Titus Hjelm [+]
University College London
Heavy metal is now over forty years old and has developed into a diverse and multi-faceted genre. Wherever it is found and however it is played, metal's fascination with transgression has often meant it has been embroiled in controversy. Controversies surrounding the alleged connection between heavy metal and, variously, sexual promiscuity, occultism and Satanism, subliminal messages, suicide and violence have made heavy metal a target of moral panics over popular culture. Metal has variously embraced, rejected, played with and tried to ignore this controversy and it remains irrevocably marked by its controversial, transgressive tendencies. This anthology provides a thorough investigation of how and why metal becomes controversial, how metal 'scenes' are formed. It examines the relationship between metal and society, including how fans, musicians and the media create the culture of heavy metal.