The Mecca of Metal
by C.J. Cain

It came as no surprise recently when I read on HardRadio's Hard News that "AEROSMITH and QUEEN make it into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall Of Fame, while AC/DC and BLACK SABBATH are overlooked." Not that either of the bands that were snubbed, nor any true heavy metal fan, really gives a sh*t, but I think fans like myself would love to see a shrine to those we have raised a fist and a Bic to, that honors the true metal-masters. Devoid of Jethro Tull and all pseudo-rockers, it would truly be a "Mecca of Metal."

I don't want to visit any well-lit building with displays aimed at the "aesthetic representation of the heavy metal culture and genre." What I want is a warehouse in a low-rent district that is barely one step ahead of local fire and safety codes; where the ambience is not "kitchy" little memorabilia, like autographed symbols or guitars, but rather pictures of inducted bands on the wall with the simple universal caption, "THESE F**KERS ROCK!!" The pictures need to hang on bare concrete walls filled with fans' black-markered testaments, like "Halford Rules" or "Angus is King!" The air needs to be heavy with the mixed aroma of sweat, stale booze and smoke, after all-those are the conditions under which we enjoy what the bands do most!

Who should be so enshrined? Everyone has their favorites, and there are definite arguments for many, but a few stand out among the others as early innovators, who developed their own unique styles and still bless us with them today. Ladies and gentlemen, bangers and thrashers, please present the universal metal salute to the charter members of the Mecca of Metal: AC/DC, Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, KISS and Motorhead. While they were hopefully omitted from any "music industry-associated" halls of recognition (signifying that they must TRULY represent heavy metal), we know they are worthy of our praise, and may they kick open the doors for the multitude of metal bands that are soon to follow.