GNR v Metallica

It's Saturday afternoon and due to the pleasure of not being in work, it's just me and the Sky remote.

In a desperate attempt to not watch Everton v West Brom on Sky Sports I end up flicking onto Scuzz, which has an hour of music dedicated to “GNR v Metallica” – this sounds like a far more interesting battle if you ask me!

This got me thinking about which band are better? As it stands today, only a hardened Guns N' Roses fan would say it wasn't Metallica. However that's not really the point is it? Maybe it’s only fair to compare both bands in their pomp.

I'm sure you may have different definitions of when Metallica were at their best, but for arguments sake I am going to stick with the Black Album era, as this coincides with when GNR were at their peak.

The last ten or so years haven't been kind to GNR and has only serve to cheapen the memory of them really. Many people may point the finger at Axl Rose… you won't get me admitting that one of course… I've seen how Axl Rose can freak out on people!

But in terms of chart ‘hits’ Gun N’ Roses are clearly on top. GNR have released 16 singles in the UK, with 12 of these reaching the top ten. Only 4 of Metallica’s 22 UK singles in the UK reached the top 10. However Metallica have been more successful with their album releases in the UK, notching up 3 number one positions, with GNR making number one twice in the UK (although Metallica have released more albums).

Both bands released a long awaited new album towards the back end of 2008, with Metallica making number one with Death Magnetic in every country but Japan. Chinese Democracy, which took 15 years to make, could only manage number 2 in the UK, although it did do better than expected considering the amount of bad press it received.

For me, the way to decide this one is to look at the best songs from each band.

According to itunes the top 5 are as follows:

Guns N’ Roses
Sweet Child O’Mine
Paradise City
November Rain
Welcome to the Jungle
Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door

Enter Sandman
Nothing Else Matters
The Day That Never Comes
The Unforgiven III (good song, not sure I would say its top 5 though)

For me, Metallica are by far the better band. They have been more consistent over the years, and I could happily listen to all the tracks off each album again and again.

However Guns N’ Roses clearly produce better hit songs. It’s difficult to go on a night out without hearing at least a few of the Gun N’ Roses songs! Looking at the GNR top five, it makes me want to dig out my copy of Use Your Illusion I & II. Although I probably will get bored looking for it and end up sticking the Black album on instead…

Interestingly GNR and Metallica did a joint tour in 1992 (whilst both in their peak), supported by Faith No More. The tour never made it to the UK, but that would have been a brilliant gig! Maybe seeing both bands live on the same day would have been a more fair way to decide who was best?

If you are still undecided however, I thoroughly recommend reading either of these two books:

Justice for All: The Truth About “Metallica”: The Truth About
Slash: The Autobiography
Remember this isn’t a democracy (Chinese or otherwise) this one is purely my opinion! If you strongly disagree, think I’m talking crap etc then feel free to vent your anger with the comments box below!

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