Heavy metal has been dissected by more writers than you could stuff in a mosh pit, and every one has a different opinion about when the style started and what it's become. In this nearly 700-page oral narrative, the musicians themselves mouth off about what's what and who's who.
There's nobody better placed than the musicians who made the music to talk about it.
Dozens of artists were interviewed, including Rob Halford (Judas Priest),
Angus Young (AC/DC), Vinnie Paul (Pantera), Barney Greenway (Napalm Death), and many more. With a foreword by Anthrax's Scott Ian, the book is divided into 13 chapters ranging from "Kick Out the Jams: Proto Metal, 1964 - 1970" in Chapter
One and "Youth Gone Wild: Metal Goes Mainstream, 1978-1992"
in Chapter Four through the concluding chapter, which runs right up through the present and is titled "New American Gospel: Millennial Metal, 1992-Present."
Here's an excerpt from Megadeth singer Dave Mustaine:
"I'm gonna assume full responsibility for my part in the whole Metallica thing. I talked a lot of shit, but I was really hurt because I got fired. I didn't really believe that I got a chance. At that time, if someone would have sat me down and said, 'You know, Dave, you've got a fucking problem...' But no one said that to me."
The book is full of classic and historic quotes from the key players in the metal genre.
The authors have done an excellent job here of laying out in words the sounds and passion of a style of music that's been making listeners bang their heads for over 40 years now.