The Heavy Metal Music Map

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


The Heavy Metal Music Map is a user-generated map of the best heavy metal music from around the world.


Welcome to the Heavy Metal Music Map! This map is designed to help you find metal bands and venues near you. Simply zoom in on your location and click on the markers to see what’s nearby.

The map includes information on metal bands, venues, festivals, and more. You can use the filters to search for specific types of metal, or you can browse by region. If you see a band or venue that you like, you can click through to their website for more information.

So whether you’re a die-hard metalhead or just getting started, this map is a great resource for finding the best heavy metal music near you.

The Birth of Heavy Metal

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, a number of bands began pushing the limits of blues rock into a new genre which would be called heavy metal. Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath and Deep Purple are often cited as pioneers of heavy metal. These bands started a musical revolution which continues to this day.

Heavy metal is a genre of rock music that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, largely in the United Kingdom and the United States. With roots in blues rock and psychedelic rock, the bands that created heavy metal developed a thick, massive sound, characterized by highly amplified distortion, extended guitar solos, emphatic beats, and overall loudness. The genre’s lyrics and performance styles are sometimes associated with aggression and machismo.

In 1970, Black Sabbath released their self-titled debut album, which was quickly followed by their second album, Paranoid (1970). These two albums laid the foundation for heavy metal. Other early heavy metal bands include Deep Purple (1969), Led Zeppelin (1969), and Judas Priest (1974).

The birth ofheavy metal coincided withthe developmentofnew technologies such as amplifier feedback controlsand distortion pedalswhich allowedguitarists to create new sounds never beforeheard.As heaviness became more prevalent inthe soundof popular music, italso became more prevalent in the lyricsand themes exploredbymetal bands. Heavymetal lyrics often dealwith dark topics such ashard life experiences,drug abuse, violenceand even death.

The New Wave of British Heavy Metal

The New Wave of British Heavy Metal, often abbreviated as NWOBHM, was a nationwide musical movement that started in the United Kingdom in the late 1970s and achieved international attention by the early 1980s. The original aim of the movement was to return heavy metal to its roots by eschewing the theatrics and pretensions of stadium rock and arena rock bands of the 1970s.

The New Wave of British Heavy Metal was led by bands such as Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Motörhead, Saxon and Def Leppard. These bands were followed by a second wave of groups such as Diamond Head, Venom, Mercyful Fate and Metallica. The movement had a strong influence on the development of thrash metal and power metal.

American Heavy Metal

American heavy metal is a genre of rock music that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s. It is characterized by its aggressive, driving sound and its use of distorted guitars, bass guitars, and drums.

Heavy metal began to develop in the United States and Canada in the late 1960s, when artists such as Jimi Hendrix and Cream began to experiment with distortion and feedback. By the early 1970s, bands such as Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, and Deep Purple were widely recognized as pioneers of heavy metal. In 1973, Led Zeppelin’s album Houses of the Holy cemented the genre’s popularity, and in 1974, Kiss released their debut album which was also hugely successful.

The late 1970s and early 1980s saw the rise of New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM), a movement that drew heavily from the sounds and image of 1970s hard rock bands. Bands such as Iron Maiden, Motörhead, Diamond Head, Saxon, Samson, Def Leppard, and Judas Priest became extremely popular in both the UK and North America. In 1982, Metallica released their breakthrough album Kill ‘Em All which established them as one of the biggest bands in heavy metal.

In the 1990s and 2000s (decade), American heavy metal underwent a number of changes. Grunge bands such as Nirvana and Alice in Chains brought alternative rock into the mainstream, while bands such as Pantera fused heavy metal with hardcore punk to create a new subgenre known as groove metal. At the same time, power metal bands such as Blind Guardian and Stratovarius emerged from Europe to find success in North America. In more recent years, there has been a renewed interest in traditional heavy metal bands thanks to movements such as stoner metal, doom metal, sludge metal, blackgaze (a fusion of black metal with shoegaze), and post-metal.

Power Metal

Power metal is a subgenre of heavy metal music combining characteristics of traditional metal with speed metal, often within symphonic contexts. Generally, power metal is characterized by a heavier sound, stronger emphasis on vocals, and overall production. Power metal bands usually have one or two guitarists who play fast, melodic riffs with lots of shredding.

Vocals in power metal are dramatic, and often epic in scope. They can be operatic, but more often they take the form of clean singing. Power Metal lyrics usually deal with fantasy or science fiction subjects. The lyrical approach often mirrors the musical approach, with grandiose lyrics about battles, dragons, warriors, and so forth.

Death Metal

Death Metal is a subgenre of heavy metal music. It typically employs heavily distorted and low-tuned guitars, played with techniques such as palm muting and tremolo picking, deep growling vocals, aggressive, powerful drumming featuring double kick and blast beat techniques, minor keys or atonality, abrupt tempo, key, and time signature changes, and chromatic chord progressions. Its themes commonly revolve around death, violence, religion, misery, and the human condition.

Death metal developed in the mid-1980s. Bands such as Venom, Celtic Frost, Slayer, and Kreator were important influences on the genre. It expanded in the late 1980s with bands such as Death, Obituary, Dissection Danzig), At the Gates), Entombed), In Flames), Children of Bodom) and Dark Tranquillity). In the 1990s and 2000s took on a more sophisticated identity: while some bands released one or two influential albums (e.g., deathcore bands Bring Me the Horizon and Suicide Silence; technical death metal bands Cynic (band)Gorguts); blackened death metal band Behemoth (band)), others maintained a consistent presence across multiple decades (e.g., Morbid Angel (album); Immolation (band)).

Death metal has attracted criticism for its lyrical content. According to Doug Bunton of Terrorizer magazine “it’s still probably one of the most politically incorrect forms of music you could be involved in.” Lyrical themes critiqued have included Satanism (), Necrophilia (), Misogyny (), Libertarianism (), Fascism ().

Doom Metal

Doom metal is an extreme subgenre of heavy metal music that typically uses slower tempos, low-tuned guitars and a much “thicker” or “heavier” sound than other heavy metal genres. Both the music and the lyrics intend to evoke a sense of despair, dread, death, disinterest and gloom.

The genre is strongly influenced by the early work of Black Sabbath, who formed a prototype for doom metal with songs such as “Black Sabbath”, “Electric Wizard” and “Paranoid”. During the first half of the 1980s, a number of bands from England’s new wave of British heavy metal scene defined doom metal as a distinct genre. Bands such as Venom, Witchfinder General, Saint Vitus and Candlemass developed heavier sounds influenced by Black Sabbath. pentagram

Progressive Metal

Progressive metal is a fusion genre melding heavy metal and progressive rock that formed in the mid-1980s. In many ways, it is similar to progressive rock, but with heavier instrumentation and often with more complex song structures, lyrics and extended instrumentation. Progressive metal bands also often use unusual time signatures, and have more complex arrangements than other heavy metal subgenres.

Notorious for its blending of various musical genres, progressive metal takes the best of each genre and forges new territory. Fans of progressive metal enjoy its cerebral nature as well as its aggressive sound. Progressive metal is often characterized by long songs, complex song structures, layered guitars, and flowing, dreamlike melodies.

Heavy Metal in the 21st Century

Since the beginning of the 21st century, there has been a growing number of metal bands that have used elements of traditional heavy metal in their music. This has led to a revival of interest in heavy metal, which had become less popular during the 1990s.

There are many different subgenres of heavy metal, each with its own fan base and style. Some metal fans prefer the more aggressive sound of thrash metal, while others prefer the slower and more melodic sound of power metal. There are also subgenres that mix elements of different styles, such as deathcore (which combines death metal and hardcore punk) and blackgaze (which blends black metal and shoegaze).

Despite its diverse range of styles, heavy metal is often considered to be one of the most unified genres of music. Metal fans around the world are united by their love of distorted guitars, pounding drums, and screaming vocals. They also tend to dress similarly, often wearing black clothes and leather jackets.

21st century heavy metal has been influenced by many different genres of music, including punk rock, alternative rock, and even pop music. As the genre continues to evolve, it is sure to remain one of the most popular forms of music for years to come.

The Future of Heavy Metal

The future of heavy metal is looking very bright indeed. With so many new bands and new styles emerging, it seems that the genre has never been more vibrant – or more popular.

Of course, only time will tell what the future holds for heavy metal. But one thing is for sure: it looks like it’s going to be louder, heavier and more exciting than ever before.

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