Saturday, February 13, 2010

A Heavy Metal Anniversary

Today marks the 40th anniversary of the birth of Heavy Metal. I must say that I have certainly listened to more than my fair share of that head banging goodness (and badness) that sprang from the Black Sabbath's birth. It certainly helped get me through the late 70's when there was a drought of decent music and I still manage to get in a listen now and again, even this late. Happy Birthday to Ozzy and the boys!

It began with a clap of thunder and a tolling bell. Then, as a heavily distorted guitar played a diminished fifth — a tone sequence once banned by the Roman Catholic Church for being the “Devil’s interval” — a male voice started to wail as if from the grave. A few bars later the drums came in, and the resulting din was loud enough to make it seem as if Earth was coming apart at the seams.

The date was February 13, 1970 — 40 years ago today — and the album Black Sabbath, by the band of the same name, had just been released. It gave birth not only to heavy metal, but also to a new kind of dance move for the working-class male: headbanging.
Here's to 40 more years of music. Good and bad.

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