10 Pop Bands Who Tried To Write Metal Songs

Pop punk, pop rock, indie pop, power pop. All rock styles that directly clarify in their name what genre they are based on – pop music. But what happens when a band in one of these traditions tries to write a metal song?

And we’re not talking about the anthemic rock bands that already have a harder side, like Shinedown or My Chemical Romance, to name just two contemporary examples. We are also not talking about the hard rockers of the time who retained pop melodies and structure, like Aerosmith or Led Zeppelin or many others.

We’re also not talking about the various pop-punk bands that covered previously written metal material for projects such as the Punk becomes metal series. Nor metallic covers of pop songs.

No, we mean more like when nerd-rock mainstays Weezer tried to write a heavy metal song in 1998 and didn’t even release it until 12 years later. Or when Panic at the Disco! bandleader Brendon Urie leaked his own creation of extreme metal even more recently.

Or when Blink-182 sidekicks Fenix ​​TX used their last major effort in 2001 to experiment with thrash metal. (The Poppies band even gave a nod to Metallica with the title of a song from that year. Lechuza“Muppet pasture.”)

So now that you know what we mean, let’s go. Scroll down to see if you remember these various attempts at metal from pop bands. They all get an A for effort.

  • Sugar Ray, “New Direction” (1998)

    Listeners Who Bought Sugar Ray’s 14:59 at the end of the 90s were probably surprised by the thrash metal intro, which bears no resemblance to the poppy alt-rock of the rest of the album. But they might not have known that Sugar Ray started out as a nu-metal band before they found the sound that made them famous. “New Direction” is just an acknowledgment of their other influences.

  • Fenix ​​TX, “Something Bad Will Happen” (2001)

    Fenix ​​TX got the blink-182 hookup when, around 2000, Mark Hoppus of the Kings of Pop-Punk started managing them. Subsequently, the Texas-based upstarts’ “All My Fault” took off on rock radio. Within a year or so, however, Fenix ​​TX was writing much meaner riffs to go along with much more metal lyrics on tracks like “Something Bad Is Gonna Happen”. “Do you want to fuck it up? / Well, motherfucker, come on!”

  • Weezer, “Everyone” (2010)

    Weezer hid “Everyone” from listeners for over a decade. He finally emerged on the odds and ends compilation Death to fake metal in 2010. But is “Everyone” fake metal in itself? The Rivers Cuomo-led band recorded it in 1998 alongside their cover of The Pixies’ “Velouria,” which is featured on the 1999 compilation. Where is my Mind? Tribute to Pixies.

  • Jimmy Eat World, “Get It Faster” (2001)

    In retrospect, the odd part of Jimmy Eat World’s “Get It Faster” is that the whole wacky idea of ​​the song was apparent in the demo version. The poppy emo rock band were playing with metal riffs, and out came the track that probably has the closest they’ve ever had to a metalcore breakdown. Unfortunately, on the bleed american recording, the joke is totally lost.

  • Sum 41, “Pain for Pleasure” (2001)

    Somehow, of all the pop-punk bands of the 2000s, Sum 41 showed they had the chops to play metal for real. It is therefore not surprising that the idea quickly materialized on Any killer with no filler“Pain for Pleasure” by Iron Maiden. The song’s title doubled as the name of the act’s alter-ego metal band fronted by Deryck Whibley.

  • Brendon Urie, “Metal Song” (2019)

    In 2019, Panic! Disco mastermind Brendon Urie has revealed a metal song he did during a charity live stream on Twitch. And, believe it or not, it actually sounds like a “real” extreme metal song. Perhaps Urie could deepen this style?

  • Foo Fighters, “Weenie Beenie” (1995)

    Foo Fighters are considered hard rockers. But though he came from Nirvana, Dave Grohl’s first widely heard song as frontman of the Foos was the poppy Beatles send-off “This Is a Call.” It preceded the raucest foo fighters number “I’ll Stick Around” as a single. But when “Weenie Beenie” appeared on the tracklist for the self-titled debut album, it was the first time anyone outside of Scream fans had heard what Grohl could really do with heavy music. Of course, after later metal-only solo efforts such as Probot and dream widowwe everything know now.

  • Bon Jovi, “We Rule the Night” (2004)

    Bon Jovi, the band that perhaps embodies the type of 80s hard rock artist who was in all news a pop artist, did not release his 1985 metal experience “We Rule the Night” until the 2004 compilation 100,000,000 Bon Jovi fans can’t be wrong. Listen to it and see if you can figure out why.

  • NOFX, “Eddie, Bruce and Paul” (2009)

    NOFX are the kings of indie pop-punk. And while coaster“Eddie, Bruce, and Paul” is definitely a pop-punk song – forbidden beats and all – its thematic homage to Iron Maiden, along with its wicked riffs and guitar solo, deserved to be included here. Who knew Fat Mike was a Paul Di’Anno fan?

  • Ryan Adams, “Signal Fade” (2010)

    Do you remember Ryan Adams? Before disappearing from the musical landscape due to allegations of sexual misconduct in 2019, the folk singer-songwriter attempted to write an entire heavy metal album. The result, Orioncame out in 2010. He apparently hasn’t tried since.

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