Ever since Black Sabbath named themselves after a horror movie and started writing dark, foreboding songs that buzzed with menace and defiance, fans and creators of hair-raising films and metal made a run into the darkness. In this episode, we dare to peer into the darkest parts of human nature through the lens of metal music and horror. Alice Cooper explains how he invented horror rock and Rob Zombie and Dee Snider talk about their entry into the world of horror moviemaking. Members of Pantera, Metallica, Anthrax, Cannibal Corpse and more describe the inextricable link between metal and horror.


Pantera frontman Phil Anselmo says horror movies and extreme metal are outlets for people who don’t deny death and accept the pain and tragedy of life. Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett celebrates the darkness and gloom of metal music and horror and says guitar playing acts as a form of therapy and saved his life numerous times when he was younger.. Anthrax guitarist Scott Ian explains his love for the catharsis and excitement of metal and horror and considers them to be two sides of the same coin. White Zombie founder and filmmaker Rob Zombie explains how he’s been drawn to horror and metal music since he was young. Alice Cooper talks about how he sustained real injuries during his shows’ choreographed switchblade fights. Twisted Sister’s Dee Snider is baffled by the love his character Captain Howdy in the 1998 horror film Strangeland gets from young women. Film composer and Zombi bass guitarist Steve Moore states he views metal music as a reflection of the political, ecological and social traumas of the ‘90s. Cannibal Corpse drummer Paul Mazurkiewicz says he and his bandmates always sought out the most extreme entertainment they could find, both in film and music. Horror author Jeremy Wagner explains his fascination with horror and death. 

Backstaged: The Devil in Metal is a production of Diversion Podcasts in association with iHeartRadio. Written and hosted by Jon Wiederhorn. Produced and directed by Mark Francis and Scott Waxman. Consulting Producer: Andrew Kalb. Production Assistant: Anita Okoye. Social Media Manager: Stephen Tompkins. Instrumental guitar music by Scott Waxman. Editing by Chris Schreiner. Technical Producer: Clem Fandango. Director of Marketing and Business Development: Jacob Bronstein. Executive Producers: Scott Waxman and Mark Francis. Special thanks to Oren Rosenbaum at UTA.

Learn more about Backstaged at DiversionPodcasts.com.

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