Black Sabbath and the birth of British Heavy Metal

What is heavy metal music? Many fans would say this genre of music started in the late 1960s, into the early 1970s and beyond. There are multiple forms of rock music, but what makes heavy metal stand out above the rest? Initially, the music was played at high volume with massive guitar stacks, creating a sound unlike anything heard before. The volume was essential and was probably taken to its extreme with Black Sabbath in the 1970s. So the volume was important, but what else made heavy metal a unique genre of music?

Their first album, called “Black Sabbath”, was unique. It featured songs that were very long, leaden riffs together with frantic guitar solos, and Ozzy Osbourne’s doom-laden lyrics. The heaviest tracks were “Black Sabbath”, “N.I.B.”, “Behind the Wall of Sleep”, and “Sleeping Village”. All of these tracks conjured up a sense of myth and mystery that was to shape heavy metal over the next few years. At that time, music fans had not heard anything quite like this before. Their track “Warning”, for example, weighed in at 10 minutes and 33 seconds. For this type of music, this was unheard of. The album was released on February 13, 1970, and reached number eight in the UK charts and 23 in the American Billboard charts, where it stayed for a whole year. Had Black Sabbath created something that was unique amongst rock music, maybe heavy metal itself?

Black Sabbath then released their “Paranoid” album, where perhaps the most seminal of all heavy metal riffs appeared on their track “Iron Man”. The use of a ring modulator at the start of the track to create the voice of Iron Man was highly influential. It took heavy metal to new heights, and is probably one of the most famous tracks of its genre ever written. The album soared to the top of the UK charts. The track is still used today in the films featuring the superhero Iron Man. The eponymous track “Paranoid” from the same album was a smash hit, and finally showed that heavy metal was reaching the masses. If you want to listen to this track, why not use an apple PC refurbished in the uk. This album also features another heavy metal classic, “War Pigs”. This fantastic heavy metal pastiche of the Vietnam War is an example of how Black Sabbath would change the musical landscape forever.

Black Sabbath continued to release many more albums in various guises, but the first two albums were so different and commercially popular that Black Sabbath were here to stay. Many bands have been influenced by Black Sabbath, but their first two albums were undoubtedly works of art in relation to the birth of British heavy metal music. Nothing like those two albums had ever been heard before, and there is no doubt that they invented or sowed the seed for the future of heavy metal as we know and love it.

The Beatles

One of the most well-known bands in the world, The Beatles were a pop / rock band that formed in Liverpool in 1960. The line-up consisted of Paul McCartney, John Lennon, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr until the band’s dissolution when a number of the members went on to pursue solo careers. The Beatles’ early sound was a small evolution from 1950s rock and roll, but the group still managed to become global icons that would influence popular music and culture around the world, particularly the counterculture of the 1960s.

Throughout their career, The Beatles continued to experiment with both sound and recording techniques, incorporating a wide range of music styles, many of which they discovered when travelling the world. The group also incorporated elements of both classical music as well as older forms of pop, this is evident in a lot of their songs when they have entire string sections or even orchestras just for one song on an album. During some of their more experimental phases, The Beatles’ sound evolved into psychedelic rock and many songs took on a harder edge, a lot of this was due to the influence of other bands that were popular around the same time period, such as the Rolling Stones.

The main songwriters of the group, Lennon and McCartney, helped to establish the group’s reputation playing clubs in Liverpool during the early part of their career. The band’s lineup has changed a number of times, originally featuring Stuart Sutcliffe playing the bass guitar, before the band finally recruited Ringo Starr in 1962 and the four remained the sole members of the band until their eventual split. A large part of the groups success is owned to their manager, Brian Epstein, who helped to mound the band into a more professional outfit. The group were also greatly helped by their producer, George Martin, who helped to guide the band and develop their recordings that helped increase the success of their first hit. ‘Love Me Do’, which was released in 1962.

The band’s real fame came around 1964 when the band became an international phoenomenon, being one of the bands to lead the British incursion into the American music market, in which they broke numerous records. Thanks to their success, the band was also able to create their own motion-picture films, the first of which they titled ‘A Hard Day’s Night’, which debuted in 1964. This also marked the start of the bands true creative innovation, when they were suddenly not limited by any resources, they were able to be more and more creative, particularly with the newer, electronic recording equipment that had begin to hit the market at that time, particularly noticeable with the ‘White Album’, released in 1968.

Personalities of Heavy Metal Fans

There’s a high probability that you’re a connoisseur of metal, or somebody you know adores this genre. Currently, heavy metal is the most popular music genre in the United Kingdom, beating hip hop, reggae, and pop. At least one in five persons in the UK prefers metal, which is basically hard rock, to other music genres.

Popular Rock Bands in the UK

Which is your favourite rock band? Is it from previous generations? Twenty per cent of people in the UK listen to groups such as Iron Maiden, Metallica, and Black Sabbath. Judas Priest is another rock band that is often listened to in Britain.

So what makes an individual a true metal fan, and what are the characteristics of heavy metal lovers?

Male

It’s a no-brainer that most of the heavy metal fans are male, judging from the beats and energy it takes you to dance to the tunes. Accidents are not uncommon on rock dance floors. In cases where you injure yourself or other fans when dancing, click here for immediate medical assistance. Notably, this doesn’t rule out female fans, as there are even metal bands which comprise of ladies. But this type of music just seems to be more intense and engaging.

Creative and Unique

According to the Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, a study showed that more than half of the participants evaluated, embraced certain rock bands, including Disturbed, Enslaved, Cradle of Filth, and Overkill. And most of these participants admitted that they’re unique in terms of behaviour and are creative. This supports the point why you consider yourself a super creative person with plenty of ideas.

Openness

Apparently, you have got an open personality if you’re a true connoisseur of heavy metal. You speak your mind and always maintain open communication with people close to you. Telling it blatantly frees up your mind and gives you peace.

Introverted

While you may be open to people you care about, you are not excited by other forms of music and its fans. You only love staying with people close to you, listening to your heavy metal and shutting the door on other personalities. And ultimately, you pay for that expensive ticket to break the boredom which comes with other genres. Put simply, you’re very intuitive, and you like reflecting on past ideas and activities.

Low Esteem

Surprisingly, you may have realised that you have low self-esteem. So, you turn to heavy metal, which is a catalyst that boosts your self-worth. The other reason why you may be listening to this form of music is to promote inner and positive self-evaluations. Maybe after that powerful and energetic performance and dance, you’ll feel more appreciated and important.

In summary, you need to understand that not all of the traits as mentioned above are the same for everyone. But it may be true that you associate yourself with one or two of these personality traits. It’s no weakness or sign of flaws that you’re glued to any single type of music. Volume up, dance, and enjoy your heavy metal.

The Rolling Stones

 

Form in London in 1962, The Rolling Stones are one of the longest running bands in musical history, continuing to tour today. The band went through a number of line-ups early in their career, with their first stable line-up consisting of Mick Jagger on lead vocals, Brian Jones on guitar, Keith Richards on guitar, Bill Wyman on bass, and Charlie Watts on drums. Ian Stewart originally played piano for the band but was removed from their permanent line-up in 1963. Jagger and Richards assumed leadership roles within the band after the recruitment on their manager Andrew Loog Oldham.

The Rolling Stone’s musical style helped them in their role as being at the forefront of the ‘British Invasion’ into the American music market, with the band achieving huge popularity in the 1960s in both Britain and America, helping to become of the most influential bands during the counterculture movements in the 1960s. The groups sound was, and remains, rooted in blues to form their classic rock sound. Originally the band found great success in performing cover songs before transitioning to performing their own material, which they now almost exclusively play. Their songs ‘Satisfaction’ and ‘Paint It Black’ became international hits after their respective releases.

The band’s musical style evolved during the 1960s psychedelic era with their music taking on a more experimental edge, particularly in relation to recording techniques that were fast becoming popular at the time, although the band did eventually return to their classic rock style. This is evident to anyone listening to their albums in chronological order, although almost all albums have been well-received commercially and amongst fans.

The Rolling Stones have continued to release new music since their formation, although the frequency began to slow down during the late 1970s, with album releases becoming spaced out further and further. Alongside their studio releases, the band have continued to tour the world, becoming one of the most successful bands of all time. A number of musical critics have stated that the band’s ability to continue producing music rooted in classical rock and blues has helped their longevity, whereas a number of bands that have attempted to capitalise on passing trends have not been able to last anywhere near as long as The Rolling Stones have.

Eagles – Hotel California

The Eagle’s fifth studio album, Hotel California, was recorded between March and October 1976 before being released on the 8th of December in 1976. The album contains three singles that each managed to do well in commercial charts, reaching high numbers in the Billboard Hot 100. ‘New Kid in Town’ managed to reach number 1 in the US, ‘Life in the Fast Lane’ managed to hit number 11, and ‘Hotel California’ also managed to reach number 1. The album is currently their second highest-selling album, behind their compilation album, Their Greatest Hits (1971 – 1975). In total, the album has managed to sell more than 42 million copies across the world and has been certified 26x Platinum in the United States.

Recording Chief Bill Szymczky helped to bring the album about at both the Criteria and Record Plant studios between March and October 1976, with the album being released in December of the same year on the Asylum record label. The album was the first to feature the guitarist Joe Walsh, who was brought on board to replace guitarist and founding member Bernie Leadon. Walsh’s guitar style added much to the album, with many critics pointing this out as a critical component of the album’s success.

The title song of the album, Hotel California, was written as a warning about the excesses of fame and success within America, particularly related to the failing of the American dream, as it was believed at that time that the American dream was unattainable for most Americans.

Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin IV

The fourth studio album from acclaimed British rock band Led Zeppelin followed the naming convention set by their previous album and was titled Led Zeppelin IV. The album was released on the 8th of November in 1971 under the record label Atlantic Records. The album only took three months to record, which was done between December 1970, and February 1971, mostly in the country house Headley Grange. Jimmy Paige served as the album producer, helping to ensure that the sound quality remained high, although some have speculated that this was also to ensure that his guitar solos were considered loud enough according to his own tastes.

The album was a huge hit amongst fans, as well as commercially, as the band had been more experimental when compared to some of their previous albums due to their financial freedom that the success of their previous albums allowed them. One of Led Zeppelin’s most well-known songs, Stairway to Heaven, was released on the album. Breaking with their tradition of not including cover songs on their albums, Led Zeppelin did include one cover, a rock reinterpretation of the blues song ‘When the Levee Breaks’.

Rock and Roll

The musical genre of Rock and Roll dates back to 1940s and 1950s America. The genre is an evolution of blues, gospel, jazz, boogie woogie, with some sub-genres of rock and roll also having a distinct country feel to them, particularly rock and roll from some of the southern US states. Some of the earliest elements of rock and roll are evident on early records from 1920s blues music, although the term did not get invented until 1954.

Rock and roll has undergone many evolutions since its inception, with most early rock and roll relying heavily on blues rhythms, as well as following the standard band formula of having a lead singer and the rest of the band being considered to be ‘backing’.

During the 1960s the formula for the rock and roll band changed, largely due to the influence of the Beatles, as it was uncommon for the lead singer to have the band named after themselves and the band as a whole became more important than any individual member. The popularity of Rock during the 1960s and 1970s led to the creation of a number of sub-genres, many of which took on a much harder sound than their predecessors. Metal is one of the most well-known derivatives of rock music, and many metal bands have switched between the two genres when recording their albums.

Numerous musical historians have stated that the invention of rock and roll was a huge turning point in history in the countries where it was popular. Many bands were influential during the counterculture movements and bands started to become more and more political, particularly with many writing anti-war protest songs.

Rap

Either an old genre or a modern phenomenon depending on your point of view, rap music in its current form generally comprises of a rhythmic speaking over some form of musical backing track. Early precursors of rap are spoken poetry, with the difference between the two being that rap songs are typically performed in time to some form of music.

Rap is one of the primary components of the hip-hop genre, with almost every hip-hop album containing either exclusively rap or every track having some form of rap on it. Anthony ‘DJ Hollywood’ Holloway has been given the credit for inventing the style that would go on to become the modern style of rap. Holloway was from Harlem, New York, and the area has remained popular in the rap scene ever since.

There are many negative sides associated with rap and hip-hop, particularly relating to lyrics which appear to glorify violence, drugs, and sexism. Many rapper have come under fire in the media in recent years for their negative influence over younger men, with music itself having even been blamed for a number of violent gang incidents that have taken place.

The Eagles

World renowned band the Eagles was formed in Los Angeles in 1971. Although the line-up has changed numerous times through the years, the original line-up consisted of guitarist and vocalist Glenn Frey, Don Henley on drums, Bernie Leadon on guitar and backing vocal, and Randy Meisner on bass guitar. Throughout their career, the Eagles managed to have five singles holding the number-one spot on US charts, as well as numerous musical accolades, including six Grammy Awards, five American Music Awards, and six albums hitting the number-one spot on musical charts. At the end of the 20th century, their two albums, ‘Hotel California, and ‘Greatest Hits (1971 – 1975)’ were among the 20 best-selling albums in the United States, according to the metrics taken by the Recording Industry Association of America. In 2006, the albums had both climbed in popularity and both albums were amongst the top three best-selling albums in the United States.

The Eagles first album, named after themselves, was released in 1972 and managed to produce three singles that made it to the top 40 in US charts: ‘Take It Easy’, Witchy Woman’, and ‘Peaceful Easy Feeling’. The band’s initial success was not replicated for their second studio album, Desperado, which was released in 1973. Although the album only managed to reach number 41 on the charts, although the album does contain two of the songs that are regularly listed as fan favourites: ‘Desperado’ and ‘Tequila Sunrise’.

The band decided to expand their roster in 1974 when they were recording their album ‘On The Border’. The band recruited Don Felder as an additional guitarist, something that helped the band write a number of their signature guitar solos.