Students Staff

11 April 2014

Essex student blogger up for two UK Blog Awards

Business Management student and journalist Rhys Stevenson has been nominated in two categories of the UK Blog Awards for the website he created to celebrate metal bands from around the world.

Global Metal Apocalypse was started by Rhys in 2011 and the blog has now reached more than 150 countries with contributors from all walks of life and four international correspondents uncovering the best metal music in Africa, Asia, Europe and North America.

On 25 April, Rhys will find out whether he has been successful in two categories at the UK Blog Awards – the arts and culture category and the young persons (18-25) category.

Rhys said: “Bands in places like Indonesia, India or Botswana don’t get much attention in the Western world, but I feel the blog can give them the reviews, interviews and the attention they deserve so we can make people aware of these really exciting bands. We want Global Metal Apocalypse to be the essential global news and media source for metal music.”

Rhys points out that in some countries metal music is frowned on by the authorities and Global Metal Apocalypse gives bands and outlet and offers links to the wider world and a community of metal music enthusiasts.

He said: “For example, in the Middle East they are under threat of being found out for listening to metal music. These bands are playing music they like and risking their lives doing it.”

Rhys praised Dr Michael Bailey from the Department of Sociology for the insights into blogging provided by the New Media and Contemporary Cultural Change module he took as part of his Essex Business School course.

He said: “Without those blogging sessions I wouldn’t have had the chance to redevelop my skills. They taught me lots of things which I could integrate into my blog.”

He said his Business Management degree had also helped him develop a huge range of skills including time management, negotiation, ethics and accounting which are helping him take his blog further and in the future and will be essential in helping turn the blog into a fully-fledged business.

But, he also points out that Essex provides a unique atmosphere for someone developing a blog with a global vision: “The overall experience of being at Essex – because it is so diverse - means you really appreciate and relate to different cultures. That helps when you are speaking to people from around the world via Facebook, MySpace or MSN.”

So which country’s music does he love the most?

He remains a staunch supporter of the UK metal scene, but also predicts great things for Indian metal – although he adds the Japan scene is very strong.

“I can see more and more Indian bands coming over in the next few years and hopefully I can help people check these bands out.”

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