In honor of St. Valentine’s Day, we wanted to offer you a list of love songs. But, these aren’t the ordinary love songs about boys falling in love with girls, or girls getting their heart broken. The following heavy metal songs represent the madness and chaos of love’s firm grip on the human psyche. These songs all include tales of torment, romance, lust, sexuality, jealousy, betrayal, the question of evil and the nature of sadomasochism, and even the unspeakable acts of the sexually/criminally insane. Most of all, these songs are passionate and full of that spirit and energy (and rage) that only love can conjure. We now present Metal’s Top 10 Love Songs.
See also: Ten Metal Albums to Hear Before You Die
10. Bathory, “Woman of Dark Desires” (From the album Under the Sign of the Black Mark, 1987) “Woman of Dark Desire”s is a thrashy, black metal love song; a tribute to Countess Elizabeth Bathory, the female member of Royalty from 14th Century Eastern Europe, who is responsible for vampiric legends, from real life crimes where she tortured, killed, raped and bathed in the blood of many female victims. It was said the blood gave her eternal beauty and youth. This historic figure was always shrouded in mysticism, occult and eroticism, much like the one-man band Bathory, led by the late Swedish metal musician Qurothon. The song is named after Countess Bathory, and vividly gives listeners a picture of her ghastly, blood soaked rituals in the 1500s in her castle near modern day Hungary. Bathory was not the first, and won’t be the last of black metal bands to profess their love for Elizabeth Bathory, and the lore that surrounds her vampiric killings.
9. Bleeding Through, “Love Lost in a Hail of Gunfire” (From the 2003 album This Is Love This Is Murderous) This song is the first track on this album, from one of Orange County, California’s best metal core exports. It fits perfectly on a record whose cover features a real looking bloody heart with a knife pierced through it, and the band’s logo written in blood. The song sets the tone and flow for the rest of the album, and is full of very heavy emotions of hate and torment over love gone wrong; possibly betrayal. But, the takeaway message is one of strength, as vocalist Brandan Schieppati screams “now I rise from my knees, I will not live in misery, you won’t take me, you will not destroy me, you cannot destroy me, I’ll fight you with every ounce of strength I have left, I’ll seal it with a bullet and a kiss!”
[ 8. Cannibal Corpse, “Stripped, Raped and Strangled” (From the album The Bleeding, 1994) This song is definitely not your typically upbeat, happy love song, or even a tragic tale of heartbreak. At its core, this track, from Cannibal Corpse’s fourth album (and final with vocalist Chris Barnes) is about love … of killing, mutilating, and desecrating his victims, before and after they die. This psychopathic killer in the song gives a glimpse into his mindset and paints a picture of his disgusting, atrocious, hateful and evil acts, which he has a passion for, and this self-awareness makes the song truly sick. Love sick.
7. Motorhead, “Love Me Forever” (From the album 1916, 1991) This song, from their ninth album, was Motorhead’s interpretation of a heavy metal ballad, and was eventually covered by German heavy metal singer Doro Pesch. The song offers Lemmy’s take on love—one filled with rock n’ roll, sex, drugs, booze, and more sex. “Love me or leave me, tell me no lies, Ask me no questions, send me no spies, You know love’s a thief, steal your heart in the night, slip through your fingers, you best hold on tight,” Lemmy sings. [ 6.Deftones, “Be Quiet and Drive (Far Away)” (From the album Around the Fur, 1997) The Deftones are known for producing sounds that defy the boundaries and constrictions of genres. Deep within each song exists vast layers of bass and drums, guitar riffs, and ephemeral sounds, including layers of influences ranging from rock, hip-hop, trip-hop, punk and even dark wave, and experimental. This track is the sixth song on the band’s second album, and was also a huge single for the band. Chino Moreno’s unique voice has the ability to make the hair stand up on the back of your neck. His performance in this heavy, scratchy and radiant song aches of love, longing and the need to escape anywhere he can with this special someone. “It feels good to know you’re mine,” he sings. “Now drive me far away, away, away.”
5. Opeth, “When” (From the Album My Arms Your Hearse, 1996?) From 1998, this was the third song on Opeth’s first concept album about a departed soul and his tormented love for a woman. Filled with moments of beautiful poetic harmonies, and others with dark evil sounding riffs and demonic growls, this song is just shy of 10 minutes, which is short for Opeth. It contains the traditional brutality of Swedish death metal’s sound, and elements of folk, and classical and progressive rock influences of bands such as Rush, King Crimson and others. You can feel the sense of loss and tragedy within the story line, and it is clear the protagonist is very aware of his own ‘demise.’ This song retains the vibe of darkness death metal is known for, but instead of menacing or violent, the vibe is more of heartbreak and love stricken grief.
[ 4.Skid Row, “I Remember You” (From the self titled debut album, Skid Row 1989) You can’t deny the force behind Sebastian Bach’s powerful performance on this hair metal ode to love. Bach has said in past interviews that the song, along with being a hit single for Skid Row, was the number one song for high school proms all across the country. Somehow, “I Remember You” will always keep that nostalgic retro metal sound, and evoke many memories from fans who came of age when it was a hit, making it a classic metal love song.
3. Pantera, “This Love” (From the album Vulgar Display of Power, 1991) This track could be considered a ballad, with a twinge more aggression. The intro of guitars builds on the heaviness with Dimebag’s powerful, crunchy bashing riffs. Phil Anselmo’s lyrics exemplify a very abrasive, heartfelt, but dangerous side of love. This is an angry, passionate and raw song, full of Pantera’s vibrant rage, and it is all centered around a failed relationship. Listeners can really hear Anselmo’s tortured, in your face vocals, and one can really feel the connection between the emotions of love, jealousy, hate and misery.
[ 2. Danzig, “Devil’s Plaything” (From the album Danzig II: Lucifuge, 1998) This is a song about love and evil. It is full of sensuality and the notion of being seduced by evil. “Love is a flame, a devil’s thing, a violent storm, about to be born,” sings Evil Elvis Glenn Danzig in the epic opening of this song. His clear voice makes for a dark, romantic heavy metal soliloquy. This is the perfect song for lovers, with its deep sentiments of lust, sins of the flesh, passion and perhaps even Lucifer’s own sick sense of erotic sadomasochism. “Devils plaything, in my hands, if you don’t want pain, you don’t understand,” howls Danzig.
1.Type O Negative, “Love You To Death” (From the album October Rust, 1996) Much of the Type O Negative”s material revolved around mushy themes like heartbreak, depression, drug abuse, sex, violence and insanity. This made it a difficult task to choose the band’s best love song. On “Love You to Death,” listeners are instantly drawn into the romantic seance, with Peter Steele’s deep voice. This song is about a man so in love with a woman he worships her every command, and smothers her to death (literally) with his love. You can feel the insecurity and anguish over this yearning for love in this song, as the late great Steele screams “Am I Good Enough..For you??” to end the song. This is a haunting, erotic heavy metal tune that is mildly aggressive, but not too fast or violent.