The song is called “400” for a good reason: it has 400 stunning singers – all growling, screaming and doing their best to break a Guinness World Record.
Seven of these singers live in Southwest Florida, but the sprawling death metal track features people from all over the world including Mexico, Italy, South Africa, Canada, Bulgaria. , Argentina, Russia and the United States.
Fort Myers frontman Bryan Riquelme has just four words on the 37-minute song: “The Thoughts of thee”. But he makes the most of it, shouting in a death metal style which he calls a “low tunnel”.
Several of his friends from Southwest Florida are also on the song, including two members of the band Nitheful.
“It was a great idea,” said Riquelme, frontman of Bradenton’s deathcore band Grasping at the Shadow. “I was just like, I’m down if everyone’s down!”
Everyone was down, it turns out. The finished song, “400,” was released last month on iTunes, YouTube, Bandcamp and other music sites.
Now they are just waiting to hear from Guinness World Records to confirm that they have broken the world record. A Guinness spokeswoman said their review process could take three or four months.
Cape Coral frontman Paul Lyons says he’s thrilled to be a part of the project no matter what.
“Even though Guinness doesn’t make it official, it’s still a good thing,” says Lyons, who sings with local punk / metal band Kindly Shut Up and grindcore band Swamp Gas. “I just thought it was a great idea.”
This idea started with singer Fred Nylist of Canadian metal band Beyond Deviation. Nylist initially thought about collaborating with only 15 or 20 people, but then he and a friend widened the scope: they wanted to break the record for the most vocal solos on a song.
This song, “Melancholy”, was recorded in 2016 and featured 365 singers from Nepal, according to Guinness World Records. Guinness officials checked it in February 2018.
“I was like, that would be pretty easy to beat!” Nylist said and laughed. “Well, maybe not easy …”
Nylist posted the idea on social media, and soon the news spread among metal singers around the world. These singers started recording and sending out their vocal lines – each one was only 3-10 seconds long and later assembled by Nylist into one great song.
Lyon’s contribution? It’s just one word, sung in a shrill cry: “Insanity”.
The Cape Coral singer loves how he fits in with the song’s other 399 vocals. “It blended together a lot better than a lot of people thought.”
He also likes the song as a whole and what it represents.
“It’s crazy,” he said. “It’s unique because it has never been done before. You just sit down and listen and hear all the different voices. “
It took about a month for Nylist to edit all the voices together. “400” brings together five or six pre-existing songs with brand new lyrics and transition music between each section.
Nylist says the result sounds better than he expected.
“I was surprised,” he says. “When I started putting it together, there were a hundred voices on it, and I was like, ‘OK, that sounds really interesting. And then you get to 200 votes, and you say to yourself: “OK! In fact, it flows really well.