Green Room

Confirmed: Changing Metallica songs to a major scale doesn’t work so well

posted at 2:02 pm on January 25, 2013 by

It worked like a charm with REM because, let’s face it, even the downbeat songs written by a band capable of “Shiny Happy People” aren’t going to be so far down that they can’t survive a scale change. (That said, I wouldn’t want to see this trick performed on “Everybody Hurts.” Good lord.) “Losing My Religion” is an especially good candidate for the experiment, too: The original is sufficiently uptempo and lyrically ambiguous to support the warmer tone that comes with shifting from minor to major. It’s like taking a painting done in pastels and making the colors brighter. Might not work, but it’s worth a shot.

Trying that with a metal band is like adding pink to a canvas covered in shades of black. It’s the musical equivalent of castration. The best way I can explain the transformation is this: Beavis and Butt-head would love the original version of this tune but Stewart would love the new one. Any Winger fan would.

Major Scaled #1 : Metallica – “Nothing Else Majeur” from major scaled on Vimeo.

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D minor is really the saddest of all keys.


Christien on January 25, 2013 at 2:09 PM

That’s because their songs suck in any key.

Bring it.

CurtZHP on January 25, 2013 at 2:36 PM

Turn it up to 11

22044 on January 25, 2013 at 2:36 PM

I must be tone-deaf because it doesn’t sound that bad.

chimney sweep on January 25, 2013 at 2:37 PM

I used to do this kind of thing all the time on the piano, only I’d take songs like “Happy Birthday” or “Joy to the World” and put them in minor key. Really bugged the heck out of a lot of people.

steebo77 on January 25, 2013 at 2:40 PM

I must be tone-deaf because it doesn’t sound that bad.

chimney sweep on January 25, 2013 at 2:37 PM

I liked it too.

steebo77 on January 25, 2013 at 2:41 PM

As a Metallica fan I don’t like perfection tampered with and this version appeared out of key more than the other experiment.

Cindy Munford on January 25, 2013 at 2:42 PM

Don’t know about the scale, but vimeo sucks loads.

Bmore on January 25, 2013 at 2:43 PM

How ’bout using the Chipmunks effect on them? I hate Lars.

Oh, I guess somebody already did it, here. I think my speakers are going out. Everything sounds tinny…

Fallon on January 25, 2013 at 2:44 PM

Before you posted anything about this, I remarked to a friend that the Metallica one worked better, but that’s probably because I love “Losing My Religion,” while “Nothing Else Matters” is pretty much a speed bump on an album I only sort-of like anyway.

calbear on January 25, 2013 at 2:44 PM

Sometimes reinterpretations of songs work. For me, this one didn’t.

22044 on January 25, 2013 at 2:49 PM

See, you have to go listen to Riders on the Storm.

Personally I find it hilarious.

Right up there with Weird Al’s Polka your Eyes out, which has Sandman at the 1:55 mark:

Or, Bohemian Polka:

Snowblind on January 25, 2013 at 3:07 PM

Yup, Lars still sucks. Would like to hear this happen to a Tool song. If there are any Tool fans here, youtube “parabol 800%”, stretches it out to about half an hour and is pretty darn meditative. ^^0^^

ahlaphus on January 25, 2013 at 3:12 PM

After listening to duelling cellos do “Welcome to the Jungle” on Fox News the other day, I don’t think I’m up to this.

(Criminy, isn’t there enough Muzak fodder out there already?)

apostic on January 25, 2013 at 3:21 PM

Yeah, that’s just… wrong. Maybe I’m biased because it’s my favorite Metallica song, thanks to Apocalyptica’s version of it, but some things should not be done to classics.

pookysgirl on January 25, 2013 at 4:13 PM

“Uhhhhhhh… what the hell is this crap?”


JohnGalt23 on January 25, 2013 at 4:39 PM

The worst thing about having a new baby is the middle of the night feeding, I’d always turn on the the TV and I guess the sleep deprivation and strange programming leads to the inevitable “did I really see that or was that a dream?” First was the music video with Christopher Walken in it. That freaked me out. But I then saw a musical duet of the Cellist Yo-Yo Ma (greatest name ever) with Bella Fleck, a banjoist, playing part of Bach’s Brandenburg concerto.

It still haunts me to this day. (although it was quite good)

Tomblvd on January 25, 2013 at 4:47 PM

I liked the change to Metallica’s song, but didn’t like the REM one. That might be because I’ve always disliked the black album, though.

VerbumSap on January 25, 2013 at 7:24 PM

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