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My Heavy Metal Story

Ever since I was a little kid, I've loved music. I don't know why, but it's something that I've always been sort of obsessed with. When I was a really little kid (like 4-7) I listened to whatever my parents did, which was mostly classic rock and pop.
My first introduction to heavier music was when I was 8 years old, and I got the DVD to the movie "The Scorpion King", which featured a music video for the song "I Stand Alone" by Godsmack. I really liked the song, so my dad made me a CD of Godsmack's music, which I would frequently listen to. For the next 4 years or so, I stuck with mainstream rock/hard rock like Godsmack, Nickelback, Creed, Aerosmith, and bands like that.
Around the 7th grade I started to get REALLY into Metallica, it was like I couldn't get enough of their music. I had a steady musical diet of Metallica for the rest of Middle School, while exploring the softer side of other metal bands like Slipknot and Disturbed. I really only listened to mainstream metal until the summer into high school. I still labeled any bands with unclean vocals as "screamo" and was pretty oblivious to the genre of music I considered myself a fan of.

The big "event" that shoved me facefirst into metal was an actual concert. I was hanging around my house on a hot August day the summer going into high school, when my friend Mike dropped by. He's about 3 years older than me, but we were pretty good friends since we were the only teens in our neighborhood. He was a pretty dedicated metalhead, and listened to a lot of bands that I considered at the time to be needless noise. He had however been introducing me to more and more bands that I was interested in. He said he was going to Mayhem Festival that day, I figured "why not" and I went with him. It was 2009, and we were only going for the main stage, which was Bullet For My Valentine, Killswitch Engage, Slayer, and Marilyn Manson.
I only knew 3 collective songs from the entire stage, which was War Ensemble and Raining Blood by Slayer, and The Beautiful People by Marilyn Manson. I had a deeprooted hatred for Manson at the time, so I wasn't looking forward to seeing him at all.

We showed up about halfway through BFMV, and I could already tell it was going to be a cool experience. The loudness and the attitude of the entire festival seemed to just "click" with me. My earliest metal concert memory is yelling "right now it's killing time!" alongside the crowd during ScreamAimFire, even though I had never heard any of their music beforehand, BFMV put on an entertaining show.

The next band to play was Killswitch Engage. Like BFMV, I had never heard any of their music before. The techies brought out a big screen-stage and pyro equipment while setting up,to which my friend responded that it seemed that they went "all-out". The band started, and they seemed just as loud and just as awesome as the previous band. We had Open-Air seats, which were right in front of the lawn, so we went to the lawn a few songs into KSE. I jumped straight into my first moshpit on that lawn, wearing sandals (bad idea), and had the time of my life. We returned to our seats a few songs later, and Adam D from KSE had his usual stand up routine and they finished the set.

By now I was excited to see Slayer, since I actually knew some of their music. They didn't disappoint, and it was a cool show. Marilyn Manson played afterwards, and I probably would have had a better time if I had let go of some of my previous hatred of him. I was pretty opinionated at the time and actually believed in God (haha), so I found his speeches sort of insulting, but I did leave thinking I had a good time.

I went on over the next few months listening to the bands I had just seen. To this day, BFMV and KSE are the bands that got me used to screaming vocals, and my tastes have expanded to more underground metal. I went to Mayhem Fest again the following summer for the entire day, and had a blast. My current favorite bands are Mastodon, Machine Head, Megadeth, Tool, Into Eternity, Cormorant, and Lamb of God. I don't go to anywhere as many concerts as I would like to (I've only been to MayhemFest 2009, 2010, and a Chevelle indoor concert), but I still listen to music frequently, and my tastes are always expanding.
Xenocide720 Xenocide720 18-21, M Apr 19, 2011

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