66 Songs of Satanic Splendour 

66 songs of satanic splendour

June 6th – unofficially Slayer Day, though since that great thrash band retired, it is a fine day nonetheless to celebrate the majesty of metal and their devotion to the dark lord. Whether it was the old bluesmen moaning about devils down in Georgia, the Rolling Stones’ sympathy for him, or Black Sabbath’s declaration that he was “coming ‘round the bend”, for years now bands have explored Satan’s influence on the living. 

We reached out across the social stratosphere to find 66 of the best Antichrist anthems, Beelzebub ballads, Lucifiarian lyrics, Mephistopheles’ melodies, Hellfire hymns and Satanic singalongs for you to enjoy this June 6th. 

What’s your favourite?

66. Corey Taylor – ‘HWY 666’

65. Entombed – ‘Left Hand Path’

64. Sepultura – ‘Antichrist’ 

63. Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds – ‘Up Jumped the Devil’

62. Twisted Sister – ‘Burn in Hell’

61. Death Angel – ‘Devil’s Metal’

60. I Killed the Prom Queen – ‘666’

59. Watain – ‘Satan’s Hunger’

58. Megadeth – ‘Devil’s Island’

57. Metal Allegiance ft. Chuck Billy – ‘Can’t Kill The Devil’

56. Alice In Chains – ‘The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here’

55. Anthrax – ‘The Devil You Know’

54. Chimaira – ‘The Age of Hell’

53. Phil Campbell & the Bastard Sons – ‘Riding Straight to Hell’

52. Bring Me The Horizon – ‘Crucify Me’

51. Palace of the King – ‘The Devil Made Me Do It’

50. And That Man – ‘Run with the Devil’

49. Danzig – ‘Am I Demon’

48. Bathory – ‘In Conspiracy with Satan’

47. Murderdolls – ‘197666’

46. Tool – ‘Die Eier von Satan’

45. Spinal Tap – ‘Christmas with the Devil’

44. Motörhead – ‘Born to Raise Hell’

43. Possessed – ‘Pentagram’

42. My Chemical Romance – ‘Mama’.

MCR superfan Lorie Way (Instagram): “It’s very theatrical for them! It even has Liza Minnelli on it. Was super unusual for them as a band and also is pretty different to anything else I’ve really heard elsewhere. And it’s always amazing live too!”

41. Elena Tsagrinou – ‘El Diablo’ (Cyprus). 

Wall of Sound’s Eurovision expert Cary (Twitter): “A song about the devil, referring to it by his Spanish name, sung by a Cypriot. The joy of Eurovision!”

40. Rob Zombie – ‘The Devil’s Rejects’

39. Charlie Daniel’s Band – ‘The Devil Went Down To Georgia’

38. Pantera – ‘Cowboys From Hell’

37. Kreator – ‘Phantom Antichrist’ 

36. Metallica – ‘Devil’s Dance’ 

35. Parkway Drive – ‘Devil’s Calling’ 

34. Impending Doom – ‘Satanic Panic’

33. Zebrahead – ‘The Devil on My Shoulder’

32. Edugy – ‘Down to the Devil’

31. Opeth – ‘The Grand Conjuration’

30. Morbid Angel – ‘Bleed for the Devil’

Morbid Angel are one of the first death metal bands I remember listening to way back in the mid 80s. I would have been 14 or 15 and with lyrics like…”Fill the air with the smell of death, Grace us with your magic, Fill the night with the stench of evil, I summon forth the beast” … it was what has stuck with me.” 

29. Mayhem – ‘Freezing Moon’

28. Satyricon – ‘The Pentagram Burns’

27. Fit For An Autopsy – ‘Do You See Him’

26. Gojira – ‘Satan is a lawyer’

25. Marduk – ‘Christraping Black Metal’

24. Aborted – ‘Drag Me To Hell’

23. Tenacious D – ‘Tribute’.

Educate Ebony podcast host, Ebony (Instagram): “Put this as a joke cause Dave Grohl is the devil in the music video.” (Ed note: Dave as the devil is totally rock n roll)

22. Electric Wizard – ‘See You In Hell’

21. Manowar – ‘Bridge Of Death’.

WOS metal veteran Gareth (Instagram):  “It’s a 9 minute opus off the 1980 classic Hail To England. The lyrics tell the story of a man who sold his soul to Satan and is crossing to the other side, over the Bridge Of Death into hell and Satan’s service”.

20. Monster Magnet – ‘See You In Hell’

19. Cradle of Filth – ‘Shat Out Of Hell’

18. Carnifex – ‘Hell Chose Me’

17. Architects – ‘Holy Hell’

16. Lamb of God – ‘Walk with Me in Hell’

15. Cancer Bats – ‘Lucifer’s Rocking Chair’

14. Van Halen – ‘Runnin With The Devil’

13. Emmure- ‘Blackheart Reigns’.

WOS co-editor Ricky Aarons: “One of the most underrated Emmure songs. There’s a breakdown where Frankie screams “Welcome to Hell” and it’s the heaviest darkest hellish shit.”

12. Emperor – ‘Inno A Santana’

11. Mercyful Fate – ‘Satan’s Fall’.

Denouncement Pyre’s D (Instagram): ‘Satan’s Fall’ is a stand out track from one of the earliest and greatest Black Metal records of all time, Melissa. That’s right, it’s Black Metal because it reaches depths of evil and darkness that most records since have failed to get even close to. The first breakdown riff is pure evil!”

10. Behemoth ‘The Satanist’

Lots of black metal bands reference Satan but Behemoth really likes to dig in and commit to the concept – as the title track from their 2014 album shows. The drums and guitars paint a hellscape appropriate to frontman Negal’s vile bark. There’s two other tracks that reference Him by name on this album alone. Voted by our Twitter followers.

9. AC/DC – ‘Highway to Hell’

“Hey Satan, payin’ my dues, playin’ in a rockin’ band…” Bon was a bad dude, doing dirty deeds and a whole lotta Rosies. The Devil wishes he had this much swagger. Voted by our Twitter followers.

8. Dark Funeral – ‘The Arrival of Satan’s Empire’.

WOS contributor Andrew Kapper (Instagram): “The song itself is a completely relentless barrage of trem-picked guitars and blastbeats – and the vocals, good god (pun intended). That opening scream is one of the most intense shrieks I’ve ever heard. Black metal in its most furious form. Plus the lyrics are pure blasphemous entertainment; regaling Satan’s conquering of the earth by way of spearing angels, slitting throats and the spilling of Christian blood. Metal AF.”

7. Ghost – ‘Year Zero’

The intro covers it – a gregorian chant through the different names for his evilness. Ghost loves a bit of devil worship but ‘Year Zero’ is the peak, as voted by our Twitter followers ahead of ‘Satan’s Prayer’, ‘He Is’ and the classic ‘Square Hammer’.

6. Venom – ‘Welcome to Hell’

Venom took the hint of the occult popularised by Sabbath and went all in. Unlike Motley Crue and Van Halen, the British band sounded like they knew the devil personally and had his approval to release music in his image. They were a decade ahead of ‘Enter Sandman’ too, including a prayer mid-song.

5. Black Sabbath ‘NIB’

4. Slipknot – ‘Devil in I’

3. Motley Crue – ‘Shout at the Devil’.

Tattoo artist and Wall of Sound contributor Duane James (Instagram): “I was 12 when I discovered Motley Crue, and Mum was convinced that a band of that nature was the work of Satan himself. So when I heard that they had a song called “Shout At The Devil ” I thought maybe she was right. Didn’t matter to me though, because I loved it along with all their other high pitched, hairsprayed, more makeup than a Bratz doll, LA swagger. From there I was introduced to other hellbound tunes such as Iron Maiden’s “Number Of The Beast” and the most evil of all, Venom with “Welcome To Hell”. Thirty plus years later and Mum is still praying for my soul. Bless.” 

2. Iron Maiden – ‘The Number of the Beast’

Bruce Dickinson was the new guy so stepped up with some menace and a (thin) slice of cheese on his Maiden debut single. Iconic intro, driving riff and one of metal’s most famous rally cries on the chorus. The Devil himself would’ve learned this on his six string.

1. Slayer – ‘Hell Awaits’

Demonic distorted chanting? Doom intro? Thrash as fast as lightning? Lyrics about violent violations of the soul? Slayer do it all and with a ferocity that could only come from the depths of hell. No wonder acolytes carve their name into their skin. Hard to think of a song more adept at being our number 1 on 6/6!

Happy Slayer Day!

Words by KJ Draven (Twitter and Instagram)

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