Worst lyric rhymes

If “worst” is objectionable for some, we can go with “near” or “lazy”. Or slant rhyme.

In the following line from Frank Zappa’s “Can’t Afford No Shoes”…

Went to buy some cheap detergent
Some emergent nation got my load
Got my load
Got my toad
That I stowed

…trying to sneak in that “emergent” rhyme with “detergent”, and the “load/toad/stowed” thing …naaaaaa.

Rob Wright of Nomeansno trying to find a rhyme here:

Above me is a black obelisk
And the dangers that I risk

Again, I’ll have to go with, well - a bit of a stretch, for me.

David Thomas triying to be clever (which, admittedly, he often can be) in Pere Ubu’s “Petrified” with this beauty:

Has the short end of the stick
Been given archaeopteryx?

I know there’s more on the tip of the ole tongue.

The first two examples being more a lameness than off-rhyme issue.

“Hey only fools rush in and only time will tell
If we stand the test of time”

Why Can’t This Be Love? by Van Hagar

Rhyming time with time isn’t even the worst part of it.

Heh, quick derail on WCTBL: I always thought one of the grossest lyrics of all time was in that song…

“It’s got what it takes” - nothing like beer ad copy in a Van Hagar song.

Ah yes, the beautiful double rhyme:

Almost every hymn.

Seriously, how many rhyme “Good” and “God”, or sometimes “Blood”. And that’s just the tip of the holy iceberg.

I’m the assisting minister at our church, so sometimes I’m walking next to the senior pastor as we’re singing. And he allllmost cracks up every time I sing those lines so they rhyme (so after “blood”, I sing “gud”… just loud enough for it to annoy him.

I prefer near/slant rhyme to true rhymes myself. (Not to be contrarian—I just think they usually sound better, more so in poetry than song lyrics, where I can tolerate perfect rhyme more,) I’m sure this one will come up as one of the worst, but it’s one of my favorite identity rhymes, playing on two meanings of “mass”: “Generals gathered in their masses/just like witches at black masses.” (“War Pigs,” by Black Sabbath, of course,) That is just killer.

As for rhymes I truly hate: almost any song that rhymes “love” with “above” or “glove.” The laziest, tritest, most uninteresting rhyme there is.

More trite than “fire” and “desire”?

It’s a close call, but I can tolerate fire/desire more. Jimi made it work well enough in “Let Me Stand Next to your Fire,” so it’s got that going for it. I’m sure I can think of “love”/“above” exceptions, but if you hit the trifecta and add “glove,” yer out.

One of the more clicheed ones rhymes that I’ll have to put Pere Ubu’s feet to the fire again, in the otherwise serviceable “Waiting For Mary” - I’m down on my knees, I’m begging you please.

er, beautiful repeated rhyme, that should be; ‘double’ being something quite different.

No, that would be rhyming “school” with “golden rule”. Is there a single song in the history of man that doesn’t use that? Sure, you can rhyme “fool”, but “golden rule” has to be used first.

With “fool”, I always associate it with “cool” as being one of the go-to-too-manys.

I think Steve Miller wins for taxes/facts is in Take the Money and Run.

Surely sadness/madness takes that crown.

My nomination for the OP:

“I am an anarchist-a
I am the antichrist-a”

That is just dumb, even for punk.

Somebody get me a ladder.

Almost just as dung-worthy:

Abra, abra, cadabra, I wanna reach out and grab ya

That is called an imperfect rhyme. It is a legit literary device.

You may also be seeing examples of assonance (or consonance).

You just raised the bar higher.


In Fantastic Voyage, Coolio rhymes ‘yourself’ with ‘left’ and somehow pulls it off.

I like taxes/facts is. It’s funny.

That’s not what the rhyme is, though.

It’s an ABAB rhyme. “In”/Win" and “Time”/“Line”.

It can be argued that “time” and “line” is an imperfect rhyme, but it’s not rhyming “time” with itself.

You’d love “Bagpipe Music” by Louis Macniece

Bob Dylan forced a rhyme with “sweet” in “The Mighty Quinn” with the improbable construction, “cup of meat”.

“Oh you know I like to do just like the rest
You know I like my sugar sweet
But jumping fumes and making haste
You know it ain’t my a cup of meat”