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Review: Heavy Metal: The music and its culture
Book Review
Heavy Metal: The music and its culture
Publisher: Da Capo Press
Author: Deena Weinstein
Year published: 2000
ISBN: 0-306-80970-2

Rating: 4.5/5

Review online: May 24, 2000
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Readers Rating
Heavy Metal: The music and its culture

Rated 4.33/5 (86.67%) (3 Votes)

Originally published in 1991, this book has just been released in paperback format, with an additional chapter on "Metal in the 90s".  Simply put, this book is a page-turner.  Author Deena Weinstein is a professor of sociology who decided to do a serious study on the heavy metal culture, and from the content of this book, she did a damn good job.  Unlike some other would who only go around interviewing artists, detractors and reading news material, she actually went to concerts, talked to fans, listened to the music - and it would seem that she appreciated it.  She is pretty much objective in the treatment of the subject, with what could be seen as a "pro-metal" bias, but that I would rather qualify as an understanding of the metal culture.

The only negative comment I have on the book is that it sometimes get a little too "technical" and there's some repetition in some chapters.  Reminiscent of the time when the book was originally written, we all know that the quotes from Metallica's Lars Ulrich cited in the book turned out to be just a load of bull...  We all know that story.

Covering everything from the music to the detractors, this book is an absolute must-have for metal fans, and also for those with prejudices against metal.  Reading the book you'll also find what it means to be a sell-out band in metal.  Metallica sheep please take note :).  Looks like I'm on an agenda here!  Bottom line: If you're going to buy only one book this year, this is the one to get.

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