“The solo on Enter Sandman is a real hummer! I just love it!” King Crimson’s Robert Fripp shares his love for Metallica, Megadeth, Slipknot and Korn

Robert Fripp holding a guitar
(Image credit: Adam Gasson)

King Crimson guitarist Robert Fripp has shared his appreciation for heavy metal bands Metallica, Megadeth, Slipknot and Korn in a new interview.

Talking to Guitar World, the progressive rock pioneer spoke about his YouTube series Sunday Lunch, where he’s covered a host of songs with his wife Toyah Willcox and frequently gone viral.

When asked if there were artists that he was “less familiar with” but then became a fan of after covering, Fripp first tipped his hat to Megadeth, especially their singer/guitarist Dave Mustaine.

“Going into [1990 single] Holy Wars… The Punishment Due, I could tell Dave Mustaine is a serious player,” he said.

“He thinks musically in a different way to me. But there are similarities, too. I can tell this from researching his playing: he seems to work in patterns – developing and introducing variations within those patterns, which I do myself.”

The guitarist then acknowledged Korn and Slipknot, whose respective songs Blind and Psychosocial he’s also reinterpreted with Willcox.

“I heard Korn for the very first time when we chose to do Blind and was really impressed by [guitarists] Head and Munky,” Fripp said. “They’re heavily into seven-strings and alternative tunings.”

He later added: “What I like about Psychosocial and Slipknot is that the ethos of the band is closer to the ethos of bands in general. Which is essentially, the music comes first and the band comes first before the members themselves.

“Not everyone I’ve worked with in King Crimson has been as committed to the band as they have been to their own solo career, which probably helps explain some of the personal difficulties people have had with Robert… that ‘terrible man’ who was unkind to them.”

Fripp then, finally, admitted that the Sunday Lunch cover of Metallica megahit Enter Sandman marked the first time he’d ever learned a song by the band.

“Toyah and myself have been aware of Metallica for quite a while, but I’d never learned a Metallica song before Sunday Lunch. We’re actually playing that song on the road because we love it so much. I look at Kirk [Hammett] and James [Hetfield] as one player – they’re joined at the hip for me!

“The solo on Enter Sandman is a real hummer!” he added. “I’ve been learning it and would say it’s quite challenging but lots of fun. It requires work to get it down properly. So yes, Metallica and Enter Sandman… I just love it!”

Frip and Willcox are currently touring Sunday Lunch as a live show. They recently performed a cover of Led Zeppelin’s Kashmir in front of Robert Plant and will return to the road on September 2. Dates below:

Robert & Toyah Sunday Lunch Rock Party 2023 Tour dates

Sep 02: Durham Castle
Sep 30: Wimborne Tivoli
Oct 01: Cheltenham Town Hall
Oct 07: Harrogate Town Hall
Oct 08: Whitley Bay Town House
Oct 09: Manchester Salford Lowery
Oct 14: Worthing Assembly Hall
Oct 16: Liverpool Philharmonic Hall
Oct 19: Bury St Edmunds Apex
Oct 20: Basingstoke Anvil
Oct 21: London Shepherd's Bush Empire
Oct 25: Buxton Opera House
Oct 26: Shrewsbury Theatre Severn
Oct 28: Swansea Grand Theatre
Oct 29: Birmingham Town Hall

Matt Mills
Contributing Editor, Metal Hammer

Louder’s resident Gojira obsessive was still at uni when he joined the team in 2017. Since then, Matt’s become a regular in Prog and Metal Hammer, at his happiest when interviewing the most forward-thinking artists heavy music can muster. He’s got bylines in The Guardian, The Telegraph, NME, Guitar and many others, too. When he’s not writing, you’ll probably find him skydiving, scuba diving or coasteering.