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Are Slayer songs out of key?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Vacume, Dec 27, 2006.


  1. Vacume

    Vacume

    Jan 11, 2006
    it never occured to me till now, but my freind clames they dont kno any theory, he said "Well think about wut scale is used in reigning blood" and he also said it seems as if there solos are just random notes played very fast, this seems like it could be true, any other bands u think dont use any music theory in thier songs?
     
  2. Unless they're prog, I would say most rock bands don't use theory. Chuck Berry never played anything that wasn't in A, and he was pretty much the first!
     
  3. Poop-Loops

    Poop-Loops Banned

    Mar 3, 2006
    Auburn, Washington
    Kerry King has a more chaotic style, so it could be pretty random, but Jeff Hanneman is definately more melodic.

    But metal songs pretty regularly go out of key. Listen to Symbolic by Death. The solo is meant to be off key, it sounds pretty cool. But that's basically it: if it sounds good, then use it. Keys are only there to guide you, not to box you in. Once you know the rules, you can break them. ;)
     
  4. steve21

    steve21 Banned

    I agree with how going out of key can be good (Like when Chuck Schuldiner does it), but int he case of some people (Kerry King) it's all just random notes.

    Kerry King & Tom Araya are just basically just kids banging away, IMO. Dave Lombardo's a pretty solid drummer, but drumming imo takes more of a feel than mind thing. Jeff's the only one with any real knowledge, IMO.
     
  5. Vacume

    Vacume

    Jan 11, 2006
    hhmmmmm if jeffs the only one with thoery knowledge wouldnt he constantly become frusterated with the rest of the band, wouldnt he change the songs to keep them in key, not let king do solos:meh:
     
  6. ihateusernames

    ihateusernames

    Jun 26, 2006
    I wouldn't say it's a lack of theory on any part of the band members. Unless anyone on here has met them and quized them on theory none of us should be pointing that finger.

    There are plenty of times that it would appear Kerry King is tone deaf or is choosing to ignore the key when soloing. Could very well be a lack of theory knowledge....or just his preference and style.
     
  7. bassbully43

    bassbully43

    Jul 1, 2005
    Be real...theory in rock music for the most part is thrown right out the window and i for one am glad for that. Rock music and alot of music isnt about the proper note and structure its about the song and the feel and if it sounds good it is good...thats rocks theory ...right there! To say one person in a band who is theory trained would try to change anothers way of playing is wrong. I've played with theory trained players and took/take a few tips but will not allow them to change me or my style and truely they have never tried.

    Slayer is known for in your face playing and moster riffs and leads to be or out a step or key is part of their sound and makes it all the better. Remember in rock there are no rules and that is the rule...look at the Ramones...3 chords and a cloud of dust but those tunes will live on forever...theory....yes usefull...i studied it in tech school and Voc school when i as younger also in law enforcement to an extent come to think about it my Social Services training but its the practical hands on training i.e. in music playing the bass putting notes ,scales words and music together that is what it is all about. Throw out the books and get out the music...besides the people (crowd) dont care if you know the circle of fifths upsides down just play us a good song and rock out. :bassist:
     
  8. WalterBush

    WalterBush

    Feb 27, 2005
    Yuma, Az
    Full disclosure, I'm a certified Fender technician working in a music store that carries Fender, Yamaha, and Ibanez products among others.
    Tom Araya was listening to Jeff Berlin and studying jazz music from his home when Kerry King introduced him to Judas Priest. That's from an interview in GFPM, if anyone remembers that magazine.

    Both Jeff Hanneman and Kerry King have the same guitar teacher, and continue to study with him. They know what they're doing, and if they play atonally, it's because they prefer it.

    Lots of people (my mother and my wife, for instance) would listen to Allen Holdsworth, Mike Stern, or the Kronos Quartet and say they're just playing a bunch of notes out of key, too.
     
  9. Toasted

    Toasted

    May 26, 2003
    Leeds, UK
    You only think that they're off-key because they melted your ears off.
     
  10. neptoon

    neptoon Supporting Member

    Jul 25, 2000
    Cape Canaveral, FL
    :D
     
  11. Poop-Loops

    Poop-Loops Banned

    Mar 3, 2006
    Auburn, Washington
    Disagree. A lot of good metal (and I guess rock... =/) uses theory.

    People who tell you that theory isn't needed and such are basically dreamers who want to be like Hendrix. They think that music is somehow outside the realm of conventional learning and you either "have it" or you "don't".

    People (even on here) who have learned by ear and have no theory or any formal training say they don't need it. But the people who did start learning suddenly say it opened their eyes.

    Theory is never a bad thing and should not be looked down upon. It's how you use it that matters.

    *cough* METALLICA *cough*
     
  12. jady

    jady

    Jul 21, 2006
    Modesto, CA
    You have to learn the rules to break them.

    Thats what my music theory prof told me when I wanted to know why I needed to learn counterpoint.

    Take Larry LaLonde from Primus. I have heard that guy play an entire album and not once play a note in the right key but he is a highly trained guitarist. It's actually pretty hard to be dissonant ALL the time.
     
  13. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize!

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    I would argue that many rock, and even more blues, players learned theory the hard way. They kept playing until they learned what worked and what didn't.

    Learning formal theory just gives you a way of describing what is being played. Instead of going "I played a B chord like this" you can say "it is a B7sus4".
     
  14. bassbully43

    bassbully43

    Jul 1, 2005
    To say one person in a band who is theory trained would try to change anothers way of playing is wrong. I've played with theory trained players and took/take a few tips but will not allow them to change me or my style and truely they have never tried.[/quote]
    live it learn it!
    *cough* METALLICA *cough*[/QUOTE]

    yea..... wish like all you all this site we had the gig when Jason left...yep ya'll know you would...not bad for a bunch for chord moshers..oh wheres their theory book...James needs it :D
     
  15. bassbully43

    bassbully43

    Jul 1, 2005
    Is that the same as the school of hard knocks? Im am a Grad:) I agree with this post theory helps you understand offen what you already knew but didnt know you did...at least form my standpoint.
     
  16. Scottgun

    Scottgun

    Jan 24, 2004
    South Carolina
    Blues, metal, pop, prog, RIO, Zappa and just about any genre you can think of employ theory, structure, rules, etc. whether a band is formally or actively aware of them or not.

    Slayer's guitarist is probably not thinking, "ok, on this solo I will use the mixolydian mode", but in more general thinking of double-picking a pattern on the upper strings and throwing in a bunch of wammy-bar wiggles. It's still rules, just not formally defined rules.
     
  17. very true!

    i agree with this a lot too--a lot of musicians have learned on a trial-and-error basis
     
  18. Poop-Loops

    Poop-Loops Banned

    Mar 3, 2006
    Auburn, Washington
    live it learn it!
    *cough* METALLICA *cough*[/QUOTE]

    yea..... wish like all you all this site we had the gig when Jason left...yep ya'll know you would...not bad for a bunch for chord moshers..oh wheres their theory book...James needs it :D[/QUOTE]

    I'm very sorry. I really don't understand this post. The quotes mess with my head and the last bit is confusing. :(
     
  19. Slayer rocks!! I used to play a few of their songs before taking a break on bass - Angel of Death, Dead Skin Mask, Seasons in the Abyss, Blood Red and a few other old ones

    Perhaps the fact Slayer tune all their songs down half a step has some bearing on songs being perceived to be "out of key"?

    And isn't moving from key to key a normal thing in a song, which is why there are notes referred to as "passing tones" or am I misunderstanding those as well? :)

    Cheers
     
  20. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize!

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    I think you are confusing chord changes with key changes. Passing tones are used to move from one chord to the next.

    For example a simple song in D might have the chords D G A . A common passing tone going from D to G might be F#.

    In country music key changes are fairly common but you usually only change once. "Five Feet High and Rising" by Johnny Cash is an example of a song with many key changes. However, the chord progression (I IV V) stays the same.
     

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