For some reason, Hilburn has gotten confused. He is not an underground champion of rebellious rock 'n' roll. He is a middle-aged writer for a large metropolitan newspaper, writing for the masses. His taste mirrors that of his co-workers at The Times and echoes other middle-aged scribes in other mass-market publications across the country--Topeka, Phoenix, Cleveland.
When he touts punk rock and post-punk rock as innovative and anti-Establishment, he does not realize that he is the Establishment. And when his favorite albums are on Top 10 lists all over the nation, they have the Establishment seal of approval.
Heavy metal is the only music that is truly rebellious and anarchic. Mom cannot do her aerobics to metal, as she can to new wave. Heavy metal does not have the approval of the wimp-writer rock critics. It is music that is hated by all adults, scorned by all critics.
It is real rock 'n' roll.
KMET, at its height, played heavy metal. And that, pontificating pundits, is what made it great.