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Who Are the Best Voices in the History of Metal?

 
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Who Are the Best Voices in the History of Metal?
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Holymagica
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This was in New York times March 29, 2013 and think today is the best day, to post it.

Raining Blood” may not be “Harlem Shake,” but to Howie Abrams and Sacha Jenkins it might as well be. Slayer’s popular 1986 song is No. 4 on the list “Our Favorite Songs by the Best Metal Bands,” one of several indexes the authors compiled for “The Merciless Book of Metal Lists,” set for release this month by Abrams Image. The book features scores of compilations of bests (songs, drummers, bass tones), worsts (“10 Heavy Metal Fashion Faux Pas”) and the only-in-metal (“10 Illegible Black Metal Logos”).

(The authors spoke with The Times about the most embarrassing heavy-metal album covers.)

Mr. Jenkins said he and Mr. Abrams collaborated on the book for the same reason many fans get into the metal genre in the first place: to unleash fury.

“Metal fans are rabid and the love to debate,” said Mr. Jenkins, who co-authored a popular book of rap lists in 1999. “They love to argue and obsess about the music.”

One of the lists that’s sure to get metal fans’ hair in a twist is “20 of the Greatest Metal Voices.” Here’s who made the top 10:

1. Ronnie James Dio (Black Sabbath, Dio)
2. Rob Halford (Judas Priest)
3. Bruce Dickinson (Iron Maiden)
4. Eric Adams (Manowar)
5. Geoff Tate (Queensrÿche)
6. King Diamond (Mercyful Fate, King Diamond)
7. Tom Araya (Slayer)
8. John Bush (Armored Saint/Anthrax)
9. James Hetfield (Metallica)
10. Max Cavalera (Sepultura, Soulfly)

Mr. Abrams said Mr. Dio was the unanimous choice for the top spot because the singer, who died in 2010, had a virtuosity that set him far apart from other top metal vocalists.

“If he needed to apply darkness, he could do it,” said Mr. Abrams. “If he needed to belt and go to a higher range, he could. He replaced Ozzy Osbourne in Black Sabbath, and I’m not sure there was a taller task for a vocalist. He did it with ease and grace, and he may have improved on what Oz did in the first place.”

In a genre in which singers growl, howl, scream and otherwise create vocal mischief, defining a good metal singer can be a challenge.

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