An Intern’s Journey To Terrorizer Towers

By on 19 December 2013


Here at Terrorizer, we’ve been running an internship programme for some time now, allowing our readers to gain a glimpse behind the scenes of one of the UK’s foremost extreme metal magazines. We decided to ask our current intern Tal Fineman to explain just how he got into metal in the first place, and here’s what he came up with…

The year is 2008, and a diminutive 12 year old is wandering into his local branch of HMV. Brought up thus far on a wholesome diet of my parents’ classic rock, I had been electrified by a snippet of AC/DC’s ‘Back in Black’ in the film ‘School of Rock’ and was determined to buy my first album and carve out my own musical identity. Life would never be the same again. Although I sometimes wish I’d headed home clutching some more classic AC/DC , I ended up with ‘Black Ice’, an album that will always possess a certain degree of magic for me, although I have listened it literally to death – the CD is so battered it no longer plays.

The track that really captured my heart was ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Dream’ – the way the shimmering, mysterious verse gives way to the absolute majesty of the chorus riff never fails to give me shivers, and every time I hear it I’m reminded of the reasons I fell in love with heavy music in the first place…

‘Brutal Planet’ from ‘Brutal Planet’ by Alice Cooper (2000)

A friend from school played me ‘Poison’ by Alice Cooper and lent me a few of his dad’s CDs. Although I enjoyed the classic thrills of ‘Billion Dollar Babies’, I really gravitated towards one of Alice’s lesser known releases, ‘Brutal Planet’, an album which saw the band turning towards a darker, heavier sound that takes cues from industrial metal. It’s a far cry from the classic rock that most will associate with Alice Cooper, but it’s a period in the band’s history that I believe to be criminally underrated; I still return to ‘Brutal Planet’, as well as follow-up ‘Dragontown’ on a regular basis.

‘Leper Messiah’ from ‘Master of Puppets’ by Metallica (1986)

Now I had a real taste for something darker and heavier, I went in search of metal. Unsurprisingly, I stumbled upon one of the biggest selling records in the genre – ‘Master of Puppets’. It’s an album which needs no introductions, a definitive exercise in thrash metal that showcases some of the most (in)famous riffs of all time. Although not an ‘extreme’ album by modern standards, ‘Master of Puppets’ was my route to the discovery of heavier thrash bands like Slayer and Exodus, which represented my first forays into real brutality.

‘Funeralopolis’ from ‘Dopethrone’ by Electric Wizard (2007)

Cut forward a few years, and I’d started playing bluesy, Sabbath throwback tracks with my first band, informed by the chilled out grooves of stoner/desert rock bands like Kyuss. I first discovered doom metal when I stumbled across ‘Funeralopolis’ by Electric Wizard on YouTube. I remember thinking the introduction was pretty accessible, with a pentatonic bass riff that I could relate back easily to a lot of the records in my collection, but the moment the guitars kicked in over the main riff was crushingly, incomprehensively dark and heavy in a way I hadn’t even considered possible before. There’s a very good reason ‘Dopethrone’ was voted Terrorizer’s album of the decade – its one of the finest modern metal records of our age.

WORDS: Tal Fineman

About Kez Whelan

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