People often ask me why I still listen to Heavy Metal music. Most people who make these sort of comments equate metal with many of the bad hair bands of the 80s and wouldn’t know real metal if they were hit on the head with one of Udo’s wrecking balls.
Here is the secret of why I love metal; plain and simple, it’s fun.
Metal is all things.
It can be theatrical (Kiss, King Diamond, Alice Cooper, Ayreon).
It can be depressing (Candlemass, Anathema, My Dying Bride).
It can be bludgeoning (Napalm Death, Slayer, Morbid Angel, Death).
It can be cerebral (Spiral Architect, Rush, Ulver).
Or it can just plain rock (Motorhead, Armored Saint, AC/DC).
That’s what is great about metal, it’s not just one thing. Metal crosses over into many genres and has so many subgenres that I don’t have time to list half of them. Whatever mood you may be in, there is a metal band for you.
I have a good friend who is into progressive and art rock from the 70s. He made a comment concerning the lack of guitar heroes and progressive music in today’s music scene. My reply was that there are tons of bands and fantastic musicians around today, but most of them are in the metal underground. In the 70s and 80s you could hear progressive/heavy music that on radio but now, if you want to hear music comparable to bands like Rush or Yes or King Crimson, you have to dig around in the world of metal. Some heavy and technical bands manage to break through, like Tool and The Mars Volta, but those bands are the minority.
Another thing that I love about metal is that it’s challenging. There are so many metal albums that require several listens before you can even break the surface of what the musicians are playing. Sure, bands like Motorhead (god love them) release stuff that is instantly engaging but bands like Iron Maiden, Opeth and Iced Earth continue to release longer and denser albums, that only reveal themselves after repeated listens.
So, why do I love metal? Because I would be (musically) bored to tears without it.
Up The Irons!