Gene Hoglan on Metallica “Borrowing” From Dark Angel

  • Axl Rosenberg

People have been saying for years that Metallica’s “One” rips off Dark Angel’s “Darkness Descends,” and with good reason: parts of the two songs sound exactly the same, and even share lyrics.

After first commenting on the similarities last year, Dark Angel drummer Gene Hoglan has now once again addressed the resemblance between the two tracks, this time in an interview with Metal Hammer. And… I think Hoglan may throwing some shade at Metallica?

“‘Steal all you can from drummers.’ That’s what drummers do – it’s just how you apply it that makes it your own. I had such a mishmash of influences it was going to be inevitable that I was going to develop my own style.

“Like in Dark Angel, I was trying to create beats that had never been heard before. Like the opening of ‘Darkness Descends,’ that beat in the very first minute, I’d never heard anyone play that beat before, so I dropped it in.

“Then a few years later I had all the phone calls: ‘Hey have you heard that new Metallica song ‘One’? It’s got your beat in it, it’s got the riffs, it’s even got the lyrics, ‘Darkness imprisoning me!”

“I thought, ‘Oh that’s cool, we’re influencing Metallica now!’ [Laughs]”

Although on the one hand Hoglan says that stealing is “just what drummers do,” he also compliments himself by saying he created “beats that had never been heard before.” All-but-explicit in Hoglan’s assertion is that Lars Ulrich didn’t or maybe even couldn’t write similarly-inventive beats. So while some of Hoglan initially seems to be like “Hey it’s NBD,” he doesn’t let Metallica off the hook that easily.

Discuss amongst yourselves in the comments section.


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