What Metal Bands Hated Grunge Music

It was the sound that defined a generation and split the music world in two. Grunge was the 90s answer to 80s hair metal, and while the two styles couldn’t be more different, they both had their fair share of fans and haters. In this blog post, we take a look at some of the most famous metal bands who hated grunge music.


Though it enjoyed a relatively short time in the limelight, grunge’s impact was nonetheless significant. The genre not only shoved hair metal and pop metal off the charts, but its dark, gloomy themes and stripped-down aesthetics signaled a major shift in the rock world’s sonic palette. And while many artists and fans welcomed this change with open arms, others – particularly those within the metal community – saw grunge as a threat to all they held dear.

Grunge music

Grunge music was a genre of rock music that emerged in the early 1990s. It was characterized by its distorted guitars, grungy vocals, and dark, brooding lyrics. Grunge music was popularized by bands such as Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and Soundgarden. Many metal bands of the time disdained grunge music and its popularity.

The rise of grunge music

Grunge music became a commercial success in the early 1990s, due in part to the popularity of Nirvana and Pearl Jam, but also because grunge fashion and culture were adopted by the mainstream. Grunge fashion, which featured plaid shirts, Doc Martens boots, and unkempt hair, became popular among young people across the United States and Europe. The popularity of grunge culture lead to a backlash from some members of the metal community.

In an article for Kerrang! magazine, Anthrax guitarist Scott Ian recalled being at a club in Los Angeles in 1992 and seeing Nirvana singer Kurt Cobain sitting at a table with members of Guns N’ Roses. Ian said he went up to Cobain and asked him what he was doing there, to which Cobain allegedly replied, “I’m here to take over your world.” Ian said he was “shocked” by Cobain’s comment and added that it was “a very watershed moment” for him.

Ian’s story exemplifies the tension that existed between grunge and metal fans in the early 1990s. On one hand, there was a sense of camaraderie between fans of different genres; on the other hand, there was also a feeling that one genre was trying to supplant the other. This tension came to a head in 1992 when Nirvana released their album Nevermind. The album’s success signaled the end of metal’s hegemony over popular music and the beginning of grunge’s ascendance.

Nevermind not only topped the Billboard 200 chart but also increased mainstream visibility for other grunge bands such as Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains, andSoundgarden. While many people credit Nirvana for popularizing grunge music, it is important to remember that the band did not invent the genre. Grunge had been brewing in Seattle since the late 1980s with bands like Green River, Mudhoney, Soundgarden, and Mother Love Bone laying the groundwork for Nirvana’s breakthrough.

The popularity of grunge music

The popularity of grunge music in the early 1990s led to a backlash from some metal bands. Grunge was seen as a threat to the profitability of metal, and some bands went so far as to publicly denounce it.

While most metal bands ultimately embraced grunge (or at least stopped bashing it), there were a few holdouts. Here are five metal bands that hated grunge music:

1. Metallica

2. Megadeth

3. Anthrax

4. Exodus

5. Overkill

The influence of grunge music

When grunge music first hit the mainstream in the early 1990s, it took the world by storm. With its raw, unpolished sound and dark lyrics, grunge was a far cry from the hair metal and pop music that dominated the charts at the time. And while many music fans embraced grunge as a breath of fresh air, not everyone was a fan. In fact, some of the biggest names in heavy metal openly criticized grunge and its leading figures, including Kurt Cobain and Nirvana. Here are some of the most famous metal bands that hated grunge music.

When Nirvana’s Nevermind dethroned Metallica’s self-titled album from the top spot on the Billboard 200 in early 1992, it signaled a shift in the musical landscape. And while Metallica frontman James Hetfield was initially supportive of Nirvana and grunge (he even went so far as to produce one of Nirvana’s early demos), he later admitted that he wasn’t a fan of their music. “It was just too soft for me,” he said in a 1995 interview. “And I didn’t like Cobain’s voice either… I don’t think [Nirvana] were very good musicians.”

Guns N’ Roses
Guns N’ Roses frontman Axl Rose was never one to shy away from voicing his opinion, and he didn’t hold back when it came to grunge. In a 1992 interview with Rolling Stone, Rose called Kurt Cobain “a whiney little wimp trying to sing like Robert Plant” and said that Nirvana “[didn’t] have any f*cking songs.” He also slammed Pearl Jam, saying they were “just trying to rip off Led Zeppelin” and predicting that they wouldn’t last more than two years.

Motley Crue
Like many metal bands of the 1980s, Motley Crue enjoyed massive success thanks to their loud, over-the-top image and sound. But when grunge came along in the early ’90s, Motley Crue found themselves out of step with the times. In a 1992 interview with Kerrang!, bassist Nikki Sixx made it clear that he wasn’t a fan of grunge or its leading figures, calling Kurt Cobain “a punk kid who ruined himself” and Nirvana “the single most important band since Led Zeppelin.”

Metal bands

Before we get started, it’s important to understand that not all metal bands hated grunge music. In fact, many metal bands welcomed grunge music with open arms. Grunge music brought a new level of energy and excitement to the metal scene. It also gave metal bands a new level of credibility.

The rise of metal bands

The early ’90s saw the rise of a new hard rock genre known as grunge. Hailing from Seattle, Washington, grunge music was characterized by its heavy guitar sound and angsty lyrics. Many metal bands of the time initially welcomed grunge, seeing it as a natural progression from the hard rock of the ’80s. However, as grunge became more popular, metal bands began to grow resentful of the genre.

Grunge was marketed as a more “authentic” form of rock music, and many metal bands felt that they were being unfairly overshadowed. In addition, grunge musicians were often critical of the flashy image and musical excesses of metal bands. As metal’s popularity waned in the late ’90s, many metal bands went on to experiment with different styles, incorporating elements of grunge into their sound.

The popularity of metal bands

The popularity of metal bands began to decline in the early 1990s with the rise of grunge music. Grunge music was a subgenre of alternative rock that emerged in the Seattle music scene in the late 1980s. It was characterized by a heavy, distorted sound and lyrics that were often critical of the mainstream.

Grunge music quickly gained popularity, and by 1992 it had replaced hair metal as the dominant form of rock music. Manymetal bands were unable to adapt to the new musical landscape, and their popularity declined sharply. In addition, manymetal bands were associated with the excesses of 1980s glam rock, which made them unpopular with mainstream audiences.

Despite the decline in popularity, there are still manymetal bands that are active today. These bands have largely abandoned the glam image of the 1980s and instead focus on heavier, more aggressive sounds. Manymetal bands have also embraced alternative forms of rock such as punk and hardcore, which has helped them appeal to a wider range of listeners.

The influence of metal bands

The metal scene was exploding in the early 1990s with bands such as Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer, Anthrax, and Pantera leading the way. These bands were selling millions of records and playing to sold-out arenas around the world. They were the kings of heavy music.

However, all was not well in the world of metal. A new musical movement was brewing in the underground that would soon challenge metal’s supremacy. That movement was grunge, and many metal bands despised it.

Grunge bands such as Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and Alice in Chains were taking the world by storm with their stripped-down sound and simplistic song structures. To many metal fans, grunge was a passing fad that would soon be forgotten.

However, grunge would have a lasting impact on metal. Many metal bands would adopt a more stripped-down sound in the wake of grunge’s popularity. Others would embraces elements of grunge into their music, resulting in a new subgenre of metal known as nu metal.

Whether they loved it or hated it, there’s no denying that grunge had a major impact on metal music.


In conclusion, grunge music was not well-liked by many metal bands. Some members of metal bands actively campaigned against grunge music, while others simply voiced their displeasure with the genre. While there were a few outliers who enjoyed grunge music, the vast majority of metal bands disliked the genre and felt that it represented a decline in the quality of music being produced.

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