A well-placed breakdown can cause absolute devastation. Be it at home or at a show. Breakdowns have been over done in more recent years, becoming more of an arbitrary obligation but when used correctly… oh my… Get ready to flail those arms, spin those kicks and throw down as here are some of my favourite breakdowns of all time!
10) The Legacy by Lock & Key
Ah, cymbals and tension building chugs, the international sign of shits about to go off. Lock & Key really build up to this breakdown with the traditional traits that most, if not all, hardcore bands have used at some point. It’s the sheer force at which the line ‘To those who drag you down, say fuck them all’ is spat that makes the breakdown drop like a ten-ton hammer.
9) The Gospel by Knocked Loose
*Barks uncontrollably*. You knew it was coming. I knew it was coming, the only question was what Knocked Loose song would appear. I ended up with The Gospel. The bands discography is jam packed with breakdowns but it was this song of their Pop Culture EP that made the cut. It is that transition from all out chaos into to arm flailing, leg kicking breakdown that gets me time and time again.
8) Destabilise by Enter Shikari
Everyone ready to do the Shikari Shuffle? This breakdown is insanely bouncy. Enter Shikari have always known how to injected a little synth into their music in all the right ways. Sending dubstep inspired pulses throughout the chugs keeps this breakdown interesting without turning the entire section into one massive electro bass drop. Go on give it a listen and you’ll be bouncing side to side every time it comes on.
7) Create by POLAR.
Am I bias? I mean I am sat here in a POLAR. t-shirt but just listen to that breakdown. It has the bounce, the aggression, the crashing cymbals that all good breakdowns have. The only difference is that POLAR. smash out one hell of guitar riff to accompany it. It is just slow d-tuned chugs. It has melody, rhythm and a pit inducing aura without being just another open palm muted breakdown.
6) Dark Days by Parkway Drive
Now I could have a list of my favourite breakdowns without throwing in atleast one Parkway Drive song. There are so many breakdowns form this band that could make up an entire list of their own but I decided to choose their environmental awareness anthem, Dark Days. It punches straight out of Winston McCall shrill vocals. Yes, it maybe simple and not very innovative but it is damn effective.
5) Burnt Tongues by Your Demise
This one maybe purely nostalgic. Back in the late 2007 I went to my first gig. It was Enter Shiakri in Brighton with Hundred Reasons and you guessed it Your Demise. When the opening riff kicked in I was straight in the pit. Little did I know that the song was going to erupt into one of the chuggiest, drum assaulting and brilliant breakdowns of my earliest musical exposures. This is the breakdown that got me into the band and I love it for that.
4) Misery by Gallows
‘Misery fucking loves me!’. Not only is this one of my favourite songs, from one of my favourite bands but also contains one of my favourite breakdowns. Gallows bring their A game with this gritty, grim and nasty little bridge. It ends the song by letting former frontman Frank Carter vent his depressive frustration out in a style only these British hardcore punks could pull off.
3) These Colours Don’t Run by Architects
Blegh! When you hear Sam Carter yell this you better be ready cos a huge breakdown is about to push its way onto the scene. Architects write some of the best riffs around but also some of the best breakdowns. These Colours Don’t Run may not be their most melodic or riffy breakdown but it is certainly their hardest. The thing hits like super Saiyan Goku.
2) Domination by Pantera
Possibly the original breakdown in the world of heavy music. Domination by Pantera is an incredible song. After Dimebag unleashes one of his most signature solos it hits. Almost 4 minutes in and you get square jawed by the chuggyness. It lays down the ground work for nearly every metal and hardcore breakdown to follow. Big chunky chugs of pure pit destruction.
1) Disdain by Guilt Trip
Is it a plane, is it a dive-bombing plane? No, it’s just the extra whammy dives Guilt Trip throw left and right for maximum carnage. You know that a breakdown is going to be heavy as fuck when all the instruments ring out to let the singer to a pre-breakdown speech. You better be ready to throw down after Jay Valentine is done telling you to carve your name into his skull cos what follows is one of the best breakdowns of the modern era.
There are so many solid breakdowns that I know for sure I have missed a few. So why not comment a link to you favourites a I’m always on the look out for new music jam. See you all in the pit!