Exodus guitarist Gary Holt explained the reason behind Metallica frontman and founder James Hetfield’s words about not playing together again in his recent interview with Louder Sound.
As you probably know, Exodus has been preserving its place as a prominent thrash metal band since its formation in 1979. Even though they aren’t considered a member of the Big Four, including Metallica, Megadeth, Anthrax, and Slayer, Exodus is the co-pioneer of the Bay Area thrash metal scene with Metallica.
Along with being two milestone bands that hit the Bay Area scene around the same time, Exodus and Metallica had another common point, their guitarist. Metallica lead guitarist Kirk Hammett was playing for Exodus until he was invited to join Metallica.
According to Holt, there was a competition between them at that time because the other thrash metal bands didn’t gain popularity. When Metallica and Exodus played together for the last time, Holt claimed that they ‘stomped Metallica into the dirt.’ Thus, James Hetfield laughed and said that Exodus wouldn’t support them anymore, and they never did.
Holt said in his interview that:
“The scene was rad. You could go to a different club five nights a week and never see the same band twice. There wasn’t thrash metal competition, cos, in the beginning, there was only us and Metallica – the first time I ever heard with them was when we played with them, and it felt like looking in a mirror. Later on, there was some competition. The bands were all friends, and we hung out together, but Exodus owned Ruthie’s. Everybody was gunning for us, but nobody could take us.”
The last time we played a proper show with Metallica was a New Year’s Eve show at Bill Graham’s Civic, and we stomped them into the dirt. We were getting wasted after the show, and James Hetfield was laughing and saying, ‘Haha, that’s the last time you guys will ever support us.’ It was the last time we ever supported Metallica.”
Apparently, Gary Holt thinks Exodus was a better thrash metal band than Metallica, and they owned the scene. Therefore, although not supporting Metallica started as a joke, Exodus has never played for the band as a supporting act since then.