For this week's episode, Hell Bent For Metal return to one of their favourite topics, Ghost (never something they need an excuse to do!). Rather than spend any more time gushing about new album 'Impera', they're discussing how Ghost did something amazing for the trans community with a Metallica cover. (Although there is a little bit of gushing about 'Impera'. And they're not apologising for it either.)
After some discussion between Tom and Matt about their relationships with Ghost, as well as Tom revealing what he thinks is the greatest rock music magazine cover ever (which unsurprisingly involves Immortal), they hosts run down exactly what Ghost did, and why it means so much. Perhaps inevitably, this also includes a (sweary) return to current political events that have affected the trans community, and why this makes Ghost's actions even more impactful.
There's also the small matter of one of the more real-world-relevant lyrical angles on 'Impera', and whether or not Tobias Forge's affinity and support for the LGBTQ+ influenced his motivation to write that song.
Speaking of Metallica covers, this week's Camp Classic is a song that was given a huge boost in profile when the San Francisco titans covered it: the seminal NWOBHM classic 'Am I Evil?' by Diamond Head. And while there's obviously plenty of talk about things directly relevant to queer people and their experiences, there's first the small matter of how the huge influence Diamond Head had on the biggest metal band was repaid in more recent times.
After that, the queer angle itself proves fertile ground for the trademark HBFM digressions, from the link between homophobic persecution of lesbians and the persecution of those women perceived as witches, to the now-bizarre social rules that governed what it was and was not acceptable to do as a gay man in Ancient Greece.
This week's visit to the Hate Crew Gaybar has two new releases for the jukebox. The first is 'Love And Hatred' by Los Angeles filthy doom-meets-melodic hardcore band Grey Moth, a project featuring previous HBFM guest Chris Gregory. The second (for which Tom has to make a
grovelling small apology) is 'War Of The Worlds, Pt.2'. It's the new shred-filled prog metal solo album (with the help of a few guest musicians) by Symphony X guitarist Michael Romeo.