Singled Out

This is what happens when the ROCK(jock) plays in Photoshop (I must be breaking multiple copyright laws…)

Metalheads get it. We know a single song, no matter how good, can’t justify an entire album, much less a band. And yet, that continues to be how mainstream music defines worth, maybe more than ever thanks to iTunes. While we here at The SIDESHOW in no way endorse this business or artistic model, it did get us to thinking: What are some of our favorite songs, regardless of albums and bands?

Starting in Episode 31 with Brian’s picks (which you can find below), the three of us will unveil our favorite heavy metal singles. This is by no means our definitive lists and we really don’t have any specific criteria but the spirit of this exercise is to identify those songs we can’t stop subconsciously banging our heads to, even though we may not even like the album or band. And we want you to do the same! Post your favorite one-hit wonders in the comments and why they stand our for you and we’ll read your responses on air.

In Flames, “My Sweet Shadow,” Soundtrack to Your Escape
Still Remains, “The Worst Is Yet to Come,” Of Love and Lunacy
Bleeding Through, “Tragedy of Empty Streets,” The Truth

Machine Head, “Davidian,” Burn My Eyes
Amon Amarth, “Death and Fire,” Versus the World

Soilwork, “Nerve,” Stabbing the Drama
Hatebreed, “Doomsayer,” The Rise of Brutality
Arch Enemy, “Enemy Within,” Wages of Sin
Mercenary, “Redefine Me,” The Hours That Remain
Fear Factory, “Self Bias Resistor,” Demanufacture
Remembering Never, “Incisions,” Woman and Children Die First
Chimaira, “The Flame,” Resurrection

(I came at this from a “one hit wonders” point of view for the show.  The expanded list of all my favorite songs [including favorite bands] will be added in the comments.)

Divine Heresy, “Failed Creation,” Bleed The Fifth
Haste, “With All The Pride And Dignity Of A Drowning Swimmer,” The Mercury Lift
Ministry, “Reload,” Sphinctour
Raunchy, “Drive,” Velvet Noise
Roadrunner United, “Army Of The Sun” The All-Star Sessions
Soilwork, “Nerve,” Stabbing The Drama

Keep checking this post in the coming weeks as Kyle the ROCK(jock) unveils his favorite songs…


  1. Some interesting observations about your lists of singles. First is how little overlap there is among the choices, even among bands. There a couple of picks for Amon Amarth “Death and Fire” and Machine Head “Halo” (counting my list). Then different songs from Hatebreed, August Burns Red, Dillinger, Arch Enemy, and that’s about it.

    Another interesting thing to note is that it seems as though very few of your picks were released before you started listening to metal. While there is an early Machine Head pick, a classic Pantera song, and I’m guessing maybe the Sepultura and Fear Factory songs might be from “before your time” all of the other 60 or more selections seem to be from the 21st century (or very late 20th century).

    I do realize that the music that makes the biggest impact on our lives is whatever we were listening to when we cracked open our first beer, but I also try to seek out and experience music that has stood the test of time. I feel that if people enjoyed something at the time and are still talking about it today then it is probably worth checking out. And some of that has turned into my favorite music, such as classic Iron Maiden and Operation Mindcrime by Queensryche. Both of those feature some of my favorite songs of all time that I didn’t experience when they were originally released. Does that mean I am going to like everything that received critical acclaim in the past and is still being talked about today? Obviously not, as I am not a fan of early Napalm Death and grindcore. But I have discovered an entire world of metal from the 70s and 80s that I wouldn’t have even known about if I only ever listened to current music.

    But because I was listening to classic metal and rock and all sorts of music in the first 6 or 7 years of the 2000s, I’ve been trying to go back and discover music from that time and your lists of singles are helpful in that respect. There are a bumch of songs from your lists that I’ve never heard before that I’ve checked out and am enjoying, such as Soilwork “Nerve” and that Roadrunner United song.

    Another thing regarding the concept of the single (the whole point of this discussion) is as a good way to experience a band you’ve never heard before. I am traditionally an “album guy”, like you guys seem to be, and think that any band worth their salt puts out a complete album of quality music. However, when I discover a band that I want to listen to that has a large back catalog, it often isn’t practical for me to listen to 10 or more albums from that band. So I’ll do some research and cherry pick some singles to form my own “greatest hits” collection and experience the band in that way.

  2. Here is the rest of my list…..for now!

    Agony Scene, “Lines Of Suicide,” The Agony Scene
    American Head Charge, “All Wrapped Up,” The War Of Art
    Amon Amarth, “Death In Fire,” Versus The World
    The Bled, “Shadetree Mechanics,” Silent Treatment
    By Night, “The Truth Is Sold,” A New Shape Of Desperation
    Byzantine, “Hatfield,” The Fundamental Component
    Diecast, “Medieval,” Tearing Down Your Blue Skies
    Dillinger Escape Plan, “Sunshine The Werewolf,” Miss Machine
    Dry Kill Logic, “From Victim To Killer,” Of Vengeance And Violence
    Every Time I Die, “Off Broadway,” Hot Damn!
    Glassjaw, “Miracle In Inches,” Coloring Book EP
    Gojira, “A Sight To Behold,” The Way Of All Flesh
    The Haunted, “Abysmal,” Revolver
    Katatonia, “July,” The Great Cold Distance
    Killswitch Engage, “Temple From Within,” Killswitch Engage
    Kvelertak, “Sjohyenar,” Kvelertak
    Lamb Of God, “11th Hour,” As The Palaces Burn
    Machine Head, “Halo,” The Blackening
    Marilyn Manson, “Dogma,” Portrait Of An American Family
    Mastodon, “Where Strides The Behemoth,” Remission
    Narrows, “Life Vests Float, Kids Don’t,” Self Titled EP
    Norma Jean, “High Noise, Low Output,” Meridional
    Nine Inch Nails, “Somewhat Damaged,” The Fragile
    Pantera, “Mouth For War,” Vulgar Display Of Power
    Protest The Hero, “Limb From Limb,” Fortress
    Sepultura, “Refuse/Resist,” Chaos A.D.
    Slayer, “Death’s Head,” Diabolus in Musica
    Sleepytime Gorilla Museum, “Sleep Is Wrong,” Grand Opening And Closing
    Textures, “Awake,” Silhouettes
    Unearth, “Giles,” III: In The Eyes Of Fire
    White Zombie, “Thrust!,” La Sexorcisto: Devil Music Vol. 1

  3. Even though I posted a few of these previously, I’ll give my full list of favorite songs here, with a few more comments. First is that I am not really differentiating between a “single” and a “song.” Since one of Kyle’s inspirations for this was based on listening to singles on the radio, I realize you aren’t going to hear 20 minute (or even 10 minute) epic songs on the radio, but that doesn’t preclude them from being my favorites. When I started making a list, I couldn’t believe how many of my favorite songs fall into that category, which are (in no particular order):

    One – Metallica
    2112 – Rush
    Rime of the Ancient Mariner – Iron Maiden
    Suite Sister Mary – Queensryche
    Bleak and Blackwater Park – Opeth (it’s too hard to pick one Opeth song, so I picked two)
    Ghost Love Score – Nightwish
    Battle Hymn – Manowar
    Halo – Machine Head
    Chasing the Dragon – Epica

    Chasing the Dragon and One are about 7 and a half minutes, the rest of these clock in at over 9 minutes. Halo doesn’t seem like it is 9 minutes long, but I double checked that it is.

    Other songs that are my favorites that are more of what you could traditionally call a “single” are:
    Killing In The Name – Rage Against the Machine
    Wish – Nine Inch Nails
    Nemesis – Arch Enemy
    Twilight Of The Thunder God – Amon Amarth
    Before I Forget – Slipknot
    Thorn in My Side – Quicksand

    Finally, I’ll list what I call “not quite one hit wonders”, or more appropriately, my favorite songs by bands that are not my favorite bands. These songs fall into a category that I can’t say I am a big fan of the band or in some cases I haven’t heard a lot of their albums but I like one song from them:
    Sails of Charon – Scorpions
    Tears of the Dragon – Bruce Dickinson
    Tears Don’t Fall – Bullet for my Valentine
    Contempt Breeds Contamination – Trivium
    Waiting Room – Fugazi
    In Ashes They Shall Reap – Hatebreed
    Nightfall – Blind Guardian
    Emerald Sword and Holy Thunderforce – Rhapsody (two hit wonders?)
    Carcass – Heartwork

  4. For those of you that care, here are some more on my list. And, btw, I intentionally left off classic bands like Metallica, Iron Maiden and Slayer just b/c I didn’t want to have a choose just one song.

    Parkway Drive, “Romance is Dead,” Killing With a Smile
    Dark Tranquillity, “Wonders At Your Feet,” Haven
    August Burns Red, “Your Little Suburbia is in Ruins,” Thrillseeker
    Unearth, “Endless,” The Oncoming Storm
    Heaven Shall Burn, “The Weapon They Fear,” Antigone
    Symphony in Peril, “Stiletto” The Whore’s Trophy
    Devildriver, “End of the Line,” The Fury of Our Maker’s Hands
    The Agony Scene, “Paint it Black (Rolling Stones cover),” The Agony Scene
    Into Eternity, “Spiraling Into Depression,” Buried in Oblivion
    Full Blown Chaos, “Wake the Demons,” Wake the Demons
    A Thousand Falling Skies, “The Wilting,” The Wilting
    TesseracT, “Deception,” One
    Amorphis, “The Sky is Mine,” Skyforger

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