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20 Songs Not To Play On Valentine's Day

Unless you're into it.

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Photo by Annie Spratt

In the words of Cinema Bizarre, "Love songs, they kill me." At best, they have soporific value. At worst, they make me want to "push fingers into my eyes." Of course, outliers to the general rule do exist like Black Sabbath's "N.I.B." However, such songs are about as few and far between as your chances of stumbling upon your favorite black metal frontman just by going for a hike in the woods.

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Fortunately, there are very few true gentlemen like Rick Astley in the world of extreme music. Most modern-day metal frontmen neither want to tell you how they are feeling, nor do they get their jollies by damning themselves to "a full commitment." As a result, the selection apathetic, solipsistic, sadistic, and/or debauched music is truly awe-inspiring.

Before we reveal our list of the top anti-love songs, we will name some of our (dis)honorable mentions: Lamb of God's "Set to Fail," Ragnarok's "Dominance and Submission," Kreator's "Pleasure to Kill," Bathory's "Sadist (Tormentor)," and Sarkom's "Black Metal Necrophilia. Songs like Sarcoma Inc.'s "Sadistic Ways of Domination," "Necrowhore," "Psychopathic Dominator," and "Infernal Concubine" will rekindle your love for inhumanity, while some quality rock tracks include Die Ärzte's "1/2 Lovesong," Andy Black's "We Don't Have to Dance," Terminal Choice's "She's the Devil," and Gleb Samoiloff & The Matrixx's "Romantika."

If your significant other happens to be a woman, you might want to play a Dream Theater record or two for her as an experiment. Given our recent headline "John Petrucci Wonders Why More Women Don't Come To Dream Theater Shows," her thoughts should be of interest to the metal community at large. Ex-Mayhem's Kjetil Manheim seems to have anticipated this important public debate during his chat on The Thomas Eriksen Podcast. Regarding his inability to relate to Dream Theater's music, Manheim confided in Thomas that "I can't find anything there because they're pitch perfect always… It does nothing for me. It's like meeting a girl, and you know instantly that it's no… There's nothing to work on here, so it's not gonna happen." Manheim, nonetheless, acknowledged his respect for this band, which has obviously acquired a massive fan base. Needless to say, what fails to titillate Manheim may just leave you pierced by Cupid's arrow like a "Shot in the Dark." We believe that there are probably still a fair amount of women out there who are turned on by Dream Theater.

Darkthrone has truly conquered our hearts. Nevertheless, consider almost the full body of their work to be on this list as well. Today, Fenriz and Nocturno Culto not only continue to define Darkthrone, but they are also metal's most steadfast duo. Although Fenriz and Nocturno have had their differences, it is as if these two are a match that was made in Valhalla. Some fans may not know that Nocturno only joined Darkthrone in May 1988 after the group's first demo. When the musicians were first connected through their mutual acquaintance Kjetil AarhusFenriz allegedly explained to Nocturno that his band played music that deviates from what one might call sexual. We think that Darkthrone is a very "moral" band insofar as no sins of the flesh are possible as long as it is playing. When it comes to preserving one's chastity, turning on Darkthrone is the equivalent of holding garlic up in the face of a vampire. Thus, if your date brings you home and begins to play Darkthrone, it either means that the person has deep respect for you or that the individual in question possesses zero social skills. Darkthrone is anti-social music that is meant to be experienced in holy solitude. This is so true that Fenriz and Nocturno have not played a live gig together since 1996. This is not a bad thing, however. Even Marcel Proust admitted in Sodom and Gomorrah (Vol. 4 of his semi-autobiographical In Search of Lost Time) that he was among those who only felt the "pleasure" and "sensations of art" when he was "alone," as opposed to with the object of his affection.

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Our (anti-)Valentine's Day playlist mostly features hedonistic picks that champion eros, or what has been described as "descending love," over the virtues of philia and agape. (Pope Benedict XVI has summarized the latter as "love grounded in and shaped by faith.") That said, don't forget to take these songs with a grain of salt. The "Like Saint Valentine" singer represented by #17 on our list reminds us that this is precisely what you will need to rub into your partner's wounds.

Avenged Sevenfold – "A Little Piece of Heaven" 

"A Little Piece of Heaven" is Avenged Sevenfold's epic masterpiece from their eponymous album, which was released on October 30, 2007. We all know how the story unfolds that is narrated in this beloved, all-American classic. A man stabs his girlfriend to death. Her "angry soul comes back from beyond the grave to repossess the body" that the anti-hero has desecrated. The woman kills the man. These victims of love are finally joined in matrimony for the rest of their "unnatural lives."

This elaborate song is the brainchild of the late James "Jimmy" Owen Sullivan, a.k.a. "The Rev." Guitarist "Synester Gates," or Brian Elwin Haner Jr., told Metal Hammer: "Jimmy wasn't the guy who needed a pat on the back, but he was really proud of that chorus. It was a little bit of a joke, too; when he'd sing it, kind of like Scooby-Doo. He thought it was such a cheesy kind of jingle, so catchy and so syrupy. He just thought it was so funny to juxtapose that with the lyrics. We all loved it."

As it turns out, "A Little Piece of Heaven" is comic gold. The lines about necrophilia are among the most amusing lyrics in modern metal: "She was never this good in bed even when she was sleepin'. Now she's just so perfect. I've never been quite so deep in…" This timeless song continues: "I can keep you lookin' young and preserved forever with a fountain to spray on your youth whenever. 'Cause I really always knew that my little crime would be cold that's why I got a heater for your thighs." Because of Avenged Sevenfold's sense of humor, it shouldn't come as a surprise that Synester Gates' father, Brian Elwin Haner Sr., a.k.a. "Papa Gates," is a comedian and a musician who has recorded with his son's band.

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Steel Panther – "Community Property" 

It goes without saying that Steel Panther has an abundance of songs that will perfectly complement your anti-Valentine's Day festivities: "Eatin' Ain't Cheatin'," "Gods of Pussy," "Let Me Cum In," "If You Really Really Love Me," "It Won't Suck Itself," "Do You Wanna Do Me," "Fat Girl (Thar She Blows)," etc. For a taste of some real "Balls Out" fun, watch Steel Panther perform "Weenie Ride" live for Metal Injection HERE.

"Community Property" is one of Steel Panther's greatest hits. This slow song (or at least the hot video below) from Feel the Steel (2009) is guaranteed to make either your heart or your kn*b throb: "I would give you the stars in the sky, but they're too far away. If you were a hooker, you'd know, I'd be happy to pay. If suddenly you were a guy, I'd be suddenly gay. 'Cause my heart belongs to you. My love is pure and true. But my cock[/dong] is community property." Of course, these highly romantic lyrics do nothing to reinforce the kind of gender stereotypes that might anger your significant other(s): "You're the only girl that I like to screw. When I'm not on the road. When I come home, my dinner's made. And the front lawn is mowed. I'll kiss your mouth even after you swallow my load." (Alternatively, the edited version goes: "… even after my rocket explodes.")

As always, this group of glam rockers brilliantly champions/parodies male sexual liberation and empowerment: "I wanna make it clear, so you retain it. My dick's[\dong's] a free spirit. And you can't restrain it. No, you just can't chain it down." But these bad boys do maintain collective conscience: "I see your face every time that I go out and cheat." In all earnestness, as self-evident as it may seem, it is nonetheless important to clarify that Steel Panther's content is supposed to be humorous and clearly does not represent the personal views held by this upstanding and hardworking team of entertainers. Frontman Michael Starr, for example, is a proud father and husband.

Nattefrost – "Whore (Filthy Whore)" 

Nattefrost is, of course, the brainchild of Carpathian Forest's "Nattefrost," a.k.a. Roger Rasmussen. This solo project truly is one of metal's most under-appreciated gems. "Whore (Filthy Whore)" makes it clear that Nattefrost is the type of generous lover whom we all could use: "… covered with cum, tears, and snot. I gave her all I fucking got." The lyrics to the chorus of this delightful little numbers are as potent as they come: "Whore — Put your shoes on. Bitch — swallow my cum. Slut — Suck me dry. Cunt — Choke and die." "Whore (Filthy Whore)" hails from Blood and Vomit (2004), which also includes the avant-garde masterpiece "Nattefrost Takes a Piss" and a cover of Beherit's "The Gate of Nanna." Fenriz has called Blood & Vomit "a fantastic album." He selected Blood & Vomit's second track, "Sluts of Hell," for the compilation album Fenriz Presents… The Best of Old-School Black Metal (2004), which was released by Peaceville Records. Nattefrost has also been supportive of Fenriz. Mr. Rasmussen encouraged the Darkthrone founder to treat the public to his Fenriz' Red Planet material, which was recorded in 1993, after ex-Cadaver's Apollyon played it for him. Thus, Fenriz and Nattefrost released the album Engangsgrill (2009) through Indie Recordings. Nattefrost's contributions to Engangsgrill date from 2002-2008.

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For more hateful, cryptic BM with serious punk attitude, you can listen to songs like Nattefrost's "Cunts, Sluts & Wankers" and "Nekronaut (Cunt Cunt Gimme More)." In the latter track, Nattefrost rages: "What the hell are you crying for?! My grim necropenis wants more. So bend over you little sado-whore… When I kill you, I am stone-cold. Satan takes your soul. Open your mouth and suck for your life. You will suck me dry." The ever-charming Nattefrost continues: "Now the cunt can't gimme no more… She's almost dead and bleeding on my floor. And now she's just a fucking bore. Fucking bore." As a woman, I am simply shocked that Nattefrost has found such a fool-proof formula for making ladies feel valued. His tact, refinement, and psychological superpowers are obviously unmatched.

Gaahlskagg – "Skullfuck" 

From the title of this amazing group, one can easily infer that it was formed by Gaahl and Skagg. (Skagg was one of the many all-stars to feature in support of Nattefrost on the above-mentioned album Engangsgrill.) "Skullfuck" first appeared on the release Erotic Funeral Party I / Styggmyrs triumf (1999), which was split with Stormfront. The song was later included in Gaahlskagg's debut album, Erotic Funeral (2000). "Skullfuck" simply cannot be outdone. It is a work of pure genius. Gaahl never uses an extraneous word. His every utterance is like a whip to the spine: "I'm a necrophile maniac. Ready to skullfuck you. I'm waiting for your cold body." This is precisely the track that every metalhead should fall asleep to each night in order to ensure "Sweet [Wet] Dreams": "And the last you see is me naked. Ready to reverse your eyeballs. And skullfuck you." Gaahl's screams make us beg for more. "I Am Sin" also moves us to tears of sublime happiness: "I'm standing strong and proud. Violent erected. Oh, come to me my child. Feel my penetration… I am the force of lust. The force of pleasure. I baptize you in sperm. The resurrection." The following track, "Come to My Kingdom," is another haunting tune that will awaken the most artistic and (ig)noble sentiments in you: "Worship me. For I am sin. And I am lust. I am desire." This album is too magnificent not to experience in full.

Gehennah "Piss Off, I'm Drinking" 

No, we don't mean the "black metal" band that was formed in 1993 in Stavanger, Norway. (The Norwegian Gehenna once featured a female keyboardist named "Sarcana," Nina HanslienGehenna tends to be pretty accessible for a BM band, so if you must torture your significant other with extreme music, Gehenna is sadly only a light form of punishment.) Today, you will be listening to the Swedish "filthy street metal" band called Gehennah, which was founded in 1992 as Gehenna. (Gehennah only added the extra "h" to their name after publishing their first two demos.) This band combines elements of German thrash, black metal, and so on to create the kind of raw, aggressive black n' roll that will make you realize why bands formed before 1993 are especially awesome. (1993 was not only the year of Euronymous' tragic and widely publicized death, it was also a challenging time in general for those with predilections for extreme metal. Hence, the immortal Darkthrone lines: "You have nothing in common with me. You think old school is 1993. I've been a thrasher since '84. Almost nothing sounds true anymore." Fenriz adds: "It [rock] went plastic in '94.")

Some of Gehennah's more colorful songs include "I Fucked Your Mom," "We Love Alcohol," "Blood Metal," "Sick-Pack Queen," and "Bitch with a Bulletbelt." "Piss Off, I'm Drinking" is from Gehennah's debut album, Hardrocker (1996). The song also appeared on Gehennah's sophomore demo effort, Brilliant Loud Overlords of Destruction (1994). "Piss Off, I'm Drinking" is about rejecting "a woman too grotesque to even be" in the name of heavy music. "I said: 'Baby, metal is what I need, not some bloody whore to feed." In 2016, Gehennah told Decibel that their #1 rule for distinguishing oneself from posers is "Stay filthy." The band elaborated: "Personal hygiene is for Dark Tranquillity fans. Showers should be low on the list of priorities, well below things like daytime drinking and shoplifting." While this philosophy (or at least the Dark Tranquillity diss) might earn you the friendship of those who oppose the type of melodic death metal spawned by the Gothenburg scene, it is sure to earn you a rejection from your date.

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Lindemann – "Golden Shower"

In 2013, Rammstein's Till Lindemann formed Lindemann with Hypocrisy's Peter Tägtgren, who is also known as one of metal's most accomplished producers. In 2020, Tägtgren caught fans off-guard when he left the project in 2020 because it was not his "cup of tea." When discussing his departure with with LANDRY.Audio, Tägtgren reflected that Lindemann "could have become one of the biggest bands in the world." The pair had already released two successful albums together, Skills in Pills (2015) and F & M (2019). "Golden Shower" is one of the hits from the former album. Based on this song, it should come as no shock that Mr. Lindemann is not only a published poet, but he is also the son of one: "Please stand up and spread your legs. Let me eat your shame. Let me sip champagne… Be my human Eiffel Tower. Give me, give me golden shower… Let it rain from your pretty cunt." The lyrics to Skill in Pills' "Fish On" are among the most abject verses that you will ever hear. This statement also applies to "Fat": "Your armpit swampy little oceans. Your flabby butthole a soggy cave. I put in my parts and, let them bathe, so call me freaky. Call me sick. I like it sticky." Till continues: "I want to get laid, but your holes are hard. So hard to find. It doesn't matter. I'll fuck you, fuck you from behind."

You can head over to Till Lindemann's Doctor Dick web store to purchase items like his "Golden Shower" wine. Sadly, the autographed, mounted phalluses are already sold-out for the bargain price of 169€. Most of the vibrators are gone as well, but you can still nab the "Tilldo 'Buddy' Plug Vibrator" while it lasts. After all, the Tilldo is the V-Day gift that it sure to please.

Sodom "Eat Me" 

True black metallers know what other headbangers can sometimes be slow to remember: The German thrash band Sodom is an inspiration and a legend. Although bassist Tom Angelripper is Sodom's only remaining original member, the band is celebrating their 40th anniversary this year. Thus, Sodom has appealed to their fans to submit their memories and thoughts about the group to be published in an upcoming booklet.

Sodom's "Eat Me" offers educational instruction on the topic of what not say to a woman: "I feel myself getting hard. Spread your crack." If you want to become an instant pariah, sing these words aloud: "Number one in your face. Number two on your cans… Come on taste my candy cream." After thoroughly savoring "Eat Me," you can pop some bubbly to the tune of "Volcanic Slut" from Sodom's debut album, Obsessed by Cruelty (1986). (Mayhem's Euronymous named his record label after the first track following the intro on Obsessed by Cruelty — "Deathlike Silence.") Sodom's "The Wolf & the Lamb" is a more sophisticated alternative: "You kill the one you love at the first opportunity. Wistful resolution. Carnal property." We conclude from these lyrics that Sodom has read Oscar Wilde's The Ballad of Reading Goal (1898): "He looked upon the garish day with such a wistful eye; the man had killed the thing he loved and so he had to die." "Sodom & Gomorrah," a cautionary tale about the perils of lust, is another obvious choice to kill the mood in a room set with candles and roses.

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Rammstein “Bück dich” 

Unlike the band represented by #3 on our list, Rammstein cannot count Fenriz among their supporters. The Darkthrone founder has referred to Rammstein's music as "plastic." However, very few headbangers will deny Rammstein's status as gods of Neue Deutsche Härte. No band captures existential angst like Rammstein. The sextet's monotonous, machine-like industrial metal is the perfect soundtrack for the modern age. Thus, rather than acting like a sentimental wimp this February, why not take the opportunity to rediscover the beauty of impersonal erotic encounters through Rammstein?! Our 8th pick begins: "Bück dich, befehl ich dir. Wende dein Antlitz ab von mir. Dein Gesicht ist mir egal. Bück dich."/"Bend down, I command you. Turn your face away from me. Your face doesn't matter to me. Bend down." In Massachusetts in 1999, keyboardist Flake and frontman Till Lindemann were arrested for simulating anal sex during this song. We implore you not search for the professionally filmed video of Rammstein performing this hit while on the 1998 Family Values Tour. Rammstein was arrested during this tour as well on Halloween night. Although guitarist Richard Kruspe was wearing a white dress, his 5 bandmates were practically naked when the authorities removed them from the stage.

Of course, the song that precedes "Bück dich" on Sehnsucht (1997), "Du Hast," is an all too obvious means of spoiling any marriage plans that your significant other might harbor. From beginning to end, Sehnsucht is a shining example of depravity as is the majority of Rammstein's catalogue. "Ich tu dir Weh" from Liebe ist für alle da (2009) even speaks about inserting rodents into the object of one's torture. Rammstein provoked torrents of lust and laughter when they released a Liebe ist für alle da limited edition box set that included six pink dildos, lube, and handcuffs. Liebe ist für alle da's "Pussy" gained notoriety for its pornographic music video. (In 2021, a man in Russia was sentenced to 2 ½ years in jail for sharing this clip.) At live concerts, Mr. Lindemann used to operate a phallus-shaped, foam-spraying cannon during this song. Thus, it should seem only natural that a special version of "Führe mich," one of LIFAD's bonus tracks, was recorded for Lars von Trier's raunchy masterpiece Nymphomaniac: Vol. 1 (2013). Watch the extended director's cut with a glass of Rammstein's "Rosenrot" rosé.

Lord of the Lost – "Sex on Legs" 

"Sex on Legs" is a nostalgic dose of sleaze. Now that Lord Of The Lost's "Sex on Legs" is turning 11 this March, we are crying over our lost youths. "Sex on Legs" was released on Lord Of The Lost's sophomore album, Antagony, which dropped on April 1st, 2011. Lord Of The Lost is a band from Hamburg that has brandished many hats over the years. Yet, it is Lord Of The Lost's wilder material that many listeners will find the most fun. Lord Of The Lost is so outrageous that nothing seems to be capable of detracting from their magnetism. Some skin-deep metalheads who may not be very sure of themselves will object to Lord Of The Lost's pop influences, but the beauty of this band is that they evade categorization.

Considering that "Sex on Legs" is a kinky song about a quickie with a sex worker, we think that it is an especially appropriate choice for the upcoming holiday, which extols the merits of long-term relationships: "Your parts are even there for hire. I'm going avant-garde. Walk on! Don't keep the flesh together. Oh, I would kill for what I want. Between your legs forever. Don't say that I'm the only one. Scream that you come. And then I leave you walking on…"  If you are struggling to understand vocalist Chris Harms at times, the words are a bit easier to discern on the "Hotel Lounge Version." You would not want to miss out on lyrics like "I am gagged between your heat. You know I'm not here to talk. After I lick dry your leak. I just want to see you walk." After listening to "Sex on Legs" about 20 times, you can make angry love to Lord Of The Lost's Blood for Blood," "Undead or Alive," "La Bomba," Full Metal Whore," "Break Your Heart," "Odium," and "Heart for Sale."

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Last year, one internet troll dubbed Lord Of The Lost "The Symbol of a Dying Scene." As a result, the band credited themselves as "Lord Of The Lost (The Symbol of a Dying Scene)" at the end of their music video for "My Constellation." We suggest that you head over to Lord Of The Lost's website for a tote bag with this printed epithet because an order of 25€ or more will help you procure what you really need — a free Lord Of The Lost condom.

London After Midnight"Love You to Death"

London After Midnight may not be a metal band, but they are 100% metal in spirit. London After Midnight is arguably the best goth band as well as one of the most under-appreciated bands of all-time. The term "goth," however, is not entirely fair. London After Midnight began playing live in 1990 and initially took pride in their affiliation with the deathrock scene. According to the group, the Los Angeles public only decided to attach the label "goth" to London After Midnight in 1993. London After Midnight immediately perceived an unhealthy vibe and decided to distance themselves from all scenes.

Despite performing with a changing lineup of live musicians, Sean creates and records all of London After Midnight's content by himself. Thus, like True Norwegian Black Metal, London After Midnight's work has an unparalleled sense of atmosphere, albeit in a very different way. (Mr. Brennan is highly socially conscious and that is one of the first things that new fans will discover when learning about his art.)

"Love You to Death" debuted on Violent Acts of Beauty (2007), which Brennan has described as "… more reflective of the world and more observational of emotions." Yet, the album still contains a variety of different types of songs. "Love You to Death" was written from the point of view of a stalker, of which Sean has, unfortunately, had many: "I love you to death, I love you completely, a love that is purely vain. And I never meant to hurt you so badly, I thought you'd enjoy the pain." "The Pain Looks Good on You" and Tiamat's remix of "The Bondage Song" are among the other London After Midnight songs to play this February 14th at your own peril.

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Alice In Chains – "A Little Bitter"

Alice In Chains' "A Little Bitter" manages to be brutal without being disgusting or reaching for any below-the-belt jabs. Alice In Chains' music is characterized by poetic brilliance, trippy metaphors, and an almost divine ability to resonate with listeners. "A Little Bitter" is less known than Alice In Chains' "Love, Hate, Love," for instance, but it is no less great. The lyrics take aim at a Janus-faced woman whom the speaker compares to "a wrinkled magazine": "I'm so selfish paying your rent while your blood I'm talking. You spend me like a tree. Dirty dollar bills for leaves. Dark in a sea of my seeds and the tears on which you feed… Your body is a temple, a dormant altar to where infantile men lie around, itching and nibbling for a small piece of sanity of which you cannot give." Needless to say, "A Little Bitter" spouts more than your average smattering of vitriol. Despite the song title, the chosen tone is still a bit unexpected given the almost stoic attitude that Alice In Chains often adopts. (In "Shame in You," Layne Staley sings: "… I believe in inner peace…" Granted, Alice In Chains' material can be quite acerbic. "God Am," for example, is an especially critical song. Yet, even there, the will towards reconciliation still seems active. Staley grappled with the notion of God. Yet, he still seemed to believe in a creator of sorts: "I just believe that I'm not the greatest power on this earth. I didn't create myself, because I would have done a hell of a better job.")

"A Little Bitter" stands apart from the rest of Alice In Chains' work. It was recorded with "What the Hell Have I" in April 1993 for the Arnold Schwarzenegger film The Last Action Hero (1993). This was the first time that bassist Mike Inez, who replaced Mike Starr, joined Alice In Chains in the studio. "A Little Bitter" was later remixed for Alice In Chains' Music Bank (1999). This remix was included on The Essential Alice in Chains (2006) as well. You can also find a concert version of "A Little Bitter," which was recorded in at the Kemper Arena in Kansas, on Alice In Chains' Live (2000). This Missouri show took place on July 3rd, 1996. Alice In Chains was touring in support of Kiss that night. Staley overdosed afterward and was rushed to the hospital. Thankfully, he was revived. (Ironically, Alice In Chains had been chosen to replace Stone Temple Pilots on that 4-show your because Stone Temple Pilots's frontman Scott Weiland had been forced to return to rehab.) Staley ultimately passed away on April 5th, 2002, in his Seattle condo. He told Mike Starr that he had been visited by the ghost of his late fiancée, Demri Parrott, with whom he had broken up in 1994, shortly beforehand. If this story has made you feel depressed, do not play Alice In Chains' improvised "Love Song" for the purposes of comic relief and in order to appreciate Layne and crew in all of their youthful caprice.

Sentenced "Killing Me Killing You" 

Although Sentenced disbanded in 2005, their presence in the Finnish metal scene is sorely missed. During the course of their career, Sentenced made the enormous leap from death metal to easily accessible "goth" metal. For this reason, metalheads might be taken aback to learn that a video exists of Sentenced covering Darkthrone's "Cromlech" in 1992. ("Cromlech," which is not to be confused with the demo tape by the same name, is the opening track on Darkthrone's death metal debut album, Soulside Journey [1991].) According to the account that posted the video, "Old Black Metal," Sentenced shared the stage on that occasion with bands like Beherit and Old Funeral, who played their final show that evening. (Abbath Doom Occulta co-founded Old Funeral and later quit in order to form Immortal with Demonaz in 1990. Demonaz was among the musicians to have passed through Old Funeral's ranks).

Ville Laihiala, who joined Sentenced in 1996, is the frontman who gave "Killing Me Killing You" its iconic sound. Because his deep, chilling voice is as sexy as they come, it is a bit perplexing to think that he and another one of Finland's greatest voices co-existed in the same band for a brief period. From the beginning, Ville played guitar in Poisonblack, which he founded in 2000. Yet, Juha-Pekka Leppäluoto was the group's original singer. JP left Poisonblack after the group's debut album, Escapexstacy (2003), to focus on his work with Charon, which broke up in 2015. After failing to find a new frontman, Ville took over vocal duties for Poisonblack as well. After all, he was the best choice possible. Nevertheless, the strain of playing guitar and singing must have been taken its toll.

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Deathstars – "Blood Stains Blondes"

What does one do when it becomes evident that black metal has been destroyed by posers, "blackpackers," and the abuse of technology to produce "clinical" and sometimes even sparkly sounds?! Sadly, it has even been stated that current BM bands that lack a sense of self-irony are "pathetic." As strange as it may sound, Deathstars are the product of what happens when musicians who are extreme in spirit are forced to cope with being part of the "Synthetic Generation." All of the band's original four members had been part of the Strömstad scene and are, in fact, former black metallers. At one point or another, they all played in a BM band called Swordmaster. Deathstars' former drummer "Bone W. Machine," or Ole Öhman, is famous for his time with Dissection, with whom he relocated to Gothenburg. You can hear Öhman on Dissection's first two albums. He was a childhood friend of Dissection's mastermind, Jon Nödtveidt — the late brother of Deathstars' co-founder, Emil Nödtveidt, a.k.a. "Nightmare Industries," who played live with Dissection in 1997. (Of course, Dissection was known for blending black metal and melodic death metal in a way that was innovative, genius, and still brutal. Unfortunately, however, very few bands can pull off anything remotely similar without making music that sounds like the symptom of the decline of an [un]holy subgenre.) Deathstars supported Dissection at their final show on June 24th, 2006, which was dubbed Midsummer Massacre. Although this concert was professionally filmed, the DVD has never been released. Like Dissection, Deathstars have been remarkably innovative. Deathstars' frontman, "Whiplasher Bernadotte," or Andreas Bergh has described Deathstars as having one foot in the cemeteries of Scandinavia and one foot on Sunset Strip. Rather than abandoning their BM worship of death, Deathstars has put a humorous spin on it. They have brilliantly turned everything that defiles black metal (from a purist's POV) to their favor by creating a "deathglam" style that is unquestionably their own. Deathstars' albums are highly polished and beautifully produced by none other than Emil.

"Blood Stains Blondes" is an especially amusing song from Deathstars' third album, Night Electric Night (2009). Whiplasher sings: "You always will swallow my lies with a twist of steel. Cut deep into the flesh. Ride the spikes." Andreas takes poetic inspiration from the likes Dostoevsky and Bulgakov. However, he has described Deathstars' lyrics as the "primitive" complement to the group's meticulously crafted music. Whiplasher's distinctively low voice is sure to kill you and your date. For your Valentine's Day from hell, we also suggest listening to Deathstars' "Little Angel": "Tell me now how your wings got broken. Tell me now how your spine got whipped by leather. Tell me now how your tongue got split. Tell me all the things you need to drift away." "Trinity Fields" is simultaneously one of the funniest and creepiest songs you will ever come across: "Hear him breathe as you pray. His tongue licks your palms. Feel him seduce when you pray. There's oral sex in his psalms." Isn't this band the best?! Our other picks by Deathstars include "Play God," "The Rape of Virtue," and "Termination Bliss." We look forward to Deathstars' upcoming album, which will hopefully come out sometime soon.

The 69 Eyes – "Dead Girls Are Easy"

Necrophilia is a sure-fire way to skeeve out your (presumably) better half. "Dead Girls Are Easy" is not only one of The 69 Eyes' best tracks, it is also one of the most memorable death n' roll songs from Finland. Thanks to The 69 Eyes' perfect blend glam and goth, "Dead Girls Are Easy" remains as fresh in 2022 as it was when it first premiered on Radio Bam in 2009. The video below, which was posted on Playboy's website, is a bit of a nerd's wet dream. It was directed by Bam Margera, whose decision to cast his then-wife, Missy Rothstein, as one of the models is such a grand act of nepotism that it will make you gag. Viewers cannot help but notice vocalist Jyrki 69's resemblance to a gothic Elvis.

If you think that this song is freaky in a bad way, just remember that Jyrki has done good work for UNICEF to fight human trafficking, the exploitation of minors, etc. Last year, The 69 Eyes' most excellent drummer, Jussi 69, spoke with Sanna Marin, Finland's Prime Minister, regarding Covid-19 restrictions. This strange fact tells you everything that you need to know about the group's status in Finland.

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Marduk – "Sex with Satan" (Piledriver Cover)

True Norwegian black metallers have criticized Swedish extreme bands for making "Life Metal." That said, Marduk is so cool that even Marduk approved of them. (The late Mayhem co-founder corresponded with Marduk's guitarist "Evil," Morgan Steinmeyer Håkansson.) Marduk's cover "Sex with Satan," a song by the Canadian band Piledriver, will not disappoint your expectations of wickedness. (The original is pretty sick as well, so check that out if you want to learn the meaning of Darkthrone's "Canadian Metal.") "Sex with Satan" can be found on Marduk's EP Glorification (1996) along with covers of songs like Bathory's "The Return of Darkness & Evil" and Venom's "Hellchild."

Gorgasm "Infection Induced Erection" 

Gorgasm is one of America's most disgusting death metal bands. The list of Gorgasm songs that would certainly induce panic if ever played at the disco seems endless: "Post Coital Truncation," "Deadfuck," "Mouthful of Menstruation" "Kuntkiller," "Clitoral Circumcision," "Sadistic Bliss," "Repulsive Cuntortion," "Anal Skewer," "Stabwound Intercourse," etc. Surprisingly, this killer band has been around since 1994. Gorgasm released their first demo cassette, Gorgasm, in 1996. Their first album, Bleeding Profusely, was first issued in 2001. Gorgasm's most recent release, Destined to Violate, came out in 2014. The sad reality that these psychos, who are probably thoroughly nice individuals, have not taken the world by storm is one of metal's biggest mysteries.

Perhaps the fact that Gorgasm has failed to become a household name has something to do with lyrics like those featured on "Infection Induced Erection" from Orgy of Murder (2011)?! — "Spreading STDs, my gift for the community. Hookers, I spread their filth, syphilis, gonorrhea, AIDs, Chalamydia, and genital warts. I spread the fucking disease. Forcing my puss-filled cock, rock hard with abscess… All whores die by my infected shaft." It should be stressed that Gorgasm's material, like that of Steel Panther, for example, does not reflect the perspectives of the band members. Think of Gorgasm's wickedly narrated songs as you would think of a horror-movie villain.

HIM – "Join Me in Death" (Demo Version) 

HIM's frontman Ville Valo is one of the most attractive men on the planet. For that reason alone, it is best not to let your loved one so much as see Ville's image unless you want to create an obsession that is sure to annoy you. Unfortunately, HIM played their final show on December 31st, 2017. Yet, Ville Valo surprised fans in 2020 when he released the EP Gothica Fennica Vol. 1 under the VV moniker. The content, which sounds almost exactly like HIM, proves that "Love Metal" is still alive. Ville has also rekindled his collaboration with the Finnish group Agents for a limited time since retiring from HIM. We anticipate that the "Heartkiller" singer will continue to show his fans "Love, the Hardest Way" by remaining somewhat mysterious in the foreseeable future.

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Slippery When Dead (1998) was the blueprint for Razorblade Romance (2000), which is a fantastic album, even if it may seem too saccharine for some metalheads to digest. Razorblade Romance should have been produced by the man responsible for #12 on our list — "Hiili," or Kai Hiilesmaa. Instead, HIM opted to make the trip to Rockfield Studios in Wales, where heavyweights like Black Sabbath have recorded. Slippery When Dead is significantly darker, colder, and more gothic than Razorblade Romance. When a little more pressure is applied to the figurative blade, listen to how the dry humor pours out during the course of the former, demo effort.

On Slippery When Dead, the lyrics for "Poison Girl" and "Join Me in Death" overlap in places. In the former recording, Ville croons: "Cut my wrists. I'm open wide for you. Turning wide paler and I'm dying to be with you." In the "Join Me in Death" demo variant, this line is slightly altered: "Slowly I cut my wrists…" (You can hear Ville performing this version live in 1998.) As classic as the finished product remains, "Join Me in Death" was certainly cheekier in its original state. Yet, during an appearance on The Harald Schmidt Show, Valo made an impish modification to this pop hit that restored some of its wickedness a couple of months after RR's release. He sang "Your life ain't worth living" instead of "This life ain't worth living" the final two times around. We also recommend listening to the "Razorblade Kiss" demo, which was called "Razorblade Romance," and the RR outtake "Too Happy to Be Alive."

Ville Valo has taken inspiration from the artist represented by #10 on our list, London After Midnight's Sean Brennan. In 2003, Valo and Brennan appeared together on the cover of the German magazine Orkus. During their encounter, the former brought items for the latter to sign. Ville has revealed that he has been a fan of LAM's music since 1995. Ville has influences that are more diverse than one might expect. He once told Kerrang: "I wanted to be in a black metal band, but when I heard Dimmu Borgir's Enthrone Darkness Triumphant [1997], I knew there was no point." (Although this statement was likely intended as a compliment to Dimmu Borgir and producer Peter Tägtgren, it could also express the elitist notion that this totally "un-necro," album helped to commercialize black metal with its use of synthesizers, keyboards, etc. Championing the second school of thought, Mayhem's Necrobutcher has politely expressed the sentiment that keyboards really do not belong in black metal unless they're used in some kind of "weird" way.)

Asphyx – "'Til Death Do Us Part" 

Asphyx is clearly one of the Netherlands' best bands. They promise you "Death the Brutal Way." "'Til Death Do Us Part" hails from Asphyx's eponymous 1994 album. Ron van Pol's agonized vocals are enough to damn you to eternal rest: "Violation of the vows, death is soon to come. Divorce is final, your life is no more. Your flesh will decompose and return to nothing. Your soul will vanish to a place, where no man has gone before."

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In their most recent album, Necroceros (2021), Asphyx criticizes the plastic surgery boom with the song "Botox Implosion." Because cosmetic procedures have become popular Valentine's Day gifts, it may put you in poor standing with your partner to be caught singing about "putrid nipples leaking pus."

Carpathian Forest "Sadomasochistic" 

You can find "Sadomasochistic" on Carpathian Forest's debut album, Black Shining Leather (1998). These endearing lyrics could only be the work of Nattefrost: "Pick up your teeth with broken fingers. Lick the blood of your cracked lips. The color purple seems to fit you. Bow down." Although it is tempting to view this song as misogynistic, it is quite clear that it comes from a place of contempt for all human life exterior to oneself. The urge to play master and thereby get high on schadenfreude is the speaker's foremost ambition: "Kneel before me and shine my shoes…" When you are done with this filthy little tune, try chilling out with Carpathian Forest's "Pierced Genitalia" and "Nekrophiliac / Anthropophagus Maniac."

Eisregen – "19 Nägel für Sophie"

Eisregen is one of the most imaginative and bizarre metal bands. Their music is instantly recognizable. Eisregen has no shortage of transgressive songs that have resulted in a fair amount of pearl-clutching over the years. Eisregen's "19 Nägel für Sophie" is a particularly strong track that will make you "Blutgeil," to name another one of their pernicious songs. By Eisregen's standards, however, "19 Nägel für Sophie" is actually moderately restrained in regard to its use of explicit imagery. The track tells the story of Sophie, a red-headed "angel" of a woman. The speaker discovers that Sophie has betrayed him by sleeping with 19 other men. Thus, the protagonist kills her other lovers. He gives Sophie each of the 19 skulls and more: "19 Nägel, 19 Nägel für Sophie. Sie blutet aus 19 Löchern so heftig wie noch nie. Ich schenk ihr 19 Nägel. 19 mal rostfreier Stahl, doch erst Nagel Nummer 19 beendet ihre Qual."/"19 nails, 19 nails for Sophie. She bleeds from 19 holes as heavily as ever. I give her 19 nails. 19 times stainless steel, but only nail number 19 ends her agony."

BONUS 

Enjoy Dope Stars Inc.'s cover of London After Midnight's cult classic "Kiss." Although this song was originally intended to shed light on crimes committed by clergymen, Dope Stars Inc. clearly choose to interpret the lyrics as a role-play, S&M fantasy: "I'm on my knees, I beg your mercy. My soul is my loss, I'm well hung from your cross."

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These “Ultrawired” boys from Rome will certainly rock your world. Their post-breakup song “Self Destructive Corp.” is a great way to prove to the outside world that you’re a total trainwreck. It will make you want to party your way into a “coma, fuck yeah!”

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