The Reason James Hetfield Refused To Be Compared To Slayer

Almost every thrash metal fan compares Slayer and Metallica as their music is under the same roof. While both of these bands have admirable careers without a doubt, it’s almost inevitable for them to have a little competition thanks to their passionate audiences.

Although fans have ideas regarding the winner of this comparison, Metallica frontman James Hetfield doesn’t even think they are in the same league. Let’s take a look at the time when the singer revealed why Metallica cannot be considered a thrash metal band, and how they shouldn’t be compared to Slayer.

Metallica And Slayer Among ‘The Big Four’ Of Thrash Metal

Every rock and roll fan knows that there are ‘Big Four’ thrash metal bands that are the ultimate representatives of the genre. This title includes Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer, and Anthrax, all of which are often credited for helping create, develop and popularize the genre.

There’s no doubt that all four of these incredible bands have had a remarkable music career and sold millions of records worldwide. Therefore, every fan of this genre picks their favorite out of these four bands, and it’s often Metallica that’s regarded as the number one due to their highly successful history.

Metallica is arguably the most successful band out of all since they are one of the most commercially successful bands of all time, having sold over 125 million albums worldwide as of 2018. In addition to this, their last six studio albums have consecutively debuted at number 1 on the Billboard 200.

After releasing ten studio albums, four live albums, a cover album, five extended plays, 37 singles, and 39 music videos throughout their music career that spans over 40 years, the majority of thrash metal fans think Metallica is the king of the big four, but James Hetfield has different opinions on this matter.

James Hetfield Said Metallica Is Different Than Slayer

During a 1992 interview, James Hetfield reflected on being labeled as a thrash metal band. Surprisingly, the musician stated that the band never liked being called a thrash metal group. However, their audience could’ve been cautious if they heard heavy metal.

The reason behind this was bands like Judas Priest if you ask Hetfield, in addition to the genre’s bad reputation regarding satanism. Still, Metallica is way different than other thrash metal bands like Slayer according to the frontman. For instance, their style didn’t really on wearing spikey clothes on stage to reflect their genre.

Hetfield’s statement follows:

“I mean, we never really liked being labeled thrash metal, at least because we were definitely different than Slayer. You know, we didn’t rely on spikes and crap like that when we were trying to get other people into Metallica. They would hear heavy metal, and they would instantly be turned off by that term because they had in their mind Judas Priest or satan or some crap like that. That’s not what Metallica was all about.”

You can watch the interview below.