Question Of The Week: One Too Many Times?
Of course we expect that it is our favorite songs that we’ve heard the most. But that’s by choice — What about the songs that have reached our ears a million times without our permission? Our gf/bf’s super-jam? The tired old hit that persists on FM radio and at parties? Your neighbor’s Friday night favorite? That one song that cycled throughout your 30 minutes on hold with Ticketmaster? The theme of Mr. Show?
So here in today’s Question Of The Week, we’re curious:
What metal song have you heard the highest number of times in your entire life?
It takes a minute to reach an answer. But it’s a revealing one :) Have an awesome wknd!
Probably “Enter Sandman,” which is kind of depressing… Great song, but not the best metal song ever, y’know? My logic is this: I listened The Black Album about a billion times in my life. The video used to be on MTV almost 24/7. I’ve seen the band perform the song live about a half a dozen times. And I’ve heard the song used at various sporting events over the years (which is really saying something about its popularity, because I rarely watch sports). On top of that, when MetalSucks first started doing our booth at New York Comic Con every year, we brought speakers to play music, and quickly learned a rather frightening lesson: Metallica attracts metal fans like bees to honey. No matter what other band we play — Iron Maiden, Slayer, Megadeth, Pantera — none of them draw a crowd like Metallica. So we started playing the first five Metallica albums … on repeat … every year … and the Con is FOUR DAYS. It’s made me so sick of those classic albums that I can’t even listen to them for pleasure anymore. It’s also added immeasurably to my “Enter Sandman” tally. So even though there are songs and even bands I love more, I suspect if my brain had a play count like iTunes does, “Enter Sandman” would be at the top of the list.
Though I spent hours mangling “Master of Puppets” on my knockoff Fender as a teenager, the winner would be Metallica’s “Dyers Eve.“ It’s fast, it’s airtight, it’s thrashy-as-all-fuck. Lars has never played better or faster (maybe it was actually played by Charlie from Anthrax?) and Hetfield’s vocals make the dopey lyrics go down easy. But while it’s one of my favorite Metallica tracks, “Dyers Eve” was vaulted to the top of the heap through being a staple on various running mixes. The song’s forward momentum gooses the shit of of your brain when it tells you that you should slow down and breathe. It came on at the very end of my first run that lasted more than three miles (four miles, guys!) and shoved my flailing, wheezing body to the end. The appeal of “Dyers Eve” is complex. Yeah, there’s a lot of elements on the surface that are appealing, but what keeps me coming back to it is intangible. I listen to music that’s a fuck of a lot more brutal and fast (‘sup Origin??) but I always return to the song that closes out …And Justice for All. And, frankly, the band as far as I’m concerned.
To learn a tough album on guitar, it’s not always a matter of a major focus sesh — it’s more a lifelong pursuit, a battle of inches. So I’ve heard Whitesnake’s “Wings Of The Storm” a lot for that reason. Then there’s the perfect mixtape, of which each of us has a few, and on one of mine in pole position is “Wings.” And what about the best song on a super-favorite album, the one you back up and replay like ten times — and then finally get past it only to restart the album and snag ten more back-up/replays: Again, “Wings” and its home album, Slip Of The Tongue. Some songs you knowingly share with each fan of jizz-spraying guitar virtuosity that you happen to encounter: “Wings Of The Storm.” (But “Sex Child” is gaining fast lol.)
Gotta be The Faceless’s “The Ancient Covenant.” The Faceless were one of the bands that pushed me into heavier music (yeah, I know) and remain a major inspiration for me to this day. “The Ancient Covenant” is the track I would pick to best represent Planetary Duality, and it’s got everything I want in a death metal song – inhuman blasting, mind-warping chromatics & dissonance, and spacey, soaring leads. That string-skipping/gallop section at 1:05 is simply untouchable. I even tried to learn the damn thing, playing it every single guitar practice as a “warm-up.” I’m still not quite there, but I know the song front to back, just as well as the tracks I’ve written myself. It’s the most-played track in my iTunes and will likely remain there for a good while. That drawn-out, syncopated chord passage that closes off the track is so cathartically conclusive; it’s a perfect track to listen to as part of the end of QOTW for MS.
Slayer, “South of Heaven.” Between the fact that I became obsessed with this song when I first heard it and that Slayer really rose back to infamy during my lifetime, I’ve heard this song maybe a million fucking times. Thankfully, it still rules, and I still love it, so I can stand to hear it again and again forever.
DAVID LEE ROTHMUND
It’s relatively new, but Periphery II. I spun that album for weeks when it came out. I laughed. I cried. I got kinda drunk and loved it even more. “Mile Zero” is my favorite track. It gives me goosebumps, even on parts of my body where goosebumps aren’t supposed to appear. Thanks, Periphery, for giving be goosebump dick.