Articles Movies and Television Observations and Musings 

Trick or Treat: Heavy Metal Horror Movie (1986)

The eighties were the golden age of heavy metal and horror movies. Occasionally the two worlds collided. One such union is the 1986 film, Trick or Treat. Trick or Treat stars a metal fan named Eddie Weinbauer who goes by the nickname “Ragman.” As a freethinking outcast, Ragman endures constant torment at the hands of classmates. Heavy metal provides not only an escape from suburban hell, but instills hope in a post-high school existence. Eddie takes inspiration from rocker Sammi Curr. An alumnus of Eddie’s high school, Curr found fame…

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Articles Observations and Musings 

Slayer: The Seat Cushion Riot

Slayer shows are legendary for their brutality. A contemporary Slayer concert is a good time but things were different in the early days. Crowds were passionate to the point of being crazed. Sometimes this passion could get out of hand, leading to bodily harm and property damage. Word of Slayer riots first came to me in 1990. To promote the upcoming release of Seasons in the Abyss, Slayer booked a small club tour just before the album was released. Billed as “A Week in the Abyss,” the band previewed new…

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Articles Observations and Musings 

Metallica Damage Inc. Tour – Jason Newsted’s Second Gig

The rise of You Tube has allowed unprecedented access to bootleg concert footage. Once the sole domain of grainy VHS tapes, fans can now watch virtually any recorded performance online. Occasionally, a unique moment is captured on film. Such is the case with Metallica’s 1986 Anaheim, California show at the now defunct Jezebel’s. Jason Newsted touring behind Master of Puppets gives the concert historical significance. It had been barely over a month since Cliff passed away and Anaheim was Jason’s second appearance with the band. Metallica are back on the…

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Articles Observations and Musings 

Kryst the Conqueror – Post Misfits Christian Metal

After the demise of The Misfits, Glenn Danzig promptly formed Samhain. Jerry Only and Doyle seemingly disappeared from public view. What had become of the Caiafa brothers in the long gap between Misfits eras? They formed a Christian metal band! Kryst the Conqueror, pronounced CHRIST the Conqueror, was not a band in the traditional sense. The group never performed live and did not have an “official” singer. They DID, however, write a series of songs that mixed positive Christian messages with fantasy-themed lyrics. The Doyle Fan Club was formed in…

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Bobby Steele: Undead Misfit

Bobby Steele has gotten a raw deal. Before forming The Undead, Steele played on legendary recordings that laid the groundwork for The Misfits ascent to icon status. By 1980, Steele was fired and replaced with Jerry Only’s little brother. Doyle may get mainstream recognition as Misfits ax-slinger, but Bobby Steele deserves equal credit. Barring the few that were around to witness the original line-up, fans largely discovered the classic Misfits recordings through compilations lovingly known as Collection 1 and 2. In the post-vinyl/pre-internet age, Bobby Steele’s contributions went largely un-credited….

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The Black Sabbath Cartoon – “Lost” Clip from 1974

Imagine Black Sabbath as stars of their own Saturday morning cartoon. One clip floating around You Tube purports to be just that. Set in 1974, the show would have aired during the Sabbath Bloody Sabbath era. In the roughly three minute segment, Black Sabbath appear as animated caricatures of themselves. Bill Ward guzzles booze and talks incoherently. Ozzy is the ever-present clown, continually getting into hijinks, often without clothes. Tony and Geezer are depicted as stately rock stars that counteract the antics of their drug-addled singer and boozed up drummer….

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Don’t Look Back: Bob Dylan vs. Donovan

D.A. Pennebaker’s documentary, Don’t Look Back, captures Bob Dylan during his 1965 tour of England. Bringing It All Back Home had peaked at number 1 in the UK. Teenage girls stalk his hotel, fans chase his limousine, and newspapers feed the frenzy with endless Bob Dylan articles. Pop singer Donovan was also enjoying a surge of popularity in 1965. Throughout the film, Dylan is preoccupied with the local press. Seemingly every time he opened the paper, Donovan’s name appeared. Our first hint of jealousy arrives early on. Dylan reads a…

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Heavy Metal Parking Lot: Judas Priest 1986

Judas Priest released the divisive Turbo in 1986. Despite alienating core fans with synthesizers and pop hooks, Turbo became the band’s highest charting album to date. The subsequent “Fuel For Life” tour was equally successful. Fans turned out in droves to see Priest live. Although Judas Priest filmed the tour for home video, two filmmakers provided documentation of a different sort. Armed with equipment borrowed from a cable access studio, John Heyn and Jeff Krulik interviewed tailgating fans outside the Capital Centre in Largo, Maryland. Aptly titled, Heavy Metal Parking Lot, the…

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Album Art Exploration Articles Observations and Musings 

Iron Maiden: The Legend of the Black Cat

Eddie has been the face of Iron Maiden since day one. From seedy underworlds of urban decay to Egyptian pyramids and hostile ice planets, creator Derek Riggs has famously buried jokes and messages in the landscapes that Eddie called home. One particularly murky legend is that a black cat is hidden in each Iron Maiden album. The black cat legend is rarely discussed. I wondered if the concept was some half-invented figment of my imagination. A Google search yielded no conclusive evidence. If not for fruitless inquires posed by random…

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Hardwired…to Self-Destruct: Reconciling with Metallica

Full disclosure. I was one of the fans that felt alienated by the “Black Album.” Those feelings only intensified with the release of Load and Reload. I hated their new image, the haircuts, the music, but most of all, I resented that they had turned their backs on metal. In short, I disconnected from all things Metallica. Please don’t be angry with me. I know many fans stayed with the band every step of the way. Millions came on board during the era that caused me to flee. I don’t…

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