Metal may be the most maligned musical genre out there. But regardless of whether you think its rep is well-deserved or wholly unfair, there is no denying the powerful visual images that have been associated with it from the beginning, seen everywhere from album covers to black concert T’s.
From the iconic Zombie-like figure of Eddie, Iron Maiden’s mascot, to the Misfits skull beaming from the front of t-shirts going on two generations now, heavy metal has proven to be creative pay dirt for thousands of artists and designers across the globe. The coffee table book The Art of Heavy Metal is a beautiful showcase of the genre as a visual medium. Boasting 400 color images of posters, album covers, flyers and the standard issue t-shirt (occasionally in other colors, but most often in black), this book is impressively in depth, covering the early British metal invasion, hair metal, death, black, stoner metal… pretty much any prefix you’d think of adding to the word “metal.”
As if this book weren’t already a must have for every head banger out there, Motorhead’s Lemmy Kilmister decided to pen the intro to this one. Now it’s pretty much a standard issue textbook for the misunderstood.
The Art of Metal: Five Decades of heavy Metal Album Covers, Posters, T-Shirts and More By Martin Popoff and Malcolm Dome/Hardcover/224 pages/Voyageur Press/2013
The Art of Metal: Five Decades of Heavy Metal Album Covers, Posters, T-Shirts and More By Martin Popoff and Malcolm Dome (Book)