advises men to listen closely. The theme of the song is essentially that women sometimes need to have their needs attended through gentle, romantic sexual encounters. During the song, the singer demonstrates his sensitivity by suggesting that he would bring flowers and explaining his need for a relationship involving team work.
- Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol – This tender love song about getting by with just you and your beloved is a band composition with lyrics by lead singer Gary Lightbody, who called it “the most pure and open love song I’ve ever written.”
What do you guys think? Think we are missing some songs? Disagree with some inclusions? Tell us in the comments!