Christe, Ian (Dark Noerd)
Male. Hobbies and other interests: Composing digital metal music.
Home—105 North Eighth Street, Brooklyn, NY 11211. E-mail—[email protected].
Musician and writer. Staff writer for Wired; founder of "This Is How I Feel" (cartoon T-shirt line).
Sound of the Beast: The Complete Headbanging History of Heavy Metal, HarperCollins (New York, NY), 2003.
Composer of heavy-metal music, sometimes under the name Dark Noerd; contributor of articles to Request, Alternative Press, Bananafish, Spin, and other entertainment/technology magazines.
Ian Christe combined his love of heavy metal with his writing expertise to create Sound of the Beast: The Complete Headbanging History of Heavy Metal, an extensive encyclopedia documenting the history of heavy-metal music. Christe has been contributing to magazines for over a decade, about as long as he has been composing digital metal music. His articles, featured in Request and Spin, have earned him a reputation as a knowledgeable and reliable source of information on music and technology. Under the name Dark Noerd, Christe has released albums and contributed songs to movie soundtracks.
Christe's Sound of the Beast begins with the emergence of Black Sabbath in 1970 and documents the evolution of heavy metal into the twenty-first century. Critics have praised the book's organization and Christe's enthusiastic writing. Library Journal's Robert Morast maintained that Sound of the Beast is "surprisingly conversational and easy to follow through three decades and hundreds of bands." The book is heavily researched, as it includes interviews with dozens of heavy metal icons, as well as comments from other respected followers of the genre. Some prominent artists interviewed by Christe include Rob Zombie, Metallica's Lars Ulrich, Twisted Sister's Dee Snider, and Megadeath's Dave Mustaine.
Some critics cited the book's exclusive nature as a fault, saying that portions of Christie's text are not easily accessible for readers with only a surface interest in heavy metal. Terry Teachout, a reviewer for Book, remarked that, "while those who know nothing whatsoever about heavy metal may find Christe's sheer accumulation of detail somewhat daunting, full-fledged heavy metal enthusiasts will appreciate the care Christe takes with the music." Christe classified his work as "the blow-by-blow story of the evolution of heavy metal" on Sound of the Beast Web site, and added that he "tried to capture the cutting edge of metal as it intensified and changed over the decades."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Book, March/April, 2003, Terry Teachout, review of Sound of the Beast: The Complete Headbanging History of Heavy Metal, pp. 70-71.
Kirkus Reviews, February 1, 2003, review of Sound of the Beast, p. 199.
Library Journal, February 15, 2003, Robert Morast, review of Sound of the Beast, pp. 140-141; March 1, 2003, Robert Morast, "Forging the Gospel of Metal: Ian Christe's Sound of the Beast, "p.94.
Digital Metal,http://www.digitalmetal.com/ (June 21, 2003), David Perri, review of Sound of the Beast.
Hot Wired,http://hotwired.wired.com/ (May 21, 2003), "Ian Christe."
Metal Judgment,http://www.metaljudgment.com/ (June 6, 2003), review of Sound of the Beast.
Sound of the Beast,http://www.soundofthebeast.com/ (June 6, 2003).*