brendan halpin


I went to my first metal show last night! Well, I guess it was the second if you count that year that Ozzfest was free.

I grew up listening to punk, which is sort of metal-adjacent, but the mainstream conquered punk in 1991, whereas the more extreme versions of metal remain pretty stubbornly un-commercial. I mean, I assume some of these bands make a living making their art, but nobody’s getting rich making black metal.

I’m drawn to art that gathers in misfits, as punk did when I was a kid, and so I have been slowly working my way into metal. I like the theatricality and the musicianship, but I’d still consider myself an outsider to the scene. (I mean, also I’m old as fuck, so). So this is pretty much going to be an outsider’s view of a metal show. Which means I don’t know all the proper names of the sub-sub-sub genres, for one thing, so don’t yell at me about that. Okay, off we go!