Everybody loves a good cover version. Some people love a bad one too. The history of metal is littered with both - as well as unexpected ones, unrecognisable ones and ones that are so WTF?! they make you wonder how the hell they got past the studio security guards and out in the wide world.
Either way, there’s something great about your favourite band delivering a killer version of someone else’s song. Maybe it's better than the original, maybe it takes the song someplace the people who wrote it could never even imagine, maybe the band have made an obscure track their own, or maybe it’s just so immense it’s guaranteed to make you lose your shit every time you hear it.
But what's metal‘s greatest cover song ever? Now that’s a big question. Google couldn’t help. Science wasn’t much use either. We tried casting the runes and reading the tea leaves, but nada. We did think of running naked into the street, raising our fists to the skies and shouting, “DEAR GOD OR WHOEVER IS UP THERE, WHAT IS THE ANSWER!?", but that kind of thing is frowned up where we live.
So we figured we'd asked you. If anyone has a) impeccable taste in music and b) likes a good online ruck about metal, we can't think of anyone better qualified. So here we are.
Now, there are literally thousands upon thousands of cover versions out there. Every single metal band ever has covered at least one song during their career – except Slipknot, weirdly (though Corey Taylor has more than made up for that). Much as we'd like to list them all, we'd end up with a poll of 372,500 songs, of which 372,495 are covers that Metallica have played live precisely once.
So to make life easier, we've come up with a list of 100 or so songs to get the ball-rolling. There's one cover per band, and they're all official studio recordings. And no livestream covers - much as we love 'em, life's too short to go there.
Raging with fury that a cover you love isn’t on there? Hey, we love Lawnmower Deth’s version of Kim Wilde’s 80s pop hit Kids In America just as much as the next person and we feel your pain. That's why we've given you the option to add in your own choices at the bottom. And if that's not enough, you get three choices. Not one, not two, but THREE. Yes, you're right. We are generous.
So there are the rules of engagement. Ready to go? All you need to do now is get voting - and check back in the not-too-distant future to find out the ultimate winner…