Running Title: Bang Your Head – The Rise And Fall of Heavy Metal
Ah the 80s, New Wave, Transformers, Milli Vanilli, Heavy Metal, Hair Metal, Glam Metal … yes, I know I’ve mentioned Metal a lot … because that’s what most of us remember so much from the 80s. Ok, some of us might have The Best of Debbie Gibson on our MP3 players alongside Van Halen … and I’m pleading the bloomin fifth. For me I lived most of the metal 80s through the telly as I was still stuck in a certain English speaking colony in South America. When I landed in America, it turns out that fate has a sense of humour, since I was sent to high school that was predominantly into rap and hip-hop with literally a handful of us (as you count us on one hand) that dared to walk around the halls in denim jackets that sported decals by Guns N’ Roses, Dokken, Def Leppard, Accept or AC/DC. Aye talk about fun times. Reading Bang Your Head was like being visited by ghosts from your metal past, and boy do some of us do need a visit because that emo bollocks is just not bloody cutting it.
In Bang Your Head, Konow takes us through the world of heavy metal from the late 70s onward to the early to mid 90s when grundge came on the scene. It is somewhat an expose of some of the behind the scenes that was all part of the heavy metal decadence: the egos, the eccentricities, the shadiness, and then there were the heavy metal artists. Bang Your Head takes from the point heavy metal struggled to gain a foothold in the mainstream to the part where artists let their egos get the best of them as many started taking themselves a bit too seriously and some treated the fans like utter crap. Paging Mr. Rose. Some of the stories are laughable and some … well … pretty much answered a ton of “where are they now”questions. A delightful read, and in the end you might find yourselves unsympathetic to many of these tossers and bit more appreciative of others. For some reason, as you read about the heavy metal industry somewhat imploding in view of the Seattle sound (grundge), the song “Don’t Know What You Got Til It’s Gone”, by Cinderella, echoes in your head. Talk about irony. In the mean time that Cinderella song only reminds me of the time a certain girl told me that it was best if we remained “friends” … the night before the prom. I never went to the bloody prom. Sigh. I have detoured. And let you into my life. You poor bastards.
On a brighter note, for those of us that banged our heads in the 80s, are still banging our heads (with less hair) today or just plain bloody posers, then Bang Your Head is the book to have in your literary arsenal. And yes, headbangers do read.
Bang Your Head by David Konow
April 18, 2011 by larry h.