Synopses & Reviews
This formidable oversized hardcover runs 288 pages (including a 32-page color section), and combines hundreds of unseen early Hellhammer and Celtic Frost photos with a vast treasure trove of artwork and memorabilia. A substantial written component by Fischer details his upbringing on the outskirts of Zurich, Switzerland, and the hardships and triumphs he faced bringing the visions of his groundbreaking bands Hellhammer and eventually Celtic Frost to reality. In addition, the book includes an introduction by Nocturno Culto of Norwegian black metal act Darkthrone, and a foreword by noted metal author Joel McIver.
Without question Only Death Is Real goes farther than any other source in exploring the origins of underground heavy metal. The wealth of visual information is astounding, both in terms of documenting early 1980s headbangers and exposing the still-relevant imagery of the first Hellhammer and Celtic Frost photo sessions. On top of that, the written chapters combine Tom Fischerand#8217;s often shocking stories with lengthy quotes from Martin Eric Ain and the other main Hellhammer members, explaining in intimately human terms how extreme metal was born.
and#147;Fischerand#8217;s delving deeper into his past than ever beforeand#133;very interesting reading. Itand#8217;s as much a document of metalhead life in the early and#8217;80s as the story of one band.and#8221;and#151;MSN Music
"Not just the story of two bands who became genuine linchpins in metal history, itand#8217;s also a universal tale about the power of heavy metal to provide a shelter from alienation"and#151;Metal Hammer
and#147;Immaculately presentedand#133;a tale of disenfranchised youth with the dedication to follow through with their dreams, against significant oddsand#8221;and#151;PopMatters
and#147;A proud and regal commemoration of a band that clawed its way to legendary status. Five stars.and#8221;and#151;Austin Metal Examiner
and#147;A must-haveand#133; authoritative, and the hard work is evident. Only Death Is Real was created by people who respect fans and know what they want.and#8221;and#151;Invisible Oranges
and#147;and#133;the heartfelt and open narration from Fischer makes it a genuine asset to the understanding and appreciation of his canon, what was overcome and what was sacrificed in the name of music that has since become classic.and#8221;and#151;Terrorizer [10/10 review]
and#147;An astonishing book, both in its subject matter and its presentationand#133; Itand#8217;s the antithesis of the standard trade paperback rock tome.and#8221;and#151;Hellbound[10/10 review]
and#147;Absolutely amazing.and#8221;and#151;Deaf Sparrow [5/5 review]
and#147;A killer look into the mind of the band.and#8221;and#151;BrooklynVegan
and#147;The apex of extreme metal textsand#8221;and#151;deathmetal.org
and#147;Recounts the hard work, unlimited dedication, and immense confidence it took for this group of amateurs to create one of the darkest and most influential metal bands of all time: Hellhammerand#8221;and#151;Associated Content
and#147;Highly recommend this to anyone with even the remotest interest in the beginnings of the extreme metal sceneand#8221; [4.5/5 star review]and#151;MetalCrypt.com
and#147;This is a book about the real Hellhammer, the essence of that group, the aura it carried, and the truly unique spirit of revolution of the times in which it existed. It is a book about a group of outcastsand#151;about persistence, dedication, and an utterly personal vision. I have worked very hard to make sure it will do justice to the work of a number of very unique people who shared the same ideas at a very unique point in time.and#8221;and#151;Tom Gabriel Fischer
In the early 1980s in the rural outskirts of Zurich, Switzerland, author Tom Gabriel Fischer assembled the groundbreaking heavy metal band Hellhammer — a dark, dramatic force that flew in opposition to his surroundings in every way, even the flashy party-hearty hard rock music of the day. Slowly, Fischer pulled together an ever-larger legion of similar-minded outcasts and adventurers. In a few short years, Hellhammer vanished and Celtic Frost was born, and in this remarkable volume the tale is told with vivid photographs and exacting narrative detail.