A driving, percussion-heavy form of rock that demands to be played LOUD, Metal has been described as larger-than-life music played by larger-than-life people.

Heavy rock evolved out of the power blues of late sixties bands such as Cream and Vanilla Fudge, and got heavier and doomier with Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple. Whether Steppenwolf’s lyric “Heavy metal thunder” (from William Burroughs) was the cause or the result of this turn-of-the-decade heaviosity is unclear. What is apparent is that if you want screaming guitars over a deafening rhythm section, metal is probably your thing. Of course, there are many densities and textures of metal. The wonderfully named NWOBHM (New Wave of British Heavy Metal) dominated the Eighties (Iron Maiden, for example) while things surged further into the red in the Nineties with the emergence of powerhouse bands such as Metallica and Pantera.

Follow heavy sounds through the decades or explore the many sub-genres: prog metal, death metal, thrash, stoner rock… and more.

Crank it up to eleven.