Of the many musical genres that immerse themselves in our culture, you
would be hard pressed to find one which exacts as much emotion from its
listeners as Heavy Metal. Whether you are drawn in by the forceful barrage of
sound that envelopes the listener or the fantastical lyrics that are commonly
utilized, any avid listener will agree that this style of music stands for no
substitute. In this brief article my intent to provide the reader with a basic
understanding of the origins of Heavy Metal, and the subtle yet influential role it
plays on our culture today.
There are many varying opinions on the true origin of Heavy Metal. Over
time I have developed my own, however; it is important to note one of the
primary sources I have used for information on the subject. In his work, The
Encyclopedia of Heavy Metal, Daniel Bukszpan(2003) lays out a clear and
certifiable history of the genre. Reading this work, I was able to research various
bands for their influence on this style of music.
Heavy Metal derives its sound from a fusion of Blues, Rock, and guitar
distortion. Developed by experimental teenagers whom like every other
generation were actively seeking ways of escaping from their parent's influences,
the sound followed the principles of Rock and Roll by becoming more aggressive
and substantially louder. The first signs of life can be found in the early 70's,
where bands such as Deep Purple and Led Zepplin had established themselves as
something altogether different. The youth naturally embraced this new style, and METAL 3
Heavy Metal was born.
As the generation responsible for Heavy Metal grew, so to did the genre
itself. During the 80's, Heavy Metal reached an unprecedented level of popularity.
Bands like Iron Maiden, Queensryche, and Rainbow introduced a new level of
musicianship that rooted itself...