Metallica’s Sensational Iron Man Cover of Black Sabbath’s Masterpiece

Metallica Iron Man

Photo: By Saad Faruque from Bangalore, India (Metallica) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Well it really does not get more fun than this. Metallica’s great tribute to Black Sabbath took place during the 2006 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremonies. Lars Ulrich and James Hetfield of Metallica gave the speech that introduced Black Sabbath into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2006. Standing at the podium, Lars Ulrich opened his speech by stating if there had been no Black Sabbath there would have never been a Metallica or even the genre of heavy metal music. Lars Ulrich credited Black Sabbath with finding the unknown X factor that separated Black Sabbath from bands like Blue Cheer, Steppenwolf and even Led Zeppelin. Lars argued that the X Factor “what ever the f### it was, was the factor that has anointed Black Sabbath as the creators of Heavy Metal Music.

Lars Ulrich made it a very special point to note how honored Metallica was to be chosen as the band to induct Black Sabbath into the Hall of Fame. In James Hetfield speech, Metallica’s guitarist opened with the following line  “Black Sabbath is mammoth riffs with menacing lyrics that make me oh so happy.” the lead guitarist spent most of his time paying tribute on a personal note in how the band influenced himself as a nine year old. It was a short speech but spoke to the point on how rock and roll can become a saving grace for many young adolescents.

The performance of “Iron Man,” demonstrated the power of the heavy metal riff that so defined the Black Sabbath sound. It can be easily argued that the opening riff to “Iron Man,” is easily one of the most powerful and iconic riffs in rock and roll history. Watching Ozzy Osbourne rock to Metallica’s performance was just as enjoyable as listening to the band play. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame picked the perfect artist in Metallica, in inducting Black Sabbath into the Hall.

Updated August 20, 2020

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