Back in the 1980s, the so-called “Big Four” of the thrash movement (METALLICA, MEGADETH, ANTHRAX, SLAYER) were all competing to be the biggest metal band in the world. Now that the dust has settled, the bands are all on extremely good terms with each other. They’ve even spent the last year staging massive “Big Four” concerts around the globe.
Before the four bands performed at New York’s Yankee Stadium on Wednesday (September 14), Rolling Stone magazine spoke with members of each of the acts (see video below) about how they all get along these days. “A lot of things have changed over the years,” said METALLICA‘s Lars Ulrich. “When you get out of the sandbox and grow up, you stop worrying so much about what everyone else is doing … To me, the competition is now internal. That’s the biggest difference from twenty years ago.”
The first U.S. “Big Four” concert took place on April 23 in Indio, California.
Ulrich told Rolling Stone after the Indio show that there was a possibility of gigs in the South and Midwest, although he doubted a full tour would happen.
The all-day event in Indio featured the so-called “Big Four” bands of the Eighties thrash metal scene performing together on a U.S. stage for the first time ever in their 30-year careers.
A series of similar shows last summer in Europe was wildly popular, leading to demand for a U.S. version. The “Big Four” package also played several more European dates this past July.
All four bands were presented with awards for sales of a hundred thousand copies of a “Big Four” live DVD which was released late last year.