Louder Than Hell: The Definitive Oral History of Metal is the shocking, insane, brutal, and fascinating story of heavy metal music told by those who lived it, from Black Sabbath (above), Anthrax, and Slayer, to Megadeth, Metallica, and Iron Maiden. Here's a taste:
ROGER MIRET (Agnostic Front): In the mid-'80s, there wasn't much difference between metal and hardcore scenes. Everyone dressed in black, everyone was walking out of step with society, because whether you were a punk rocker, a skinhead, a hardcore kid, or a metal dude, you didn't fit in. You were a weirdo, and nobody's mother wanted their kids hanging out with you.
Louder Than Hell: The Definitive Oral History of Metal (Amazon)
PETER STEELE: (Type O Negative, Carnivore): [Carnivore's second album, 1987's] Retaliation was extremely influenced by my discovery of hardcore music at CBGB in '85 and '86. What I strived to do was create an album that was half Black Sabbath and half Cro-Mags, Agnostic Front, Murphy's Law, Sheer Terror, Black Flag, stuff like that. I loved the heaviness, the slowness, the dirge of Sabbath. But at the same time, going to CBGB on Sundays for the matinee, there was so much unbelievable energy in there. It didn't even matter if bands were not in tune.
MIRET: All these bands like Anthrax and Metallica would come and see us at CBGB. It was like the welcoming home of all these bands, and I think meeting each other and seeing each other's bands really cemented the crossover scene...
SCOTT IAN (Anthrax, S.O.D.): I used to go to the CBGB hardcore matinees and that got me totally into Agnostic Front, C.O.C., and D.R.I. You'd have all these hardcore and metal kids coming together to see these bands and there were definitely fights, but at the same time you felt this sense of community.
HARLEY FLANAGAN (Cro-Mags): If it were not for Venom and Motörhead, the Cro-Mags would not have sounded the way we did. I was hanging out with violent skinheads with crazy pentagrams and swastikas tattooed all over them, listening to Venom and Discharge, huffing glue, trying to invoke demons.
The Oral History of NYC's Metal/Hardcore Crossover (book excerpt in the Village Voice)