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HEAVY METAL AFRICA
by edward banchs

A sightseeing trip in southern Africa in 2007 opened the author’s eyes to an uncharted music scene in an unexpected place: rock and metal, alive and raging in the forgotten continent. Sparked by his own love of heavy music and an insatiable wanderlust, Edward Banchs travels throughout South Africa, Botswana, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritius, Reunion and Zimbabwe meeting the musicians and fans who, working with varying degrees of infrastructure and resources, pursue this music with a drive and passion recognizable to metal fans anywhere in the world.

From cafes in Madagascar to quiet, dusty towns in the middle of the Kalahari, Edward seeks to understand exactly how the musicians live and struggle – while experiencing the passion of rock and metal in Africa for himself. Along the way, he discovers the Africa he never learned about in books, leaves one country in tears, avoids fisticuffs with someone convinced he was spreading Satanism, visits Africa’s largest slum, contracts malaria, and even makes a bit of history in the process. All in the name of heavy metal!

With a scholar’s curiosity and a headbanger’s enthusiasm, Edward sheds light on the history, accomplishments and aspirations of African metal bands living their passions, and defining their generation the only way they know how: loudly!

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