Edwin Starr's song "War" cuts straight to the chase.
War! Huh! What is it good for? Absolutely nothin'!
Eric Bogle's song "And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda". As an old World War I veteran who lost his legs at Gallipoli sits on his porch, watching the veterans march past every ANZAC Day, he muses:
The young people ask what are they marching for, and I ask m'self the same question.
Also his song, No Man's Land.
But here in this graveyard that's still No Man's Land The countless white crosses in mute witness stand To man's blind indifference to his fellow man And a whole generation who were butchered and damned
"But the shit that I've done with this fuck of a gun You would cry out your eyes all night long...
"War Is Hell (On the Homefront, Too)," a No. 1 country song for T.G. Sheppard in 1982. A twist on the trope, the song – set during World War II – sees a 16-year-old grocery delivery boy have his first sexual encounter with the wife of a soldier stationed on the front lines overseas. The woman relates her loneliness and burning desire for sexual intimacy by telling the boy the title line.
"The body bags and little rags of children torn in two. And the jellied brains of those who remain who point the finger right at you. As the madmen play on words and make us all dance to their song. To the tune of starving millions to make a better kind of gun."
Trivium's "Down From the Sky" is about dropping the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in WWII.
L Arc En Ciel's "Hoshizora" is about both the aftermath of either the Tokyo firebombings or Hiroshima and dedicated to the children of Iraq.
Flickering hot air is the remains of a dream, a town that fears the darkness goes to sleep A small happiness above the rubble, I was born here, I who watches the stars. nobody knows. nobody cares. I have lost everything to bombs.
Map of the Problematique has elements of this, although the main subject matter is different.
The discography of Galneryus up until 2009 is pretty equally split between this trope and War Is Glorious. Some of the best for this trope would be "Blame Yourself" and "Stardust."
I Was Only Nineteen (A Walk in the Light Green) by Redgum, which details the various horrors faced by the ANZAC troops in Vietnam.
God help me, I was only nineteen.
The Kaizers Orchestra song "170", about a volunteer soldier (given the number "170" and never referred to by name) who leaves behind his pregnant wife to fight in a war. The song ends as his CO sends him over the top first to check if all is clear, and no response comes. The song "Død manns tango" (Dead Man's Tango) involves a veteran who's been forgotten by the world and paralysed from the waist down: It's possible it's the same person.
Sabaton singing almost entirely about war, uses this trope from time to time. Some notable examples:
"Cliffs of Gallipoli"
"How many wasted lives how many dreams did fade away broken promises they won't be coming home Oh mothers wipe your tears your sons will rest a million years found their peace at last as foe turned to friend and forgive"
"Hell on earth, the trenches mean death, better keep your head down low Charge their lines, the ultimate test it's a synchronized sacrifice Get the wounded after dark Left alone in no man's land Maddening chaos at the front Dream of heaven. Angels are calling your name"
"A Light In The Black":
"Leaving home, set to sea Was this really meant to be? See the shore of our home fade away Facing blood, facing pain Have our brothers died in vain? Many lives has been lost on the way"
The Price of a Mile (over on the quotes page), about the bitter stupid bloody battles of WW1.
"A Lifetime Of War" (English version):
"Has man gone insane? A few will remain Who'll find a way To live one more day Through decades of war It spreads like disease There's no sign of peace Religion and greed Cause millions to bleed Three decades of war"
The Swedish version offers a more personal view on the war.
Benjamin Britten's War Requiem sets nine poems by Wilfred Owen to music and surrounds them with Ominous Latin Chanting. The standard text of "Agnus Dei" in the Requiem mass replaces the line "Dona nobis pacem" (Grant us peace) with "Dona eis requiem sempiternam" (Grant them everlasting rest); the "Agnus Dei" in the War Requiem uses both.
Billy Joel's "Goodbye Saigon", about the Vietnam war, is well known for its realism and the many hearts it broke. To give an example, these are the opening lines.
"We met as soul mates on Parris Island We left as inmates from an asylum And we were sharp, as sharp as knives And we were so gung-hoe to lay down our lives..."
This is a common theme used in the Gorillaz anti-violence ballads, but "Dirty Harry" (namely the rap solo) is an especially good sample:
"I got a ninety-days digit and I'm filled with guilt From the things that I've seen Your water's from a bottle / Mine's from a canteen At night I hear the shots ring, so I'm a light sleeper The cost of life, it seems to get cheaper..."
Smile Empty Soul has a few of these such as "This Is War" and "God's Army" where they make their opinion on the subject extremely clear.
Toxic Holocaust use the exact phrase in "War Is Hell," which includes near nearly 1 minute of chanting "war is fucking hell."
God Dethroned released a concept album based on the battle of Paschendale. They did not skimp on the details.
Thrash Metal band Warbringer seems to invoke this trope more often than not, especially the song 'Forgotten Dead', below. YMMV, as they tend to toe the line between condemning and glorifying war with their explicit, visceral lyrics.
"The whistle blows, you are forced to advance into oncoming machine gun fire Caught in the blast as the mines detonate lifeless bodies hang from barbed wire Stabbed through the gut by a bayonet, blood chokes your scream Another dying sould is laid upon the altar ofmankind's greed"
Carach Angren's "The Funerary Dirge of a Violinist"
And so the instrument of peace is silenced by the one of war It plays the music of the dead; music made of lead I've had enough of this sickening war and it's murderous puppets! They don't understand the language of music cannot be spoken in death
You are an orphan now, Adopted by the beast of war The end of all your childhood dreams has come A life of combat, forevermore
Phil Och's Signature Song is considered to be be I Ain't Marching Anymore.
For I marched to the battles of the German trench In a war that was bound to end all wars Oh I must have killed a million men And now they want me back again But I ain't marchin' anymore
The traditional Irish anti-war song Johnny I Hardly Knew Ya details the maiming the titular soldier receives when off fighting, and the horror of people seeing him when he returns.
Where are your legs that used to run When you went to carry a gun Indeed your dancing days are done Oh Johnny, I hardly knew ye. ... Ye haven't an arm, ye haven't a leg Ye're an armless, boneless, chickenless egg Ye'll have to be put with a bowl out to beg Oh Johnny I hardly knew ye.