Skip to main content

Backstaged: The Devil in Metal

A time machine through decades of metal that examines the origins of metal music, its connection to darkness and decadence, the lifestyle of many of its followers and how the genre has upped the ante on the phrase sex, drugs and rock n’ roll. It might be the colossal doom of Black Sabbath, the cutting precision of Judas Priest and Iron Maiden or the graphic lyrics of Slayer, metal is “The Devil’s Music.” Some fans have fallen under its seductive spell, turning them into rebellious beasts. Bestselling author and music journalist Jon Wiederhorn is your host and guide. Through insightful and sometimes outrageous interviews with musicians, take a trip through the various tropes of metal and examine and sometimes celebrate the elements that make metal so appealing. Hear from members of Black Sabbath, Metallica, Pantera, Slayer, Anthrax, Motley Crue and many more as we hunt down the devil within and discover why it’s okay, and even necessary to keep metal alive.

Listen to the Podcast

The Book

This season of the Backstaged podcast is based in part on author Jon Wiederhorn’s work on two books, Raising Hell: Backstage Tales from the Lives of Metal Legends and the modern classic, Louder Than Hell: The Definitive Oral History of Metal.

“A great read and an instant classic.” — The Onion’s A.V. Club

“Often hilarious, occasionally, ‘God, I wish I hadn’t read that!’, sometimes profound, sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes infuriating…no one holds back on any subject…you come away from this book with a crystal-clear vision of this world.” —The Huffington Post

Read the Book
Jon Wiederhorn

Jon Wiederhorn

Jon Wiederhorn is a veteran music journalist with more than 30-years of writing experience and the author of Raising Hell: Backstage Tales from the Lives of Metal Legends and the celebrated classic Louder Than Hell: The Definitive Oral History of Metal (with Katherine Turman). Wiederhorn is a former editor at Rolling Stone and a former writer for MTV News and the co-author of My Riot: Agnostic Front, Grit, Guts & Glory with Roger Miret, Ministry: The Lost Gospels According to Al Jourgensen with Al Jourgensen and I’m the Man: The Story of That Guy from Anthrax with Scott Ian. He has written for Rolling Stone, SPIN, MTV, Guitar World, and Revolver, among others.


Host & Writer John Wiederhorn
Producers & Directors Mark Francis & Scott Waxman
Consulting Producer Andrew Kalb
Production Assistant Anita Okoye
Social Media Consultant Stephen Tompkins
Executive Producers Mark Francis, & Scott Waxman

Email can still be fun.

Diversion sends you email you’ll actually want to receive: details about new shows and our great hosts, plus behind-the-scenes stuff you can't get anywhere else. Give it a try.

"*" indicates required fields