But I want to know. Why all the love? What really sets them apart? Because I can't find it.
Well, for me, Metallica arent' the be-all-end-all of music, but they are a good band who've made some really good music. Just because people are posting their favorite Metallica songs in a thread,doesn't mean we're all worshipping them or anything, we're just sharing our favorite songs by them.
As for what sets them apart... When I think back on the other 80's thrash bands that were around at the same time (anthrax, Megadeth, Motorhead to an extent), none of them sound like metallica. Aside form some Megadeth songs, I've never heard a band of their contemporaries (key word "contemporaries", not bands that followed after) sound like they do. Which is totally different from the hard rock scene of today, where you have a bunch of bands that might as well all be the same effing band cuz they all sound alike. I'm talking about everything that's on the Billboard Active Rock top 20 right now.
Regardless of how MUCH you like Metallica, they have a unique sound, even within the genre of thrash. (and most recently, the more vague "hard rock".) Not that I like all their stuff, but they have a signature sound. Lars's drumming, James's voice, and just the way they construct their songs.
"Always make graphs. You'll never accomplish anything in life without graphs." -SacredSturgeon
3. To me, "Sad But True" is actually a brilliant example of a story presented through the medium of a song, since it's probably the only song I've ever heard that actually has a "plot twist", and brilliant writing that has the lyrics change only slightly by the end to present this. On top of that, it's just a pretty good song.
2. Because of the sheer rage contained in the song, and having one of the most beautiful introductions in a metal song I've heard, a perfect build-up to the pounding fury of the main song, I'd say "Battery" is the second of my top three.
1. My current top Metallica song however is "...And Justice For All". This song is another story presented through the medium of music, the story of a trial, and a miscarriage of justice. I read a pretty good analysis that I always recall when I listen to it. It starts off softly, showing how on the surface, the legal system appears to be doing its job with no problems, but then the facade shatters, and the corruption beneath the surface comes to light as it momentarily becomes heavier. Then it softens up for a bit, before the corruption becomes the main focus of the song. The high-pitched guitar wailing we hear for a short moment is the plea of the man in the dock, crying out that he's innocent and has done nothing wrong, or the plea of the mother in the gallery who is shouting abuse at the corporate official allegedly responsible for her son's death - basically, the cry of the innocent whom the system is meant to serve.
Then we get into the song, the trial ongoing as Hetfield blares his critique of the system as it stands and its various shortcomings. The later solo can be divided in two - the first part being either the defence trying to assert the innocence of their client, or the plaintiff making their case against the fat cats responsible for their misery (the innocent side), and the second part, the more wild and almost mockingly angry part, the prosecution hurling all kinds of misleading "evidence" at the defendant, or the corporate lawyers again asserting the innocence of their clients (the side of guilt).
Another verse, and then we hit the ending of the song. The high-pitched guitar makes a return as the court finds against the innocent parties, the defendant is locked up for a crime he didn't commit, the corporation gets away with a crime it could not be found guilty of, and all in a day's work for a legal system fuelled by the hunger for cash. By the time we reach the last twenty seconds of the song, even I'm welling up as I think of all the miscarriages of justice caused by the inherent flaws of the legal systems of both Britain and America. "Justice is lost. Justice is raped. Justice is done."
"Even should the heavens fall, let Justice prevail."
I'ma have to say:
...And Justice For All
Frayed Ends of Sanity
For Whom the Bell Tolls
Trapped Under Ice
Fade to Black
Seek and Destroy
Hit the Lights
Master of Puppets
Holier Than Thou
Nothing Else Matters
Sad But True