On My Playlist: Top 5 Chevelle Songs

Chevelle
Chevelle

It’s all in the family for Chevelle with brothers, Pete and Sam Loeffler and their brother-in-law, Dean Bernardini having graced our ears with heart-pounding music for close to two decades.
The band previously had their brother, Joe, as bassist in the band but he left the band in 2005. The band continues to go from strength to strength in their 8-album discography with their blend of hard rock, metal and alternative influences.
The band is currently made up of Pete Loeffler – guitars, vocals, Sam Loeffler – drums and Dean Bernardini – bass guitar and backing vocals.
Here are my favourite Chevelle songs.
Honourable Mentions: ‘Saferwaters’, ‘I Get It’, ‘Emotional Drought’, ‘Wonder What’s Next’, ‘Jars’, ‘The Meddler’, ‘Comfortable Liar’, ‘Forfeit’, ‘Face To The Floor’, ‘Sleep Apnea’.
5. Vitamin R (Leading Us Along)
Clean guitar strumming followed by distorted palm- muted riffs and Loeffler’s almost desperate tone of voice, sets this song in motion. The track explodes into the chorus when Loeffler amps up the volume with grunge-like vocals and guitar bends: ‘Well if they’re making it, making it. Then they’re pushing it, pushing it. And they’re leading us along. The hassle of all the screaming fits. That panic makes remorse.’
Chevelle knows how to write an epic bridge and this song is no exception with Loeffler screaming, ‘I became over and over a slave,’ repeatedly with immense passion. One of the band’s strong points is the way in which they deliver their lyrics and this song is one of the prime examples.

4. Well Enough Alone
‘Well Enough Alone’ from the band’s fourth album, Vena Sera starts off with a bang as Loeffler takes a breath before hitting our eardrums with an impressive signature scream that lasts 9 seconds! The musical structure here is second to none with a guitar-driven intro leading into a darker and melodic verse as Loeffler croons into the mic: ‘So fed up what’s with the scenes? Observe and leave instead. This pity wagon penetrates my skin so sensitive, makes me sick.’
The chorus gets another thumbs up with a short and sweet passage before it hits right back into the opening scream and second chorus.
The bridge is also fantastically written and takes the song to another level with stop-start guitar riffs and pounding snare and bass drums changing the pace dramatically. This, then, progresses into an aural adventure as Loeffler’s harmonious ‘woo-oohs’ work perfectly in bringing the song back up to the third verse.
The main themes in the song focus on relationships, personal struggles and shame and this combination of lyrical content and instrumentation makes this a standout track.

3. The Clincher
This guitar-laden track probably has the best intros to a Chevelle song with a loud scream from Loeffler signalling the hard-hitting main riff that follows it. This track is the perfect example of Chevelle’s softer-louder style that has made them famous. Loeffler’s singing is perfection on this track and the build-up in the verses is just supreme before the melodic chorus hits. This song is a see-saw of different musical mechanics as riffs bounce off one another in this three-minute song. The best part is its bridge where Loeffler whispers ‘now saturate’ before it crescendos until he nearly bursts your speakers with his screams. You can truly feel the passion in this track.

2. Send The Pain Below
This is one of Chevelle’s first songs to achieve mainstream success and its haunting and emotional verses that focus on dealing with pain are one of the best parts of the track. Right from the onset, you get an idea of the theme and its relatability is one of its strong points. The chorus where Loeffler sings ‘I send the pain below, much like suffocating’ is as beautiful as it is powerful. The transition into the bridge of the song is another example of the band’s ability to enhance a song in a heartbeat. Fluid, efficient and enough to want to make you headbang all day long.

1. The Red
To many Chevelle fans, this song still stands the test of time with its palm-muted main riff in the chorus and amazing message on anger management and how to deal with the emotion. The song focuses on themes of bullying, self-deprecation, anxiety and the urge to break free of negativity. Loeffler excels in the chorus with amazing, clean vocals: ‘They say freak when you’re singled out. The red, well it filters through.’
The outro of the song is where it really picks up momentum with Loeffler feeling the rage as he screams ‘seeing red again, seeing red again’ at full tilt.
A true masterpiece of a track from Chevelle and a well-deserved number one.

  AUTHOR
Wouter Pienaar
Sport Journalist

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