1984, the year of miner’s strikes and Mitsui Miike, the AIDS virus and Band Aid, Richard Ramirez and crack cocaine; not quite the dystopia Orwell predicted (although Mark Zuckerberg was born!) but close. However, amidst the civil unrest, famine and fear, heavy metal thrived, birthing the likes of Nuclear Assault, Razor, Candlemass and Death. This landmark year offered up milestone albums from Judas Priest, Metallica and Scorpions, the return of Deep Purple, debuts from Saint Vitus, Trouble and Running Wild, EPs from Sodom, Slayer and Celtic Frost, AC/DC headlined Monsters Of Rock, Iron Maiden went behind the Iron curtain and Venom made a concept album. All in all, it was a pretty good year, as proved many times in the past 12 months when we’ve published articles celebrating the 30th birthdays of some of our most-played record, from Exciter’s ‘Violence & Force’ to Twisted Sister’s ‘Stay Hungry’. So, in December, when other magazines were busy making their best of 2014 lists, we were too busy listening to ‘Don’t Break The Oath’ and ‘Apocalyptic Raids’. That’s not to say 2014 didn’t have its fair share of Ecstacy & Danger, there was Ample Destruction from At The Gates, Triptykon and Orange Goblin, … Read More
Twin innovators who forged metal in their own wayward images with nary a thought for either compromise or common sense, BUDGIE and DIAMOND HEAD were enormous influences on the early days of Metallica, with Dave Mustaine even claiming that it was his love of the former that sealed the deal when it came to his gig with the Four Horsemen. Yet, as Diamond Head’s Brian Tatler confirms, they both might have been forgotten had it been for the aforementioned San Fran saviours. Never fear; interviews with both Tatler – who takes us back to the making of the debut ‘Lightning To The Nations’ – and Budgie frontman Burke Shelley in our second anniversary issue mark the perfect reminder of a maverick spirit that embodies why we started Iron Fist in the first place.
Acrimoniously ejected from Metallica in 1983, it didn’t take long for guitarist Dave Mustaine to saddle up and form MEGADETH with a glint of revenge in his eye. By May 1985 he had delivered the ultimate comeback in the form of ‘Killing Is My Business… And Business Is Good’, with more spite, more speed and more “state of the art heavy metal”than the majority of that era’s rivetheads could believe. With the album reissued this month, Jim Martin talks to Dave Mustaine, Dave Ellefson and man-on-the-scene Brian … Read More
Racing though the heavens, straight into the dawn, the immortal titans JUDAS PRIEST have returned. Unholy architects of much of what we now consider heavy metal, the Brum-birthed bezerkers have forged onwards with a bloody-minded singularity of approach for some forty years now, informing everything from the music’s full-throttle, speed-fuelled attack to its wardrobe in the process. Jim Martin gets the lowdown from ROB HALFORD, IAN HILL and new axeman RICHIE FAULKNER on the trials, tribulations and triumphs they’ve encountered in a life of steel.
So long are the shadows that Priest have cast that countless bands have named themselves after one of their tunes, and one of the greatest, naturally, are EXCITER. The Canadian power trio, who dented heads with classic ’80s albums like ‘Heavy Metal Maniac’ and ‘Long Live The Loud’ are also with a vengeance, and Damien talks to longstanding rivetheads DAN BEEHLER and JOHN RICCI on their wayward pursuit of violence and force.
Another band named after a tune by a titanic metal force (much like this magazine) OVERKILL are also on customarily savage form at present, and inimitable frontman BOBBY ‘BLITZ’ ELLSWORTH has dealt with numerous instances of serious illness as well as the attendant struggles of … Read More
In this issue of Iron Fist we celebrate the legacies and careers of two bands responsible for the progression of extreme music as we know it; CELTIC FROST and MAYHEM. Both celebrate 30 years of existence this year and both are still dabbling in the dark arts; Tom G Warrior with TRIPTYKON and Mayhem with their new album ‘Esoteric Warfare’.
In our cover story, Thomas Gabriel Fischer talks to Jim Martin about what drove him to create Hellhammer and the early Frost demos and how those same inspirations are channelled into his current work, while Kim Kelly talks to Necrobutcher and Attila Csihar about the formation, and dogged survival, of one of the most important bands still playing and creating heavy metal music today.
Talking of dogged survival, we also talk to maidens of metal, DORO and Ann Boleyn of HELLION about how they started their respective bands, Warlock and Hellion, and how nothing will get in their way as they continue to make music three decades after they begun. Elsewhere in the magazine we talk to AT THE GATES about their forthcoming album and reveal details of new works by 40 WATT SUN, GEHENNAH, Gaz Jennings (ex-Cathedral) and Phil Swanson (ex-Hour … Read More
The new issue of Iron Fist is upon us and we’re getting behind a campaign to get Germany’s great rock and roll export, SCORPIONS, to the UK. So far they’ve not included Britain on their final Worldwide Live tour and we’re set to change that. Speaking to guitarists RUDOLF SCHENKER and MATTHIAS JABS, Louise Brown discovers a band far from retirement and with plenty more to give their fans.
They’re not the only band still “hungry” for the road, Jim Martin talks to JAY JAY FRENCH from TWISTED SISTER about the making of ‘STAY HUNGRY’ and their upcoming 30th Anniversary tour. And talking of 30th anniversaries, we’ve also got a massive feature celebrating three decades of ‘PSALM 9’ and talk to both TROUBLE and THE SKULL about how they’re continuing their legacy through two different paths. We also talk to DAN LILKER on the eve of his retirement from touring about the band, and the album, that kick-started his career; ANTHRAX and the making of ‘FISTFUL OF METAL’ and we discuss getting back into the studio with JINX DAWSON of COVEN, who just released her first album in 40 years! We’re gearing up for BROFEST too, the second edition of the Newcastle … Read More
Our first full year demonstrating the Iron Fist, it’s had its highs and… actually it’s all been highs. Thank you so much for your unwavering support. We finish the year as we mean to go on, with a new issue of Balls To The Wall heavy metal, both old and new.
We caught up with reanimated gods of grind, Carcass, on their European tour to talk about their first album in 17 years. The mighty Ester Segarra shot them in Japan, while Olivier ‘Zoltar’ Badin got a grilling from frontman Jeff Walker (not the other way round) in Paris – it’s been a long and grinding road but they’re a band that deserve their place on our last cover of the year.
This month also sees the 30th anniversary of ACCEPT’s fifth album, ‘Balls To The Wall’ and Adrien Begrand gets to relive its making with Wolf and Stefan, while Damien also looks back to the time of changes with Brian Ross of BLITZKRIEG and I catch up with HELL and find out that they’re looking firmly to the future, while keeping one foot in their past.
There’s also features from Demilich, Bulldozer, IRON MAN, Chastain and Demonic Christ while new steel from … Read More
So, here we are, issue 7, a whole year survived, and in a certain respect we’re back where we begun. Erik Danielsson of Watain is back on the cover, marking the completion of a circle that begun when he and I first discussed the idea of Iron Fist back in June 2012. When Erik moved back to his hometown of Uppsala earlier this year our awesome photographer Ester Segarra and I were invited to hang out and meet the bands of the Uppsala Metal Of Death circle, including Degial, Reveal and the incredible In Solitude, who just served up an album of the year contender in ‘Sister’. We got a chance to talk to Erik and Pelle and Gottfrid Ahman about creating both the new Watain and In Solitude albums at the same time and how it helped cast in stone two vital slabs of contemporary heavy metal.
Motörhead, the band that gave us our name, are also back within our pages, this time thanks to Paul Schwarz’s fantastic interview with Phil Campbell about their new album ‘Aftershock’. Hell, even Kim pulled off an amazing coup in interviewing Mystifier, something she told me she wanted to do when I asked her … Read More
It was so good to have KING DIAMOND back on British soil this weekend… and it’s good to have the King on the cover of Iron Fist issue 6. When we started this magazine a year ago (yep, we can’t believe it either!) it was always our dream interview and with the 30th anniversary of ‘Melissa’ coming up (we can’t believe that either!) Damien spoke to the man himself about his whole career, from Brainstorm to Bloodstock… he even hinted at a possible Fate reunion… we live in hope!
Putting issue 6 together was carnage, we must admit. It’s festival season, which means that most of our team were lying face down in a field somewhere in Europe rather than tethered to our keyboards, but we managed it – despite insane hangovers from Muskelrock, Metallsvenskan, Bang Your Head or Hell’s Pleasure.
In this issue we’ve tied down some in-depth exclusive interviews with cult Italian masters DEATH SS, British thrash overlords ONSLAUGHT and death dealers EXHUMED. Olivier ‘Zoltar’ Badin also spoke to both Chritus Linderson and Scott Reagers (who NEVER does interviews) about two SAINT VITUS albums that he believes deserve more attention.
We’ve also got interviews from RAMMING SPEED, CAUCHEMAR, GORGUTS, BESTIAL MOCKERY’S … Read More
We take the rough with the smooth here at Iron Fist – you cannot have one without the other. And with every celebration there is an element of tragedy, or for the optimists there is a cause for celebration in every moment of sadness. We started Issue 5 of Iron Fist in a celebratory mood – one of metal’s most important albums – ‘Holy Diver – was about to turn 30, but in talking to lead guitarist Vivian Campbell we learned how miserable the making of that landmark record made him, spilling the beans of the well-documented fall-out between him and Ronnie James Dio.
We also wanted to celebrate the life and music of one of metal’s most important guitarists, Jeff Hanneman – Reign In Peace!
But most of all we wanted to celebrate tenacity and perseverance, a thread running through interviews with Hungary’s underground cult thrashers, Tormentor and underrated NWOBHM heroes, Pagan Altar, Satan and Virtue. While Tormentor, Pagan Altar and Virtue were noticed long after they’d called it quits, Satan journeyed through the hard times through many guises before reforming under their original name and making one of the albums of their career.
In this issue we also speak to lifelong … Read More
It’s apt that issue 4 of Iron Fist came out in that twilight zone between the beginning of Spring and Easter, a time of death and rebirth.
Because that’s what this issue feels like. When we came up with the idea for Iron Fist we knew we would give it a shot at three issues, see what the reaction was and who knew? We might not have even made it this far. But you, the readers, have been so supportive and it’s thanks to you that there is an issue 4, and will be an issue 5 and beyond. We owe you. Remember this is as much your zine as ours so get yourself onto our Facebook page and tell us what bands you want to see interviewed in future tomes.
This is also the most personal issue of the mag so far. On January 22, The Devil’s Blood announced they were calling it a day, and as one of my favourite modern bands I was obviously crushed by the news. But after talking to their founder and architect Selim Lemouchi, he offered the opportunity to give Iron Fist the most definitive interview about their split and give us some hope about … Read More
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