#1
I have noticed in some songs, they do not appear to follow a certain scale. An example of this is the second riff in For Whom the Bell Tolls by Metallica

-------------------
-------------------
-------------------
-------------------
2-5-4-3-2-5-4-3
0-3-2-1-0-3-2-1

This means the scale would have to include the notes E, B, D, G, C#, F#, C, and F, which for starters is more notes than you would find in most scales.

Am i incorrect or are Metallica breaking the rules
#2
there are instances where keys can change. the rules, however, can be bent, not broken.
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#3
yeh the're breaking the rules ...

but if you add enough distortion and it sounds badass than it's metal


and what he said ^
#7
it's not really done for dissonance purposes in the strictest sense... that chromaticism in 'For Whom The Bell Tolls' is used for passing tone purposes and to create a strong downward movement to the tonal center

in fact the Metallica style of thrash metal removes 'vertical' dissonance almost entirely (reducing most of any one chord to roots and fifths) in favour of 'horizontal' dissonance (where a chord or note is only harmonically 'wrong' because of what it preceeded)

that kind of thing works because although you have a series of chords that don't appear to be connected harmonically, you DO have so many other things that tie what you hear together... like Neilsyboy said, you have the distortion: the timbre of the sound is consistent from chord to chord.. the rhythm is usually very tight and regimented.. and the sound of the chord itself is the same (usually a powerchord)... so although the chords might not 'work' harmonically, you perceive a strong relationship between the two chords because of all the other stuff

that's the bigger picture of harmony and music... notes and scales and chords are just one tiny part that conditions how we hear music... it can be frustrating to see people concentrate so much on scales all the time when there's timbre, rhythm and phrasing that contribute so much more to the overall picture... i.e. "I want to play X type of music... what scale do I use??" .... most of the time it doesn't matter as much as you think
#9
^ + 1

secondly, in descripitive terms it would be chromatic emphasizing Minor tonality. in fact, i think everything metallica has written emphasizes minor tonality.
#10
Quote by z4twenny
^ + 1

secondly, in descripitive terms it would be chromatic emphasizing Minor tonality. in fact, i think everything metallica has written emphasizes minor tonality.


how can they do that? why does it emphasize minor tonality rather than major?

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#11
^ well the most basic description i could give you in this sense is that there is a root and a minor third, a second and a minor second. the root and minor third really outline the minor tonality feel of it. if you were to break it up into 2 different scale bits put together you would have

1,2,b3
and
1,b2,b3
both of which are considered minor scales

so basically everything about it says minor.

also what inflatablefilth said is very accurate in this case.
#12
i see, so if i were to do

-----------
-----------
-----------
-----------
-6-5-4-3-2-
-4-3-2-1-0-


it would be a chromatic run emphasising major tonality because it starts on a major 3rd and ends on the root?

"The mind is its own place, and in itself

Can make a Heav'n of Hell, a Hell of Heav'n"

- John Milton, Paradise Lost
#13
Quote by Wonthefu
You don't sit down and write a song using theory. You sit down and write a song, then use theory to understand why what you wrote sounds the way it does.


i disagree, you can use theory to get an idea of what to play to get the sound and feel you wish.
#14
Quote by Gacel
i disagree, you can use theory to get an idea of what to play to get the sound and feel you wish.


This is true, but it doesn't change the fact that theory is a descriptive system, not a prescriptive one.
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#15
Quote by Random3
I have noticed in some songs, they do not appear to follow a certain scale. An example of this is the second riff in For Whom the Bell Tolls by Metallica

-------------------
-------------------
-------------------
-------------------
2-5-4-3-2-5-4-3
0-3-2-1-0-3-2-1

This means the scale would have to include the notes E, B, D, G, C#, F#, C, and F, which for starters is more notes than you would find in most scales.

Am i incorrect or are Metallica breaking the rules


its not breaking "the rules". They are using chromatics.
shred is gaudy music
#16
Quote by metallicafan616
i see, so if i were to do

-----------
-----------
-----------
-----------
-6-5-4-3-2-
-4-3-2-1-0-


it would be a chromatic run emphasising major tonality because it starts on a major 3rd and ends on the root?


MAYBE if you played something major sounding over it, it MIGHT sound major. i'd be inclined to still say no however because you've still got the minor 2nd and minor 3rd in there and i'd call the major 3rd a flattened 4th
#17
sorry for the double post, i keep trying to edit my previous post and it keeps killing my IE

i would call this


D--------------
A-2-6-5-4---
E-0-4-3-2---


implying major tonality (e major) because you have a natural 2nd and a major 3rd and i would call the b3 a passing tone
#18
Quote by inflatablefilth
it's not really done for dissonance purposes in the strictest sense... that chromaticism in 'For Whom The Bell Tolls' is used for passing tone purposes and to create a strong downward movement to the tonal center

in fact the Metallica style of thrash metal removes 'vertical' dissonance almost entirely (reducing most of any one chord to roots and fifths) in favour of 'horizontal' dissonance (where a chord or note is only harmonically 'wrong' because of what it preceeded)

that kind of thing works because although you have a series of chords that don't appear to be connected harmonically, you DO have so many other things that tie what you hear together... like Neilsyboy said, you have the distortion: the timbre of the sound is consistent from chord to chord.. the rhythm is usually very tight and regimented.. and the sound of the chord itself is the same (usually a powerchord)... so although the chords might not 'work' harmonically, you perceive a strong relationship between the two chords because of all the other stuff

that's the bigger picture of harmony and music... notes and scales and chords are just one tiny part that conditions how we hear music... it can be frustrating to see people concentrate so much on scales all the time when there's timbre, rhythm and phrasing that contribute so much more to the overall picture... i.e. "I want to play X type of music... what scale do I use??" .... most of the time it doesn't matter as much as you think


Damn! Great post!
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#20
^ yes and no, if you're just doing basic major/minor stuff over that then major is going to blend with it better i think than minor. because of the b3 you could throw minor pentatonic over it and it would sound decent too. i would still mark it as a major type.
#21
Quote by Gacel
i disagree, you can use theory to get an idea of what to play to get the sound and feel you wish.


That would be using theory to figure out what's in your head, not using theory to write a song.

Mind you there's not a huge difference between the two, but there is a difference.
#23
Quote by Random3
I have noticed in some songs, they do not appear to follow a certain scale. An example of this is the second riff in For Whom the Bell Tolls by Metallica

-------------------
-------------------
-------------------
-------------------
2-5-4-3-2-5-4-3
0-3-2-1-0-3-2-1

This means the scale would have to include the notes E, B, D, G, C#, F#, C, and F, which for starters is more notes than you would find in most scales.

Am i incorrect or are Metallica breaking the rules


Oh no! The FBI's Music Theory Department will arrest them! How can anyone be so bad and break the music theory rules???

/sarcasm

Music theory isn't set of rules. Music theory just tells us why something sounds the way it sounds. This is just a chromatic line.
Quote by Johnljones7443
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#24
These are all power chords
-------------------
-------------------
-------------------
-------------------
2-5-4-3-2-5-4-3
0-3-2-1-0-3-2-1

E5 G5 F#5 F5 E5 G5 F#5 F5
#25
Quote by Wonthefu
There are no rules.

Theory isn't rules, it's a way to describe how things sound.

You don't sit down and write a song using theory. You sit down and write a song, then use theory to understand why what you wrote sounds the way it does.

Bingo.