How to Make Heavy Metal Music

Have you ever had the urge to form a metal band, play grinding riffs and slay out some slick solos with some friends? This guide will help you get on your way.


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    Get a band full of people who want to play the same or similar kinds of music. For example, black metal and death metal work well together; Alternative metal and hard rock go great together. Think about other combinations you and your band might like. If you're thinking more creatively, try to make some more unusual genre combinations. An American group called Panopticon combined bluegrass and black metal, so really extend your abilities and ideas. Spread your wings and soar into the world of metal sub-genres.
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    Remember there are three main kinds of metal: Stuff you want to head-bang to quickly, stuff you want to slowly head-bang to, and stuff you want to go crazy to (jumping around and swinging your arms). So decide what kind of song you want to make, think of yourself as the listener, what do you feel like listening to right now?
    • Make it so that it's not just you who will enjoy it, but so that many will enjoy this particular song. Think of the things that make you really dig a song: The vocal melodies, the guitar solos, the riffs or the drum patterns. try to think of new ways these can be combined to form favourable songs.
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    Get one member of your band to come up with their part (lyrics, rhythm or riff) guitar is a good instrument to start with. From there, you should all think of other parts for the band that would work well with the part that you started with. If you start with a riff, try getting the guitarist to loop it and then ask the drummer to figure out the percussion for it.
    • This can lead to some interesting ideas, because once the two are stable, other members can jump in and add to the song. Get the lead guitarist to sit back and consider throwing a high melody in, or a solo.
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    • Bassists should try to write something that boosts the song. This could be anything from a simplistic riff that follows the guitars, to an advanced bass riff that is completely individual from the other music, while still fitting the song. Playing a funk riff behind a blazing death metal riff will not always work. (Still give it a try though, you never know what could sound good together).
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    Try to be in sync with one another. For example, if the guitarist/s or bassist/s play a short note and stop then the drummer should also do something similar (like choking the crash/china or whatever they decide).
    • Also, if you want to have screaming/growling in your music, don't be afraid to let it all out. It all depends on what kind of metal you're trying to make. Especially in metal genres, it is important to work on a coherent unit sound. You don't want the drums to be inconsistent or else it may throw out the rest of the band.
    • However, if that is the intention for the song then by all means give it a shot, if you believe that the band can pull it off. Experiment with different sounds to find what works for your band, and what sounds good.
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    Decide on a structure. Try to be creative. Instead of using another verse/chorus, add a drum breakdown, or a guitar solo. Make the song invite someone in who may not be into metal. A creative song will also make more people consider your band as a higher standard. Do not write one professional song, then back out with two weaker songs.
    • Try to maintain a high standard in your writing ability. Write consistently and aim high. When you write one song that people approve of, don't let the rest of your material be slackened.
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  • Vocalist: Make sure your lyrics fit the style of music you are playing, this is important! Don't scream when you are playing a song that it doesn't fit, or alternatively, don't sing soaring vocals over a death metal instrumental backing.
  • Drummer: Don't hold back, don't try to save energy, remember to drink plenty of liquids (water is the best choice) to keep your energy and hydration up but don't hold back on your drumming. The more energy you put in, the more you will get out of it.
  • Guitarist: Just because you can play extremely well doesn't mean that you should do it all the time. Sometimes the simplest riffs are the most memorable. Make sure you practice both rhythm and lead skills, as this help a band's sound. A good metal song with an average solo can bring the entire quality down. Write as if you are performing for your idols.
  • Bassist: Follow the guitarist's playing and have similar parts to him/her but try to sync yourself with the drummer. This is a two edged sword as it can make your music seem a little repetitive. This technique can help boost a band's tone and performance.
  • The entire band should contribute to lyrics. Try to be different. People got sick of glam bands singing about sex all day, so try to write something that people will be able to enjoy for many generations. Don't write a song you won't agree with when you're 30-40.
    • Don't be afraid to do covers of songs which were made by bands that are the same or similar genre to you.
  • Aim to impress everyone, but don't take criticism to heart. If someone criticizes your work, don't get angry. Remain calm, accept the points made and see if you can improve on it. A lot of improvement can come from listening to critics. Make sure you find a position where you don't cater to critics or core fanbase. Listen to both, and accept input, but do not let them completely take over your creative process.

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Categories: Music Techniques