Metal is one of the most fascinating genres of music ever born of this earth. From the glitter and glam rock of the 80’s, to the dark, intense soundscapes of melodic death metal, there are always surprises lurking within the shadows. When taking on the task of finding the best metal love songs, it’s not as simple as it sounds. Metal has a great variety of sub genres and encompasses decades of creativity. As such, we’ve delved into everything from the hair and glam metal of the 80’s to some more recent heavy metal offerings from bands like Opeth and Avenged Sevenfold.
10. “I Want To Know What Love Is” by Foreigner
Ranking 479 on Rolling Stone’s greatest songs of all time list, Foreigner’s “I Want to Know What Love Is” continues to be known as one of the bands all-time best love songs. From their 1984 album, “Agent Provocateur” “I Want to Know What Love Is” charted in first position in both the US an UK. The song emits an almost surreal, dreamlike vibe, where the singer longs to experience true love, and wishes his partner to share the secrets of love with him. Background vocals were supplied by the New Jersey Mass Choir who also released their own interpretation of the song. The single reached platinum status in the US and Gold in the UK.
9. “This Love” by Pantera
If you’re a diehard fan of metal who’s searching for a love song with a more aggressive take on the subject, then Pantera’s “This Love” could satisfy your craving. When the song begins, you are introduced to an almost haunting, soul searching sound. However, this soon gives way to Dimebag’s thrashing riffs. Lyrically speaking, this song isn’t as poetic as others on our list. In fact, it gives way to a more precarious view of the topic, which concerns a love gone wrong.
8. “Be Quiet and Drive” by The Deftones
Not as lyrically profound as others on our list of metal love songs, but that’s not where the punch lies. Indeed, this songs passion comes from the intensity of Chino’s vocals, partnered with the raw, heavy, rhythmic and atmospheric delivery of guitar and percussion. The song tells of a man who has finally found love, and wishes to drive away, to escape with this love, to protect it from becoming tainted by the meddling of the world. What makes this song resonate with fans is the message.
7. “Love Walks In” by Van Halen
“Love Walks In” came off Van Halen’s 1986 album, 5150. It was also the first song where Sammy Hagar and Van Halen worked on together. The song gently unravels its net of dreamlike, somewhat sentimental keyboards, immersing the listener within the world of this piece of classic rock. At first listen, the lyrics seem to capture you, soothingly describing the wonders of first-time love. Or is it? While it comes across as a masterfully composed love song, it’s actually about aliens “walk-ins”, where humans and aliens exchange souls.
6. “I’ll Remember You” by Skid Row
Composed by Rachel Bolan and Dave Sabo, “I’ll Remember You” hit the Billboard Hot 100 number 6 slot in 1990. This power ballad took on the tough subject of a love that was, and now has withered away to nothing, and the man who cannot accept it. Sebastian Bach’s keen delivery carries with it the melancholy passion of regret, blended with a subdued aggression that immediately draws the listener in. According to Bach, “I Remember You” was the number one prom song in the U.S. in the year 1990″
5. “When” by Opeth
“When” centers around an ethereal being who watches as his beloved mourns: “So there I was, within the sobriety of the immortals, a semblance of supernatural winds passing through the garden sighs, flowers die”. Known for the intensity of their musical epics, Opeth incorporated writhing and complex metal riffs, which blend seamlessly with their acoustic guitars lines. In true Opeth style, the build of the composition appears to progress to an almost sensual climax, somewhat sad, yet always persistent and powerful.
4. “I’ll Be There For You” by Bon Jovi
A definite fan favorite, “I’ll Be There For You”, is a lyrical masterpiece. It’s poetic take on love, the belief in love and ever present yearning, creates a soundscape of immersive escapism. Taken off their 1988 album, “New Jersey” and composed by Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora, the song hit number one on Billboard’s Hot 100. The song is a hymn to a love that took a wrong turn, where the singer is suffering from a broken heart, he prays that she’ll give him another chance. Until then, he’ll be there for her, always.
3. “A Little Piece of Heaven” by Avenged Seven Fold
“A Little Piece of Heaven” by the metal band, Avenged Seven Fold is about as far from your standard expectations of what the phrase, “love song” brings to mind. Basically, the protagonist of the song does away with his lady, and preserves her body. However, she ends up returning to life and knocking him off. If anything this love song is a horror fan’s delight set to music. In fact, if one takes a look at its official video, one can’t help but feel as if you’re in some type of surreal world, born of madness, yet teasing you to continue to watch to see the outcome of the torrid tale.
2. “Sweet Child O’ Mine” by Guns and Roses
One of the purest anthems to the love experienced between two people, “Sweet Child O’ Mine” is Axl Rose’s ballad for the love of his life at the time, Erin Everly. In this song, Released in June of 1988, off their debut album, “Appetite for Destruction”, “Sweet Child O’ Mine” was the third single, and went on to top the Billboard Hot 100 in the number one position in the US and 6 in the UK. An interesting side fact, is that Axl Rose also wished to show his appreciation for the band Lynyrd Skynyrd by attempting to simulate their sound.
1. “Is This Love” by Whitesnake
Written by David Coverdale and John Sykes, this song was originally meant for Tina Turner. However, Coverdale held onto it, a decision based on David Geffen’s urging. The song revolves around a man asking if the woman he loves, if his feelings for her are love, a wayward, temporary crush or meaningless physical attraction. Released as a single off their “Whitesnake” album, it hit number two on Billboard’s Hot 100. The video received plenty of airplay, and starred his girlfriend at the time, actress Tawny Kitaen.
Love is undoubtedly the most covered topic in music. Relationships fascinate us. How we deal with these relationships is as varied as there are stars in the sky. Suffice it to say, that when it comes to metal, the ways and means of this subject run the gamut of a lover forever in search for eternal love, to the more darker versions found in heavy metal bands such as Avenged Sevenfold. Whichever side of the fence you sit, we hope to have provided you with a solid cross section of choices, for any mood or taste.