The world of drop A songs is fascinating and diverse, often pushing the boundaries of musical creativity. These tracks, known for their unique tuning, have become staples in various genres, particularly in the realms of rock and metal. Playing guitar in drop A tuning offers a heavier, more resonant sound that has captivated audiences and influenced countless artists.
In this comprehensive article, we’ll explore some iconic drop A songs, delving into their significance, the techniques used, and why they resonate so deeply with fans.
1. Cancer – Devil Wears Prada
Cancer by the American metalcore band The Devil Wears Prada stands out as a powerful track in their repertoire. This song, from their acclaimed studio album, showcases the band’s ability to blend intense metal sounds with emotional depth. The song features heavy power chords and dual lead vocals, creating a sound that is both aggressive and haunting. One interesting fact about this track is its use of atmospheric elements, which add a layer of complexity to the song. The song’s thematic exploration of struggle and resilience resonates deeply with fans, making it an iconic piece in the metalcore genre.
2. You Only Live Once – Suicide Silence
Suicide Silence, an American deathcore band, brings a relentless energy to their track You Only Live Once. This song, known for its brutal sound and intense pacing, is a staple in the death metal world. The entire song is driven by groovy riffs and guttural vocals, characteristic of the band’s style.
A fascinating aspect of this track is its thematic content, which encourages living life to the fullest, a message that resonates with many fans. The song’s impact on the deathcore genre is undeniable, making it a quintessential metal song for enthusiasts.
3. Stacked Actors – Foo Fighters
The renowned American rock band Foo Fighters is famous for many great songs, but it’s the dynamic track Stacked Actors that makes our list today. This song, featured on their third studio album, showcases the band’s versatile approach to rock music.
The track is known for its gritty guitar riffs and the unique vocal style of Dave Grohl, making it a standout piece in the band’s discography. An interesting note about Stacked Actors is its lyrical content, which is believed to critique the artificial nature of Hollywood. This song’s enduring popularity cements Foo Fighters’ status as one of the leading rock bands of their era.
4. Bleed Like You – Ill Niño
Ill Niño, an American heavy metal band, brings a unique fusion of Latin and metal influences to their song Bleed Like You. This track is known for its combination of melodic elements with heavy metal intensity. The song features rhythmic, groovy riffs and emotional lyrics, showcasing the band’s ability to blend different musical styles seamlessly. An interesting aspect of Bleed Like You is its exploration of personal themes, making it a relatable and powerful song for many fans. Ill Niño’s innovative approach to metal music is evident in this track, making it a significant contribution to the genre.
5. Gravity’s Union – Coheed and Cambria
Gravity’s Union, by the American progressive rock band Coheed and Cambria, stands as a testament to their narrative-driven music and intricate compositions. This song, part of their ambitious concept albums, weaves a compelling story with its lyrics. The track is characterized by its progressive structure, shifting tempos, and emotional vocal delivery. An intriguing fact about Gravity’s Union is its place within the band’s overarching science-fiction storyline, adding layers of depth and intrigue for fans. The song’s complexity and the band’s unique approach to storytelling through music have solidified it as an iconic piece in the progressive rock genre.
6. Siren Charms – In Flames
Swedish metal band In Flames is known for their melodic death metal sound, and Siren Charms is a prime example of their mastery in this genre. The entire song showcases a blend of melodic elements and harsh metal tones, creating a unique sonic landscape. The track is distinguished by its harmonized guitar lines and emotive vocals.
An interesting note about Siren Charms is its evolution in sound, reflecting the band’s willingness to experiment and evolve over the years. This song’s combination of melody and intensity makes it a standout track, further cementing In Flames’ status as pioneers in the melodic death metal scene.
7. Solar Flare Homicide – Emmure
American metalcore band Emmure brings a raw, aggressive energy to their song Solar Flare Homicide. Known for their uncompromising sound, this track is a perfect showcase of the band’s style, featuring relentless riffs and powerful vocals. The song is characterized by its intense breakdowns and aggressive lyrical themes, resonating with fans of heavier music.
An interesting aspect of Solar Flare Homicide is its direct and unapologetic approach, which has become a signature element of Emmure’s music. The track’s impact on the metalcore scene is significant, making it a key song in the band’s discography and one of the best aggressive songs of all time.
8. Recreant – Chelsea Grin
Recreant by Chelsea Grin, an American deathcore band, showcases the brutal and technical aspects of the genre. This song features on the band’s debut studio album, Desolation of Eden. It’s known for its complex guitar work and relentless drumming, creating an intensely heavy sound. The track features growled vocals and technical breakdowns, typical of the deathcore style.
Many fans and critics cite this song as a defining track of the genre. The song’s technical proficiency and raw power make it an essential listen for fans of extreme metal.
9. Layers Of Time – Lacuna Coil
Italian gothic metal band Lacuna Coil presents a captivating track with Layers Of Time. This song stands out in their discography for its blend of heavy riffs and melodic choruses, a hallmark of the band’s sound. The track is distinguished by its engaging guitar work and the dual lead vocals of Cristina Scabbia and Andrea Ferro.
An interesting aspect of Layers Of Time is its exploration of themes like self-reflection and the passage of time, adding a deeper, introspective layer to the song. This track showcases Lacuna Coil’s ability to meld gothic elements with modern metal, making it a significant contribution to their genre.
10. Crack The Skye – Mastodon
American heavy metal band Mastodon’s Crack The Skye is a testament to their progressive and experimental approach to metal music. This song, from their album of the same name, is known for its complex structures and thematic depth, dealing with subjects like astral travel and Russian history. The track features intricate guitar work and dynamic shifts in tempo, showcasing the band’s technical skill.
This song is actually part of a concept album, which is highly regarded for its ambition and coherence. Mastodon’s ability to weave intricate narratives through their music has made this song a standout track in the progressive metal scene.
11. Citizen Erased – Muse
Muse is known for their innovative approach to music, and Citizen Erased from their album Origin of Symmetry is a prime example of their creativity. The song is characterized by Matt Bellamy’s distinctive vocals and the use of diverse instrumentation, including electronic elements.
The lyrical content of this song delves into themes of dehumanization and loss of identity. The song’s ambitious composition and thought-provoking lyrics have solidified its status as a fan favorite and a highlight in Muse’s discography.
12. High Road – Mastodon
Returning to Mastodon, High Road is another remarkable track from this American heavy metal band. This song is known for its catchy riffs and more straightforward structure compared to some of their more complex works.
High Road combines heavy guitar work with melodic passages, creating a sound that is both accessible and distinctly Mastodon.
This track appeals to a broader audience, showcasing the band’s versatility and ability to create songs that resonate beyond their usual fan base. The song’s blend of heavy and melodic elements makes it a standout track and a testament to Mastodon’s skill in songwriting.
13. Guardians Of Asgaard – Amon Amarth
Swedish melodic death metal band Amon Amarth brings to life the fierce and epic world of Norse mythology in their track Guardians Of Asgaard. Known for their thematic focus on Viking history and lore, this song is a perfect representation of their style. It features powerful riffs, thunderous drumming, and Johan Hegg’s growling vocals, all of which contribute to the song’s intense and battle-ready atmosphere.
The song’s lyrical content is rich with references to Norse gods and mythological battles, offering not just a song but a journey into a bygone era. This track solidifies Amon Amarth’s status as a leading band in the melodic death metal genre, particularly for those who appreciate a blend of history and heavy music.
14. Psychosocial – Slipknot
Psychosocial is a track that showcases Skipknot’s signature blend of aggression, complexity, and melodic hooks. This song, from their album All Hope Is Gone, features a combination of crushing guitars, percussive intensity, and Corey Taylor’s dynamic vocal range.
Psychosocial isn’t just a metal song. It’s a commentary on social and psychological themes, reflecting the band’s inclination towards introspective and provocative lyrics. The song’s commercial success and critical acclaim have made it one of Slipknot’s most iconic tracks.
15. Reign Of Darkness – Thy Art Is Murder
Australian deathcore band Thy Art Is Murder delivers a brutal and relentless sound in their track Reign Of Darkness. This song is a standout in their discography, known for its unyielding intensity and technical prowess. The track features rapid drumming, dissonant guitar work, and guttural vocals, all hallmarks of the deathcore genre. An interesting note about Reign Of Darkness is its thematic exploration of nihilism and despair, which resonates deeply with fans who appreciate the darker side of metal. The song’s influence on the deathcore scene is significant, showcasing Thy Art Is Murder’s ability to craft music that is both aggressive and thought-provoking.
16. This Is Exile – Whitechapel
This Is Exile by American deathcore band Whitechapel is a powerful statement in the genre, known for its sheer intensity and heavy breakdowns. The song features relentless guitar riffs and Phil Bozeman’s deep, growling vocals, creating an atmosphere of aggression and power.
The track stands out for its technical skill and the way it encapsulates the essence of the deathcore genre. An interesting aspect of This Is Exile is its thematic content, which delves into topics of isolation and alienation. Whitechapel’s ability to combine technicality with thematic depth has made this song a key track in their discography and a favorite among fans of heavy music.
17. Glass Hearts – Of Mice & Men
Of Mice & Men offers a compelling mix of aggression and melody in their song Glass Hearts. This track is a notable example of their ability to blend heavy guitar riffs with emotional and introspective lyrics. The song features powerful vocals, both clean and screamed, showcasing the band’s dynamic range.
Glass Hearts explores vulnerability and resilience, themes that resonate deeply with the band’s fanbase. The song’s combination of hard-hitting music and meaningful lyrics showcases what makes the American metalcore genre so appealing to its listeners.
18. Another Life – Motionless In White
Another Life by Motionless In White, an American metal band, stands out for its blend of metalcore and gothic elements. The track is known for its catchy melodies, haunting atmosphere, and Chris Motionless’s distinctive vocal style. This song, from their album Disguise, features a mix of heavy riffs and electronic elements, creating a unique and memorable sound.
The music video adds a visual layer to the song’s themes of love, loss, and longing. The track’s ability to combine different genres and styles has made it a standout song in Motionless In White’s discography and a favorite among fans.
19. Visions – Bring Me The Horizon
British rock band Bring Me The Horizon showcases their versatility and experimental nature in the song Visions. Known for constantly evolving their sound, this track from their album There Is a Hell Believe Me I’ve Seen It. There Is a Heaven Let’s Keep It a Secret. is a blend of metalcore and electronic elements.
Visions features a combination of aggressive riffs, electronic beats, and Oli Sykes’s intense vocal delivery. An interesting aspect of the song is its exploration of mental health and introspection, topics that are recurrent in the band’s music. The track’s innovative approach and thought-provoking lyrics have made it a significant piece in Bring Me The Horizon’s musical journey.
20. Bones – Make Them Suffer
Australian metal band Make Them Suffer brings a blend of deathcore and symphonic elements to their song Bones. This track is known for its heavy yet melodic sound, featuring brutal riffs intertwined with atmospheric keyboard parts. The song showcases the band’s ability to fuse harshness with melody, creating a powerful and emotive listening experience.
The lyrics delve into themes of personal struggle and growth. Make Them Suffer’s skill in combining different musical elements has made Bones a standout track, highlighting the band’s unique position in the metal scene.
21. Sacrifice Unto Sebek – Nile
American death metal band Nile is known for their ancient Egyptian themes and technical proficiency, both of which are prominently displayed in their song Sacrifice Unto Sebek. This track, from their album Annihilation of the Wicked, features complex guitar work, rapid drumming, and Karl Sanders’s deep, growling vocals.
This song incorporates historical and mythological lyrics, creating a unique blend of brutal music and ancient culture. This track’s combination of technical skill and thematic depth has made it a standout in the death metal genre, showcasing Nile’s distinctive approach to music.
22. Lifelines – I Prevail
Lifelines by I Prevail is a dynamic track that combines hard-hitting riffs with emotive lyrics. The song, from their album of the same name, features a blend of aggressive and melodic elements, showcasing the band’s ability to balance intensity with melody.
Lifelines explores overcoming adversity and finding strength, themes that resonate deeply with many listeners. The song’s powerful message and engaging musical style have made it a significant track in I Prevail’s discography, highlighting their talent in crafting relatable and impactful music.
23. Possession – Whitechapel
Possession by American deathcore band Whitechapel is a relentless and brutal track showcasing the band’s signature heavy sound. The song has intense guitar riffs, thunderous drumming, and Phil Bozeman’s guttural vocals.
One of the best things about Possession is its dark and aggressive lyrical content, which delves into themes of control and inner turmoil. The track’s sheer intensity and technical prowess have made it a favorite among fans of extreme metal, solidifying Whitechapel’s reputation as a powerhouse in the deathcore scene.
24. Supremacy – Muse
British rock band Muse is known for their ambitious and genre-blending music, and Supremacy is a prime example of their expansive sound. This track, from their album The 2nd Law, features dramatic orchestration, powerful guitar riffs, and Matt Bellamy’s commanding vocals. The song is notable for its cinematic quality and grandiose scale, blending elements of rock with symphonic influences. This song explored themes of power and resistance, topics that are recurrent in Muse’s music. The song’s blend of different musical styles and thought-provoking lyrics have made it a standout track in Muse’s discography.
25. Wormholes – Volumes
American progressive metalcore band Volumes brings a unique blend of technicality and melody in their song Wormholes. This track is known for its complex rhythms, djent-style guitar work, and the use of both clean and harsh vocals. The song’s structure is dynamic, featuring shifts in tempo and intensity, which showcases the band’s technical skill and musical versatility. An interesting aspect of Wormholes is its lyrical content, exploring themes of existentialism and personal introspection. Volumes’ ability to combine technical proficiency with meaningful lyrics has made Wormholes a highlight in the progressive metalcore scene.
26. Remember Everything (Acoustic Version) – Five Finger Death Punch
American heavy metal band Five Finger Death Punch offers a poignant and introspective take with their acoustic version of Remember Everything. This version strips back the original’s intensity to reveal a more vulnerable and emotional core. The acoustic setting highlights Ivan Moody’s expressive vocals and the song’s heartfelt lyrics, which deal with themes of regret and reconciliation. An interesting aspect of this acoustic version is how it transforms the song’s energy, showcasing the band’s versatility and ability to connect with listeners on a deeply personal level. This rendition of Remember Everything resonates with fans for its raw honesty and emotive power.
27. Lithium – Evanescence
Evanescence, known for their emotive and powerful music, brings a deeply resonant track with Lithium. This song, from their album The Open Door, is a standout for its haunting melodies and Amy Lee’s compelling vocal performance.
Lithium features a blend of delicate piano lines and robust guitar work, creating a sound that is both ethereal and intense.
The best thing about this song is its exploration of themes like inner conflict and the struggle between comfort and change, which are conveyed through its poignant lyrics. The track’s ability to balance vulnerability with strength has made it a significant piece in Evanescence’s discography, showcasing their unique blend of gothic and rock elements.
28. No One Loves Me & Neither Do I – Them Crooked Vultures
Them Crooked Vultures, a supergroup featuring members from bands like Led Zeppelin and Queens of the Stone Age, brings a unique rock experience in No One Loves Me & Neither Do I. This song is a powerhouse of rock ‘n’ roll, featuring cool riffs, solid drumming, and a catchy chorus. The track showcases the group’s ability to blend classic rock elements with a modern edge. An interesting fact about this song is the collaboration of renowned musicians, each bringing their signature style to the mix.
No One Loves Me & Neither Do I stands as a testament to the magic that happens when talented artists come together.
29. Davis – Chat Pile
Chat Pile, an emerging name in the rock scene, brings a raw and intense sound with their track, Davis. This song is known for its gritty, abrasive tone and the use of dissonant guitar work, which creates a sense of unease and intensity. The vocal delivery is as raw and unfiltered as the instrumentation, contributing to the track’s overall impact.
Davis explores dark and uncomfortable themes, reflecting the band’s willingness to push boundaries and explore the darker corners of the human experience. Chat Pile’s approach to music in Davis is a fresh and unapologetic take on the noise rock genre.
30. Resentment – A Day To Remember
American rock band A Day To Remember blends pop punk and metalcore elements in their song Resentment. This track is known for its catchy hooks, heavy breakdowns, and the juxtaposition of clean and screamed vocals. The song’s energetic and melodic approach, combined with its introspective lyrics about dealing with anger and frustration, resonates with a wide audience.
This song is a testament to the band’s ability to create music that is both emotionally charged and immensely enjoyable.
What is a Drop A Song?
In the world of music, especially within the genres of rock and metal, the term “drop A song” refers to a specific guitar tuning used in the composition and performance of a song. To understand what makes a drop A song distinctive, it’s crucial to delve into the concept of guitar tuning and how it affects the sound and style of music.
Understanding Guitar Tuning
Guitar tuning involves adjusting the pitch of the strings to achieve certain notes. Standard tuning on a guitar from the thickest to the thinnest string is E, A, D, G, B, E. However, musicians often alter this tuning to create different sounds and facilitate specific techniques.
The Drop A Tuning
Drop A tuning is a type of alternate tuning where the guitar’s strings are tuned to enable the lowest-pitch string to play an A note. In a six-string guitar, this usually means tuning the strings to A, E, A, D, F♯, B. This results in the lowest string being tuned down a perfect fourth from E to A, and the second string from B to E. The remaining strings are tuned the same as in standard tuning.
Characteristics of Drop A Songs
Heavier Sound – Drop A tuning allows for a deeper, more resonant, and heavier sound, which makes it a great option for metal bands. It’s particularly popular in genres like metal, where a darker and more powerful tone is often desired.
Ease of Playing Power Chords – This tuning simplifies the finger positioning for power chords. Power chords are a staple in rock and metal music, and drop A tuning allows guitarists to play them with a single finger across the lower strings.
Increased Range – Drop A extends the guitar’s range on the lower end, giving musicians access to deeper notes that are not available in standard tuning. This expanded range opens up new creative possibilities for songwriting and composition.
Genre Flexibility – While commonly associated with heavier music genres, drop A tuning is not limited to metal bands or rock legends. It offers versatility and has been used in various music styles to add a unique flavor to the compositions.
Technical and Creative Expression – Drop A songs often involve complex playing techniques and creative musical expressions. The tuning allows for the exploration of unique chord voicings and riff compositions, which can significantly influence the overall mood and atmosphere of a song.
The Cultural Impact
Drop A songs have had a significant impact on the evolution of modern rock, emo, and metal artists. This tuning has become a defining characteristic of certain sub-genres and has influenced the playing style of countless guitarists. It has allowed bands and artists to push the boundaries of traditional sounds, contributing to the continuous evolution and diversity of music.
In summary, a drop A song is not just defined by the tuning of the guitar but also by the creative possibilities it unlocks. It’s a fusion of technical skill, sonic depth, and musical innovation that continues to shape the landscape of contemporary music.
The journey through the world of drop A songs reveals a rich tapestry of musical expression and creativity. From the thunderous intensity of death metal to the poignant melodies of gothic rock, each track discussed here showcases the unique possibilities that this tuning offers. Artists across genres have harnessed the depth and power of drop A tuning to create music that resonates on a profound level with listeners. These songs, characterized by their technical prowess, emotional depth, and thematic richness, not only define their respective genres but also continue to inspire and influence the next generation of musicians. The legacy of these tracks stands as a testament to the enduring power and versatility of music, demonstrating that even within specific technical constraints, the possibilities for creative expression are limitless.