Heavy Metal Vocals


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My presentation to a group of enthusiastic young metal kids in Denmark.

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Heavy Metal Vocals

  1. 1. James Herbert
  2. 2. <ul><li>I’m hell in Dyscord, eh. </li></ul><ul><li>Where we are at as a band </li></ul><ul><li>Why should you listen to me? </li></ul>
  3. 5. Davey Havok , lead singer of AFI , suffered from vocal nodes, which forced AFI to cancel several shows on their Spring '04 tour as well as changed the style of his singing from a raspier style to a clearer style. Bert McCracken , vocalist of The Used , developed a nodule in his vocal cord, and underwent surgery during the summer of 2007. The nodule was successfully removed. Angela Gossow , the lead vocalist of Arch Enemy , also suffered from a vocal fold nodule.
  4. 6. <ul><li>Yelling for meat pies </li></ul><ul><li>Sounding evil.... But still very sore </li></ul><ul><li>Working some things out on my own </li></ul><ul><li>Singing Lessons </li></ul><ul><li>He-he HAY HAY </li></ul>
  5. 7. <ul><li>Not quite throaty, but raw and powerful. </li></ul><ul><li>Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, The Who </li></ul>
  6. 8. <ul><li>Very throaty and aggressive but not a scream or a yell </li></ul><ul><li>Metallica, Avenged Sevenfold, He is Legend </li></ul>
  7. 9. <ul><li>A throaty and aggressive sound but with limited melody and rap phrasing </li></ul><ul><li>Bickies, Papa Roach, Machine Head (Burning Red Era), </li></ul>
  8. 10. <ul><li>More a yell than a husk, with discernable pitch and melodies </li></ul><ul><li>Machine Head, Pantera, Sevendust, Strapping Young Lad, Filter </li></ul>
  9. 11. <ul><li>Harsh, abrasive yell with little pitch variation, associated with Punk/Hardcore Bands </li></ul><ul><li>Hatebreed, Atreyu, IKTPQ, Unearth </li></ul>
  10. 12. <ul><li>Very broad and diverse, aggressive sound with some pitch variation but not melodic </li></ul><ul><li>Arch Enemy, Killswitch Engage, Lamb of God, Chimaira </li></ul>
  11. 13. <ul><li>Predominantly clean singing, some husk, usually a very high pitch with lots of Vibratto </li></ul><ul><li>Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Dio, Dragonforce </li></ul>
  12. 14. <ul><li>Very low pitch, demonic sounding </li></ul><ul><li>Nile, Cannibal Corpse, Deicide, Bloodduster </li></ul>
  13. 15. <ul><li>Extreme Lows contrasted with extreme highs </li></ul><ul><li>The Black Dahlia Murder, Whitechapel </li></ul>
  14. 16. <ul><li>The false cords allow us to make loud and scary noises </li></ul><ul><li>The most problems seem to be with singers who try to get an aggressive sound with their true cords </li></ul>
  15. 17. <ul><li>The human body is frail </li></ul><ul><li>The human body is good at healing itself </li></ul><ul><li>Minimise damage and allow your voice to rest </li></ul><ul><li>Metal vocals are like exercise </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Warming up </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Good Technique </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Allow for rest and repair </li></ul></ul>
  16. 18. <ul><li>Warm ups are more for the day after </li></ul><ul><li>It may seem un-metal but it’ll keep your voice working </li></ul><ul><li>Any more general singing warm-up tape will do, or sing a song comfortable for your range to warm up </li></ul><ul><li>I use ‘The Zen of Screaming’ warm-up tape </li></ul>
  17. 19. <ul><li>ZZZ </li></ul><ul><li>EEE </li></ul><ul><li>Me-Ge Monkeys </li></ul><ul><li>Whe he- HEY HEY! </li></ul>
  18. 20. <ul><li>Air management </li></ul><ul><li>Voice Placement </li></ul><ul><li>Knowing your voice </li></ul>
  19. 21. <ul><li>More important than you’d think </li></ul><ul><li>Your body does things automatically </li></ul><ul><li>A lot of singing is learning how to make unseen parts work together </li></ul><ul><li>Breathing is central to having all the parts work </li></ul><ul><li>Blowing out a candle, except your vocal cords are your lips </li></ul>
  20. 22. <ul><li>Strength comes from your lungs not your throat or cords </li></ul><ul><li>As the trumpeter and the accordionist knows, top it up </li></ul><ul><li>Reserve breath comes from topping up </li></ul><ul><li>Develop an awareness of your stomach muscles, isolate them from your breathing </li></ul>
  21. 23. <ul><li>Above the pencil </li></ul><ul><li>Project to the spot </li></ul><ul><li>Trust the P.A. </li></ul>
  22. 24. <ul><li>Know your range, what is comfortable and what is an effort to hit </li></ul><ul><li>Imitating someone is likely to do some damage </li></ul><ul><li>Make the most of what your voice is built to do </li></ul><ul><li>Where do the gears kick in? Head Voice and Chest Voice </li></ul>
  23. 25. <ul><li>Know when to stop and when to ease back </li></ul><ul><li>A sore voice is like a sprained ankle </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t whisper or speak gingerly, that makes things worse </li></ul><ul><li>Throat sprays, lollies, and drinking water </li></ul><ul><li>The flu, colds, and infections </li></ul><ul><li>A good nights sleep and silence </li></ul>
  24. 26. <ul><li>Minimise damage, allow for damage to repair </li></ul><ul><li>The aim is to be able to do your set without any real effects, and to be able to do it day after day, even with limited sleep and opportunities to party </li></ul>
  25. 27. <ul><li>Metal Vocals aren’t about getting aggressive with your voice </li></ul><ul><li>Talking in loud environments can cause strain </li></ul><ul><li>Rehearsing can cause strain where you can’t hear yourself properly </li></ul><ul><li>Do things quiet when trying new things </li></ul>