GREAT philosophical book for Musicians

Postby thesvh on Thu Jan 01, 2009 6:22 am
Premier Guitar Magazine calls Mind Over Metal by Scott Von Heldt"A tool of provocation for musicians" [ No Rating ] 31 Dec 2008

As Any metal fan will tell you, metal is about more than just black shirts and angst. There is a recondite complexity behind this genre that is hell-bent on destruction and power. Singer and guitarist Scott "SVH" Von Heldt explores the philosophical side of metal's mayhem and monster tones in his first book, Mind Over metal - The Musician's Guide to Mental Mastery. The book is the first in the Mystic Art of Self-Discovery series. Von Heldt, who has worked with members of White Zombie, Cirque du Soliel and Bad Company, taps a wide range of disciplines and doctrines to explore the erudite and existential side of heavy metal, martial arts, the study of internal energy, the mind's thought patterns and ESP (Extended Sense Perception) to name a few.

SVH's approach is more Buddah than Blackmore. The prerequisite breakdown of alternative tuning science is there, as expected, but the book flourishes with thought-provoking insight into creativity in general, not just the dark art it can produce. Mind Over Metal is a quirkily effective read that makes a strong argument for the appreciation of the metal aesthetic and it's ability to connect the idea of a primal voice with one's individual voice. The title suggests a one-sided attack, but SVH's message transcends genre as it unpacks the common mission of any musician: to create art without apprehension.

Furthermore, the text challenges the reader to not only practice regularly, but to do it in an "honest, self-expressive" way, where the player and guitar become one. Only by reaching this point, SVH explains, can a musician fully grasp the far-reaching possibilities of the instrument - a state of metal nirvana (the mental state, not the grunge act) where a guitarist can reach the kind of "self-realization" that produces truly metal-riffic licks!

The Books narrative is augmented by quotes from musicians, martial artists, ancient philosophers - even Yoda. This cerebral yet grounded exploration of the ear crushing, diabolically poetic force known as metal is indeed a tool of mental provocation for the guitarist who is seeking to master the genre.

CK - Premier Guitar Magazine - January 2009

"When one loses himself in his art, the art then comes to life."

-Hazrat Inayat Khan