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    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2009
    In these difficult economic times, I've found myself listening a lot lately to Metric's Help I'm Alive.

    This got me pondering and looking at my collection a bit, and it seems that songs of stress and anxiety* have always had a certain thematic prominence in Hard Rock (tm). A quick and dirty list from mainstream Rock:

    Billy Joel - Pressure
    Queen/David Bowie - Under Pressure
    Black Sabbath - Paranoid
    Styx - Too Much Time On My Hands
    Pink Floyd - most anything with a Roger Waters credit

    What else have we got? What songs do you turn to when work is grim, and in long motivational meetings, managers start sending out emails with anecdotes such as:
    "Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up. It knows it must outrun the fastest lion or it will be killed. Every morning in Africa, a lion wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the slowest gazelle, or it will starve. It doesn't matter whether you're a lion or gazelle - when the sun comes up, you'd better be running."

    *Note - This is stress and anxiety, Sturm und Drang, not crying in a corner. There is no crying on Whitechapel.
      CommentAuthorPaul Sizer
    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2009

    "Don't push me, 'cuz I'm close to the edge..."
    Sounds like stress and anxiety to me.
      CommentAuthormister hex
    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2009
    "Man of Constant Sorrow". "Blue Moon of Kentucky." Pretty much all of Robert Johnson. They had a flood back then, too. History doesn't repeat itself but sometimes, it rhymes. "Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?"

    Remember just after 9/11, they wouldn't allow certain songs to be played on the radio? Like R.E.M.'s "End Of The World As We Know It"? Ah, good times.
    • CommentAuthoricelandbob
    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2009
    well if there is only one song that portrays stress it can only be...

    Fucking Hostile by Pantera!!!

    Almost every day
    I see the same face
    On broken picture tube
    It fits the attitude
    If you could see yourself
    You put you on a shelf
    Your verbal masturbate
    Promise to nauseate

    Sounds pretty stressed to me!

    @ Mister Hex
    Nothing new there. I remember in the UK during the first gulf war, these songs couldnĀ“t be played...
    The Doors - Light My Fire
    Something Happens - "Parachute"
    The Cure - Killing an Arab
    Little angels - Bone yard
    Massive Attack had the word "attack" dropped during the gulf war.

    And... Get this... Give Peace A Chance by John Lennon!
    • CommentAuthor/
    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2009
    @ Paul Sizer - I am completely with you on that one. Good choice, man.

    This sums up how I feel about my part of the world:

    <a href="">Disconnect</a>
  1.  (6245.6)
    Most of Tom Waits' material...

    • CommentAuthor/
    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2009
    @ Val - I can tell he felt that. Good man right there.
    • CommentAuthorE0157H7
    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2009
    I have been listening to an endless playlist of The Stooges, Skinny Puppy, Placebo and Danzig almost constantly.
    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2009
    I don' t know how I could have left out Tom Waits. He's one of my favorites, too.

    As penance I offer:

    Mission of Burma - That's When I Reach for My Revolver
    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2009

    Tennessee Ernie Ford's "Sixteen Tons"
    Vocalizes my job stress.
    • CommentAuthor/
    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2009 edited
    This: (terminator theme, couldn't find a decent embed)
    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2009
    I like to listen to relentless sounds when I'm hard at work.

    Pretty much any NIN song features stress and anxiety, but the words to "Only" fit how I feel some days.

    -Chris D.
    • CommentAuthor/
    • CommentTimeJun 28th 2009 edited
    <a href=""></a>

    edit to clarify: Not being silly, this song really does represent some kind of unnatural anxiety in my mind...I might be alone on that one, though.
  2.  (6245.14)
    Pretty much every single Off With Their Heads song covers this topic:

    Fuck This, I'm Out

    Die Today

    I Am You

    Bomb the Music Industry also have a nice line in stress and anxiety songs:

    Fresh Attitude, Young Body
  3.  (6245.15)

    Definitely agree with the NIN, not so much the Clutch. The 'stress' part of the music has no release, and Clutch for me gives me puh-lenty of release. I don't feel the satiated at the end of a NIN song, nor at the end of a Tool song....

    If I feel confrontation and release at the end of the song, I just can't classify it as stressful in the end...
    • CommentTimeJun 29th 2009 edited
    I've been a fan of Brand New since I was 14 but I didn't realise how many of their best songs are anxiety songs, lol.

    You burnt bright but you run out
    I fell asleep at the incline
    I can't shake this little feeling
    I'll never get anything right

    (oops embed fail HERE we go. PS ignore their hilarious outfits it is like nobody can sound good without dressing like a douche)
    • CommentTimeJun 29th 2009
    Anything off "Psalm 69" makes me edgy.
    • CommentTimeJun 29th 2009
    In special honor of stressful work Mondays. Meant entirely without irony.

    • CommentAuthor/
    • CommentTimeJun 29th 2009 edited
    This is kind of on topic because it helps me feel <em>less</em> stressed...I can see how it might produce some animal tension in others, maybe? Not to derail, just taking a shot in the dark with this one -

    <a href="">Don't Trust a Ho</a>
  4.  (6245.20)
    Oh, and I forgot about the Mountain Goats! Boy, does John Darnielle know from anxiety! (also dresses less like a douche than the other guys)

    The reception's gotten fuzzy.
    The delicate balance has shifted.
    Put on your gloves and black pumps.
    Let's pretend the fog has lifted.
    Now you see me, now you don't.
    Now you say you love me.
    Pretty soon you won't.