As some of you know, I’m a NZ wedding celebrant. This means I get to marry awesome couples in civil wedding ceremonies. It’s not a full-time gig or anything, but it is a fun way to spend a few weekends a year, especially given the types of weddings I perform. I’ve officiated medieval ceremonies, married couples in front of hobbit holes, dressed up as the Mad Hatter, performed blood ceremonies and handfastings, and prayed at Buddhist altars … all for awesome, alternative couples.
For many alternative couples, the music in the ceremony is particularly important. For us metalheads, including some of our favorite music (often, the music that brought a couple together in the first place) is an obvious choice. But where do you find “wedding appropriate” metal songs? Most metal songs aren’t about love, and if they are, they’re about love falling apart.
Although I firmly believe that if you want to walk down the aisle to Cannibal Corpse’s “Fucked with a Knife”, then you should be able to do it, I know that many couples need to balance their love of metal with family expectations, and a sense that probably the day should be at least slightly romantic.
Here are my picks for 25 romantic heavy metal songs that could work at your wedding:
1. Pain of Salvation – The Heart of Mine (I pledge)
I’ve never got into PoS that much, but this song is beautiful and will always make me think of my man ;) (Awww). An amazing first dance song.
2. Apocalyptica – Bittersweet
Break this bittersweet spell on me.
Lost in the arms of destiny.
Not “strictly” metal, and probably not strictly a love song, but I am so entranced with the melody and vocals in this song, and the beautiful chorus, I chose to walk down the aisle to this. Probably any Apocalyptica song would work at a wedding – if you wanted to walk down the aisle to Metallica’s “Creeping Death”, using Apocalyptica’s version will help you get it past your Mom.
3. Metallica – Nothing Else Matters
“So close, no matter how far.
Couldn’t be much more from the heart.
Forever trust in who we are.
And nothing else matters.”
For many of us, Metallica were our “gateway band” into the world of metal, and this song – which Hetfield wrote about missing his girl while on tour – holds a special place in our hearts. A popular choice as an entrance song for wedding ceremonies.
4. Nightwish – Sleeping Sun
“I wish for this night time,
to last for a lifetime.”
My friend Andy sings an incredible version of this song, and we were thinking of having it at our wedding, but opted for a different song instead. Tarja’s voice is at its prime here, and the sweeping music would make this a beautiful processional song.
5. Cradle of Filth – Her Ghost in the Fog
Many Cradle songs take their inspiration from gothic literature, which often deals with themes of love. I love that aspect of the band, and if you’re a fan, dark gothic songs like this could work as a recessional song at a gothic metal wedding.
6. Pantera – The Love
A great first dance song if “My Heart Will Go On” isn’t quite your thing.
7. Tesla – Love Song
If you’re a metalhead who has suffered a broken heart, this 1989 ballad will resonate. Full of hope and faith in love, it’s a beautiful track for your wedding.
8. Type O Negative – Love You to Death
I beg to serve, your wish is my law,
Now close those eyes and let me love you to death.
First of all, there’s not much that’s sexier than Pete Steele’s deep, gravelly voice. The song is about a man trying to prove himself worthy of his partner, and is a beautiful processional song, especially if you’ve got a real gothic vibe going on.
9. Megadeth – Promises
A Romeo & Juliet story retold by one of the world’s biggest thrash bands. I always enjoyed the story behind this song, and if you’re a Megadeth fan, this would be a fine addition to your wedding soundtrack.
10. Motorhead – Love Me Forever
If you wanted a man like Lemmy, here’s what you have to do. Lemmy lays down his instructions for the perfect relationship.
11. Ozzy Osbourne – I Just Want You
“Each night when the day is through
I don’t ask much
I just want you…”
The Ozman has been known to bust out some beautiful ballads over the years. “I just want you” would be an awesome recessional song or first dance, delivering a powerful message about love with killer riffs.
12. Katatonia – Sweet Nurse
“O my sweet nurse
pull the curtain aside for a while”
A simply beautiful song, and a little bit different from the others on this list.
13. Avantasia – Anywhere
“Waiting for tomorrow, for a little ray of light
Waiting for tomorrow, just to see your smile again!”
Tobias Sammet can serenade me with this any day. Yum.
14. Dark Moor – Love from a Stone
This isn’t a band I’ve paid much attention to, but a friend showed me this Dark Moor song recently and I thought it was really sweet.
15. Lunatica – Song for You
From the 2006 Edge of Infinity album, this song is very beautiful and would make a lovely first dance.
16. Steelheart – I’ll Never Let You Go
Picture the relatives’ faces during the high notes …
17. Dreamtheater – Eve
IMO, the best Dreamtheater is instrumental Dreamtheater. Even without lyrics, this song tells a beautiful story.
18. Yngwie Malmsteen – Dreaming (Tell Me)
Ah, Yngwie. You can do no wrong.
19. Volbeat – I Only Want to Be With You
I adore this band. This is a fantastic cover, even if the original song is a bit blah. If you wanted an awesome recessional song for a rock’n’roll wedding, I’d definitely recommend Volbeat.
20. Judas Priest – Angel
Every metalhead wants a bit of Priest at their wedding. There are a few Judas Priest songs that would fit a wedding setting – “Angel” just happens to be my favorite.
21. Sonata Arctica – Still Loving You
I prefer this version to the original Scorpians track.
22. Lacuna Coil – Not Enough
From the Shallow Life album, many Lacuna Coil songs (as well as other gothic metal bands) will be suitable for a wedding. I particularly like this one.
23. Ozzy Osbourne – Mama, I’m Coming Home
Written about his wife Sharon, with input from Zakk Wylde and Lemmy Kilmister, it’s no wonder that this hopeful, longing song is Ozzy’s only top 40 single.
24. Kamelot – Center of the Universe
If you don’t want your first dance to be a slow dance, why not give this a spin? I know my cantankerous drummer husband certainly thinks he’s the center of the universe … :)
25. Manowar – Gods Made Heavy Metal
If you wanted a song at your wedding that encapsulated what you love about the music, and how it had brought you together and/or made you closer, then this song is the one. Of course, I’m biased, because I love Manowar, and we played this as we left our wedding ceremony, but it’s perfect!
I’ve been married for six years on the 1 November. It’s been a pretty amazing six years, with two overseas trips, building a house, some crazy good times and some bad times that have made us stronger. Metal still plays a huge part in what has shaped us as a couple, and we wouldn’t be who we are today without the music.
What are your favorite metal love songs? Post your list in the comments below!
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