Metal music is a genre that is not known for its subtlety. From its early years back in the late 60's, metal has always been a style of music that relies on volume, intensity, and horror in order to elicit terror and intrigue in the minds of its listeners. When compiling an album experience, metal bands must take careful consideration as to how to set the tone off right from the moment the first track hits.
The highly-coveted opening track has a big job to do especially on a metal release. The tune in question definitely needs to be a headbanger of the highest variety while also not being too off-the-rails to make the rest of the album feel quaint. On the flip side, other great uses are tracks that lure the listener in with a more calming passage, almost like a lion slowly stalking its prey before pouncing.
It can be a great use of foreshadowing, a stomping metallic assault, or both at the same time. Across these albums, the opening cut always sets you up for the delightfully disturbed experience that you are about to undergo. Whether they are tearing your head off or just creating a mood, these songs will make any metalhead throw up the horns.
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