A History of Heavy Metal

  • by Andrew O'Neill
  • Narrated by Andrew O'Neill
  • 8 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Based on the "absolutely hilarious" (Neil Gaiman) stand-up show.
The history of heavy metal brings us extraordinary stories of larger-than-life characters living to excess, from the household names of Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy, Iron Maiden and Metallica to the brutal notoriety of the underground Norwegian black metal scene and the New Wave of British heavy metal.
It is the story of a worldwide network of rabid fans escaping everyday mundanity through music, of cutthroat corporate arseholes ripping off those fans and the bands they worship to line their pockets. The expansive pantheon of heavy metal musicians includes junkies, Satanists and murderers, born-again Christians and teetotallers, stadium-touring billionaires and toilet-circuit journeymen.
Award-winning comedian and lifelong heavy metal obsessive Andrew O'Neill has performed his History of Heavy Metal comedy show to a huge range of audiences, from the teenage metalheads of Download festival to the broadsheet-reading theatregoers of the Edinburgh Fringe. Now, in his first book, he takes us on his own very personal and hilarious journey through the history of the music, the subculture and the characters who shaped this most misunderstood genre of music.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

THE BIG 4!

If you could sum up A History of Heavy Metal in three words, what would they be?

YES! This book does tick those 4 boxes:

Funny? TICK!
Informative? TICK!
Modern? TICK!
Cool? TICK!

(I hope no one has confused my headline, with the other 'headline' of the Big 4 because that would be both unfortunate, sad and worrying).

This book is literally the best book on this subject, and indeed many other subjects.


What other book might you compare A History of Heavy Metal to, and why?

I might compare it to Society of the Spectacle as the cover of this book is black and red, and the book 'Society of the Spectacle' is published by Black and Red.

But I won't.


What about Andrew O'Neill’s performance did you like?

The 'asides'. Made it come alive.


If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

A History of Heavy Metal - Why the Midlands is important.


Any additional comments?

Brilliant stuff!

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- Steve O'Neill

Dull thrash fan has a rant

Lasted to chapter 10 gave up!
This isn't written/read by a metal fan it's told by a thrash metal devotee with no love for anything else. I was happy to be taken along for the ride but it was so negative, shared no joy and argued it's case like a petulant teenager. I might have identified with this when I was 15 but 30 yrs later ... no thanks but waste of time
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- Mr. C. P. Edwardson

Book Details

  • Release Date: 13-07-2017
  • Publisher: Headline