Heroes of the Metal Underground

The Definitive Guide to 1980s American Independent Metal Bands


The one and only encyclopedic book on independent American metal!

“Alexandros’ in-depth research and clear love and fervor for this music bleeds all over this book! A reference book to a movement that changed music from the underside, through the back door and crashing the gates to get in.” ? Parris Mayhew, AGGROS and former member of the Cro-Mags

If all you knew about metal music was what you heard on commercial radio, then you don’t know metal. Heroes of the Metal Underground profiles over one hundred American metal bands from throughout the United States.

Metal exploded during the 1980s. American record companies signed a few bands to major label recording deals (Metallica, Slayer, Anthrax) but that left hundreds of bands working to get their songs heard. These intrepid metal bands borrowed a page from punk’s DIY handbook and did it themselves.

Regional favorites. Hometown heroes. Tour-van veterans. Bands who invested their life savings into recording and pressing their songs onto albums for a shot at immortality on vinyl. Fans loved it. We are here for it. Devil horns up, headbangers, your playlist—and record collection—is about to be blast beat’d into the metalsphere.

624 pages of pure American metal alongside images of rare records and interviews with the visionaries who wrote, played, and recorded thousands of songs you’ve (probably) never heard. Crate diggers rejoice—this book is for you.

Alexandros Anesiadis lives in London and Greece. His previous books, Crossover the Edge and We Can Be the New Wind, document punk and hybrid punk-metal bands.

Contributor Yannis Skarpelos is a sociologist and professor of Visual Cultural Studies at Panteion University, Athens. He loves all things metal.

978-1627311403 | Pub Date: August 29, 2023 | 6x9 | 520 pages | $42.95