Jerry Cantrell Discusses The Similarity Between The ‘Black Album’ And ‘Appetite For Destruction’

Alice In Chains lead guitarist Jerry Cantrell spoke to Guitar World and shared his ideas about Metallica’s iconic ‘The Black Album.’ Also, Cantrell drew attention to the common characteristics between that record and Guns N’ Roses’ ‘Appetite for Destruction.’

As you probably know, Guns N’ Roses released their debut studio album entitled ‘Appetite for Destruction’ on July 21, 1987. The album brought the band great popularity and commercial success thanks to its hit tracks’ Welcome to the Jungle,’ ‘Paradise City,’ and ‘Sweet Child o’ Mine.’ ‘Appetite for Destruction’ became one of the best-selling debut albums of all time.

Three years later, another best-selling album was released, ‘The Black Album,’ Metallica’s fifth studio album released on August 12, 1991. It gained critical acclaim and made Metallica members multi-millionaires. Enter Sandman,’ ‘The Unforgiven,’ and ‘Nothing Else Matters’ became Metallica’s most popular songs by hitting the charts.

During his interview, Jerry Cantrell revealed that he listened to Metallica a lot before choosing to pursue a professional music career. Also, he praised the songs by highlighting the similarity between the two legendary albums. Cantrell stated that both ‘Appetite for Destruction’ and ‘The Black Album’ are transcendent and examples of upward trajectory.

Cantrell stated in his interview that:

“Before I really started out as a musician, I was listening to ‘Kill ‘Em All’ and ‘Ride The Lightning’ a lot, which were the albums that indoctrinated me into them. I have to say Hetfield’s right hand is really something else. There’s nobody else that has that… he has the best picking hand in rock. The precision and power of his playing are otherworldly!

Those first five records were made a couple of years apart from each other. What a run! It culminated on ‘The Black Album.’ You can hear the upward trajectory. All of those records are transcendent, in the same way as Guns N’ Roses’ ‘Appetite For Destruction’ or Nirvana’s ‘Nevermind.’

They are the kind of records that were bigger than the band or genre they came from, taking on another form of life. Being a band is a long journey. The odds of success are stacked mightily against you…”

Furthermore, Cantrell didn’t forget to give credit to Nirvana’s ‘Nevermind’ by defining it as a transcendent record like ‘Appetite for Destruction’ and ‘The Black Album.’ He thinks that their songs were more popular than the band members themselves.