/ by Greg Gallinger

Voivod and the 1984 demo tape that changed heavy metal

Rob Fitzpatrick, for The Guardian

Voivod recorded the album on to a specially acquired chrome cassette from which they dubbed one copy, then never played again. That dubbed copy was then dubbed on to many more cassettes, which were sent to every contact they could find on the back of their LPs. The tape was traded furiously on the metal underground scene; one landed on the desk of Brian Slagel, whose label Metal Blade had discovered Slayer and Metallica.

I missed out on the whole metal tape trading scene. I did grow up listening to mix tapes that I shared with friends, but that was in middle school before I really discovered a real music scene. It wasn't until later in high school that I discovered the punk rock scene, and by that time it was all about CDs and Napster. I hear so many great stories of the days when you'd get a tape in the mail from the other side of the continent, or Scandanavia. I've always gravitated towards that scene even though I came to it late and have never been really active in it.