For over 35 years, Metal Blade Records has been putting out some of your favorite releases in all walks of heavy music. It’s a label worth celebrating, and this August, Metal Blade and BMG are releasing a new book For The Sake of Heaviness: the History of Metal Blade Records.
The book takes a look at the label’s founding, and how it found success in its 35-year run. It may be hard to conceive, but the label started for Brian Slagel as a one man operation run out of his mom’s garage in Southern California, where he worked tirelessly on a fanzine and later worked his way up to putting out a compilation. That original compilation in 1982, Metal Massacre, featured the first recordings ever from the likes of Ratt, Malice, Steeler and Metallica. Plus, the book features a foreword by Lars Ulrich himself.
Of the book, label founder and CEO Brian Slagel said, “I have been asked many times about doing a book about the history of Metal Blade and it just seemed like a cool thing to do to document the 35th anniversary. You never really stop to think about a lot of this stuff, so doing the book is a great way of looking back at how many awesome things have happened to me and Metal Blade. We have had a long relationship with BMG and with their new move in book publishing, it all seemed like perfect timing. Being able to work with their team really made the final decision to actually do the book. I am really happy with the way it came out and I hope everyone out there enjoys it as well!”
The book also details Slagel’s interactions with Motley Crue in the early days, and his role in helping bands like Slayer, Alice In Chains and Lamb of God find early success. It’s a label that to this day has seen recent albums from established bands like DragonForce and Fates Warning, to still fostering up and coming artists like Below and Tombs. It’ll be an informative read into how the label stays successful after all this time.