So the Grammys were announced, and it’s pretty much more of the same. Predictable, safe, boring. I mean, for the most part, the metal nominees deserve it, but they could have taken a ton more chances. Here’s what got nominated for Best Metal Performance:
- Judas Priest “Dissident Aggressor” from A Touch of Evil – Live
- Lamb of God “Set To Fail” from Wrath
- Megadeth “Head Crusher” from Endgame
- Ministry “Senor Peligro” from Adios…
- Slayer “Hate Worldwide” from World Painted Blood
Again, not bad, but not earth-shattering. Song for song, it should definitely be between LoG, Slayer and Megadeth. With no offense to Ministry, they haven’t put out a vital album since Psalm 69, and although Judas Priest are the heritage choice, it’s from a non-essential live album. Musically, I’d say Megadeth is the best song, but if any of those three win, that’s fine. And if Crack the Skye and Killswitch Engage were produced well enough for Brendan O’Brien to be nominated for Producer of the Year -Non Classical (as he was), why the hell isn’t either band nominated for Best Metal Performance? It would have been amazing to see a newer band like Baroness, BTBAM, Behemoth or Goatwhore sneak in there as well. And for Mastodon to have made the most adult record of their career, to have been completely shut out of the Grammy is pretty much bullshit in our book.
The Best Hard Rock Performance category is slightly better:
- AC/DC “War Machine” from Black Ice
- Alice In Chains “Check My Brain” from Black Gives Way To Blue
- Linkin Park “What I’ve Done” from Road to Revolution: Live At Milton Keynes
- Metallica “The Unforgiven III” from Death Magnetic
- Nickelback “Burn It to the Ground” from Dark Horse
Alice In Chains should absolutely win this for the opening riff alone. It is hard rock, so it’s not like it’s a travesty that Nickelback and Linkin Park are nominated, but again, an old song from a forgotten live album should immediately disqualify Linkin Park. And Halloween III was a better sequel that “The Unforgiven III.”
In the Best Rock Album category, AC/DC was nominated for Black Ice. That’s a pretty solid choice, but since it’s up against U2, Green Day, Dave Matthews Band and an Eric Clapton/Steve Winwood live album, there’s no way it’s going to win. In fact, while announcing the nominees, they should have mentioned that U2 will win and Pope-in-training Bono will accept the award via satellite from the moon, where he’s building a colony for hungry children from war-torn countries.
Also, Spinal Tap’s Back From the Dead was nominated for Best Comedy Album and Best Packaging (again, no Mastodon for packaging?), while Underoath’s Lost in the Sound of Separation picked up a nom for the Best Boxed of Special Limited Edition Package.
The Grammys will be handed out on January 31.