SoS16: Fade to Black

SoS16: Fade to Black

Welcome to Songs of Significance, chronicling the songs that have helped shape me and people across generations.

Fade to Black, Metallica, from the 1984 album, Ride the Lightning

Line of Significance

Things not what they used to be/Missing one inside of me/Deathly loss, this can’t be real/I cannot stand this hell I feel

The common musical misconception is that Metallica’s first foray into the land of the power ballad was with Nothing Else Matters off the 1991 Black album. Long before then, long before the evolution of James Hetfield from a metalhead screamer into a lyrical singer, Fade to Black came out and spoke of the inner pain and turmoil of life. and the desire for it to just stop. There’s something so melodic about the intro, and though, yes, the song picks up pace to get into the same ZIP code of most fast-as-you-can-play Metallica songs of the era, it’s downright classical in its beauty.

And live? Well, you can’t beat this song live.

B. Goode is by no means a music critic and has zippo in the way of actual music theory education. He is simply a fan of music who grew up in Seattle and loves delving into the significance of songs.


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