Tip #168 – Having Harmony Never Return Home

One thing I have noticed to be pretty common in early and classic 80’s heavy metal is a chord progression between the V and the VI.

This use of the progression to alter between tension (the V or V7 harmony) and uncomplete resolution (the VI). The listener wants to hear the tonic, but instead gets the minor triad that governs over the natural minor scale.

It creates a somber and unresolved sound without falling away from the key center. You can still hear this progression in the major key area without over using the I chord:

You can also change the order and have the V chord on the first measures of the phrases, but it might create a poor distribution of tension and resolution according to the hierarchy of the song form:

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Author: Bryan M. Waring

Bryan Waring is a graduate of USM's School of Music with a B.M. in Performance – Composition and is now attending Belmont University for a M.M. in Commercial Media – Composition & Arranging. During his time at USM, he studied violin with Dino Liva and composition with Dr. Daniel Sonenberg, as well as has premiered several pieces during the semiannual Composer's Ensemble concert series. In 2017, Bryan was a writer for the original musical theater work of "Molded By The Flow," directed by Paul Dresher and Rinde Eckert. Outside of school, Bryan has been involved with writing music for videogame developers at Portland's CI2 Lab, collaborating with the King Tide Party, and studying with Larry Groupé (Straw Dogs) in San Diego. Now living in Nashville. Along with composing, Bryan teaches music to children, receiving the Master Teacher Award for his work at ESF Camps; and does audio engineering for live ensembles. Besides talents in music, Bryan is a team-player in any competitive work environment; equipped with skills in leadership, organization, mathematics, creativity, communication, and managing. On the side, Bryan has worked as a model for several skilled artists in the New England area. Among his other accomplishments include obtaining the rank of Eagle Scout in April 2013 with a project of building a side parking area with guide rails for Webb Mountain Park in Monroe, CT.

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