Rockbrat Remembers: Heavy Metal Parking Lot (1986)

If Steve Perry were an aardvark..

By the time Rockbrat and I were teens, we were well into rock n roll – yet it wasn’t the radio stuff of the day. No Duran Duran or U2 or any of that other new wave nonsense for us. We were metal heads – headbangers, with posters of KI$$, Maiden, WASP, Ozzy, Saxon, Twisted Sister  and Randy Rhoads on our walls. We couldn’t get enough metal. We read and re read the pages of our expensive imported copies of Circus and Metal Edge magazines. Always blowing money on records, always discovering new metal – whether it be a Whitecross LP, an Onslaught cassette, an EP by John Verity (go Google him) or a new KI$$ Bootleg. We couldn’t get enough metal. It’s fair to say, that objectively speaking, we were a tad blinkered. Metal was the ONLY music that mattered, and everything else sucked, or, to coin a phrase, it belonged on Mars. I remember sitting in a cinema with Mr. Rockbrat watching this new movie called Spinal Tap that everyone was talking about. I turned to Beavis and said, “Great songs, but what the hell are everybody else laughing at?” In 1986, I could easily have been in ‘Heavy Metal Parking Lot’. So in 1999 or whenever it was that I finally got to see it, man it was the funniest thing I’d seen. The basis of the movie is two guys, (who are certified geeks) walking around a parking lot (or car park as we say) before a Judas Priest / Dokken gig. They shove a microphone and camera into fans faces and ask, ‘Do You Like Judas Priest”, or ‘What Do You Like About Heavy Metal”. The fans they talk to are all pretty stereotypical metal heads, with all the clichés covered. They are either stoned or drunk or both. It’s very funny, and if you ain’t seen it – do so. I encourage you to read this article by William Repsher, who is a staff writer based in Queens, NY. William’s article about HMPL is called ‘A Drive Back In Time: Remembering ‘Heavy Metal Parking Lot’. He published it in 2000. When I first read it I was at the office – and I had to leave my desk and walk into another room because I was laughing so uncontrollably! I had tears streaming down my face. A woman I worked with asked me, “What’s so funny?” But I knew she wouldn’t understand, few do. Yet if you are of a certain vintage, and you have a sense of humour (and if you can’t see the jokes in heavy metal  then I don’t know what to say) you will also enjoy his précis of the doco. Heavy metal fact – funnier than fiction. Read it here. You can buy the DVD of HMPL at Amazon and the like. Metal up your ass.

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