ForumsThe TavernHarsh Vocals (growls, screams, etc.)

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pangtongshu
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pangtongshu
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Backstory
While doing one of my many lovable activities, lurking, I came across an interesting conversation between Sal and Mino, in which they were talking about Mino's usage of "harsh vocals" (my words, not theirs). Being another that also practices the technique, I struck up a conversation of my own with Mino, regarding the subject. After a conversing with him for a bit, I decided to create this thread..which I've been meaning to do for some time.

What are "harsh vocals"?
Now, I couldn't find a legitimate definitions on the term (or, maybe I'm just too lazy too), but what it consists of is the usage of growls, screams, etc. while "singing" (per se).

Why use "harsh vocals"?
Many reasons, actually. It really depends on the person. Some like it because of its ability to display emotions of anguish, pain, hatred, suffering, vengeance, etc; some like the sound of it; some can't sing, but can perform them; etc.

Why isn't this in the Popular Media section?
Because this isn't popular media. In fact, this has nothing to do with media. The idea of the thread is to discuss the act of "harsh vocals"..if one would like to mention a band/singer or like to a band/singer, they may do so, but the purpose in doing so shouldn't be just to talk about them, but to talk about their usage of the art, their technique, etc.

Purpose of this thread??
Oh..yeah. Forgot that...this. Has. To. Be. A. Thing.
Anyways, there are many purposes of this thread, so I'll list 'em in my favorite way possible! In an incoherent run-on sentence! (notreallyI'llactuallyjustmakealist)
1) To provide users that practice the art of Harsh Vocals a place to discuss the subject.
1-a) Their techniques and sound
1-b) The effect they are going for with their style
1-c) Ways to improve on their techniques
1-d) Bands/singers that implore the technique, and what they like and/or do not like about their usage/technique
1-e) etc.
2) To provide users that don't practice the art, but are interested in learning about the art, a place to gain knowledge.
2-a) Also a place to learn how to do it themselves
3) For all users to discuss the art, in general.
3-a) Self-explanatory.
4) To receive feedback on their style/technique
4-a) Describe your technique.
4-a-1) What sounds can you produce?
4-a-2) How do your achieve the sounds you produce?
4-b) Provide a video (link) to you performing "harsh vocals"
4-a-1) Make sure you can prove it is you.
4-a-1-a) Post something in the description that proves it is you.
4-a-1-b) Say something within the video that proves it is you.
4-a-1-c) The "somethings" will be provided upon request (either by myself or Mino).

What do we do now?
...post! Begin discussing, gain insight on the technique, whatever your heart's (appropriate) desire!
But remember to always (**cliche incoming**) rock on \\m//

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nichodemus
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Lol, much of the post-hardcore scene's ''Harsh vocals'' is just immensely boring emoish catharsis, and doesn't really show musical talent.

Metal bands that do death growls though, should be respected, owing to the fact that it does take years of proper training to do that much growling/screaming/shrieking without damaging your throat.

pangtongshu
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pangtongshu
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Lol, much of the post-hardcore scene's ''Harsh vocals'' is just immensely boring emoish catharsis, and doesn't really show musical talent.


Oh..you mean what the general public calls "screamo"?
I'm not a fan of their style of harsh vocals..to me, it just seems like they have harsh vocals for the sake of harsh vocals.

It's weird listening to a song..in which the lyrics are about love, with no sign of aggression, being song with a scream. Then there is the common form of lyricism, with an over-abundance of aggression...to the point that it seems that the lyrics were created so that the harsh vocal usage would have justification
partydevil
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partydevil
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i dont understand the vocals when they do this. and if i do understand it then they didn't do it good enough. xD (whit exceptions like the tiger lillies there ofcourse)

i c it more as a instrument. the "harsh vocals" have to fit the rest of the music or els it is just aimless screaming.

nichodemus
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nichodemus
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Oh..you mean what the general public calls "screamo"?
I'm not a fan of their style of harsh vocals..to me, it just seems like they have harsh vocals for the sake of harsh vocals.


No, but what a large segment of teens listen to today; bands like Sleeping With Sirens, Pierce The Veil, Miss I May, Attack! Attack! and the like.
GandalftheGrey666
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GandalftheGrey666
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For me, these 'Harsh Vocals' could be a sign of agression. In the other case, it could do with communication. In the ancient times, our ancestors howled and shouted to communicate. So, I think this is OK.

Oh..you mean what the general public calls "screamo"?
I'm not a fan of their style of harsh vocals..to me, it just seems like they have harsh vocals for the sake of harsh vocals.


It's the call of the metal nature, you can't stop it.
Bronze
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I love harsh vocals when I know the singer can actually sing in the 'normal' sense. Take Mike Patton for example, the dude can sing anyway he wants too.

It's the same way with a visual artist. I can appreciate his/her doodles if I know that he/she can make a good painting.

xeano321
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It's weird listening to a song..in which the lyrics are about love, with no sign of aggression, being song with a scream.


Welcome to 2013.

Does this apply to Louis Armstrong?
nichodemus
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It's the call of the metal nature, you can't stop it.


Screamo is not metal. It has its roots in punk and hardcore.
Minotaur55
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Screamo is not metal. It has its roots in punk and hardcore.


Exactly. Screamo has a much faster beat to it, which we all know roots to punk rock. Metal has a slower beat to it and sometimes a faster guitar riff. Heavy Metal originated from Blues Rock and Psychedelic Rock. Two completely different genres of music.

And metal is it's own branch of music as well, it has no relation to rock or punk. Metal has it's own tree just as rock does. There is Groove Metal, Industrial Metal, Experimental Metal, etc. Metal has no relation to punk or rock. The styles of rock and punk can be incorporated but metal has a more prominent motif.

For me, these 'Harsh Vocals' could be a sign of agression.


Metal is a type of expression of aggression but can't fully be defined. From what I've seen, Metal is a type of enigma. It can mean one thing to one person and be something completely opposite to someone else. Metal from my view has been a expression of aggression in ones life or personal experience, and aggression can't really be expressed through harmonics; i.e harsh vocals fit the category of "Metal".

It's weird listening to a song..in which the lyrics are about love, with no sign of aggression, being song with a scream.


I agree. It is very strange to hear in harsh vocals "I LOVE YOU!!!". Somewhat humorous.

1) To provide users that practice the art of Harsh Vocals a place to discuss the subject.
1-a) Their techniques and sound
1-b) The effect they are going for with their style
1-c) Ways to improve on their techniques
1-d) Bands/singers that implore the technique, and what they like and/or do not like about their usage/technique
1-e) etc.


Alright, time to share my lore of info about Harsh Vocals.

Lesson 1:

Harsh Vocals is no joke, you can loose the ability to speak from using them. To prevent this tragedy from according the following technique will give you this skill and not hurt your throat:

1) Drink water, if you don't you're throat will dry up and you will run into throat issues. Drink one glass before attempting these vocals. Wait around 10 - 20 minutes before screaming. Just because you drank water doesn't mean you are hydrated.

2) Find a proper volume. Start at a volume that is comfortable and doesn't hurt your throat. As time goes by, elevate that volume. This will take time so don't rush it. It takes around a year or so to master this vocal style.

3) Learn to control you're air flow. You can waist air that's contained inside you're lungs, cutting the duration of a scream in half. Example: if you can scream along with the intro of this song at the top of your lungs and not run out of air you have the proper technique. If not, you need more practice.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFm9v0wvEnw
pangtongshu
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No, but what a large segment of teens listen to today; bands like Sleeping With Sirens, Pierce The Veil, Miss I May, Attack! Attack! and the like.


That would be what the general public refers to as "Screamo"

I love harsh vocals when I know the singer can actually sing in the 'normal' sense.


I have a feeling you would very much enjoy Kyo from Dir en Grey

Does this apply to Louis Armstrong?


Love it haha reminds me of something I always wanted to do for fun when/if I get a band together: have heavy metal playing style and vocals, but with lyrics about a cute bunny in a meadow haha

Harsh Vocals is no joke, you can loose the ability to speak from using them.


This cannot be stressed enough. Take care when you are doing them..and make sure you know where your limit is.
One weekend, I wanted to find out how far I could push my throat using harsh vocals..and luckily I had a lot of time spent driving to places, so I would just rock out in my car and sing then. The entire time I was in my car I was doing harsh vocals, and with little to drink. That was the closest I've been to losing my voice..and my throat hurt like a female-dog for the next 2 weeks or so.

1) Drink water, if you don't you're throat will dry up and you will run into throat issues. Drink one glass before attempting these vocals. Wait around 10 - 20 minutes before screaming. Just because you drank water doesn't mean you are hydrated.


Note: make sure the water is warm..hot or cold water can be counter-productive for you.

2) Find a proper volume. Start at a volume that is comfortable and doesn't hurt your throat. As time goes by, elevate that volume. This will take time so don't rush it. It takes around a year or so to master this vocal style.


Don't be embarrassed if you have to start at a low volume. To be honest, my vocals started, basically, at the same volume as a whisper. As time progressed I learned to project my voice more effectively.
A great way to practice growls is by simply talking while practicing. Just pretend to have a conversation with yourself, but try to use a growl the entire time.
nichodemus
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And metal is it's own branch of music as well, it has no relation to rock or punk. Metal has it's own tree just as rock does. There is Groove Metal, Industrial Metal, Experimental Metal, etc. Metal has no relation to punk or rock. The styles of rock and punk can be incorporated but metal has a more prominent motif.


No....metal has its roots in rock, especially classic 70s metal, which has very clear roots in blues rock and psychedelic rock. It just sort of branched out in such a vibrant way that it looks like a separate genre now.

That would be what the general public refers to as "Screamo"


Ignorance!
GandalftheGrey666
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And metal is it's own branch of music as well, it has no relation to rock or punk. Metal has it's own tree just as rock does. There is Groove Metal, Industrial Metal, Experimental Metal, etc. Metal has no relation to punk or rock. The styles of rock and punk can be incorporated but metal has a more prominent motif.


Have more information on shouting in music.
JoshTheBoss
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If you're into practicing this sort of thing, I would highly suggest listening to Naked City. Yamatuska Eye is the singer for the band, and he has impeccable technique when it comes to this vocal style. There's Definitely a lot to learn from him.

Minotaur55
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Have more information on shouting in music.


Screaming is not harsh vocals. While they are hand and hand in metal music they are two different things. For instance, if we are doing wikipedia articles:

Screaming

[url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harsh_Vocals]Death Growls (A.K.A Harsh Vocals[url]

The definition of Screaming in Wikipedia is "Screaming is a vocal technique that is most popular in subgenres of heavy metal, and is also used in some genres of punk, industrial." while Harsh Vocals is "A death growl, also known as death metal vocals, guttural vocals, death grunts, growled vocals, unclean vocals, deadly howls and harsh vocals among other names, is a vocalisation style usually employed by vocalists of the death metal music genres, but also used in a variety of heavy metal styles.". Screams originated from Classical and Experimental Music generally done in plays, then came Blues, Punk, Heavy Metal, etc. Harsh vocals came from rock but became the marker for metal. Two different things that just happen to be used in the same type of music.

No....metal has its roots in rock, especially classic 70s metal, which has very clear roots in blues rock and psychedelic rock. It just sort of branched out in such a vibrant way that it looks like a separate genre now.


Metal is the evolved form of rock, it isn't rock and it has it's own style. Evolution is what separates man from monkey's, it's what separates lizards lizards from dinosaurs, and it most assuredly separates metal from rock. The metal you hear in the 21st century is not what rock was back in the 20th century. Metal in the 20th century wasn't even what rock was in the 20th century, and it isn't now. Evolution. Human beings have Hispanics, Africans, and Europeans. Monkey's have apes, gorilla's, and chimps. Rock has punk and alternative, metal has thrash and industrial.

Note: make sure the water is warm..hot or cold water can be counter-productive for you.


I actually don't notice a difference in my performance if I use warm or cold water. But hot water definitely is counter productive.

1-c) Ways to improve on their techniques


Practice barking like a dog, I know it sounds weird, but barking will help you and it is actually a lot of fun! XD
Minotaur55
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I messed up the first paragraph. Let me fix that:

Screaming is not harsh vocals. While they are hand and hand in metal music they are two different things. For instance, if we are doing wikipedia articles:

Screaming

*Death Growls (A.K.A Harsh Vocals

The definition of Screaming in Wikipedia is "Screaming is a vocal technique that is most popular in subgenres of heavy metal, and is also used in some genres of punk, industrial." while Harsh Vocals is "A death growl, also known as death metal vocals, guttural vocals, death grunts, growled vocals, unclean vocals, deadly howls and harsh vocals among other names, is a vocalisation style usually employed by vocalists of the death metal music genres, but also used in a variety of heavy metal styles.". Screams originated from Classical and Experimental Music generally performed in plays, then came Blues, Punk, Heavy Metal, etc. Harsh vocals came from rock but became the marker for metal. Two different things that just happen to be used in the same type of music.

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