Pop and dance music are not your only options
BY PHILL FELTHAM
Commonly, music enthusiasts sweat to the beats of Maroon 5, David Guetta, and other mainstream pop artists to intensify their workout. However, pop and dance are not the only musical flavors that can elevate your heart rate.
Good ol’ rock n’ roll, while not the current musical trend, still offers your iPod some variety for building a decent sweat. Think about it: grinding guitars and screaming vocals are a sure fire way to push a little harder on the bench press.
Some rock listeners will play it safe and stick to familiar tunes by Aerosmith or Metallica. Good music, but I want you to think outside the old boom box. I have carefully selected seven songs from modern rock contemporaries that will electrically charge your workout. Enjoy.
Skillet – Not Gonna Die
This quartet has been around since the mid-90s; however, these rockers have recently received mainstream attention for their most recent album “Rise.” In the single, “Not Gonna Die,” lead singer John Cooper’s raspy vocals articulate his defiance of a chaotic world: “This is how it feels to take your life back/This is how it feels when you fight back.” Listen to drummer Jen Ledger’s back up vocals on the piece; it is poetry in music.
Disciple – Dead Militia and Radical
Similar to Skillet, Disciple has been pumping out heavy hits since the mid-‘90s. After recently moving to the indie scene, the band has arrived with a new album entitled, “Attack”—and a new lineup (only lead singer Kevin Young remains). “Dead Militia” and “Radical” are standout anthems that will compel you to bang your head while lifting dumbbells. You will notice in “Dead Militia” that certain elements of the song sound similar to a vocal quartet on steroids.
Dead Militia: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yXQtujOXmb0
Scott Stapp – Slow Suicide
Remember Creed, the radio-friendly, post-grunge band that dropped three multi-platinum albums in the late 90s and early 2000s? Well, in late 2013, Scott Stapp released his new single, “Slow Suicide,” from his most recent album, “Proof of Life.” This song will surprise Creed naysayers with a heavier, darker sound than the band’s previous albums. “Slow Suicide” gives Metallica’s “Enter Sandman” and AC/DC’s “Thunderstruck” some serious competition. Listen to the song; you will agree that it fits perfectly on your workout playlist.
Nine Lashes – Break the World
“Break the World” is another hard rock anthem that will satisfy your hunger for musical intensity. The song, which sounds similar to Def Leppard’s “Pour Some Sugar On Me,” showcases the talents of up-and-coming rockers, Nine Lashes, an Alabama-based band currently signed to Tooth & Nail Records. An honorable mention goes out to 12 Stones’ “World’s Collide,” a song that should be placed before or after “Break the World” on your playlist.
Break the World: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PseenibjruQ
World’s Collide: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qX1q3Z7GvGY
Fall Out Boy – Centuries
Suzanne Vega would be proud of this hard rock hit. Fallout Boy, a band that needs no introduction, combines a sampling of Vega’s song, “Tom’s Diner” with a clever arrangement of gritty guitars and soaring vocals. This hit is a solid recommendation for any workout playlist.
Rolling Stones – Paint it Black
You cannot have a workout playlist without some golden oldies. Rolling Stones’ “Paint it Black” proves that bands could rock—even in 1966. If you are looking for a more recent version of this song, try Gob’s cover, which is faster and harder than the original.
Rolling Stones’ version: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Uj9sduV3k8
Gob’s version: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ai-0_NoNit4
Originally featured in Step On Magazine in 2015