THIS EXISTS: a closer look at heavy metal cooking culture
by Tyler Munro
June 16, 2011
Every week, This Exists uncovers and explores musical peculiarities that exist in the dark corners of the internet, sometimes just outside the mainstream. Today we take a look at heavy metal’s cooking culture.
Brian Manowitz, better known as the Vegan Black Metal Chef, has made waves inside and outside of the metal community over the past month with his hilarious, possibly satirical but still wildly creative recipe videos. Rightly so; his videos are as charismatic as they are instructional, and the songs he writes and performs to deliver his recipes are, in the scope of cookbook black metal, pretty solid. Chalk that up to him being a heavy metal cook who actually plays in metal bands: Forever Dawn and Fields of Glass.
But here’s the thing: Brian Manowitz isn’t the only metal chef. He’s not even the only vegan metal chef—Tim Hogarth started his Heavy Metal Vegan Cooking YouTube channel in 2009, and though he doesn’t scream his recipes and his videos do tend to feature long-winded, awkwardly bad skits, there’s something to be said about being a head of the curve.
It’s surprising to find out that there’s an actual metal cooking community out there. Last November saw the release of Mosh Potatoes, a heavy metal cookbook filled with anecdotes and recipes from metalheads like Anthrax’s Joey Belladonna, Megadeth’s Dave Ellefson and even Lemmy, whose Krakatoa Surprise recipe features consists of Brandy, beans, curry and a surprising amount of chocolate and strawberry syrup.
Then there’s Annick Giroux’s Hellbent for Cooking, which came out about a year before Mosh Potatoes and features recipes from, well…it’s a long list, one with bands like Autopsy, Electric Wizard, Judas Priest as well as Mayhem, a band whose recipes you’re strongly advised to steer clear of given the rumour that the band made stew out of the remains of their old singer, Dead, who famously shot himself with a shotgun, wrote a note that said “excuse all the blood,” then had an image of his carcass used as one of Mayhem’s album covers (Dawn of the Black Hearts).
There’s a bit of a crossover between the two books as far as artists go, but Hellbent for Cooking came out first and seems to have a far more diverse and extensive list of contributors compared to Mosh Potatoes, even if it does feature recipes from rumoured cannibals (Mayhem) and a Japanese metal band (Sigh) whose saxophonist-slash-vocalist reportedly drinks cow’s blood and eats bugs while recording (topless).
Either way, we’re just glad to say that heavy metal cooking culture exists. Let us know in the comments if you’ve given any of these recipes a try.
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