Band Metallica’s Kirk Hammett Says Are the Architects of Metal

Band Metallica’s Kirk Hammett Says Are the Architects of Metal

Metallica’s Kirk Hammett has recently stirred the pot in the heavy metal community by naming Judas Priest, not Black Sabbath, as the true “architects” of heavy metal. This revelation came during a Q&A session in Germany, where Hammett and Metallica bassist Robert Trujillo were promoting their book, “Metallica: The Black Album in Black & White.”

Hammett’s assertion challenges the long-held belief that Black Sabbath pioneered heavy metal. While Sabbath’s riff-driven style laid the groundwork for doom metal, Hammett believes that the classic heavy metal sound of the ’80s owes more to Judas Priest. “We were worshipping at the altar of Judas Priest,” Hammett said. “Their music means so much to us. And the way Glenn Tipton and K.K. Downing played the guitars — I mean, they are architects of what we now know as heavy metal, to put it bluntly.”

Hammett’s comments highlight the influence of Judas Priest’s harmonized guitar leads, high-pitched vocals, and faster tempos on the genre. This style became the blueprint for many metal bands in the ’80s, including Metallica. “James [Hetfield] and I, we love Priest,” Hammett added, emphasizing the band’s impact on Metallica’s own music.

Reflecting on their experience at last year’s Power Trip festival, Hammett shared how rare it is for Metallica to watch other bands perform. “We don’t really get a chance to see bands, a lot of times, when we’re playing a huge festival or something,” he said. “So when we did Power Trip, we got there early — a few days early — just so that we could see all the other bands. And it was great — the anticipation of seeing Iron Maiden, Priest, AC/DC, and Guns N’ Roses, and actually seeing them. It was a wonderful time.”

The Power Trip festival featured a star-studded lineup, including Iron Maiden, Guns N’ Roses, Judas Priest, AC/DC, Tool, and Metallica. Hammett and Hetfield were particularly excited to see Judas Priest perform, further solidifying their admiration for the band.

This isn’t the first time Metallica has shown their respect for Judas Priest. In May 2013, Priest’s Rob Halford joined Metallica on stage at the Revolver Golden Gods award show to perform the Priest classic “Rapid Fire.” Halford also performed “Rapid Fire” with Metallica during their 30th-anniversary celebration in 2011. In 2019, Metallica even played a snippet of Priest’s “The Green Manalishi (With The Two Pronged Crown)” while rehearsing for a concert in Bucharest, Romania.

The Q&A session in Germany also served as a platform to discuss “Metallica: The Black Album in Black & White,” a book that celebrates one of the best-selling albums of all time. The book features classic and previously unpublished photographs by Ross Halfin, who has been working with Metallica since 1984. Halfin documented the band’s hectic schedule during the 300-date tour that followed the release of “The Black Album,” capturing everything from performances to backstage moments.

As Metallica continues their European tour, fans are left to ponder Hammett’s bold statement. Is Judas Priest the true architect of heavy metal? While opinions may vary, Hammett’s perspective adds a new layer to the ongoing debate about the origins of the genre.

Metallica’s current tour features their unique “no repeat weekends” format, where they play two sets at the same venue with completely different setlists. Upcoming shows include stops in Copenhagen, Oslo, Clisson, Warsaw, Madrid, Foxborough, Chicago, Minneapolis, Edmonton, Seattle, and Mexico City.

Hammett’s comments have undoubtedly sparked a conversation within the metal community. Whether you agree with him or not, there’s no denying the significant impact both Black Sabbath and Judas Priest have had on the genre. As Metallica continues to tour and create music, their admiration for Judas Priest remains a testament to the band’s enduring influence on heavy metal.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top