10 Songs You’ve Almost Certainly Never Heard — But Should. Now.

Most visitors to this site are pop fans, I presume. I’d like to introduce you to some other (mostly) female-fronted music — most of it with pop sensibilities — that’s a bit obscure. Much of it is metal — and some of it is quite heavy — but I would ask that you give it a chance.
If you’re willing to try ’em out, I would point pop listeners to tracks 2, 3, 5, and 6. Welcome to female-fronted metal!
Oh, and 11, too. The most indispensable pop song that nobody’s heard! Dammit. Go listen to that now!

1. “Falling Down” by The Birthday Massacrehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=koQwGlVbde0 — Let’s start out with something relatively mainstream. The Birthday Massacre blend synthpop, gothic rock, and a mainstream, Hot Topic-style sensibility into their music. This song is absolutely captivating. A mid-to-uptempo track that evokes a sentiment roughly akin to “How could I have been so foolish?” (Gothic rock, female-fronted.)

2. “In for a Kill” by Tarja Turunenhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-x9T7Y9_FtA — 4:47 to 6:20 only (I also recommend the first 90 seconds of the video, representing the song “Anteroom of Death”). Tarja, the former lead singer of Nightwish, has crafted her second solo album, and this song is the standout. It’s got an incredible pop sensibility while still maintaining a sense of dread. Her accent is very thick, but if you can get past it — or even embrace it — then I have no idea why anyone would dislike this song. (Symphonic metal, solo female)

 

3. “Days of Crying” by Dawn of Destinyhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fYZlHsn6BNE — Damn. What I really wanted was the song “In Between,” a six-minute epic that more perfectly captures the will to triumph than anything I’ve ever heard. However, this will have to do! This power metal steamroller is a perfect distillation of everything that I love about this sadly-unknown band. Listen to it and stand in awe! (Power metal, female-fronted)

 

4. “Cet Enfer Au Paradis” by Dark Sanctuaryhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8gMR02KZXEI — Quite possibly the most gorgeous, heartbreaking song I’ve ever heard. I can’t listen to it more than once at a time, but I always turn back to it. It’s incredibly powerful, especially through headphones — and the tension just builds and builds. (Neoclassical darkwave, female-fronted.)

 

5. “Destiny” by UnSun http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HwcIHpCV1Qg — This song is absolutely breathtaking. A mid-tempo metal song with — oddly enough — a driving guitar solo — the mood evoked is of new horizons and beginning anew. “I don’t know where I’m going, but I’m on my way…” The chorus repeats frequently, but the melody is absolutely spellbinding. (Gothic metal, female-fronted)

 

6. “I Call Her Sickness” by Rawkfisthttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dJhU6xYDmB4 — 0:42 to 1:20 only. The band is so obscure that all I could find of this video on YouTube is a forty-second clip from a video montage of “lesser-known bands.” The band’s name is absurd, but the chorus of the song — which is in the video — is very tense. (Gothic metal, female-fronted)

 

7. “Aiwass Aeon” by 1349http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Er_tYHanixI— This song is pure, nihilistic, destructive hatred! It slashes everything in its path. The riff is very menacing and the vocalist sounds like a demon. (Black metal, male-fronted)

 

8. “Gladiator” by Operatikahttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s86TeFOmI-g — This song, to me, feels like a call to arms: the fight is on the horizon, and you must face it! Infusing speed metal with a gothic sensibility, the only downside to this song is the mediocre production. But the tension-building is masterful. (Gothic speed metal, female-fronted)

 

9. “This Is How I Disappear” by My Chemical Romancehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qSgFCzGBjcg — I’ve changed about four people’s minds about My Chemical Romance after making them listen to this song. No reason why your mind can’t be changed, too. Dramatic, theatrical, very intense — and the lyrics are quite good. My most-played rock song.

 

10. “Saturate Me” by Mandy Moorehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4143g-ZXI-Y — One of the lost pop gems of the 2000s. The chorus evokes feelings of being revived and having new life breathed into you. Plus — she sang this as a 17-year-old pop star. Love her to death, but has Britney ever sang any lyric akin to “Forsaken, left here in my barren desolate: my soul is evaporating, won’t you saturate me?” Ah!

Oh, and..

11. “One Shot (7th Heaven Remix)” by The Saturdayshttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U7Pj1xO28eU — Listen to this song. Right. Fucking. Now. If you haven’t done so yet — and I’ve pestered people with many status updates about this most amazing of pop songs. My most-played pop song of all-time, this song is what would happen if you caught ABBA on a good day, set them up in a studio in 2010, and trained them to work with modern-day production tools. Everything a pop song should be. I’ve listened to this song hundreds of times and it’s still spellbinding, to me.

 

Also check out:

“On and On” by Agnes

“Last Shut of Your Eyes” by Visions of Atlantis

“Frozen Garden” by The Crest

“Funeral for Yesterday” by Kittie

“The Death of Love” by Cradle of Filth

“Out In the Real World” by Stream of Passion

“Cosmic Keys to My Creations and Times” by Emperor

“This Is My Life” by Fefe Dobson

“Fly On the Wall” by tATu

“Don’t Cry Out” by Shiny Toy Guns

“Virtue and Vice” by Delain

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18 Comments

  1. Jayden James
    Posted January 21, 2011 at 5:38 am | Permalink | Reply

    I tried !
    I only liked the first one you posted. I like symphonic metal sometimes but I have to be on the right mood.
    It’s too bad you didn’t put stuff like “Clown” or “Show Me love” for Tatu…
    Those two songs are so beautiful & artistic.
    I mean now we have female popstar always bragging about the quality of their (questionnable) work but they didn’t even have to do that because the music spoke for itself.

    • Alex Knepper
      Posted January 21, 2011 at 8:59 am | Permalink | Reply

      Clowns and Show Me Love are both great! I chose Fly On the Wall because I think that people have forgotten about tATu and might not realize that they were making music together as recently as a year or so ago. That song is easily the best on Waste Management. My five favorite tATu songs are probably Clowns, Sacrifice, All About Us, Show Me Love and Malchik Gay, though!

      • Posted January 21, 2011 at 7:33 pm | Permalink | Reply

        Fly On The Wall the best out of WM!?

        Guuuurl… I think White Robe is the best 😀

  2. Jayden James
    Posted January 21, 2011 at 6:42 am | Permalink | Reply

    By the way “Birthday Massacre” got some heavy 80s influence.
    Like Corey Hart, Visage, Berlin & Secret Service !
    Night Time is really nice too.

    • Alex Knepper
      Posted January 21, 2011 at 9:00 am | Permalink | Reply

      My favorites by them are Kill the Lights, …To Die For (2007 Version), Midnight, Walking With Strangers, and the song I posted. Overall their instrumentals are gorgeous but their hooks often fall short.

  3. Jayden James
    Posted January 21, 2011 at 6:48 am | Permalink | Reply

    Oops I forgot thank you for making me discover “Birthday Massacre” it’s exactly the kind of music I needed now !
    I kinda listened to “Paradise Lost”(you should try it if you like symphonic metal) for too long and I’m happy to have found a new band which is influenced by all the music I love.

    • Alex Knepper
      Posted January 21, 2011 at 9:01 am | Permalink | Reply

      I actually saw them live! They opened for Nightwish when I saw them in 2007. I wasn’t familiar with their music so I don’t really remember much, though — hah! I was too excited for Nightwish!

  4. Jayden James
    Posted January 21, 2011 at 6:49 am | Permalink | Reply

    [IMG]http://i52.tinypic.com/2mysyde.jpg[/IMG]

  5. Jayden James
    Posted January 21, 2011 at 9:24 am | Permalink | Reply

    By the way, I think it’s a very good idea to expand the blog to some pop culture & music stuff.
    It permits the reader to breathe between your flawless debunking of Project GaGa’s charade.

    • Alex Knepper
      Posted January 21, 2011 at 1:56 pm | Permalink | Reply

      I’m thinking about starting my own pop music site; branching out of this.

  6. LadyBritBrit
    Posted January 21, 2011 at 6:39 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Never Enough by Epica is my life, as is The Obsessive Devotion.
    I also like Within Temptation and After Forever alot

    • Posted January 22, 2011 at 12:29 pm | Permalink | Reply

      I saw Epica in concert a couple of months ago. They performed Obsessive Devotion and I about shit my pants. They also did other faves of mine like Martyr of the Free Word, Resign to Surrender, Cry for the Moon, Consign to Oblivion, and Sancta Terra. They didn’t do my absolute faves, though: Menace of Vanity and Burn to a Cinder. Alas!

      I will go to my deathbed upset that I missed After Forever. They had a show in my area that I skipped since it was one day after the Nightwish show I’d gone to and I didn’t want to miss another day of school.

      Then After Forever broke up.

      I will forever hate myself for missing my one chance to see After Forever live.

      WT’s new album art scares the shit out of me. It’s so horrible. And Where Is the Edge is not impressive. They’d better get their shit together fast or we’re in for a disappointing era.

      Delain is amazing and I hope they come to the US! See Me In Shadow, The Gathering, Frozen, Virtue and Vice, April Rain, Nothing Left…ahh!

      • LadyBritBrit
        Posted January 23, 2011 at 8:56 pm | Permalink | Reply

        So jealous, The Obsessive Devotion is my life…I love The Divine Conspiracy in general and Design Your Universe.
        Simone is one lady who sings in that classical powerful way and I don’t hate it. She brings emotion to her work and sounds really engaged and loves her job.

        Epica’s my favourite band, then Within Temptation, then After Forever, then Delain.

  7. LadyBritBrit
    Posted January 21, 2011 at 6:42 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Delain is also awesome

  8. Ashley
    Posted January 29, 2011 at 6:38 am | Permalink | Reply

    Felt obligated to tell you that the Mandy Moore song is beautiful, thank you for posting it. I would’ve probably never heard it otherwise. ❤

  9. raisafromthecity
    Posted January 31, 2011 at 10:30 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Shiny Toy Guns is amazing, I love the electro-rock, synth feel they have..have you heard “When did this storm begin?” by Shiny Toy Guns. Amazing!

  10. LadyBritBrit
    Posted February 13, 2011 at 7:17 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Whoa Saturate Me is good!

  11. Lollopy Dpg
    Posted September 15, 2011 at 4:13 pm | Permalink | Reply

    You should listen to some of the late Lina Morgana’s songs – she worked with Gaga before her death and they made a great pair.

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