You learn something new every day. For example, I just learned that the Foo Fighters are releasing a horror-comedy film entitled Studio 666. The film premieres tonight, and tickets are available online. (It’s showing in Chicago. Should I go?) The Foo fun doesn’t stop there: to mark the band’s foray into the horror scene, the Fighters are teaming up with Coors Light to release a limited-edition “demon-fighting beer.”
Dubbed Coors Almighty Light, the beer is described as “the first spiritually-enhanced beer developed specifically to ward off demons.” It’s apparently made with water that’s been blessed by a “non-denominational ordained minister” with the purpose of fighting off unsavory supernatural forces.
First, I want to take a moment to remind our readers that any idiot can get ordained. I am living proof. I had to get ordained as a non-denominational minister to officiate a wedding last year. After the ceremony, I tried to open a Bud Light bottle with my teeth. I have zero sway in the spiritual realm and would love to hear more about the Foo Fighters’ minister of choice.
Dubious spirituality aside, this unexpected collaboration actually makes a lot of sense. For decades, various gods of rock have summoned demons via screaming guitars and cheap-ass beers. Hard rock, beer, and demonology are all inextricably linked with a certain peas-and-carrots synchronicity. To find out why, we must look to the hard-rockin’ history books.
When you think about it, beer and hard rock are the perfect pair. My hypothesis is that it all comes back to Viking Metal, a subgenre that originated when rockers pulled inspiration from the muscled-out marauders of old. After all, when you think of a Viking horde, there’s a good chance you think about disconcertingly blonde dudes chugging beer and mead with an inimitable fervor. So, hard rock goes hand-in-hand with Viking lore and, in a way, the idea of driving out demons with sheer brute force. (Or, alternatively, casting oneself as a demon for the sake of plunder.) Meanwhile, Viking lore goes hand-in-hand with the art of a sudsy brew.
You with me so far?
I’m not alone in this hypothesis. Numerous beer writers have explored the link between heavy metal culture, demonic references, and beer. There’s even a travel show entitled The Six Most Metal Breweries. VinePair writer Cat Wolinski explains it best in a 2018 article. Wolinski writes:
“There is an undeniable, symbiotic relationship between headbanger bands and beers that defies definitions, challenges norms, and is fueled by passionate individuals who reject the status quo. The metal movement has an outsider ethos and no-holds-barred authenticity that appeals to many brewers. The results are collaborations and crossover hits of epic proportions.”
Wolinski cites several demonic beers in that article, including Dark Lord beer, “a demonic Russian-Style Imperial Stout” from Three Floyds Brewing. There are plenty of other examples on today’s beer market, including Jester King’s smoky Viking Metal, the Dank Demon IPA from Great Lakes Brewing (with very bitchin’ can graphics to boot), and the cheeky “Satan Red” ale from De Block Brewery in Belgium.
It makes total sense. Chugging pint after pint is enough to awaken the demon in any of us. Conversely, beers like the new Foo Fighters/Coors collaboration promise to protect the drinker from some obscure sinister force. It’s comforting—and, truly, what’s more comforting than a cheap beer? Ultimately, drinking demonic beer is metal as Hell, which is affirming for those about to rock from the comfort of their three-flat apartments. Just don’t try to blame your sudsy antics on a Satanic possession.