The Zen of Screaming
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Vocal instruction for metal singers! Hosted by internationally acclaimed vocal coach Melissa Cross, (whose past students include Andrew W.K., Melissa Auf der Maur and the singers from Slipknot, Killswitch Engage and Thursday), this DVD provides information and step by step exercises to help you sing aggressively without damaging your vocal chords.
The first of its kind, this DVD features convenient menus that allow you to navigate through over 30 segments, which include tips on vocal maintenance, actual vocal cord footage, and animations which illustrate specific vocal exercises. Bonuses include exclusive backstage and performance footage of today's most exciting artists, with candid offstage interviews and opportunities to see these artists actually working in the studio with Melissa.
Featured vocalists include Andrew W.K., D. Randall Blythe (Lamb of God), Brian Fair (Shadows Fall), Melissa Auf der Maur and many more!
Also includes an Audio CD & Booklet with a clearly itemized vocal practice program for each range. This DVD is as entertaining as it is informative and a must-have tool for vocalists of today.
DVD running time: 2 hrs. 25 min. plus special features.
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In other words:
Hopefully I know what I'm talking about, or I've made some pretty grievous errors in how I've spent the last 20 years.
On to the review...
The exercises demonstrated on this DVD are great!
They have helped me, and continue to aid me in being more proficient in all vocal activities.
I have noticed myself using the techniques that Cross teaches subconsciously during some practice sessions.
Like I said, this is great!
I would recommend this product to anyone trying to find and/or improve their vocal prowess.
The only cons that I can find are not worth removing any stars for.
The various vocalists keep talking about how great their lessons were. Makes it feel a more than a bit like an infomercial for private lessons.
Poor audio/video quality - yet more than good enough to get the point across. It seems like this is either a bootleg or it was just a low budget project.
So I watched the DVD and it is very comprehensive. The first 15 or so minutes do feature a lot of musicians praising Ms. Cross and going on about why her techniques work. One you pass that, then you start getting into exercises, first the physical exercises and then the musical ones. Each follows the format of Ms. Cross demonstrating the exercise, then having a guest (either a student or a professional musician) demonstrate the exercise, and then commentary from pro musicians as to why the exercises are effective.
Was there a lot of emphasis on actual screaming? No, but you have to learn to crawl before you walk, and there's way, way, way too much information on this disc to discredit it for not featuring more on screaming. I ordered the second disc so I'll let you all know if that contains more information on screaming (it was advertised that it should, so...)
Otherwise, this is a must-have for any vocalist who's trying to be in ANY group where the music is amplified. I've received classical training before, but there's a lot on this disc that I wish I would have known before. I can't wait to apply it and I hope everyone finds success in using this CD.
Special "hats-off" to Randy Blythe from the band Lamb of God, who dedicated a lot of time and his own embarrassing moments for the betterment of musical education. Support LOG by seeing them live!
If you live in the Southwest United States, I ordered both discs from --movieweb-- and they arrived faster than anything I've ever ordered over the internet before. I recommend that seller to all!
Aside from the several minutes of testimonials, this sequel goes into more depth about specific vocal techniques. This is the best part about the video and viewers will learn the most from these specific subjects. It covers three main styles of metal vocals and Melissa uses her students to demonstrate how to stay in pitch. No longer will metal vocalists be classified as mindless screamers. With the proper technique and practice, metal vocalists can be a part of a more elite group of singers in the world of music.
It is worth the buy, considering a one hour session with Melissa is nine times the amount of the DVD. And that doesn't even include how much it will be to go to New York City to participate! Either way, Melissa Cross is a pioneer and is helping metal vocalists achieve greatness without compromising their health.