Heavy music is full of legendary bands boasting deep catalogs stacked with iconic songs — sometimes it can be hard to know where to start, or what to consider their best. With that in mind, we present the “Mandatory Metal” lists, which collect what we consider to be the definitive tracks from various members of the metallurgic pantheon. Up today, Type O Negative, the self-described “Drab Four,” led by the late, great Peter Steele, who churned out some of the catchiest, most sultry gothic doom the world has ever seen. Type O have tons of great songs in their catalog, but in our opinion, these classic cuts are their most essential. If you disagree, sound off on The Pit Facebook page.
“Unsuccessfully Coping With the Natural Beauty of Infidelity”
ALBUM: Slow, Deep and Hard
This epic cut, which opens Type O’s debut album, Slow, Deep and Hard, starts like it could be a song by Carnivore, Peter Steele’s previous band, but by the time it slows down to a doom-metal dirge and then introduces its hilariously infectious and profane chorus, the listener has been taken fully into a gleefully nihilistic world all its own.
Sample lyrics: “I know you’re fucking someone else.”
“Love You to Death”
ALBUM: October Rust
Sensual and romantic yet still headbangingly heavy, “Love You to Death” is one of Nineties metal’s great make-out songs.
Sample lyrics: “Black lipstick stains her glass of red wine/I am your servant, may I light your cigarette?”
“Everyone I Love Is Dead”
ALBUM: World Coming Down
Hopelessly sad and nihilistic, this Type O classic resonates particularly strongly in light of Steel’s own premature passing.
Sample lyrics: “You love someone/There will be grief/The kiss of death/Lips of a thief”
“Black No. 1 (Little Miss Scare-All)”
ALBUM: Bloody Kisses
The song that broke Type O big, “Black No. 1” is a goth-metal sing-along that pokes fun at goth tropes yet is so irresistibly great that even all the goths can’t help but love it.
Sample lyrics: “She’s got date at midnight/With Nosferatu/Oh baby, Lilly Munster/Ain’t got nothing on you”
“Halloween in Heaven”
ALBUM: Dead Again
This standout cut off Type O’s swan song, Dead Again, is a twinkly-eyed ode to fallen rockers — from Elvis to Randy Rhoads — inspired by the death of Pantera’s Dimebag Darrell.
Sample lyrics: “Halloween in Heaven/It’s Christmas in Hell”