What a fascinating genre of extreme music Black Metal is, from the complicated riffs to the even more complicated lives of some of the individuals involved, it’s been a fascination of mine since I first read an article on Venom or heard one of their demonic riffs. Dayal Patterson has pawed his way through the most comprehensive compendium and go-to book of knowledge about this most out-there brand of extreme music available.

This tome is a hefty coffee table book with 340,000 words, over 650 pictures, and 23 new chapters that’s how well-researched this bad boy is. It lays out the movers and shakers of the scene and whilst it might be the go-to book for people drawn towards the genre it’s also a fascinating insight for those (like me) who find the whole scene fascinating but don’t necessarily like all the music. Sure the genre is vast and trawls through all corners of the genre it’s also one of those styles of heavy metal that is fiercely loyal and protective of its style. It’s not Death Metal it’s not NWOBHM it’s not hard rock and the arguments over who is in the club and who is outside the tent rage like teenagers arguing over their favourite bands since time began.

The layout of this revised edition is easy on the eye and an impeccable tribute to the style and depth of knowledge is exceptional. I first flicked through the amazing pictures and pawed over the fascinating bounty of band pics that pepper this tome it’s broken down into easy-to-navigate sections from the Venom, and Hellhammer origins right the way through the most known territories bursting with opinions and interviews it gives a cool overview of the main players and shakers whilst giving enough detail without boring the reader with detail but giving enough to expand one’s knowledge.

What Dayal has done is create the go-to book of everything and anything you need or didn’t need to know about Black Metal from its humble beginnings to the rise in Norweigan kids through the subgenres and all the jaw-dropping tales of murder and suicide as well as the subgenres within the scene. It really is the go-to book of its kind and whilst thumbing through bands I’d never listened to I found myself searching out their playlists to get a fuller picture of how they sound as well maybe a side project would be for Dayal to curate a compilation piece of audio to go with this paper book.

The book comes in at a very reasonable £35 of your British pounds and for something this hefty is a bargain but it is something that Dayal can be extremely proud of putting together. For example, I obviously knew the history of Mayhem and their twisted path to infamy and fame and I was well aware of the likes o fVenom and Hellhammer from the birth of the genre but I wasn’t at all clued up on the horrible tale of Dissection and main players horrible history and subsequent end it’s a dark tale and just one of many dark tales I also found myself chuckling at some of the evilest bands who have one or two fully committed corpse painted players allied alongside someone in shellsuit pants and grubby trainers truly a legion of doom and disciple of Beelzebub. It’s on my table in the lounge so if any visitor needs to flick through something then this is my offering to the metal gods to pass on the word and enthrall others with a book worthy of such a fascinating style of music. ‘Evolution Of The Cult’ is the go-to book on Black Metal and that’s a fact and its an exceptional read and wonderfully put together. There is even a deluxe edition available through Cult Never Dies website (Here) Buy It!

Buy Here

Author: Dom Daley