There are lots of prevailing themes in metal: death, war, hate, Satan, murder, etc. One of the most popular metal muses is blood. It's something everyone has and has lost and is always associated with pain, forging one of the most visceral and relatable elements in the genre's lyrical canon. Blood is associated with struggle, triumph, death, sacrifice and magic, so there's a lot to work with here.
Below, we've compiled a list of the 10 Best Metal Songs About Blood, all which use the powerful symbol in different ways. Some songs are about ruthless killings, others about camaraderie, and everything in between. Prepare to see red and lots of it as we tear through this list of metal songs hailing the source of life and the power to extinguish it!
The true opening track of Dissection's legendary sophomore album begins with a signature drum fill, immediately snapping the tension built by the moody intro. From the first icy notes of "Night's Blood," it is clear the band raised the bar from their brilliant debut, The Somberlain. The song is about the evils of the night and those who partake drink up "pure damnation's wine."
'Blood Fire Death'Bathory
"Blood Fire Death" is the closing track off metal's first true viking metal album courtesy of Bathory. The 10-minute opus helped to evolve the genre with more thoughtful composition than had previously been seen in the first wave of black metal. Choir arrangements bathe the background while Quorthon's gruff rasp spills over the galloping midtempo rhythms. The scene here is a battlefield where all slaves break free from their shackles to stand and fight to the bloody end.
'Bloodbath in Paradise'Ozzy Osbourne
Almost two decades after the killing spree led by Charles Manson and his followers at Sharon Tate’s home, the Prince of Darkness Ozzy Osbourne found it to be suitable subject material for one of his songs. "Bloodbath in Paradise" opens Side B of No Rest for the Wicked with the lines “You’re comin’ home, there’s blood on the walls / And Charlie and the family made house calls.” The song has a bit of an uplifting feel to it, despite the atrocities it references.
'Blood Brothers'Iron Maiden
Steve Harris penned this one and dedicated it to his late father who passed away in the mid '90s. "Blood Brothers" is dark and emotional, which falls in line with the music Iron Maiden was making around the time of the passing. The song received a second dedication in 2010 during The Final Frontier tour where Bruce Dickinson honored Ronnie James Dio and his life’s achievements. Blood has always been a symbol of unification, making "Blood Brothers" a perfect ode.
'I Cum Blood'Cannibal Corpse
The song that follows up the album opener ‘Hammer Smashed Face’ is the unequivocally perverse “I Cum Blood.” Another one of Chris Barnes’ grisly tales of unspeakable brutality, this one sees the killer run through the usual gamut of dismemberment and devious sexual acts, only this time with a peculiar, shall we say, climax? The song’s title leaves nothing to the imagination and is still a live Cannibal Corpse staple since its release in 1992.
'Thrones of Blood'Suffocation
Most Suffocation songs are about killing people in one way or another, but "Thrones of Blood" takes things to a whole new level. The song has been a frequent show opener over the last few years, probably to get the blood flowing in the crowd and on the floor. The subjects of the killing here are anyone who doesn’t fit the mold of how the killer wants to live life. An axe splits the skull in two and the head is swiftly removed from the body. The hacking continues until “A pile of flesh now lies before me.”
'Blood and Thunder'Mastodon
Mastodon's second album, Leviathan, took the metal world by storm in 2004. "Blood and Thunder" kicks things off in proper fashion with riff after riff as the band embark on a journey laid out by Herman Melville's Moby-Dick. The hunt for the white whale is arduous and painstaking, requiring sacrifice from the crew, which at some point will include blood for blood as they try to capture the elusive animal.
'Blood of My Enemies'Manowar
The defenders of true steel are always fighting whether its for honor, vengeance, metal, or against the world. Here, Manowar are riding along with the fierce, the black, and the wicked as they slaughter their enemies from above. "Blood of My Enemies" is one of the countless triumphant, fist-raising anthems in the heavy metal pantheon and crushes all posers in sight.
From the first lines, “Black magic rites on this black evil night, begin with the slice of the blade / Metal and blood come together as one, onlookers they gasp in dismay” the intent here is made abundantly clear. "Bonded By Blood" is a song that celebrates the brotherhood of metal. The blood pact signifies the effort put into the band by each member as they go out and blur the lines between Exodus figuratively and literally “killing it” onstage.
Dun-dun-dun! Dun-dun-dun! As things slow down and the pounding thunder from the floor tom comes in, its enough to make you want to pound your fist through a door and start letting the blood rain on your own. Or you can just wait for that famed Slayer riff to tear everything open as Tom Araya exclaims the gruesome horror of "raining blood, from a lacerated sky." Regardless, there's not a doubt that "Raining Blood" is the single greatest metal song about blood that ever was and ever will be. Amen.