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6 Reasons Why Metallica is the Greatest United States Heavy Metal Band of All Time

Updated on February 23, 2021
CELEBSFAN78 profile image

Ara is a Journalism graduate from California State University Northridge who is always looking to explore his writing opportunities.

This Article is Like a Tribute to Metallica

This article was originally planned so that there would be a review of the first disk of the compilation album of cover songs called Garage Inc. But before we discuss the albums for Garage Inc. it is necessary to give perspective on the reasons why Metallica is the greatest US heavy metal band of all time. Why is Metallica the greatest US metal band of all time? As of 2021 here are 6 legitimate reasons why Metallica is and or should be considered the greatest United States based heavy metal band of all time:

Metallica Band Members Back in 1985

From left to right: Kirk Hammett, James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, and Cliff Burton. Burton would unfortunately pass away the year after this photo was taken.
From left to right: Kirk Hammett, James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, and Cliff Burton. Burton would unfortunately pass away the year after this photo was taken. | Source

First Four Reasons Why Metallica Is the Greatest United States Heavy Metal Band

  1. They have had VERY good power ballads such as Fade to Black and even great softer long songs such as Mama Said and Low Man’s Lyric.
  2. They have had three of the best heavy metal instrumental songs ever in the history of the genre. These are The Call of Ktulu, Orion, and To Live is to Die.
  3. The solid two CD set called Garage Inc. that saw the band experiment and put their own musical approach to these cover songs.
  4. Albums such as Death Magnetic and Hardwired to Self-Destruct show that even in the modern era after 39 years of playing heavy metal, they can still redeem themselves if they even needed to and write quality songs while going back to their roots.


Reason #5 Garage Inc.

Garage Inc. is a two disk album of cover songs performed by American heavy metal band Metallica. I will only be reviewing the first disk which has songs that were written and performed by artists such as Discharge, Diamond Head, Black Sabbath, Bob Seger, Misfits, Blue Oyster Cult, and Thin Lizzy. This was a good idea by Metallica to do this because they had to do something different that was like a break from their traditional recording and writing process. Lars Ulrich mentioned that the band needed to do something different after three albums which were called serious by the band. These albums were 1991’s Black album, Load and Re-Load. This would make sense because these guys toured the world at a hectic pace to promote their 1991 album, the album which took them to superstar status. They had to deal with James Hetfield’s pyrotechnics accident in Montreal and I guess they were just really worn out after all that touring. This album shows the diversity of Metallica’s musical approach and it is also a way that the band “saved” my life though not in the literal sense. Their hard work and no-nonsense approach to writing GOOD quality heavy metal since 1982 has gotten them to superstar status. What Metallica was able to do in performing these covers on Garage Inc. is the 5th reason that explains why they are the greatest United States heavy metal band. The first song called "Free Speech for the Dumb" is just two and a half minutes of repeating the song’s title. "It’s Electric" is a song about someone that is convinced that he will become a rock star making millions of dollars even if he has to encounter dangers along the way.

This first disk has a few of my favorites that are great cover performances by Metallica. These favorites are Die, Die My Darling, Whiskey in the Jar, Astronomy, and Loverman which was originally performed by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. Die, Die My Darling is performed in a really aggressive way by Metallica and the vocals of James Hetfield are just perfect. "Loverman" is also very well performed as the song is about doing what we can to avoid the influence of the devil that may be lurking nearby. Loverman is spelled out in individual letters creating one of the most interesting songs in recent memory. True will exist even if empires fall and the world somehow ends. As I write this, I recall reading about the fact that James Hetfield’s mother Cynthia died of cancer when he was just 16. If she had lived long enough to see him reach the level of success that he has gotten to, she would have been very proud of him. Astronomy is a song written by Blue Oyster Cult and James Hetfield delivers his best ballad like performance that I have heard. Yes, James Hetfield does not have a high falsetto style of singing but he is a decent vocalist and in this song, he does VERY well! Next comes the Thin Lizzy song called "Whiskey in the Jar" which is my favorite cover song done by Metallica in this first disk or set of songs. The song has a groovy sort of riff that most of you may remember. Even in 2021, this cover performance of Whiskey in the Jar sounds just as good as when many of us heard it back in 1998. This is one of those songs that you can listen to while partying with your friends. There are some men that like fishing, some of them like sleeping, and there are many men that love rock and metal music.

A List of Metallica's Full Length Albums Since 1983

Year Released
Album Title
Kill Em' All
Flemming Rasmussen
Ride the Lightning
Flemming Rasmussen
Master of Puppets
Flemming Rasmussen
...And Justice for All
Flemming Rasmussen
"Metallica" the black album
Bob Rock
Bob Rock
Bob Rock
St. Anger
Bob Rock
Death Magnetic
Rick Rubin
Hardwired...To Self-Destruct
Rick Rubin

Note: this list does not include Garage Inc.

"It's Electric"

And Justice for All Album Cover

And Justice for All is another one of the band's best albums in spite of the fact that the bass guitars were tuned down.
And Justice for All is another one of the band's best albums in spite of the fact that the bass guitars were tuned down. | Source

"The God That Failed" Official Music Video

Last Great Reason is That Metallica Has Had no Sub-Par Studio Albums

Metallica has NO studio releases that are even considered sub-par. How many US based heavy metal bands can say that? My guess is not too many of them. Metallica is just a group of guys that started to play heavy metal a long time ago and they have continued to do so even after the tragic death of Cliff Burton in 1986.

"Whiskey In the Jar"

Favorite Metallica Studio Album

What is your favorite Metallica album?

See results

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2017 Ara Vahanian


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    • CELEBSFAN78 profile imageAUTHOR

      Ara Vahanian 

      2 years ago from LOS ANGELES

      Torrey B:

      Thanks a lot for commenting to say that you love Metallica. Are they your favorite band? I really thought especially at the time that I wrote this that they are the best US heavy metal band of all time.

    • profile image

      Torrey B 

      2 years ago



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