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Kreator: Flying The Flag Of Hate

Kreator vs The Big Four

The Big Four. We all know what that means, eh? A celebration of the greatness of thrash. Metallica. Slayer. Megadeth. Anthrax. Paragons of '80s metal. The bands who created the blueprint for the genre. Those without whom... Blah! Blah! Blah.

People got so carried away a few years ago when the Big Four announced they were doing shows together. It was hailed as 'The Greatest Moment In Metal' or 'a titanic event never to be repeated' etc. But what does this Big Four bollocks actually mean? And do we have the right bands in there?

For a start, the whole concept of the Big Four goes against everything thrash was supposed to stand for, and against. Leaving aside the glory of the music, thrash has always been celebrated because it was the first genuinely global phenomenon in metal. Bands came from everywhere, whereas previously, everyone really looked to America and Britain to get its metal might. There were the very occasional bands from elsewhere, but those who made an international impact were rare. Thrash opened up the planet. Suddenly, talent was flooding out from seemingly every country. 

Thrash taught us that anyone could get up and play metal, if they had the focus, talent and bottle. You didn't need huge dollops of dough. Like punk, thrash was for everyone. And that's the second point, there was no hierarchy in thrash. The fans and the bands were inextricably linked – it was truly a movement of equals, connected by a complete love of the music.

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