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Machine Head's Robb Flynn On Rolling Stone's 100 Best Metal Songs List: 'No Exodus? No Testament?'

20 March 2023 | 10:55 am | Staff Writer
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"Bay Area Thrash Metal is still an extremely vital and powerful force in music..."

(Source: Supplied)

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Machine Head lead vocalist and guitarist Robb Flynn has reacted to Rolling Stone’s 100 Best Metal Songs list, which the publication unveiled last week.

While we criticised the lack of tunes from the 2010s, Flynn targets some legends of metal in his comments: “No Exodus? No Testament?”

Flynn took to the Machine Head website to express his thanks for being included in the list - Machine Head’s Davidian from their 1994 debut album, Burn My Eyes, landed at #95 - but also levelled some critiques towards glaring omissions. Flynn wrote:

“I'd like to personally thank Rolling Stone for their inclusion of Davidian, from Machine Head's 1994 debut album Burn My Eyes in their Top 100 Greatest Heavy Metal Songs of All Time. It was a rare and delightful compliment from a magazine that has largely paid us no mind for the last 29 years.

"Once the surprise of being mentioned subsided, I decided to go through all '100 Songs.' Sure, there are many, many questionable choices on the list, but there are two glaring omissions I HAVE to mention.

"No Exodus? No Testament?”

A Bay Area native, he continued, “Bay Area Thrash Metal is still an extremely vital and powerful force in music, and it wasn't just Metallica that brought it to the World. Upon formation, Exodus were literally the most exciting band around. Crafting timeless songs like Bonded By Blood, A Lesson In Violence, or their own 'pit anthem' – The Toxic Waltz, all deserve similar honors [sic] on such a list.

"When I was a teenager growing up in the Bay Area, I cannot express how important and influential Exodus and guitarist Gary Holt were and remain. Without Gary, there is no Robb Flynn. Without Exodus, there is no Machine Head.

"And when it comes to Testament? The word that continues to flash before my eyes is ‘impact.' I can assure you that every single Rock/Metal guitar player on the face of the planet's collective jaws hit the floor when they heard Alex Skolnick play. His adding of classical arpeggio sweeps into songs like Over The Wall, and Disciples Of The Watch, was game-changing. Soon everybody from Kirk Hammett of Metallica to Glenn Tipton of Judas Priest was doing it.

"The commanding bellow of singer Chuck Billy was an absolute precursor to the Death and Black Metal vocal that would soon follow and continue until this day. That's undeniable impact.

"Again, we are humbled, honored [sic], and grateful for our welcome into your 'Top 100 Greatest Heavy Metal Songs of All Time'. Lastly, on behalf of the Heavy Metal community, thank you for representing our genre in your publication.”

View Rolling Stone’s 100 Greatest Metal Songs Of All Time list here.