Good singers, such as Floor Jansen, are able to convey moods which match each section of a song. While this is important, in this post I won’t focus on the overarching emotions expressed in a piece. Instead, I’ll examine how Floor builds upon the lyrical content with little tricks, such as where she places words into the melody line, and the way she sings individual words. These techniques don’t make or break songs, but I think they’re cool!
The song I’ll take a look at is The Trial Of Monsters, by ReVamp. Here’s the song and the lyrics. It’s symphonic metal, heeheehee.
ReVamp – The Trial Of Monsters
He is a man with no soul
For he must have sold it years ago
Laws don’t apply to him anymore
On top of the world, he guides those who will listen else your death’s a fact
With or against him; choose your game, choose his game!
The fall of a tyrant, his loss
Soon it breaks him
The trial of this monster. Our fight.
Soon will crack him
Words are binding, deeds talk
Such clear language when your life’s at stake
While he’s immune for every threat
Battered, disgraced but still strong
Even violence won’t break all of us
And even gods get what they gave; they’ll have it all!
And we see a proud man fall
Burn it all; every memory he turned black
Every ally turned against
He, the man who reigned them all
Prove his guilt, confirm his fall
Innocent till proven wrong
End this nightmare, hear my song, hear our cry!
- The fourth line, “on top of the world”, places the word “top” as the highest note in that part of the melody.
- In the chorus, Floor emphasises the first word “fall”, by sliding down from the note after she hits it, giving the impression of falling.
- Similarly on “loss”, she slides down from the note after hitting it, i.e. losing the note.
- In the final line of the chorus, she puts extra power on “crack”, which is an action-filled word, so again the vocal expression suits the lyrics.
- In the third chorus, she pauses after “crack”, which breaks the phrasing. When something cracks, it’s basically the same as it breaking.
- “Battered, disgraced but still strong” – These are fighting words, and Floor puts all her anger into opening that line.
- “And we see a proud man fall”, “Prove his guilt, confirm his fall” – The note for “fall” descends from the note for “man”/”his”, which emphasises the fall.
- “End this nightmare, hear my song, hear our cry” – I associate “cry” with high and loud, and that’s where it’s placed; at the end of the line, soaring upwards.
Granted, the literal, physical meanings of “fall” etcetera are not actually happening to the man. However, I think these little tricks can still add to a song. The Trial Of Monsters is one example of reinforcing the lyrics using good word placement and different vocal techniques.