Ever since Steppenwolf sang about their love of smoke and lightning and the heavy metal thunder, the heavy rock and metal world has become synonymous with the imagery of the darker side with album covers and posters adorned with skulls and images of the devil along with fearless animals that have a nasty bite.
The 'Art Of Metal' is a lavish heavyweight coffee table top book that explores in depth the works of art from the past five decades and also tells of the importance of how art in metal is just as important to a bands career as is the music held within the sleeve.
For some, the imagery is more recognizable than the band members themselves with Iron Maiden's Eddie taking on a life of his own and Motorhead's Snaggletooth symbol has to be one of the most duplicated tattoo's in the rock world.
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With a foreword by Lemmy himself and with chapters written by some of the most respected jounalists on the scene including Malcolm Dome, Martin Popoff, Geoff Barton, Dom Lawson, Louise Brown, Kylie Olsson, Raziq Rauf and Bryan Reesman who cover almost every genre of the world of metal from the psychedelia of the late 60s, NWOBHM, prog, stoner, black metal, thrash, glam hair metal and nu-metal are all included.
There's some rewarding reading to be had here with anecdotes from band members and the artists themselves. Everything is covered from iconic album covers to touring posters and even the much loved patched denim jacket gets it's own section.
A lot of exhaustive work has gone into this book and will make the ideal Christmas present as it will make the loved one in your life very quite on Christmas Day whilst around the in-laws as one loses themselves at the imagery and words on offer here.