Tuesday, August 07, 2012

What if?

I remember as a kid enjoying the Marvel comic What if? because each issue examined a world where some element changed and it altered the whole story line and universe we knew. So on occasion I think about what if within the hard rock/metal world and wonder how a band would have been had something not happened the way it did. Here are a few I thought about.

What if Neil Turbin had stayed in Anthrax? History tells us Turbin was out after "Fistful of metal". Joey Belladonna came in, the musical style changed and they became very popular. I prefer Joey Belladonna to Neil Turbin. However "Fistful of metal" was a solid early thrash album and Turbin had a solid screaming style. I wonder what had Anthrax had been like had Turbin stayed and they followed the musical style of their debut. I am not sure they would have become has popular but I still think they would have been a major player in the thrash scene.

What if Fast Eddie Clark had stayed in Motorhead? Ah, those early Motorhead albums are respected and Fast Eddie was a huge part of that sound. Lemmy doesn't like talking about Fast Eddie leaving. I remember when that was a recent event, but now it's three decades ago, Motorhead are still going and Phil Campbell has been the band around five times longer than Clark was yet Clark's is still held in high regard. What if Clark had decided Motorhead was where he always wanted to be and he was content playing that style. The band has often received admiration and jokes about playing the same album over and over. Would that have still been the case had Clark stayed or he have pushed make some changes along the ways? We'll never know, but interesting to think of.

Now anyone who got into Metallica prior to 1988 probably wonders about various scenarios with this band.
What if Mustaine had stayed in the band? What if Cliff had lived? What if their forth LP picked up on the direction of Master of puppets?
Which ever question you go after they all kind of focus the fact that Metallica were hot early on and seem destined to be the next great metal act. However they with And justice for all the style went a direction that was more mellow than their previous albums. It opened them up to more fans and they became even more popular but many fans of their previous work had to wonder what might have been had they not changed so much and stayed heavier. Would Mustaine staying in the band altered this course? Not that Megadeth did everything right, but Mustaine contributed heavily to Metallica's early sound and he may have kept them on that course had he been in the band longer. Some fans think the band may have stayed with the MOP sound had Cliff not died. That probably depends on how great you think Burton's influence was on their sound.

***Feel free to comment on any of the above scenarios or add in your own what if situations.

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Blogger Unknown said...

I often wonder about these scenarios. You've made some very cool observations. I always wonder about Uli Roth never leaving the Scorpions. Or for that matter Michael Schenker never leaving the Scorpions OR UFO. And sometimes I wonder about very early incarnations of bands, like Al Atkins singing for Priest, no way do I think they would have made it as big as with Halford, but I think they may have been a solid HR/HM band.

9:41 PM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Here are some NWOBHM what if situations-
What if Dianno had stayed in Maiden?
What if Def Leppard had stuck with the direction of On through the night?
What if Raven had not signed with Atlantic records (who sucked the life out of them)?
What if Diamondhead had accepted the offer from Foreigner's agent to represent them?

4:51 AM  
Blogger non de guerre said...

What if David Lee Roth had decided he wasn't just a gigolo? What if Sammy Hagar COULD drive 55? Maybe we would have been spared the horror of the Hagar-led Van Halen?

What if James Hetfield hadn't discovered that he closely resembled the Cowardly Lion? Would Metallica have not gone soft? Would Ride the Lightning not be the only Metallica album I have in my collection because it was all down hill after that?

Wikipedia can only answer so many of life's most pressing questions!

8:59 AM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Tom-The Hagar-era Van Halen bored me to tears. I blame Eddie more than Sammy for that. Sammy wasn't a great fit, but the writing was lame too. It's a shame they didn't go on with Diamond Dave, but one of the best hard bands of all time ended when Dave was put out.

Okay, RTL is my favorite Metallica too. However I don't see that it and Master are that different in style. Actually the 5.98 disappointed me a whole year before And justice for all did. It's a cover album which maybe gives it some excuse for stinking, but stink it did.

1:43 PM  
Anonymous scott whitt said...

The little kid is me asks what if Ace and Peter stayed sober?
What if Ozzy would have stayed retired? Ozzfest had a huge impact on the genre, but we have to put up with Sharon and the talentless kids.
What if Zakk Wylde would have joined GNR?
What if Graham Bonnet got more than one Rainbow album?

9:23 PM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Scott-I don't know if Ace and Peter staying sober would have mattered overall. I think very early on Paul and Gene were in control and it was all about money and they always willing to change styles to keep a career.
Ozzy should have retired for good.
I think Zakk Wylde is overrated, but wonder what if Izzy Stradlin had stayed in G-n-R and they put out a studio album in the mid-90's?
Graham Bonnet is a good one. It was a change in direction for Rainbow, but solid hard rock.

4:12 AM  

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