For some, ideas of Jimmy Page and Led Zeppelin's accidental founding of the genre (since they reportedlyreviled the title) spring to mind, while other will think of Metallica's black album, maybe you like 80s Glam Metal (why?), or just anything you can bang your head to. Death Metal, Black Metal, power, thrash, gothic/doom metals all have a home in someones heart – but what can tie these things together?
Stuff that can is almost universally acknowledged as badass (well except the shittily aforementioned 'glam' metal). Death, doom – Led Zeppelin's mega-hit “Stairway to Heaven's” lyrics were mythically tied to Aleister Crowley's old house. That's some truly badass (if a bit kitsch, these days) stuff!
So I present the first of two photos which I will suggest, then DEMAND be labelled as not just “Metal,” but the best of all Metals - “Heavy Metal.” Admittedly, I have a massive advantage as both examples are volcanoes.
That is to say – cracks in the crust of the Earth, exposing stone that has been pushed and pulled by the massive forces beneath the ground that it is molten lava.
The first is a pretty standard view into a slightly active caldera – a sight that convinced some of our forefathers into believing that the very belly of hell and the master of evil could be the only reason for such a terrible stuff. Step back a few thousand years, and you are literally staring into the mouth of hell.
Confession time – this entire entry to this point is just filler. There is one reason I typed all of this nonsense: I had to post the following picture. It is the single most Metal image I have ever seen in my life, and it's 100% natural.
We could really use some epic meedley-meedley-meeeee guitar right about now...
No one playing a Jackson Flying V, here, just terrible terrible nature. This is the volcano in Iceland called Eyjafjallajökull, and what you are seeing is completely natural and completely badass. So what's going on?
Well, while things like stone and ash are electrically neutral, in this type of eruption you have a lot of heat and a lot of turbulence. From what I can understand all of the particles, and the entire cloud, start out neutral. With the heat and colliding particles causing ionization and differences in aerodynamics between the particles separating the positive and negative charges. Once that difference is large enough, boom. Metal.
(sources: http://scienceblogs.com/startswithabang/2010/04/volcanic_lightning_eyjafjallaj.php , http://photography.nationalgeographic.com/photography/photo-of-the-day)