Girish Pradhan is no stranger to classic metal. Just like your MetalSucks editors, he was attracted equally to the glitz and glam of the Hollywood scene in the ’80s, the thrash bands a few hundred miles to the north and the NWOBHM bands from overseas.
Despite growing up in Bangalore, India, far away from any of those scenes, Girish’s knowledge of and appreciation for classic metal is deep and impressive, and that’s obvious within approximately two seconds of listening to his band, Girish and The Chronicles, who we’ve been obsessed with ’round these parts for quite some time.
So, to celebrate the band’s new album, Hail To The Heroes — out February 11 on Frontiers (pre-order here) — we asked Girish to list his ten favorite classic metal albums of all time. He did not disappoint!
Here’s Girish himself:
These albums are in no particular order, just a list of the albums I got addicted to as a kid. The availability of albums in my hometown was a huge factor too, which was probably limited back in the day.
The Number Of The Beast – Iron Maiden
This is the first thing that comes to my mind whenever someone asks me, “What’s your favorite album?” It’s hard to describe in words how much this album changed my life. I couldn’t believe my ears upon hearing it for the first time as a kid. It’s fast, heavy, perfectly produced and exactly what I always look for in music. Bruce’s vocals made me work 10x harder at my own craft… any album by Maiden, for that matter, made me sing as well as learn the bass lines, the guitars and even a bit of the drums. Number of the Beast helped me develop a lot as a songwriter by teaching me to focus on the minute details that make a song so special.
Appetite for Destruction – Guns and Roses
I don’t even have to mention why, but every song in this album is a masterpiece. It introduced me to the bluesy, wild side of metal (I never categorized the album as metal though) and a new style of vocals, which I really wanted to learn back in the day. Every instrument has a unique factor. It’s a great reminder of how an album can sound so fresh even after decades.
Invasion of Privacy – Ratt
I gotta admit I got into this one much later in life, but it has now become one of my favorites. Warren DeMartini is one the greatest guitar wizards of all time! The whole album is an awesome ride, but is there anything cooler than “Never Use Love?” Maybe “Lay It Down!” I’m thankful for discovering Ratt later in life, as after years and years of waiting I finally found something to get addicted to once again.
So Far, So Good… So What! – Megadeth
I know, Megadeth have so many great albums, but this was my first, and I instantly fell in love with the sheer destructive element on the whole thing. I also learned that you don’t have to always scream and shout in order to sound aggressive vocally. Into the lungs of hell: just hit the play button, get confused as to what the hell is going on, and then bang! 6/8 time signature drums with crazy double pedals and riffs straight out of hell. Even that particular brand of never ending guitar feedback adds to the beauty. And yeah I’m one of those people who still loves the old mix.
Pyromania – Def Leppard
I’m forever addicted to “Die Hard the Hunter” and “Rock! Rock! (Till You Drop).” Of course all the songs on Pyromania are just so good, but those two songs are just so well thought out and brilliantly composed. It’s the perfect example of how the band’s musical genius can take a song to another dimension and bring it back like magic. Def Leppard have always been the undisputed lords at that for me and this album has taught me valuable lessons in songwriting. And the sound! It was the most unique at the time and I seriously feel it still is. Rock of ages!
Paranoid – Black Sabbath
Another album with so many classics that needs no introduction from me. That’s all I can say!
Hail to England – Manowar
I was shocked when I first heard the scream in “Blood of my Enemies,” and I instantly knew that Eric Adams was no ordinary vocalist. Gotta admit my whole focus was primarily about trying to reach those extreme high notes, but the whole album screams “heavy metal,” as the sound and style was somewhat new to me. It was such a treat.
Metal Works ‘73 – ‘83 – Judas Priest
Call me backwards and uneducated but this is the album that introduced me to the mighty Metal Gods. Some albums were simply weren’t available in my part of the town and I didn’t have that ‘older brother’ in the neighborhood smuggling cassettes to me. It’s like cheating or bad luck, hearing some of the greatest works by Priest without hearing the original versions on the albums. Nonetheless, listening to the Mighty Priest was probably the greatest revelation in my young life. It showed me how one should always challenge the limits and test themselves throughout the journey. One of my friends in school had told me earlier during the day that I would start crying after listening to Painkiller. Rightly so; I had never heard anything like it before.
Reign In Blood – Slayer
I was addicted to this album for a long, long time and of course still jam with it at every occasion. Yet another flawless album in my book! If I was to choose my favorite moment on the album, it would be that part when “Altar of Sacrifice” takes a sudden U-turn. And all my close ones know how crazy I am about 6/8 time signatures in metal.
Too Fast For Love – Motley Crüe
The rawness, the attitude. It just can’t be matched! It’s so wild. How can you not love an album that starts with a riff like “Live Wire?” The haunting notes of the intro to “Merry-Go-Round” are like a time machine, defining an entire generation and era. I love this album so much and I can never stop listening to it.