In a review of Sir Lord Baltimore's Kingdom Come in the May 1971 edition of Creem, Saunders wrote, \"Sir Lord Baltimore seems to have down pat most all the best heavy metal tricks in the book.\" Creem critic Lester Bangs is credited with popularizing the term via his early 1970s essays on bands such as Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath. Through the decade, \"heavy metal\" was used by certain critics as a virtually automatic putdown. In 1979, lead New York Times popular music critic John Rockwell described what he called \"heavy-metal rock\" as \"brutally aggressive music played mostly for minds clouded by drugs\" and, in a different article, as \"a crude exaggeration of rock basics that appeals to white teenagers\".
Earlier on, as \"heavy metal\" emerged partially from heavy psychedelic rock, also known as acid rock, \"acid rock\" was often used interchangeably with \"heavy metal\" and \"hard rock\". \"Acid rock\" generally describes heavy, hard or raw psychedelic rock. Musicologist Steve Waksman stated that \"the distinction between acid rock, hard rock, and heavy metal can at some point never be more than tenuous\", while percussionist John Beck defined \"acid rock\" as synonymous with hard rock and heavy metal.
Apart from \"acid rock\", the terms \"heavy metal\" and \"hard rock\" have often been used interchangeably, particularly in discussing bands of the 1970s, a period when the terms were largely synonymous. For example, the 1983 edition of the Rolling Stone Encyclopedia of Rock & Roll includes the following passage: \"Known for its aggressive blues-based hard-rock style, Aerosmith was the top American heavy-metal band of the mid-Seventies\".
Heavy metal's quintessential guitar style, which is built around distortion-heavy riffs and power chords, traces its roots to early 1950s Memphis blues guitarists such as Joe Hill Louis, Willie Johnson and particularly Pat Hare, who captured a \"grittier, nastier, more ferocious electric guitar sound\" on records such as James Cotton's \"Cotton Crop Blues\" (1954). Other early influences include the late 1950s instrumentals of Link Wray, particularly \"Rumble\" (1958); the early 1960s surf rock of Dick Dale, including \"Let's Go Trippin'\" (1961) and \"Misirlou\" (1962); and The Kingsmen's version of \"Louie Louie\" (1963), which became a garage rock standard.
The combination of loud and heavy blues rock with psychedelic rock and acid rock formed much of the original basis for heavy metal. The variant or subgenre of psychedelic rock often known as \"acid rock\" was particularly influential on heavy metal; acid rock is often defined as a heavier, louder or harder variant of psychedelic rock, or the more extreme side of the psychedelic rock genre, frequently containing a loud, improvised and heavily distorted, guitar-centered sound. Acid rock has been described as psychedelic rock at its \"rawest and most intense\", emphasizing the heavier qualities associated with both the positive and negative extremes of the psychedelic experience rather than only the idyllic side of psychedelia. In contrast to more idyllic or whimsical pop psychedelic rock, American acid rock garage bands such as the 13th Floor Elevators epitomized the frenetic, heavier, darker and more psychotic psychedelic rock sound known as acid rock, a sound characterized by droning guitar riffs, amplified feedback and guitar distortion, while the 13th Floor Elevators' sound in particular featured yelping vocals and \"occasionally demented\" lyrics. Frank Hoffman noted that \"[Psychedelic rock] was sometimes referred to as 'acid rock'. The latter label was applied to a pounding, hard rock variant that evolved out of the mid-1960s garage-punk movement. ... When rock began turning back to softer, roots-oriented sounds in late 1968, acid-rock bands mutated into heavy metal acts.\"
There are arguments about whether these and other early bands truly qualify as \"heavy metal\" or simply as \"hard rock\". Those closer to the music's blues roots or placing greater emphasis on melody are now commonly ascribed the latter label. AC/DC, which debuted with High Voltage in 1975, is a prime example. The 1983 Rolling Stone encyclopedia entry begins, \"Australian heavy-metal band AC/DC ...\" Rock historian Clinton Walker wrote, \"Calling AC/DC a heavy metal band in the seventies was as inaccurate as it is today. ... [They] were a rock 'n' roll band that just happened to be heavy enough for metal.\" The issue is not only one of shifting definitions, but also a persistent distinction between musical style and audience identification; Ian Christe describes how the band \"became the stepping-stone that led huge numbers of hard rock fans into heavy metal perdition\".
Black Sabbath's audience was ... left to scavenge for sounds with similar impact. By the mid-1970s, heavy metal aesthetic could be spotted, like a mythical beast, in the moody bass and complex dual guitars of Thin Lizzy, in the stagecraft of Alice Cooper, in the sizzling guitar and showy vocals of Queen, and in the thundering medieval questions of Rainbow. ... Judas Priest arrived to unify and amplify these diverse highlights from hard rock's sonic palette. For the first time, heavy metal became a true genre unto itself.
By the mid-1980s, glam metal was a dominant presence on the U.S. charts, music television and the arena concert circuit. New bands such as L.A.'s Warrant and acts from the East Coast like Poison and Cinderella became major draws, while Mötley Crüe and Ratt remained very popular. Bridging the stylistic gap between hard rock and glam metal, New Jersey's Bon Jovi became enormously successful with its third album, Slippery When Wet (1986). The similarly styled Swedish band Europe became international stars with The Final Countdown (1986), whose title track hit No. 1 in 25 countries. In 1987, MTV launched Headbangers Ball, a show devoted exclusively to heavy metal videos. However, the metal audience had begun to factionalize, with those in many underground metal scenes favoring more extreme sounds and disparaging the popular style as \"light metal\" or \"hair metal\".
One band that reached diverse audiences was Guns N' Roses. In contrast to their glam metal contemporaries in L.A., they were seen as much more raw and dangerous. With the release of their chart-topping album Appetite for Destruction in 1987, they \"recharged and almost single-handedly sustained the Sunset Strip sleaze system for several years\". The following year, Jane's Addiction emerged from the same L.A. hard-rock club scene with their major-label debut, Nothing's Shocking. Reviewing the album, Steve Pond of Rolling Stone declared, \"As much as any band in existence, Jane's Addiction is the true heir to Led Zeppelin.\" The group was one of the first to be identified with the \"alternative metal\" trend that would come to the fore in the next decade. Meanwhile, new bands like New York City's Winger and New Jersey's Skid Row sustained the popularity of the glam metal style.
Women's involvement in heavy metal began in the 1970s when Genesis, the forerunner of Vixen, formed in 1973. A hard rock band featuring all-female members, The Runaways, was founded in 1975; Joan Jett and Lita Ford later had successful solo careers. In 1978, during the rise of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, the band Girlschool was founded and, in 1980, collaborated with Motörhead under the pseudonym Headgirl. Starting in 1984, Doro Pesch, dubbed \"the Metal Queen\", reached success across Europe leading the German band Warlock before starting her solo career.
The '90s were one of the most fascinating decades in rock and metal, widening the gap between the two genres and putting fans on opposing sides, either clinging to their denim patch vests or trading them in for flannel shirts. Grunge signaled the death of metal supremacy that put a stranglehold on heavy music in the prior decade, but the underground kept the metal going strong while rock acts were assuming their role on the world's biggest stages.
The 1980s are perhaps the most defining decade in hard rock and metal. Bands like AC/DC, Judas Priest and Black Sabbath, who emerged in the '70s, continued to release stellar discs, but a whole new form of metal burst onto the scene in the '80s when thrash took over and bands like Metallica, Slayer and Megadeth came to the forefront. Within the '80s also came the advent of glam, death metal, black metal, grindcore, goregrind and anything in between.
Meanwhile, punk rock continued to expand, as hardcore and other subgenres started to emerge. And in mainstream culture, hair bands dominated the airwaves, charts and the newly formed MTV, creating a worldwide revolution that saw heavy music reach its apex.
Elsewhere, industrial music started emerging in underground clubs, as bands like Ministry and Nine Inch Nails made their mark. By the end of the decade, grunge began to make its mark simultaneously with alternative rock, spreading fans of heavy music in all directions as they searched for their favorite genre niche. 1e1e36bf2d