Perhaps the healthiest part of listening to metal is how the music provides an outlet for negative emotions. While so many other artists urge their listeners to forget the bad things and focus on the positive, or have a good time, metal is resolute in acknowledging our darkest moments and, by allowing us to experience them to their fullest, exorcising them. Often, these feelings can stem from something minuscule — bad traffic, a ruined breakfast, a broken heel — but venting them in your heart with the help of a killer riff is deeply therapeutic.
But no form of emotional catharsis feels better than saying ‘Fuck you’ to someone you hate. Whether it’s a rude coworker, an asshole politician, or someone you’ve known and despised your whole life, telling someone who sucks exactly where they can go is a singular pleasure. And while plenty of metal songs are angry at the world, or large institutions like the church, there are a handful of excellent metal tracks that exist to tell off whatever dickfor makes you want to kick a car in half.
Here are 10 rad metal songs for telling someone to go fuck themselves…
Godsmack, “I Fucking Hate You” (2003)
No one should be surprised that Godsmack have written one of metal’s burliest ‘Fuck you’ songs. Even the main riff of “I Fucking Hate You” sounds like a middle finger, somehow existing in a beautiful place between chunky and kind of arch and spiteful. Of course, it’s Sully Erna’s bellowed lyrics like, “Everybody knows you’re fake/You’re everything I fucking hate/And I’m everything that you can never be” which really drive home the message. A fun inclusion on someone’s playlist for the title alone.
Strapping Young Lad, “You Suck” (The New Black, 2006)
Devin Townsend has never been soft-spoken about his feelings concerning dickheads, assholes, and posers, and on “You Suck” the virtuosic guitarist takes a moment to tell everyone how much they suck. From you to your band to your girlfriend, no one escapes Strapping Young Lad‘s judgment. That said, Townsend is an equal-opportunity decrier, urging you to tell him how much he sucks, too, and ending the track with a rousing, “Fuck us all!” No child left behind with this one.
Wednesday 13, “Bad Things” (Transylvania 90210, 2005)
“Bad Things” does something very valuable: it wishes ill on someone indirectly. So often, when we hate someone, we don’t want to hurt or kill them, we just want the universe to dole out a little karma. That’s what Wednesday 13 gets with this track: the festering desire to see cosmic retribution doled out on the people you loathe. Because why go to jail when the powers that be can handle the murder for you?
Biohazard, “Man With A Promise” (Urban Discipline, 1992)
Leave it to ‘90s Biohazard to give us some believable middle finger music. “Man With A Promise” goes specifically after members of the music industry, who in 1992 were probably as insufferable as they come. That said, a line like, “Take your money and your lawyers and shove ‘em up your ass” has a universal appeal, no matter what era or context they’re being yelled. The perfect track to throw in the face of anyone who thinks you can be bought.
The Haunted, “All Against All” (rEVOLVEr, 2004)
There are few better opening lines than, “Shut your fucking mouth, you don’t know a single thing about me!” While a pointed calling out of the media by The Haunted frontman Peter Dolving, “All Against All” is a solid fuck-you to anyone and anything in your life. The song’s deliciously melodic central riff certainly doesn’t hurt, allowing the listener to enjoy themselves even as they wish endless pain on someone else. Living well is the best revenge, after all.
Tool, “Hooker With A Penis” (Ænima, 1996)
It’s not just the sneering anger behind “Hooker With A Penis” that earns it a spot on this list, it’s the way that saltiness is aimed. Tool take this moment to rail at holier-than-thou hipster fans who cry ‘Sell out!’ at every turn and waste everybody’s time bitching about how great things used to be. Meanwhile, a line like, “All you know about me’s what I sold you, you dumb fuck” is universal in its venom. Fuck you, buddy.
The Hell, “Fuck You All” (Brutopia, 2015)
Unlike many of the songs on this list, this banger of a diss track by Watford’s The Hell isn’t a vague blast of bitterness at nondescript people they dislike. No, “Fuck You All” takes two verses to call out industry/media types and artistic snobs who act superior for writing lame music. The last verse does a great job of tying it all together with how damn good The Hell themselves are, wiyh lines like, “The truth is that you need us, and it’s fucked that you do.” Sometimes, it’s not about ‘fuck the world’ or ‘fuck ‘em all’, it’s about ‘Fuck YOU.’
Slayer, “Payback” (God Hates Us All, 2001)
With the last song on their infamous return to form, Slayer finally gave fans a track that expressed how they feel. There are no dancing demons or hellscape battlefields in “Payback,” just straightforward rancor set to a galloping thrash rhythm. At the core of this anger is a blazing overkill, a sense that the listener isn’t actually going to tear anyone’s eyes out, only that they are consumed with their desire to do so. Seething rage that makes your neck go taut and your hands clench — is there anything more perfectly Slayer?
DevilDriver, “Die (And Die Now)” (DevilDriver, 2003)
You can’t help but love DevilDriver’s directness with “Die (And Die Now).” Nothing about this song is left up to interpretation or described in couched language. No, Dez Fafara and Company make it perfectly clear: they don’t like you, and they wish you were dead. It’s refreshing to hear a band so dedicate themselves to hating their enemies and cutting through the bullshit.
Motorhead, “Go to Hell” (Iron Fist, 1982)
Man, no one says ‘Fuck you’ quite like Lemmy. What makes Motörhead‘s “Go to Hell” so especially scathing is that unlike so many of the other tracks on this list, it never gets that angry. The song isn’t ultra-speedy, Lemmy never screams so hard his voice cracks — there’s just that calm, eyebrow-cocked middle finger that only speed metal’s elder statesman can pull off so gracefully. Nothing bends the enemy out of shape quite like a smile.
Words by Chris Krovatin