I thought it might be a good idea to start a thread about this... In my absence from here I've read a lot of lyrics and written very little, but I've noticed a couple of things about some lyrics that make my blood boil and I thought it might be a good idea to hear what people's perks are when it comes to lyrics. I'm guilty of some of these things in the past, but hey, I'm always learning :p
1. Lyrics are lyrics and not cool sounding words strung together.
It makes my blood boil savagely when someone strings together a barely cohesive set of lines that sound extremely cool but don't make sense altogether or are all over the place, such as inserting lines that describe imagery into random places.
The moon hung on her heel
Grey covered sky
some other bitter crap about scenery
then I killed her and raped her
The lines describing imagery break apart the story, and are they really necesary to continue the story? If they were put before the description of the girl they might have worked... I'm guilty of writting like that in the past. It makes BC angerful when people ruin perfectly good, cohesive lyrics by plugging errelevant, but nice sounding lines.
2. Telegraphed rhymes and unnecesary rhyming.
Telegraphed rhymes are rhymes that are very easily predicted such as miss/kiss/bliss and remember/december etc. Some banal rhyming schemes (abab, aa, aaaa especially) irritate me when not used well. I'm slowly breaking out of the habit of rhyming. It also makes me very, very sad when people use rhymes as a way to continue the lyric when they're completely lost. I'm sad to admit that I used to do that a lot.
3. Anti-climatic lyrics/lyrics with too many subplots.
A lyric is a story that exists in time essentially, and on paper only as a secondary thing... I like lyrics with a good story that distill one idea into as few words as possible in the most beautiful way. Muddled, subploty and scatterbrained lyrics annoy me.
Either way, post away meh pretties. :vampire:
Read my poems I put here. I think they are none of these things.
Here are some of the favourites of mine, but I only went a few pages back I'm sure there are better ones, but even if I'm the only one I don't really care but I sure like my writing alot. Yes I am big headed. Well, I guess not really, I'm just saying I like it, not that it's good. But anyway heres some:
My favourites out of these are I win, Lcoking Doors, Beauty, Posing, The Legend.. I dunno I like all them. But you say you like short and sweet in the third point so maube you like these
SOF [untitled, they were random letters]
I don't see myself as having any limitations on the way I write. A lot of times I use random lines and it might not seem to make sense to the majority, but one other person, the right person, might read it and know without a doubt what I'm referring to.
The passage you wrote I'd say was badly done to purposely be sarcastic. The same lines spread over more territory in a single piece might have substance. Bad lines and bad rhymes have their place sometimes, too. Simple words that rhyme, if they're put together effectively, have a place in a broader audience and being more memorable than something less. I'm not saying that either is right or wrong, but just that they're different things to different people.
That kind of insertion of random imagery into a poem would, if used correctly, serve as a counterpoint or annotation to the action of the poem. I don't think we get that much care in the majority of internet contributions, but there can be a purpose to it that doesn't necessarily enhance the story, but does the poem.
I generally hate when rhymes are used without an understanding of the kind of connection between words a good rhyme achieves, or at least aims at achieving.
I have a very low tolerance for the pretentious use of language; i.e. using a large word, not because it's the right word, but because it looks impressive and makes your crappy poem look slightly better to people who aren't good enough critics to see through it. This happens a lot on the internet and in life.
Generally, following from that, the unnecessary.
A reliance on cliche out of laziness rather than irony, though even the latter can't redeem everything.
Lyrics obviously written out of a sense of duty to write lyrics, being in a band and all, rather than any kind of internal fire. If you don't enjoy language it will show. If you don't understand it, it will also show.
I was told by a writer I admire tremendously that some of my pieces seemed really forced and dull for awhile. His advice was if one has to force it, don't do it. I had had instances that I wanted to write so badly that I'd write anything trying to get back a passion of writing I had before and it showed. I've become more content in the flow of my own writing habits and don't force it unless I want to try something new. Those don't always get posted.
im trying to get away from the vaguely described "you"
you are a hypocrite blah blah blah
you are the reason you are that and so on
also the "I"s
i feel <over self-victimized> blah blah blah
i see the evil everywhere<melodrama>
even the older political stuff i posted before im trying to get away from
"its easier to shoot the king than be the king"
its easy to sit back and criticize everyone and everything and not contribute any type of solution. this was a type of writer's block i fell in. a kind of "blame game" with flowery language.
i like more absurd stuff. my mock-epic poem "job interview" is something i want to build on. contrasting archaic and old spirituality,religion with modern technology. being absurd but trying to convey a simple point
also the use of text. the spacing of and formation of words
de<struction>sire to con<trol>vert unbelievers to the tr<oll>ue g<reed>od
there was a crazy jamaican dude who lived in the eastside of town and wrote the most mindbending rants, kind of like the example i have above. alot of it didnt make sense but it was a really interesting approach. i read a zine someone compiled of his works. mostly off the wall conspiracy stuff, i found it very influencial. the example i have there doesnt really make sense but it could be worked over and have good effect
key to metal lyrics
Well, there is a difference between lyrics and poems. Lyrics have to be set to music, and there is a limited time in which they can be sung. Poems are on paper to be read, and re-read. One would have to be a bit more cautious with lyrics than poems. I'm extremely guilty of using longer, "unsingable" words. I like using longer words sometimes because they carry on the mood of a lyric or fit rhytmically.
As for thinking misanthropically, it really depends on the genre. If everything was focused on misanthropy every band would break apart into one and two man projects making sloppy, midpaced black metal in their basement. :p
I like this. Thats kinda how i see things.
I have a hardtime seeing alot of things that people write.. (as far as their meanings) ALthough over time i usually pick it up. But like she said, sometimes i'll read the right words and boom it hits. But then again those are usually songs or poems that fit how i feel, or how i think, or even how i write.
I'm definately not a person that can search for... unused perfect words to describe a feeling or situation that good writers often can. Its not that i have a lack of vocabulary, but i just don't search for words as well as others.
As with everything I do, I see it as energy. It flows. And I'm cool with like Red Hot Chili Pepper lyrics that don't mean anything but they flow. If whatever you're writing doesn't flow, then it just isn't worth it. Put the pen down and let the inspiration come to you some other time.
What'a do you mean, don't mean anything...? Having sung and played Red Hot for a while, I'd say you are meaning a meaninglessness that is, to all practical ends, meaningless.
As already said, the most irritating types of poems and lyrics are those which are written because of a need to inflate the writer's ego a few extra inches. Apart from that, much about anything goes at least as a momentary amusement.
i have to disagree here, the level of decline in red hot chili pepper lyrics borders on catastrophic.
blood sugar sex magic was good, every album after that scored a new low on any sort of message, communicating an overall point to a song. talk about random words put in order to rhyme
"first born unicorn,hardcore soft porn"
what the fuck? the whole song is bucket of shit,and i thought flavor flav was bad
most death metal lyrics are even worse
Hm, haven't listened enough to death metal to answer that one, but just for the record - do you know what califiornication means?
Psychic spies from China
Try to steal your mind's elation
Little girls from Sweden
Dream of silver screen quotations
And if you want these kind of dreams
It's the edge of the world
And all of western civilization
The sun may rise in the East
At least it settles in the final location
It's understood that Hollywood
Pay your surgeon very well
To break the spell of aging
Celebrity skin is this your chin
Or is that war your waging
First born unicorn
Hard core soft porn
Dream of Californication
Dream of Californication
Marry me girl be my fairy to the world
Be my very own constellation
A teenage bride with a baby inside
Getting high on information
And buy me a star on the boulevard
Space may be the final frontier
But it's made in a Hollywood basement
Cobain can you hear the spheres
Singing songs off station to station
And Alderon's not far away
Born and raised by those who praise
Control of population everybody's been there
I don't mean on vacation
Destruction leads to a very rough road
But it also breeds creation
And earthquakes are to a girl's guitar
They're just another good vibration
And tidal waves couldn't save the world
Pay your surgeon very well
To break the spell of aging
Sicker than the rest
There is no test
But this is what you're craving
dude, meaningless. half-developed ideas that go nowhere and dont leave an overall point.
its not like every band i listen to has to have this deep message with every song but some shit operates under the guise of having a point and other stuff is absurd on purpose and just leaves it at that. this song even has a STAR WAR reference,c'mon
Actually, it's not a bad idea to write just to do it and get back in the swing of writing. Sometimes you have to force it. It's a bad idea to keep everything you write.
Why do you say its a bad idea? Seems like not keeping things written would be a bad thing. To me anyways.
Well, I write a fair bit. I always carry a notebook with me in case I come up with something cool. I can safely say that most of the things I write do not meet my own standards.
Californication is one song that I feel has a lot of meaning. I was talking more about the By The Way album.
In regard to some previous comments, I agree that it's a bad thing to keep most of your writings. Just as Crimson said, most of my work ends up below my standards anyway. And I would hate to think someone would happen upon old things and assume that's my current skill or style (yeah, I'm paranoid like that). If it's good then it should be memorized or kept, but throwing away most of it would be the best thing to do. I've had numerous notebooks in the past that ended up fully in the trash through a span of a few months. I look back on old things I write (or even music itself, such as CDs) and think, "Holy crap, I hope my disposing of this erases every trace of it". Progress is progress, and until you've reached a talent level where everything is a keeper, recurrent disposal is completely necessary.
One dissapointing thing about some bands is when they use a more "street" style of writing. Not artistic, not poetic, just words like they would speak them to a friend. It takes away from any atmosphere. It's aggression without meaning. Without any depth. It's less entertaining because it's more predictable and doesn't have that darker, mysterious feel that doesn't come along with every day language.
As far as the weirder style of writing that's hard to pick out the meaning, I think it's sometimes just so subliminal and a little TOO poetic that people think it's just plain dumb. I actually like strange lyrics that, on the surface, seem to have little meaning. They allow the imagination to take over and form it into what your mind sees.
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