Music Genres With the Most Intelligent Lyrics

The Top Ten

1 Heavy Metal Heavy Metal Heavy Metal music is a sub-genre of rock music that originated in the late 1960s-70s, featuring more distorted and heavier instrumental work and darker lyrical themes. Heavy Metal broke into mainstream success with bands such as Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden and Metallica. more.

All metal genres have a band which takes lyrics to a high level. In heavy metal you have Iron Maiden, in thrash you have Metallica, in groove you have Lamb of God, in death metal you have Cannibal Corpse (yes cannibal corpse songs are all gory but they are well written and don't all seem the same) (Slayer also can be put in death metal as they are the pioneer of this genre even if they are thrash. I mean songs like angel of death or altar of sacrifice sounds more death than thrash.), in nu metal you have Slipknot (and maybe Limp Bizkit, no I'm kidding), in death grind it is Cattle Decapitation, in Deathcore it is Acrania, Whitechapel and Suicide Silence, in progressive death it is Gojira and Opeth, in progressive metal you have Dream Theatre and Tool, in post-hardcore it is Asking Alexandria and Bring Me The Horizon, in Metalcore it is As I Lay Dying and Killswitch Engage, and it goes on and on for the endless number of bands and genres that can summarized to heavy metal.

It's a joke? Most of metal lyrics are mediocre or worse. - BruceStark

"We have the power make our lives what they are to be
Reconnect with our humanity
Transcend to a higher place, accepting reality
You are the key to the life that you seek"
(Iced Earth - Anthem). - Metal_Treasure

Iron man, Paranoid, Enter Sandman, Master of puppets...

2 Progressive Rock Progressive Rock Progressive rock is a broad genre of rock music that developed in the United Kingdom and United States throughout the mid to late 1960s.

Not ALL artists. There are many prog artists with excellent lyrics, and then sometimes they just try too hard. Thick as a Brick, Dogs, and Time, for example, are songs with brilliant lyrics, but in songs such as Tarkus, for example, I feel that it's not very sincere, or maybe trying too hard? I would say that some prog lyrics sometimes lack real substance behind their crypto-poetic nature. I know it's a very unpopular opinion, please don't kill me, I love progressive rock. I just sometimes have the impression that some lyricists jsut write something plainly cryptic and people will try to interpret it and call it a piece of genius. - JoLeKosovo


Just go and have a look at Echoes by Pink Floyd or Starless by King Crimson. Bloody brilliant.

Especially lyricists like Neil Peart - Brobusky

3 Rap

Kudos to rappers : It's not easy to do. Prog lyrics (and I love prog lyrics) have wide possibilities. Since they don't hold the song together, they don't have to be perfectly rythmical and in the same meter. Plus, most songs have only a few short verses.
In rap, verses are long and lines have to be held together by cohesive elements of assonance and alliteration. Or else, it's weak, it doesn't hold. This puts a lot of constraint, yet pushing creativity : rap is the definition of a lyrical genre. - JoLeKosovo

Eminem, Tupac, Nicki Minaj etc. - Luckys

Nicki Minaj and Eminem, two of the best lyricists ever! - NotMisterThompson

Rap is the most lyrical form of music.

4 Psychedelic Rock

Some of the best songwriters of all time made Psychedelic music such as Jimi Hendrix, Syd Barrett, John Lennon, Jack Bruce, Eric Clapton, Jim Morrison, Grace Slick, etc.

5 Progressive Metal

Listen to tool

I got 2 words for ya
TOOL! - Iamchewbacca37

I'm sorry, but as brilliant as Tool are, they are alternative metal, not progressive metal. - Adrian_4

Listen and read the lyrics for bands like opeth and try and comprehend some of them you'll find it very difficult the lyrics are intelligently written. This song black rose immortal for instance and anything else in their discography.

6 Power Metal

Most of the power metal lyrics are also close to poetry:

"Just hand me my harp, this night turns into myth
Nothing seems real, you soon will feel
The world we live in is another skalds
Dream in the shadows".
(Blind Guardian - Skalds And Shadows). - Metal_Treasure

7 Opera

To be honest, the reason you don't know what they are saying half the time, is because the lyrics are not in English.

To be very honest, I don't know what they're saying half the time in the songs, but I know that the songs do have good life meanings to them. I did see one opera show back when I was like 15. Thought I was going to hate it but it actually made me cry because of the ending. - Mcgillacuddy

Very underrated but opera rock should be here too.

8 Thrash Metal Thrash Metal Thrash Metal is a Heavy Metal subgenre developed during the early 1980s and an early precursor of Extreme Metal. Thrash Metal features a faster and more aggressive guitar work than Traditional Metal with shredding and double-bass drums and can range from melodic singing to loud shouts. more.

Slayer skeletons of society. “Minutes seem like days since fires ruled the sky the rich became the beggars and the fools became the wise. Memories linger in my brain from burning in the acid rain of pain I never have won” that is so true. Reply if u agree

"Brother will kill brother
Spilling blood across the land
Killing for religion
Something I don't understand

Fools like me who cross the sea
And come to foreign lands
Ask the sheep for their beliefs
Do you kill on God's command?

A country that's divided
Surely will not stand". (Megadeth - Holy Wars) - Metal_Treasure

Damn,I'm stupid
I should have vote for that - Idiot244

Slayer has some very complicated lyrics like World Painted Blood. Also many of their songs are about intelligent topics like history, religion and mythology. And Slayer isn’t the only thrash metal band with intelligent lyrics. Other examples are Metallica’s Sad But True/Master of Puppets and Megadeth’s Symphony of Destruction/Holy Wars...The Punishment Due.

9 Blues Blues Blues is a music genre and musical form originated by African Americans in the Deep South of the United States around the end of the 19th century.

In the words of Bluesman Albert Cummings: "Oh well now some people say that the Blues makes you feel sad, hah! Best damn feelin' I musta ever had; I said the Blues makes me feel so good."

You really don't need big words or have a degree in psychology or philosophy to be this clued-up; you just need to know what you're talking about. This man sums up things pretty well, methinks. - Britgirl

10 Conscious Hip Hop

Needs to be number 1. - DarkBoi-X

The Newcomers

? Dream Pop Dream Pop

The Contenders

11 R&B
12 Neo-Soul
13 Alternative Alternative Alternative rock is a style of rock music that emerged from the independent music underground of the 1980s and became widely popular in the 1990s. In this instance, the word "alternative" refers to the genre's distinction from mainstream rock music.
14 Alternative Rock Alternative Rock Alternative rock is a style of rock music that emerged from the independent music underground of the 1980s and became widely popular in the 1990s. In this instance, the word "alternative" refers to the genre's distinction from mainstream rock music.
15 Gospel

For God fearing people's choice.

16 Folk
17 Nu Metal

This makes more sense then rap metal, they are completely different.

18 Grunge Grunge Grunge (sometimes referred to as the Seattle sound) is a subgenre of alternative rock and a subculture that emerged during the mid-1980s.
19 Reggae
20 Punk Rock Punk Rock Punk rock is a subgenre of rock music. It usually has rebellious lyrics and down stroked power chords played on guitars. Bad Religion, Sex Pistols, and Green Day (actually pop-punk, which is still punk in a way) are a few punk rock bands. The subgenre influenced thrash metal because of it's down stroked more.

Definitely one of the most lyrical genre. Just listen to the Dead Kennedys or Bad Religion.
Most artists in this genre say : "We just wanted to uplift the lyrics in music. Talking about what was happening in the real world."
I remember a guy from a famous anarcho-punk band saying (something along the lines of) : "Venom was even singing about Satan! I don't wake up in the morning and see Satan. I hear about wars, famines, disease, corruption..." - JoLeKosovo

21 Art Rock

Radiohead : A hear that filled up like a landfill
bruises that won't heal

Pink Floyd:Time (The dark side of the moon)
The sun is the same in the relative way but you're older
shorter of breath, and one day closer to death - waldo

22 Country

Only classic country not modern.

23 Blues Rock Blues Rock Blues rock is a fusion genre combining elements of blues and rock. It is mostly an electric ensemble-style music with instrumentation similar to electric blues and rock: electric guitar, electric bass, and drums, often with Hammond organ.

What are all these greater genres doing behind rap?

24 Melodic Death Metal

You can't really understand most of them so it's kinda pointless (at least in my opinion).

25 Folk Rock
26 Indie Rock
27 Rock N' Roll Rock N' Roll Rock music is a music genre that was created in the 1940s. The genre got popular during the 60s, 70s and 80s. Rock bands generally consists of a guitar player, a drummer, bass player and singer. There are a lot of rock subgenres.
28 Country Rock
29 Hip-Hop

I only like beastie boys that is why I put this on here.

30 Indie Pop

I love indie pop! Emotionally, well crafted songs.

Can we get an amen? - moonwolf

31 Pop Punk
32 Trance
33 New Wave

I suggest the Buggles. - Kevinsidis

34 Disco
35 Metalcore
36 Black Metal
37 Reggaeton
38 Folk Metal Folk Metal Folk metal is a fusion genre of heavy metal music and traditional folk music that developed in Europe during the 1990s.
39 Wizard Rock
40 Crunkcore

Dude, it's usually about sex. - XxembermasterxX

41 Post-grunge
42 Speed Metal
43 Pirate Metal
44 Viking Metal
45 Punk Metal
46 Pop
47 Jazz Jazz
48 Death Metal Death Metal
49 Deathcore Deathcore

Deathcore is a core of death metal. The difference is deathcore can get anime, there is much more screaming. Bands like Suicide Silence, Thy Art is Murder, Thy will be done. And more. Deathcore started in the 1990s or 2000s.

50 Post Hardcore
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List Stats

400 votes
51 listings
3 years, 148 days old

Top Remixes (6)

1. Progressive Rock
2. Psychedelic Rock
3. Rap
1. Rock N' Roll
2. Alternative Rock
3. Folk Rock
1. Folk Rock
2. Indie Rock
3. Country

View All 6

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