Battle of the bands
Metallica vs Megadeth
In our first battle of the bands, it’s a battle between two of the big four of thrash metal, Metallica and Megadeth. Since this is a new feature at the Rocker-fellas, here’s how it works. We have our two bands and we pit them against each other in five different categories, they are
Name- every great band needs a great name. We judge it on it’s origins, how clever it is, how good a job it does at describing the band, and many more things to lead to a good, marketable band name
Vocals- which of the band’s lead singers has the best, most distinctive sound. Taking into both recorded and live vocals, how they sound in real life could make or break this category
Technical ability- how the rest of the band stack up when it comes down to playing their instruments. This category ranges from guitar solos to a simple bass line, each one essential to a great band
Claim to fame- everyone loves a good band story, without a claim to fame, a band becomes just another bunch of kids playing out of a garage. If you wanna get famous, you need a good back story
Best song- simple really, which of the bands has written and performed the best song, be it for technical reasons, or if its just a classic. After all, what’s a band without it’s music
So now, you’re up to speed, on with the comparison-
Name- both bands are in the sub-genre of thrash metal, so both need a name that speaks for the genre. Thrash metal was born out of anger and aggression, manly at the social upheaval of the 1980’s and as a result, the songs are fast paced, sharp to the ears and feature growly vocals, almost shouting. The name Metallica is a good one, it has the word ‘metal’ in it ‘good start’ and is short and catchy, people will remember it. But, with the other band name, it’s not just death (a common theme amongst thrash metal songs) it’s Mega death, and the misspelling of ‘deth’ gives the name it’s own unique twist, and we all know bands that are spelt wrong do well, i.e. the Beatles. So, for that reason, I think Mustaine and the boys take the first round.
Vocals- Both bands fit the bill when it comes to growly vocals, James Hetfield of Metallica is famed for his, a voice so gravely you could lay a drive with it. Mustaine’s voice is of a slightly higher pitch, more of a screech than a growl. However, these bands both started out in the 80’s, so how do their voices sound now? Well, Mustaine’s voice has held up rather well, sounding not too dissimilar to how he did on Megadeth’s first album ‘Killing is my business… and business is good!’ Whereas Hetfield’s voice has changed, it is quite different from how it sounded on Metallica’s debut album ‘Kill ‘em all’ (see what I meant about thrash metal bands being obsessed with death? Morbid much.) However, Hetfield’s voice isn’t unpleasant, in fact on some songs I prefer him live than I do recorded. Dave’s voice has kept, but unfortunately I find it just too shrill to enjoy, whereas James sounds, albeit different, but pleasant both live and on CD, so, for that reason, he scores a point for Metallica
Technical ability- Now, comparing technical abilities of two of the big four is like choosing which one of your arms you want cut off. It’s damn near impossible. Metallica have the guitar god that is Kurt Hammett on lead, but he’s up against the man he replaced at Metallica, Dave Mustaine. On the drummers it’s Swedish superman Lars Ulrich for Metallica, who I think takes it from the army of drummers Megadeth have had over the years (their current one is Shawn Drover). And on bass, well Metallica do hold the honour of calling Jason Newstead a former member, but it’s hard to judge as he’s no longer in the band. Megadeth’s bassist is original member Dave Ellefson. It’s close, it’s very close, but, judged on the fact that they can play 8 minute epics on stage and be better than they are on recording (somehow) I think Hammet and Ulrich edge it out on this one
Claim to fame-
Now both sides have pretty strong appeals for this category, both being members of the Big Four is a pretty good claim. But one band has the man that has been in half of the big four. After being fired for extensive drug and alcohol use, plus several incidents including one where he attacked Hetfield and Ulrich after an argument over a dog and poring beer onto a bass so the then bass player of Metallica got ‘thrown across the room’ by the electric shock, Dave Mustaine was fired from Metallica. He then went on to play guitar in a short-lived band called Fallen Angels before taking on the role of singer in what would become Megadeth. Good back story, no?
Having not heard a lot of Megadeth before this, I went away and listened to a few, I found that my favourite was off their debut album, it’s called ‘Death Rites/Love You To Deth’. It has a face past riff, in keeping with thrash metal 101 and has a catchy name too, that incorporates the bands name. But, they’re up against a band with such a repertoire as ‘Enter Sandman’, ‘Nothing Else Matters’, ‘Kill The Lights’, ‘Cyanide’, ‘Fuel’, ‘One’ and, getting the nod for best song here, 8 and a half minute epic ‘Master Of Puppets’. Megadeth didn’t stand a chance.
Overall winner- Metallica
So there you have in, the winner of our first ever battle of the bands is hard thrashing, death magnets Metallica! Well done from us guys, you know,must in case you’re reading. Send us your suggestions for a new battle of the bands and if we like it, we’ll see what we can come with. Thanks guy, adios.