Jack and Spags Speak

Jack and Spags Speak

By Christian Spagnola and Jack Noonan, 7th grade


Metal, an often targeted genre of music, is often attacked unfairly.  Some sub-genres of metal are more targeted than others.  Mostly though people just don’t know what they are talking about.

Incorrect assumption #1: IT’S ALL JUST SCREAMING.  I’m not going to lie; most sub-genres have growls, grunts and pig squeals in them.  Or as the common ignorant listener may say “screaming.”  People say this is an easy thing to do.  Well, it’s not because otherwise everyone would be doing it.  Growling and pig-squealing is pretty hard and takes a good amount of practice.  Also, there isn’t really a sub-genre of metal called “screamo”; most often people are talking of death metal or deathcore.

Incorrect assumption #2:  IT TAKES NO TALENT.  This, along with the first assumption, is probably the most common insult metal gets.  All music takes a specific amount of talent.  Even rap.  Once again, if music didn’t take talent, everyone could and would do it.  But to say metal is the one type of music that doesn’t require any talent is just stupid.  Check out some of the solos musicians such as Dave Mustaine of Megadeth or Dimebag Darrell of Pantera.  It’s not just about guitarists though; Dave Lombardo of Slayer may be the fastest drummer ever.  Then, there’s the drummer for Whitechapel or the drummer for Morbid Angel, or the drummer for Death.  I could go on and on.

There’s more insults and labels thrown at metal such as disdain for the way metal heads dress or comments that the bands aren’t multi-racial.  These are invalid and aren’t good reasons to not check out the genre.

The following info is meant to give you an overview of metal’s history.  Keep in mind; this is its MAIN timeline and covers the typical sub-genres and creators.

Metal was created by Black Sabbath, a band from Birningham, England.  Then came the new wave of British heavy metal, with bands such as Iron Maiden, Venom, Diamond Head, etc.  Then, thrash metal, a combination of the British metal and punk rock, came; the early bands included Megadeth, Metallica, Anthrax, Slayer, Kreator, Exodus, etc.  In 1987,  Death released their first album Scream Bloody Gore, considered to be the first Death Metal by many.  Another band Possessed released their debut album Seven Churches with a track titled “Death Metal.”  Early death metal bands included Obituary, Massacre, Terrorizer, etc.  Then, grind core eventually came along with Napalm Death.  Black metal also emerged with Venom, Celtic Frost, etc.  Then came the 90’s with grunge and rock and Pantera.

Now, deathcore and death metal are the main sub-genres.  Some popular deathcore bands are The Black Dahlia Murder, Miss May I, The Devil Wears Prada, etc.

There are a lot more bands but this gives you a flavor for the genre and informs you about the pioneers of metal.


Heavy metal was created in the year 1970 when Ozzy Osbourne, Bill Ward, Toni Iommi and Geezer Butler formed Black Sabbath and released their self-titled album, the first metal album every released.  All six songs were 100% “head-bang worthy”.  They were full of heavy riffs, dark vocals, and fast-paced solos.  If you listened to the other music that was on the charts at that time, you would see how unique Black Sabbath was.  And so, it all began with Black Sabbath.

The next metal bands to become well known kick starts to the metal genre were Judas Priest and Iron Maiden.  They followed the trend of darker, more complex and fast-paced music such as Sabbath but each brought their own styles and innovations to the table.

Then came the “NWOBHM” or the New Wave of British Heavy metal.  This included bands such as Budgie and Diamond Head who inspired the inventors of a new type of metal greatly.  This new type is called “thrash metal” and in my opinion is the best type of metal.  The pioneers of thrash metal mainly include James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, and Dave Mustaine who were all one time in Metallica.  At the other same time other sub-genres, such as death metal, formed.

After thrash evolved, I stopped paying attention to the development of metal.  In my opinion, there aren’t many good metal bands that formed after the 80’s.  My favorite bands include Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer, Exodus, Sodom, Pantera, Black Sabbath, Budgie, Iron Maiden and Death.

Metal in general is a heavy, intense fast music.  One of the best parts is head banging, listening to something really heavy and seeing how much your brain can shake loose.  Metal is also fun while playing videogames.  Put on some Slayer, fire up MW3 and mow down some noobs!