LATEST UPDATE: 2-25-05
Name: Craig ("Horned is the") Hunter Wisnom
Birthday: October 29, 1970 (666 days from the first day of 1969)
Current location: Arizona (Flotsam and Jetsam, Sacred Reich, Exiled Atrophy, and that's about it), U.S.
Current occupation: Lawyer (Estate planning).
Hobbies: Since metal is implied; taking time with my family, video games, fantasy and sci-fi reading, watching NFL and NBA.
Favorite books: Lord of the Rings; Weiss and Hickman's Dragonlance Chronicles and Deathgate Series; Donaldson's Thomas Covenant Chronicles (see Holocaust); Dan Simmon's Hyperion (see Manticora, Gods of Fire, Drakkar); Chalker's Well of Souls.
Favorite movies: Star Wars (Episodes 4-6 only!); Star Trek II; Dirty Rotten Scoundrels; Planes, Trains, and Automobiles; Dead Poets' Society; Lord of the Rings.
Words that describe me: "Orphan Gypsy"
Instrumental talents: Play the piano, keyboard. Gotta hear "Hallowed Be Thy Name" turned into a piano tune.
Past and present band experience: None.
Favorite music listening location and why: Hmmm, life is now much more compromised, but I listen to a lot in my office, in the car, in the shower.
How I got into metal: Never listened to anything approaching popular or rock music when I was younger, with much older parents. In our junior high, they had an airband contest, and the posters people put up for Judas Priest really intrigued me, and ditto when I heard everyone talking about the Motley Crue/Ozzy concert. I started listening to the local radio which played rock, and made a tape of songs, which included Motley Crue, Judas Priest, Ozzy, Van Halen. But one night shortly after starting, I was sitting outside on the porch while it was raining, and Quiet Riot's "Metal Health" came on. The incredible metal power of that capture me and never let grow. Granted, something pretty meek compared to true metal glory, but it was a gateway song, and "when I was a tough fifteen, I heard a guitar scream, and I knew I'd never be the same." (Y & T).
Most influential bands: Queensryche (old), Judas Priest (old), Fates Warning (old), Manowar, Skyclad, Dio, Virgin Steele, Savatage.
Favorite/most memorable concerts: Seeing Manowar, I got there early, got to say hi to Scott and shook hands with him. It was that very day I found out my wife was pregnant with our first child. I applied my post-shaking hand to her stomach, and our child was named Scott. It was Manowar live; Queensryche, on the Empire tour, when they played the song I most wanted to hear and would never dreamed they would play, "Roads to Madness"; Fates Warning/Dream Theater on the Parallels/Awake tour.
Genre likes: Great and emotional vocals, good lyrics, strong metal feeling; traditional metal, power metal, etc.
Genre dislikes: Not much interest in death, black, too much doom, and no interest in nu-metal, industrialized, etc.
Thoughts on the metal genres:
Black metal: Something that started out as the last thing in the world I wanted to hear. While I still want vocals with melody, feeling, and comprehensible, and thus black metal has little interest to me, the music and production has improved so much, that I do find myself enjoying the very best and most polished bands in the genre (although, this may mean they have left that genre), and the latest Emperor and Dimmu Borgir are quite impressive.
Death metal: For a while, caused me great depression because I could never get into it without vocals that had meaning to me. Of course, there are some monstrously talented bands, and some of which that have some interest, but it still remains to me impossible to adequately convey as much meaning and interest without even a mediocre vocalist capable of conveying a vocal melody.
Doom metal: Not something I'd want to listen to all the time, but can be great at its best.
Folk metal: At its best, the classic Skyclad, it was a brilliant and innovative genre, but that had a lot to do with Herr Walker's genius.
Gothic metal: Not even sure what I'd place here.
Heavy/melodic metal: The best, the truest, the most classic, and ultimately the closest to the heart.
Power metal: Absolutely great, has been a bit overdone lately, just so many bands, but I still love the idea of this genre and most of its better iterations with all my heart.
Progressive metal: Back when the alternative was death, I loved great progressive metal, and if done at its best, can be amazing. As more and more bands and albums are available, not as high a priority.
Symphonic metal: At its best, a glorious and mighty genre. If there's too much symphony, like the lastest Rhapsody, it can become more appropriate as background music as inspiring metal, but I still love the idea.
Thrash metal: Some tremendous power and glory here, and classic Slayer, Testament, and Exodus will reign in blood forever!
Favorite musicians: Kai Hansen, Mark Zonder, Joey DeMaio, Steve Harris, Jon Schaffer.
Favorite vocalists: Eric Adams, Geoff Tate, Rob Halford, Dio, Michael Kiske.
Favorite CD covers: Manowar 'Into glory ride', Judas Priest 'Defenders of the faith', Iron Maiden 'Powerslave', anything by Luis Royo.
Favorite bands: Judas Priest, Queensryche, Iron Maiden, Fates Warning, Manowar, Skyclad, Dio, Savatage, Virgin Steele, Blind Guardian.
Favorite CDs: Fates Warning ‘Awaken the guardian’ and ‘The spectre within’, Queensryche ‘The warning’, Judas Priest ‘Defenders of the faith’, Black Sabbath ‘Headless cross’ and ‘Heaven and hell’, Iron Maiden ‘Seventh son of a seventh son’, Virgin Steele ‘The marriage of heaven and hell’.
CDs that are overrated: Any rich pop star.
CDs that are underrated: Stainless Steel ‘Wigant’, Shadow Gallery ‘Tyranny’.
Most prized metal posession: Kai Hansen autographed photo.
Reasons I joined the Metal CD Ratings site: Great site, chance to unleash writings on the world.
Advantages to being a reviewer on the Metal CD Ratings site: Great support from the administrator.
Disadvantages to being a reviewer on the Metal CD Ratings site: Not enough hours in the day to adequately report, trying to rate CDs.
Bands I would like to see in concert: Iron Maiden, Virgin Steele.
People I would like to meet: Hmmm, I'm generally happy just enjoying their artwork.
What I would like to see for the future of metal: Somehow, a bit more concentration into fewer bands and especially CDs to allow it a chance to sustain itself.
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