Alice In Chains’ Jerry Cantrell spoke to Guitar World for a featured article about his favorite aspect of Metallica’s ‘The Black Album.’ According to the article, he argued that James Hetfield has the best picking hand in the rock music world.

James Hetfield contributed significantly to Metallica’s success with his vocals, songwriting, and guitar playing ever since their formation in 1981. Moreover, he is regarded among the greatest guitarists of all time by various sources, which is mainly due to Hetfield’s distinctive guitar playing style.

In Metallica, Hetfield is known by many for his intricate rhythm playing. However, he also performs lead guitar duties and solos both in the studio and during live performances. Papa Het’s ‘Nothing Else Matters’ solo is among the most appreciated solos of the guitarist.

This year marks the 30th anniversary of Metallica’s most successful musical effort, ‘The Black Album.’ Due to that, Guitar World released a featured article in which famous guitarists talked about their most favorite parts in the album. Jerry Cantrell was one of the guests, and this gave him a chance to praise Hetfield’s talents.

Jerry Cantrell told Guitar World that his favorite thing about the album is the riff to ‘Sad But True.’ Following that, he mentioned other songs from the album but later claimed that Hetfield’s use of his right hand in ‘Sad But True’ is remarkable. Cantrell then went on to say that Hetfield has the best picking hand in rock.

Jerry Cantrell told Guitar World his favorite moment in the ‘Black Album’:

“I guess it would be the riff to ‘Sad But True,’ which is pretty fuckin’ sick. That whole record is like a perfect record, though. You’re lucky enough if you make one of those in your career, and they made about five, you know? This record was bigger than heavy metal. It put them into the stratosphere of the most successful bands in the world and broke the ceiling of how far a metal group could go. It’s admirable.

The artistic risk and sense of growth are what makes it a perfect record. This is why I can’t say ‘Sad But True’ is any more meaningful to me than ‘Sandman’ or ‘The Unforgiven’ or ‘Nothing Else Matters’ or ‘Wherever I May Roam.’ I could go on; every one of those songs is perfect. ‘The Unforgiven’ is an amazing piece too; it’s like what would happen if Ennio Morricone wrote a metal tune. That’s what it is, fuckin’ badass!

But, back to ‘Sad But True.’ Hetfield’s right hand is something else. There’s nobody else that has that, he has the best picking hand in rock. The precision and power of his playing are otherworldly.”

You can listen to Metallica’s ‘Sad But True’ below.