Ode to Heavy Metal

O, Heavy Metal Music!dio 2

You caught me unawares one night when I, alone in my bedroom, had the radio set to Q102, Texas’ Best Rock.

You interrupted an endless parade of “meh” rock songs with “Two Minutes to Midnight” by Iron Maiden, the opening riff of which caused every ear attached to my head to explode with fireworks of bliss.

Never did I know that a guitar could crunch so deliciously. Never did I know that I needed that crunch as much as I needed marrow in my bones!

Metal, you had me at hello.

And it was good that your practitioners did not wear cosmetics or have poofed-up hair. And that they did not wear scarves or sing of parties.

Nothing against parties or those who sing of them.

Your metal band sang of War! of Pharaoh! of Ancient Mariners! of the Metal Beast rising to conquer Evil!

A few years later, Metal, you found me lying on my cot at summer camp with my Walkman.

Yes, I said Walkman.

That day you gave me Ride the Lightning. You melted my brain. Which seeped out of my ears into a golden chalice of immortal power, which I raised to the heavens as I screamed and clenched my fist. My fist of immortal power.

For that I sincerely thank you, my friend Heavy Metal! With a thousand thank yous, I thank you, you great Metal Beast, you.

I love your crunching riffs.

Metal, you complete me.

2 thoughts on “Ode to Heavy Metal

  1. The Dio photo is pretty spot-on. I took the Punk path, and why-oh-why is it verboten for those styles to mix, it seems? That Trail of Dead seemed to commit some trespass when they did that, I think. You must know them if you lived in Texas, I hope.


    • I do know of them, but I don’t know their music. As far as Texas bands go, Tripping Daisy and the Old 97s are what I was into. And of course Stevie Ray Vaughan.

      About the only punk I listened to was DRI and the Dead Milkmen (which probably wasn’t punk but about as close as I got). DRI’s metal crossover record (called “Crossover,” get it?) was exciting to me. I liked the idea of bands trying to combine the two. I dabbled in punk – Black Flag, Dead Kennedys, stuff like that. Of course the Sex Pistols. But I’m definitely a metal guy. I prefer the precision and complexity, which I didn’t find much of in punk. And the crunch. Punk doesn’t crunch enough for me.


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