Metal needs its own Hall of Fame, it shouldn’t have to share with rock, R&B, soul, and jazz. So why shouldn’t Resounding Footsteps help with that? I make no claims at being an absolute authority but I know legendary figures when I see them. So from now on, at the first of the year I’ll add names (5-10) to the list, men and women that have helped make metal what it is today, through their talents in music, artist, writing, photography, and anything else that helped the community.
So without further ado, the inaugural class!
- Dayal Patterson
If you’ve read the great metal magazines Metal Hammer or Terrorizer, chances are that you’ve come across some of Dayal’s work. Writers in the metal world don’t get enough credit for what they do. Dayal is a stand out, a master at being able to bridge the gap between the musicians and artists and the fans. His amazing work is in part what inspired Resounding Footsteps approach to looking at metal as more than just music. If you haven’t read anything from his own small press Cult Never Dies then you are depriving yourself of some of the best analysis of the scene you can get. Adding Dayal to the inaugural class of Resounding Footsteps was an easy decision because his contributions to the genre and community are beyond compare.
- Christophe Szpajdel
The Lord of the Logos himself. Is it any surprise that he’s on the list? As an artist he’s worked on hundreds and hundreds of logos for bands in the underground and the mainstream (check out his credits on Metal-Archives if you don’t believe me). He’s a consummate artist whose fingerprints are literally all over the scene. His logos are distinct, sharp, and beautiful. His contributions to the metal community cannot be understated, without Christophe and others like him artwork would be relegated to Photoshop.
- Peter Beste
For his legendary work in photography, Peter Beste deserves a place in the Resounding Footsteps’ Hall of Fame. His work is evocative and provocative but most of all, his work captures the spirit of black metal and the nuances of the artists within the genre. He channels the rage and misanthropy of his subjects with his use of muted colors and stark juxtaposition of the musicians and the world around them.
- Varg Vikernes
Love him or hate him, you cannot deny Varg’s pivotal role in the creation of black metal as we know it today and his contributions to dungeon synth and dark ambient. He’s less a musician now and more a figurehead, a legendary (or mythical) character that seems larger than life. Despite his sometimes controversial stances and opinions of everything from his former bandmates to racial politics, he still a musician. It was his work on Burzum that helped define the sound quality that would come to define the genre. His place in Resounding Footsteps’ Hall of Fame was cemented a long time ago.
- Jon Nödtveidt
Perhaps the greatest pure musician that metal (maybe even music) has ever seen, Jon was a man that made music into poetry, dark and evil poetry but poetry nonetheless. I remember the first time I listened to Storm of the Lights Bane still, I was a metal newbie at that point but I learned something from Jon’s work. I learned what darkness was really supposed to be. While I can’t pretend to understand a lot of his beliefs, especially those that led to his suicide nearly a decade ago now, I do respect them because they were what helped craft such a distinct sound, a sound that will likely never be captured again.
- Messiah Marcolin
The best vocalist Candlemass ever had, bar none. Messiah’s vocals helped defined an entire genre: epic doom metal. Without his operatic stylings Candlemass’s work would have only been half as good. Messiah’s contributions highlight the importance of vocals and how they can make or break a band. Say what you will about the attitudes and drama that have surrounded Candlemass with or without him, you cannot say that Messiah is as talented as they come.
- Tarja Turunen
Speaking of legendary vocals, Tarja helped build Nightwish into the juggernaut that it has become today. She might have been forced out of the band unceremoniously but that has not stopped the soprano from continuing her work in metal. Her vocals are ethereal, haunting, otherworldly. Nightwish, in my opinion, will never been the same without her vocal abilities. No matter who tries to fill her shoes, Anette or Floor, they will never be able get out of the shadow that Tarja casts. She is a powerhouse, an egotistical powerhouse to be sure, but a powerhouse nevertheless.
- Kjetil-Vidar “Frost” Haraldstad
Frost is an absolute workhorse. As one of the fastest drummers around, Frost has proven his abilities with Satyricon and 1349 for decades. He’s a hired gun that can always be counted on to provide a battery like no other. He not only has blazing speed but Frost also has some of the best control I have ever heard. He can carpet bomb and he can deliver some devastating mid-tempo work as well. With over two decades behind the drum kit, Frost is a legend and has easily earned a place in Resounding Footsteps’ inaugural Hall of Fame class.
- Patrik Niclas Morgan “Evil” Håkansson
The ability to come up with riff after riff for two decades is something that goes beyond mere talent. Morgan is a legend, a master of the guitar. He has continuously been able to reinvent Marduk’s sound and maintain the take no prisoners imagery of the band as well. Despite the fact that Marduk’s line up never seems truly solid, he is the calm point in the storm, the artist in the middle of tempest. Without artists like him, black metal would not be nearly as popular as it is today. Resounding Footsteps owes him a lot for his influence and his talents, it only makes sense to put him in Resounding Footsteps’ Hall of Fame.
- Christopher Lee
Without mincing words, Christopher Lee is my hero. Everything that he was able to do in his nearly 90 years goes beyond legendary. He’s more of a mythical figure than anyone else in the inaugural class combined. Not only was he an actor that played some of the most legendary roles in all of cinematic history, but he was contributing to the world of metal at that hale age of 80. He may not have been the evilest of musicians or vocalists, he might not have had the most genre defining talents but that fact that he was creating music, using his ample talents the way he did, he was the first person to be put on this list. Everything that made Christopher Lee famous as an actor, he used to his advantage in the world of metal. His voice is more distinct than any actor or singer, his connection to Charlemagne, and his physical presence.