A further 29 heavyweights from across the global music industry have signed up to judge the HMAs.

Following three previous announcements, the panel now totals 105 with the inclusion of individuals from the likes of Marshall Amplification, Atlantic Records and Warner Music, as well as Nuclear Blast USA’s hugely respected leader Monte Conner – a man Metalsucks has named “the most successful A&R dude in the history of metal.”

The new group of industry insiders – who will independently cast votes to decide the finalists of of the inaugural Heavy Music Awards – represent an eclectic view of the scene.

Joel McIver, the author of the best-selling book Justice For All: The Truth About Metallica has also agreed to take part, as has Chris Ruff of Atlantic Records.

Following the selection of finalists by the judges, public voting will open on May 22 across all categories including Best Album, Best UK Band, Best International Band and Best Festival.

A public vote will decide the winners of the Heavy Music Awards, which takes place in London on August 24.

Promotions Manager at Nuclear Blast Records, Nick Azinas, who joined the Awards this week, said: “I am very honoured to be a part of the Heavy Music Awards’ first edition. It’s inspiring to have an initiative such as this one, which aims to celebrate the best in metal and rock music, regardless of whether it’s on stage or off stage. It not only benefits the bands and the industry, but most of all it benefits the fans, giving them a loud voice within the scene that they’ve created and sustained for so many decades.”

Caleb Williams, Artist Manager at Unified who signed up earlier last month, explained is motivation for becoming an HMA judge.

“I’m very excited to be involved in the inaugural Heavy Music awards,” he revealed.

“It’s a thrill to be able to represent Australia (or the convicts) in the first year of this independently voted awards. It’s a great idea and I look forward to seeing everybody that has been involved in putting this together on the night.”


Nick Azinas (Nuclear Blast UK)
Oleg Bounetsky (Believe Digital)
Monte Conner (Nuclear Blast Entertainment)
Judith Fisher (BJF Media & PR)
Lisa Fox (Rage PR)
Drew Fulk aka WZRD BLD (Producer)
Jamie Giberti (Rock Sins)
Rob Gill (Eagle Rock USA)
Chris Haaland (Warner Music UK)
Claire Harris (Nuclear Blast UK)
Daniel Holub (Make North)
James Illsley (Saviour Management)
Leigh Jones (Riff Rock Records)
Becky Laverty (Pioneer Music Press)
Joel McIver (Author and Journalist)
Jon Mahon (DJ)
James Monteith (Hold Tight PR)
Oran O’Beirne (Overdrive)
Lailah O’Donnell (Spinefarm Records)
Katherine Parrott (Creative Kapers)
Iain Purdie (Moshville Times)
Laura Richardson (Generation Entertainment)
Zach Redrup (Dead Press)
Chris Robinson (Marshall Amplification)
Chris Ruff (Atlantic Records)
Russ Russell (Producer)
Morgan Thomas (Moshing On My Own)
Tanya Traish (Heavy Ritual Records)
Nicola Mary Wyatt (Parliament Tattoo)

Take a look at the full judging line-up here.