Editors’ Notes Following the death of dictator Francisco Franco in 1975, Spain experienced a youth-culture boom. Fledgling musicians in particular were passionate in their embrace of international trends like punk, hardcore, and, yes, heavy metal. The scene’s first bands—Barón Rojo, Obús, the proggy Ñu—emerged from the working class and, like so many headbangers in the ’80s, adopted the sharp cries, serrated riffs, and galloping beats of British metal. These pioneers, in turn, inspired waves of followers who brought radically new ideas to the table. A perfect example is Mägo de Oz, whose folk-metal hybrid features touches of Celtic music. Hamlet, in contrast, helped popularize groove metal and alt-metal with their brutal, Pantera-influenced attack. In the 21st century, with heavy metal having achieved mainstream success, a new underground appeared that, with the help of the internet, alerted fans worldwide that Spain had become a hotbed for DIY bands—like Lamorte and the absolutely hellish Stained Blood—who have pivoted toward extreme metal.

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