One of the trending music stories in recent week's has been Concert Hotel's graph displaying the greatest vocal ranges in popular music. Axl Rose of the Guns 'n' Roses came out on top in the study, with Mariah Carey following closely behind. The problem is that people who pay attention to the actual science of music are also into a lot of obscure music. VVN Music hasn't gone totally off the grid with its own analysis, but it has introduced some more names for your consideration. The results?
Mike Patton of Faith No More, Mr. Bungle and several other projects is VVN's most gifted vocalist. The talented performer has a range of six octaves, which is unreal. Just in case you aren't familiar with tracks such as "Midlife Crisis," video gamers might recognize Patton's vocals from titles like Left 4 Dead 1 and 2 and The Last of Us. Namely, as the zombie-like organisms featured in both games. Take all those squawks, grunts and shrieks into consideration and you've got a healthy vocal range.
VVN doesn't deny Rose's talent however. He may not have the, ahem, "Epic" vocal range of Patton but he does have a five octave range, which is good enough to place at no. 5. Finishing in the three spots in-between are Corey Taylor (Slipknot, Stone Sour), Diamanda Galás and David Lee Roth (Van Halen), respectively. Taylor is deceptively agile, shifting from aggressive diatribes to soft melodies with his metal bands. Galás is an established avant garde performer, whose voice has been described as "capable of the most unnerving vocal terror." Roth, of course, requires an ear-catching voice to compete with Eddie Van Halen's solos.
Nothing's final with regard to this list, as edits continue to be made, but there are many entries. Just remember that there's no shame in a short range, as volume and tone make a big deal as well. Marilyn Manson technically has a wider range than Chris Cornell, and no one would call the former a better vocalist.