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Heavy Metal's popularity is and has been on the rise due to its many bands and increased guitar technology. Since the mid 1960 's, when heavy metal spread to the U. S. from England, it has grown in popularity. Many of the first bands that came from Europe came with two intentions; to spread heavy metal to other parts of the world, and to make it grow in popularity. (Ragland 1). Heavy metal is a form of rock 'n' roll music played on electric guitars and amplified to unnatural volume levels.
Such effects as feedback, distortion, reverb, and Wah Wah pedals are commonly added to the music. These effects create completely new sounds, exploiting the possibilities of electric guitars. Most heavy metal music is based on death, Satanism, youth, and teenage rebellion. It is broken into three sub categories; speed core, thrash metal, and death metal. Heavy metal is the general term for these three categories combined.
It is often just called metal. Most heavy metal music is based around the electric guitar. (Ragland 1 - 2). Guitar technology has changed a lot since the beginning of the rock era. In the early 1950 's electric guitars were very expensive and had few capabilities.
Inventions such as wah wah pedals, fuzz boxes, distortion, reverb, and amplifiers have increased the electric guitar's capabilities of making new sounds and music. The new devices have also made rock music more popular. More among the heavy metal population than the many other branches of rock 'n' roll. (Helen). Heavy metal music grabs a hold of rock's most rudimentary elements; youth, rebellion, sex, fantasy, and a good time at all costs.
It is directed towards the alienation and trauma that plagues adolescent life, particularly among the lives if teenage boys. They tend to see their lives as controlled by parents and teachers. For many others, it is a way to release frustration and anger. For instance, a heavy metal concert to those who like heavy metal, is not just a musical performance, full of elaborate costumes and settings. It is a community of teenagers who participate in a shared celebration of youth. (Ragland 1 - 2). Heavy metal tends to be male-oriented, but metal is not exclusive to the male population.
Its basic audiences are dominate by white, male teenagers from criminal backgrounds. Women in heavy metal are usually objects of lust. They are visualized as mothers and teachers, those who torment the lives of young men. They had always been seen that way in heavy metal, since the beginning of the heavy metal era. (Ragland 2). Heavy metal emerged in the late 1960 's and the early 1970 's. Rock music had begun to lose its popularity.
It became less persuasive, and more boring than ever. The youth of America had lost its interest in the rock era. This was due to lack of technology and style in music. (Ragland 2 - 3). In the early 70 's, bands started to emerge to America from Britain and some other parts of Europe. They focused on the electric guitar's central position in popular music. Bands such as The Beetles, The Rolling Stones, and Cream, became very popular in the U.
S. Thanks to these bands, a rediscovery of the influence of the blues guitar style led to more advanced gadgets made for the guitar (Reverb, Fuzz Boxes, Echo), and a deeper emphasis on exploration and improvisation. (Milward 2). The Who, a band from Britain who came to the U. S. in the mid 1960 's, helped create the Hard rock era.
Lead guitar player, Pete Townshend, would assault his guitar in a circular motion, thus producing an ear-splitting, teeth grinding power chord. Lead vocalist Roger Dairy darted like a madman across the stage while throwing his microphone in the air. The group assaulted its audiences with volume and distortion, and sometimes, violence. An example of violence is the act of smashing guitars and amplifiers. (Milward 2 - 3).
The high decimal volume, and distortion of hard rock darkened the imagery of the vocalists. Black Sabbath was one of the very first bands to evolve from hard rock, to heavy metal. Their satanic and doom-like imagery virtually sold the group to millions of young fans. Death, black magic, and Devil worship gave to the youth of the mid 1970 's, new behaviors towards music. The style that Black Sabbath had created, brought fourth new bands, such as Metallica, Anthrax, and Slayer. The style that Black Sabbath had created, was Heavy Metal. (Milward 3).
Later in time, new metal bands such as Judas Priest and Iron Maiden added more of a background to heavy metal. They wore leather jackets, and brought motorcycles on stage. They made the metal background more gloomy and mystical than ever. Today, there are hundreds of popular heavy metal bands. The most popular are bands such as Metallica, Nine inch Nails, Marilyn Manson, Ozzy Osbourne, Iron Maiden, and Megadeth. Some of these bands, such as Iron Maiden and Metallica have been around since the early 80 's, and before.
Other bands, such as Marilyn Manson and Nine Inch Nails are fairly new. (Ragland 1 - 3). Metallica is one of the most popular heavy metal bands in the world. They formed in 1981, in California. Over the years, they have release 5 successful full-length albums. Their most successful album, Metallica (Commonly called the Black Album) sold over 7 million copies in the U.
S. alone. In all, it sold a little over twelve million copies worldwide. It remained on the top 100 albums chart for over four years. It has proved to be one of the most popular albums in the history of rock 'n' roll. (Sunnerstan). Metallica was the first heavy metal band to win in the Grammy Awards.
They won a Grammy for best metal performance from 1989 - 1992. Then at the next Grammy Awards, they won the best metal performance from 1992 - 1994. They helped change the style of heavy metal in 1996 with their release of Load. It brought more of an alternative look to heavy metal. Instead of playing very loudly, and grunting, they used more of a melodic approach to creating their songs. (Sunnerstan). Iron...
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