In 1982, Metal Blade Records began operating in a young Heavy Metal fan's mom's garage in suburban Los Angeles.
The result of that metal fan's enthusiasm was the first Metal Blade Records release, "Metal Massacre", a local band compilation that included METALLICA's first recorded release, BLACK N BLUE, MALICE, CIRITH UNGOL, DEMON FLIGHT, BITCH, AVATAR, and PANDEMONIUM.
Twenty-fve years later, in 2007, Metal Blade Records has grown into an international brand – occupying offices in the U.S., U.K., Germany, Canada and Japan — all the while maintaining its independent label identity and the original vision of founder and CEO Brian Slagel.
It was Slagel's enthusiasm for heavy metal as a fan that encouraged its humble beginnings and it is with that very same passion that Slagel has lead Metal Blade Records to the forefront of the genre.
Over the last five years, Metal Blade Records' strength in mining and developing new talent, lead to adding, at the time, stellar newcomers UNEARTH, AS I LAY DYING, THE BLACK DAHLIA MURDER and THE RED CHORD to the roster. As the young guns that would help propel Metal Blade Records forward, the bands combined to sell a staggering 1.5 million units in the U.S.
The labels' recent successes do not tell the whole story however. Metal Blade Records boasts one of the most comprehensive heavy metal catalogs in the world, including seminal releases by SLAYER, CANNIBAL CORPSE, GWAR, KING DIAMOND, SIX FEET UNDER, FATES WARNING, ARMORED SAINT, MERCYFUL FATE and many more.
With a current roster that includes, in addition to the artists mentioned above, AMON AMARTH, HATE ETERNAL, GOATWHORE, 3, EVERGREEN TERRACE, CATTLE DECAPITATION, SHAI HULUD and probably the most anticipated debut release from a metal band in years, JOB FOR A COWBOY, Metal Blade Records, at twenty five years old, is reaching its prime.
2007 will not only celebrate the 25 years of Metal Blade, it will also be the year that showcases new releases by artists that represent Metal Blade's future — the third, and highly anticipated album by AS I LAY DYING, the sophomore release by THE RED CHORD, and a debut album for JOB FOR A COWBOY. In addition 2007 will also see new releases KING DIAMOND, SIX FEET UNDER and THE BLACK DAHLIA MURDER.
Throughout the years, Brian Slagel has become a prominent figure in the metal community, and continues to run Metal Blade Records independently without being an imprint of any major label.
Says Slagel: "I am really proud that Metal Blade has reached our 25th anniversary. It has been a great ride and we have worked with so many amazing people over the years. I have to thank all of our staff, artists, fans, writers, retail, radio, managers, agents and everyone else who helped us achieved this landmark. I look forward to the future as heavy metal and Metal Blade remain strong.”
To celebrate the significant milestone in Metal Blade's 25th year, there will be a Metal Blade Records 25th anniversary show at the New England Metal and Hardcore Festival on Saturday, April 28 at The Palladium in Worcester, PA. As a title sponsor of this event, Metal Blade Records artists will solely command both stages. The show will be filmed and recorded for a forthcoming release. MTV's "Headbanger's Ball" will also be on hand to film and interview artists and staffers for a special Metal Blade Records episode which will air on May 12.
Artists scheduled to perform:
BEYOND THE EMBRACE
SINCE THE FLOOD
I KILLED THE PROM QUEEN
JOB FOR A COWBOY
THE RED CHORD
THE BLACK DAHLIA MURDER
One-Time Special Guest Jam
SONS OF AZREAL
FOREVER IN TERROR
IF HOPE DIES