NYC Celebrates the Launch of LOUDER THAN HELL: The Definitive Oral History of Metal

By Lena Alazawi

Last night at New York City’s Bowery Electric, the metal community celebrated the launch of LOUDER THAN HELL: The Definitive Oral History of Metal. Compiled from over 400 interviews conducted by respected music journalists Jon Wiederhorn and Katherine Turman, LOUDER THAN HELL is a chronological history of heavy metal, told through the words of the men and women who created it, played it, re-invented it and continue to rock it. The launch party's packed house included many of metal's East Coast insiders as well as performances from Iraqi metal band Acrassicauda who were featured in the documentary Heavy Metal in Baghdad.

I sat down with journalists Jon Wiederhorn and Katherine Turman who got together four years ago after realizing that no comprehensive history of metal existed. "With the current watered-down and mediocre rock radio songs missing their mark on disenfranchised and angry kids," Katherine says, "metal has always been about going against the grain: and this is a tribute to that time."

"You look at metal and think artists are all hedonists and just want to get laid," says Jon, "and in reality you see the combination of stories of how they live in squalor and struggle, keeping their perseverance and determination alive just to pay the gas to get them from one show to the next." It’s the voices of metal from those who’ve been listening for a long time…

LOUDER THAN HELL: The Definitive Oral History of Metal (It Books; May 14, 2013; Hardcover; $32.50), is available at Amazon here.
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