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1993: The year Roadrunner Records became an unstoppable force

Starting as a death metal label before breaking a ton of mainstream heavyweights, Roadrunner Records ruled '93

The early 1990s was fast becoming a turbulent time for metal. Grunge and alternative rock had stolen the spotlight, and six-string heroics, gut-punching riffs and flailing hair were seen as passé. The success of Pantera aside, metal’s days as a mainstream force seemed numbered.

Except that wasn’t quite the whole picture. On the fringes, exciting things were still happening. Death metal had outgrown its gore-obsessed adolescence and headed into more melodic waters. A new wave of Scandinavian black metal bands were causing mayhem in the name of Satan. Brazil’s Sepultura were waiting in the wings for their shot at the big-time. And on both sides of the Atlantic, an underground record company was on the verge of becoming one of the most powerful and influential record labels of the decade.


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