Ultimate Heavy Metal Guitars

The Guitarists Who Rocked the World

This title was previously available on NetGalley and is now archived.
Buy on Amazon Buy on Waterstones.com
*This page contains affiliate links, so we may earn a small commission when you make a purchase through links on our site at no additional cost to you.
Send NetGalley books directly to your Kindle or Kindle app

To read on a Kindle or Kindle app, please add kindle@netgalley.com as an approved email address to receive files in your Amazon account. Click here for step-by-step instructions.
Also find your Kindle email address within your Amazon account, and enter it here.
Pub Date 12 Sep 2023 | Archive Date 10 Aug 2023

Talking about this book? Use #UltimateHeavyMetalGuitars #NetGalley. More hashtag tips!


Sure to strike a chord with guitarists and heavy metal fans, this authoritative and photo-filled volume surveys more than 80 of the genre’s greatest axe-slingers from the 1970s to present.

From metal pioneers like Black Sabbath’s Tony Iommi, Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page, and Deep Purple’s Ritchie Blackmore to today’s hottest shredders, thrashers, and riffers, Ultimate Heavy Metal Guitars is your guide to the instruments and musicians that made metal. Author and guitar journalist Pete Prown presents his subjects by metal-defining eras and subgenres, including: early metal, hard rock and arena rock, prog rock, Euro metal, hair metal, shred, thrash, and more.

Prown’s knowledgeable discussions examine specific noteworthy guitars each player made famous, as well as effects pedals, amplifiers, and career overviews that include the players’ first-person revelations and insights.

Illustrated with photos of the guitarists in action, the book features an early chapter on influencers who set the stage for the genre (think Clapton, Hendrix, and Beck), plus sidebars so you don’t miss out on any of metal’s nooks and crannies, touching on grunge, math metal, nu metal, doom metal, and the genre’s roots in blues and early rock.

Guitarists profiled:

Eric Clapton
Jeff Beck
Jimi Hendrix
Pete Townshend
Jimmy Page
Tony Iommi
Ritchie Blackmore
Leslie West
Martin Barre
Mick Box
Johnny Winter
Joe Perry & Brad Whitford
Brian May
Robin Trower
Don “Buck Dharma” Roeser
Rick Derringer
Ronnie Montrose
Frank Marino
Mick Ralphs
Eddie Van Halen
Ace Frehley
Tom Scholz & Barry Goudreau
Nancy Wilson
Neal Schon
Angus & Malcolm Young
Pat Travers
Michael Schenker
Scott Gorham & Brian Robertson
Glenn Tipton & K.K. Downing
Rudolph Schenker, Uli Jon Roth & Matthias Jabs
Dave Murray & Adrian Smith
Randy Rhoads
Kerry Livgren & Rich Williams
Alex Lifeson
Michael Wilton & Chris DeGarmo
John Petrucci
Phil Collen & Steve Clark
Gary Moore
Joan Jett
Lita Ford
Brad Gillis & Jeff Watson
Mick Mars
John Sykes
Vernon Reid
Yngwie Malmsteen
Steve Vai
Joe Satriani
Vivian Campbell
Jason Becker
Paul Gilbert
George Lynch
Tony MacAlpine & Vinnie Moore
James Hetfield & Kirk Hammett
Dave Mustaine
Kerry King & Jeff Hanneman
Scott Ian
Zakk Wylde
Dimebag Darrell
Ty Tabor
Jerry Cantrell
Tom Morello
Kim Thayil
Mark Tremonti
Alexi Laiho
Herman Li
Brent Hinds & Bill Kelliher
Nita Strauss
Nili Brosh

Sure to strike a chord with guitarists and heavy metal fans, this authoritative and photo-filled volume surveys more than 80 of the genre’s greatest axe-slingers from the 1970s to present.

From metal...

Available Editions

EDITION Other Format
ISBN 9780760377758
PRICE US$45.00 (USD)

Available on NetGalley

NetGalley Shelf App (PDF)
Download (PDF)

Average rating from 8 members

Featured Reviews

Ultimate Heavy Metal Guitars is a giant coffee-table type book with two pages for each of the guitarists featured, one for the history of the guitarist and his equipment and one for a full-page photo. Brown divides his book into twelve chapters, The Dawn of Heavy, Forging Metal, Rock & a hard Place, Arena Rock, Euro Crunch, Prog Power, The Headbanging 80’s, Shred, Thrash Smash & Bash, End of the Century, and Metal After the Millenium.

The Dawn of Heavy, for instance, starts with Clapton and his explanation that he had nothing to do with heavy metal. The chapter then goes on to feature Jeff Beck, Jimi Hendrix (who “revolutionized the sound of the actual tone of the electric solidbody guitar”), and Pete Townshend (“Louder and ruder than its contemporaries, the band cut a swath for bands that would follow”).

The “Roots of Metal” or “Forging Metal” then takes the reader to Jimmy Page, Tony Iommi (Black Sabbath), Ritchie Blackmore (Deep Purple), Leslie West (who?- a band called Mountain famous for “Mississippi Queen”), Martin Barre (of Jethro Tull), Mick Box (of Uriah Heep).

Each chapter (and this review is not going to go over each chapter) gives the reader a handful of names and historical perspective. It is a fascinating walk through rock history, both for the names we are all intimately familiar with and some we have heard on radio, but just never thought about who was leading the band. This reader found many of the chapters in the first two-thirds endlessly fascinating, but the latter names in the last half not as fascinating only because of lack of familiarity. All in all, it is an excellent book, a must-have for anyone who wants to have their own Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on their coffee table.

Was this review helpful?

This book was a nice collection of photos and articles featuring influential guitarists of the heavy metal genre from the past several decades. I loved the live shot photos and who they decided to feature in the book, although a few of my favorites were missing. I found it rather enjoyable.

Was this review helpful?

This is a great book for anyone who love Heavy Metal and guitar players. It not only talks about guitar gods we already know but other guitar players that I've never even heard of but should have. I also love that the book talks about who influence them to play but it also talks about what equipemnt they use and why. My favorite part of the book is the photos of all the guitar players, it just made the book better for me.

I want to thank Quarto Publishing Group – Motorbooks, Motorbooks and NetGalley for an advance copy of this fabulous book

Was this review helpful?

Readers who liked this book also liked: