Donzdorf on the edge of the Swabian mountains in Southern Germany. A village just like any other, with a pointed church spire, a supermarket and a new housing estate. But Donzdorf is the seat of “Nuclear Blast Records”, one of the world’s most successful independent heavy-metal record companies. The company’s boss, Markus Staiger, grew up with heavy metal, like many young people in rural areas, and has turned his enthusiasm into an empire with branches in Los Angeles and other major cities. Housewives from the village work for the mail order department, sending out bloody skulls to every conceivable place in the world. Listening Sessions are held in the village pub, where the offerings are commented on by the regulars as critically as by international journalists.
The film takes a look at the occasionally comical interaction of the tranquil village inhabitants with the rather crude hard rock scene. But traditional positions have shifted: whereas heavy metal once stood for rebellion against provincial traditions and conventions, it has today, far removed from urban subcultures, long become a firm and established part of life in the country.
With music by Dimmu Borgir, Kataklysm, Meshuggah, Sonata Arctica, Nightwish.
Written and directed by Andreas Geiger
Photographed by Marc Rogoll
A co-production with SWR/ Arte
Funded by MFG Baden-Wuerttemberg
DVD Distribution: Nuclear Blast