#1
Hey UG Pit-dwellers,
I have another school assignment, and i need a bit of your help.
I have to write a contrasting essay on the differences between rock and metal music.
Rock and metal would seem like very similar genres of music to the untrained ear, but I thought rock and metal were close enough genres to find some differences. So, what are some of the main differences between metal and rock?
Any help you can offer would be great.

Thanks!
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#2
Show the class some Led Zeppelin (rock).

Show the class some Darkthrone (metal/black metal).

That's a pretty big contrast.

Edit: NVM, just read it's an essay. Still, my point stands.
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#3
I mean, the differences in the genres.
I do know that metal uses different scales/percussion/vocals than rock, but that's all I know.
Call me Wes.
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#4
Untrained ear ? I wouldn't put it like that. Its more a thing of people not liking metal and or rock and to them its the same.

AC/DC - Rock
PanterA - Metal

You have to have some hella "untrained" ears to not notice the difference there. So please don't include that sentence in your essay.

"Rock and metal would seem like very similar genres of music to the untrained ear,"

Cheers and good luck with it.
#5
It kind of depends on which type of metal you're talking about. Metal is a very broad genre of music, just like rock is. You could compare Slayer and AC/DC, or you could compare Deeds of Flesh and Pink Floyd, and both comparisons would be entirely different.
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#6
Well... if you want to do something like the differences between some basic stuff, like Zeppelin versus Maiden, just pick on the scales, the lyrical topics, the image and the instrumentation.

^what he said too.
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#7
Quote by metal4life592
It kind of depends on which type of metal you're talking about. Metal is a very broad genre of music, just like rock is. You could compare Slayer and AC/DC, or you could compare Deeds of Flesh and Pink Floyd, and both comparisons would be entirely different.


But your comparing sub genres. Of course people would hear the difference. Try AC/DC and Judas Priest. Much more of a challenge for people with untrained ears.
#8
Quote by metal4life592
Show the class some Led Zeppelin (rock).

Show the class some Darkthrone (metal/black metal).

That's a pretty big contrast.

Edit: NVM, just read it's an essay. Still, my point stands.



but not always Deep purple are heavy metal if you contrasted them to each other then its a much smaller contrast
#9
Put it like this. Metal = Fire, and Rock N Roll = whatever element you think suits best. What I mean by that is that they are in the same circle, but work in different ways. I'm not creative. Procrastination FTW!
#10
Seeing as how metal is part of rock, asking for the differences between the two is like asking for the differences between stratocasters and electric guitars.
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#11
Quote by metaldud536
But your comparing sub genres. Of course people would hear the difference. Try AC/DC and Judas Priest. Much more of a challenge for people with untrained ears.


Yeah, I think I'm just getting a little too specific with the subgenres here.
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#12
No... ARGH...
I mean, the technicalities of rock and metal.
Like, the differences in the vocals, the percussion, and the melodies?
That's what i'm asking.
And by untrained ear, I mean people who don't listen to rock or metal at all. Alot of people might just call both of them rock, or both of them metal, without distinguishing between them (atleast the people I know do this).
The point of a contrast essay is to find differences between two things that appear to be similar. And I will be reffering probably to classic metal (iron maiden, black sabbath) and general rock (led zeppelin, gnr)
Call me Wes.
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#13
Quote by metal4life592
It kind of depends on which type of metal you're talking about. Metal is a very broad genre of music, just like rock is. You could compare Slayer and AC/DC, or you could compare Deeds of Flesh and Pink Floyd, and both comparisons would be entirely different.


Exactly.

The primary differences in general (note general) is that metal had a much darker feel to it, as well as differing vocal styles (the distinctive styles being very clear, high Iron Maiden style 'Power metal' vocals and death vocals), lyrical content (cannibal corpse), playing styles (double bass drumming, often far for virtuosic playing) and (ofen very noticably) different distortion levels.

Metal is often much darker sounding and/or heavier than rock.
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#14
As a broad generalization, all forms of Metal have moved away from the old blues roots of Rock 'n' Roll. Metal uses less of the Pentatonic Minor/Blues blues scale and mostly use diatonic scales, harmonic minors or chromatics depending on sub-genre. The lyrics focus a lot less on love and promiscuity and more on relatively original stuff (like fermented offal discharges ). Metal has more distortion too...
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#15
Quote by darkarbiter7
No... ARGH...
I mean, the technicalities of rock and metal.
Like, the differences in the vocals, the percussion, and the melodies?
That's what i'm asking.
And by untrained ear, I mean people who don't listen to rock or metal at all. Alot of people might just call both of them rock, or both of them metal, without distinguishing between them (atleast the people I know do this).
The point of a contrast essay is to find differences between two things that appear to be similar. And I will be reffering probably to classic metal (iron maiden, black sabbath) and general rock (led zeppelin, gnr)


Ohhhh, okay. I see what you mean now, but that's a little harder to point out than what I said earlier.
Quote by Trefellin
You know a music scene is fucked up when it becomes difficult to keep track of who killed who, who committed suicide and who alledgedly engaged in cannibalism.

LastFM
#17
Rock has its roots in blues. While some metal has strong blues influences (Megadeth), it's got far more roots in classical music. That's the main difference, and it's really hearable... Rock also utilizes the major scale a lot more, while metal is almost exclusively minor (lots of harmonic minor), or it's somewhat atonal, with roots in jazz. You should however mention that today, they blend together a lot, and there's no clear line between the two.
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#19
Quote by Raziel2p
Rock has its roots in blues. While some metal has strong blues influences (Megadeth), it's got far more roots in classical music. That's the main difference, and it's really hearable... Rock also utilizes the major scale a lot more, while metal is almost exclusively minor (lots of harmonic minor), or it's somewhat atonal, with roots in jazz. You should however mention that today, they blend together a lot, and there's no clear line between the two.


Thanks. That solves the melody part.
Is there a huge difference in percussion too? It seems like drums in metal are a bit more emphasized than the drums in rock music. Can someone clarify or add to this?
Call me Wes.
Gear:
Fender American Deluxe HSS Strat
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Bad Cat Cougar 5
1957 Gibson GA-5
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#20
Quote by darkarbiter7
Thanks. That solves the melody part.
Is there a huge difference in percussion too? It seems like drums in metal are a bit more emphasized than the drums in rock music. Can someone clarify or add to this?


Bass drum is used far more.

More blast beats.

Generally faster drumming.
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#21
Quote by gm jack
Bass drum is used far more.

More blast beats.

Generally faster drumming.


Thanks!

Now onto the vocals, I know that metal singers seem to scream/growl, but i just wanted to clarify that. Also, I have to write a whole paragraph on each point (melody, drums, vocals), so if you can add more than one difference, that'd be quite nice.
Call me Wes.
Gear:
Fender American Deluxe HSS Strat
Chicago Blues Box Roadhouse
Bad Cat Cougar 5
1957 Gibson GA-5
Ceriatone 18w TMB Combo
Hughes & Kettner Tube Factor
Various Ibanez TS9s
Weber MASS Attenuator
#22
easy, syncopation.

The diference between rock in metal is cadence (of drums and bass/guitar

rock goes dun-dah-dun-dah-dun

metal goes dun-dahdah-dun-dahdah-dun.


met
#23
Maybe this has been said, ia havent read all the posts but...

If your first doing an essay you gotta include a short genesis of both rock and metal, an array of subgenres and how they are characteraized(sp) and actually teach people the difference beetween the genres, a good starting point for research would be https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=474076 this great thread
#24
Quote by darkarbiter7
No... ARGH...
I mean, the technicalities of rock and metal.
Like, the differences in the vocals, the percussion, and the melodies?
That's what i'm asking.
And by untrained ear, I mean people who don't listen to rock or metal at all. Alot of people might just call both of them rock, or both of them metal, without distinguishing between them (atleast the people I know do this).
The point of a contrast essay is to find differences between two things that appear to be similar. And I will be reffering probably to classic metal (iron maiden, black sabbath) and general rock (led zeppelin, gnr)

Mention how most metal songs feature at least one fast tempo, high pitched solo while rock settles for slightly slower, less flashy solos.
#25
Metal drumming = lots of cymbals, open hats most of the time, more double bass, lots of tom fills.
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#26
Although Rock music has some technical stuff, IMO Metal in general is more technical. Especially song structure. Also, Rock covers everything from Bob Seger to bands like Seether which can be heavier than some NWOBM bands.

edit: I think it could be really hard to compare both of these genres just because they both have so many sub-genres. Might be easier to compare to sub-genres instead, try explaining to people the difference between metalcore and deathmetal. a lot of n00bs can't tell them apart despite what seems to me as obvious differences.
Last edited by Godsmack_IV at Dec 10, 2007,
#27
Don't forget to also take in all the subgeres in metal (folk, thrash, power, neo-classical, etc) there's a clear difference between exodus (metal) and the who (rock)
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