Accused child killer Damien Echols in court. His habit of wearing black clothing and listening to heavy metal music was remarked upon by the prosecution as being an indication that he was a practising Satanist, and this “evidence” was submitted as proof he was guilty of killing three children and sexually mutilating their bodies.
Satanism has been subjected to intense criticism ever since it was popularized by figures such as Anton LaVey, but statistics show that homicides motivated by occult beliefs have always been extremely rare in modern times. The case of seventeen-year-old Ricky Kasso of Long Island is therefore an anomaly, yet continues to be one of the most horrific examples of ritual murder in living memory.
Ricky Kasso was born and raised in New York, and his childhood was an unexceptional one. Its only when Kasso discovered a book on Satanism at his local library that his personality became unstable, and he drew the attention of his peers and authority. He became a heavy recreational drug user and skipped school to listen to heavy metal music whilst reading books on witchcraft. Neighbors were shocked at the way Kasso would scream “Hail Satan!” at passing pedestrians, and he earned a reputation as a bully. Kasso even formed a cult that dedicated itself to Satan and bragged to friends about conducting blood rituals at the infamous house in Amityville where Ronald DeFeo murdered six members of his own family.
In June 1985, when Kasso was seventeen, he confided to a friend that he wanted to sacrifice a victim to Satan in order to increase his power. Kasso decided his target would be fellow drug enthusiast Gary Lauwers, who Kasso believed had stolen bags of PCP and mescaline from him. Alongside two other friends from the cult, Kasso lured Lauwers into a lonely patch of woods with an offer to get high. The four teenagers took hits of LSD and gathered around a small campfire, until Lauwers annoyed Kasso by trying to leave because his mother would be worried about him. Kasso took out a knife and stabbed Lauwers in the chest, while the two other boys held him down. Kasso demanded Lauwers’ say “I love Satan”, but when the unfortunate boy said “I love my mother” instead, Kasso gouged his eyes out with the knife. When Lauwer’s was dead Kasso covered his body with leaves and fled the scene.
Ricky Kasso could not resist bragging about his crime, and two weeks later he was arrested for murdering Gary Lauwers. An autopsy of the body revealed the victim had been stabbed between seventeen to thirty-six times in the chest, with five of the wounds peircing his lungs and heart. Kasso claimed he had heard Satan telling him to kill Lauwers in the form of a crow, and laughed when he heard Lauwer’s funeral would be closed-casket due to the state of the body.
Unfortunately justice wasnt served for Gary Lauwers; Kasso hung himself in his prison cell while awaiting trial. The two other cult members involved in the brutal murder recieved lesser sentences.
C: As an alternative black woman, I can feel so out of place with my own culture. Being Goth, listening to EDM and heavy metal, and being an atheist (among many other things) makes me feel like an unicorn. Doesn’t help that I grew up being told I was white because of it. If wish I had other black women friends like me.
You know that evil Heavy Metal that your parents hate you listening to? You know those lyrics about hell and doom, demons ripping you new orifices to shit out of? But what if I told you it’s all reel? I know… I was there. Deathgasm (2015)
friendly reminder that you can like whatever you want, even if those things seemingly contradict. you can love listening to heavy metal and doing yoga. you can do musical theatre and dress in all black with dark makeup. you can love getting your nails done and wearing red lipstick and ride a motorcycle. if you like it, do it.
there is a universe inside of you. don’t let anyone put you into a box.
“Heart Attack” closed Heavy
Metal Breakdown and rather loudly presented Grave Digger as not the most
technically proficient of the new crop of German metal acts, nor the most
melodic or professional, but arguably the craziest. Perhaps more than Accept’s epochal “Fast as a
Shark”, the final song on Grave Digger’s debut album was the first true thrash
metal song to come out of Germany- Accept may have unwittingly begat thrash
with Restless and Wild’s legendary
opener, but Chris Boltendahl’s screeching and Albert Eckardt’s frantic drumming
sounded like direct counterpoints to Kill
‘Em All. “Heart Attack” lived up to
its title thanks to its unrelenting aggression and speed, with Boltendahl in
particular sounding especially unhinged.
The sheer insanity on display took German metal to another level, raising
the bar and forcing a lot of bands that were still primarily influenced by
Judas Priest to step it up a few notches.