In the ’80s and ’90s it was not uncommon to see photos of metal legends such as Slayer, Alice in Chains and Megadeth clothed in the half-skull logo that has become a venerated symbol for Utah metalheads.
While stores like Hot Topic have become a haven for mall rats, Kevin refused a distribution offer years ago that would have put HMS T-shirts in malls because it would’ve cheapened HMS’ authentic metalhead image. Today, sales from clothing eclipse music sales and HMS-branded clothing is sold to customers worldwide.
Although the location of the HMS has changed over the years, the authentic vibe that permeates the store and impeccable customer service has remained consistent. – USA Today
One way to avoid the hype: treat metal like any other specialty, whether gardening or hair-weaving, and ignore the teeny-bopper market entirely.
It seems that sell-outs occur, and consequently failures of quality occur, when some novice sees a successful pop-ish metal band, and counsels a heavier metal band to emulate them.
This then poisons the good name of that metal band, and fails to attract the pop listeners, who want something that is 100% pop, not a metal-pop hybrid.
Morbid Angel just found this out the hard way. Slayer did back in 1998 as well. It’s an eternal cycle.