METALLICA, MEGADETH, ANTHRAX Perform 'Helpless' At 'Big Four' Show In Germany (Video)

The "Big Four" bands of 1980s thrash metal METALLICA, MEGADETH, SLAYER and ANTHRAX kicked off their European tour earlier tonight (Saturday, July 2) at Veltins Arena in Gelsenkirchen, Germany.

The highly anticipated onstage performance of the "Big Four" bands at the same time happened near the end of METALLICA's set, between "Enter Sandman" and "Battery". Members of ANTHRAX and MEGADETH joined METALLICA on stage for a cover of DIAMOND HEAD's "Helpless" (with MEGADETH mainman Dave Mustaine cranking out the guitar solo) before METALLICA ended the night with "Creeping Death".

SLAYER couldn't join tonight's jam due to their travel arrangements to get to tomorrow's concert. Andreas Kisser (SEPULTURA) is filling in for ANTHRAX's Scott Ian on the tour and took part in the jam.

In announcing tonight's "Big Four" jam, METALLICA guitarist/vocalist James Hetfield said from the stage, "We need to celebrate The 'Big Four' is here And also celebrate METALLICA's thirty years. Unbelievable! And these other bands aren't far behind. Beautiful. And it's through the love and support from all of our fans that keep us going for thirty years. So thank you! So we're gonna play a song together. And maybe you've seen the ['Big Four'] DVD where we played [DIAMOND HEAD's] 'Am I Evil?' We're trying to mix it up a little bit, do some different songs. So we'll see what happens In the spirit and beauty of heavy metal and a jam, we'll see what happens. Let's invite everyone up here We're not sure who's here . . . OK, this is a different songs from DIAMOND HEAD. Let's see if we get it [right]."

The first fan-filmed video footage of the "Helpless" performance can be seen below.

METALLICA's setlist was as follows:

01. Hit the Lights
02. Master of Puppets
03. The Shortest Straw
04. Seek & Destroy
05. Welcome Home (Sanitarium)
06. The Memory Remains
07. All Nightmare Long
08. Sad But True
09. Wherever I May Roam
10. The Call of Ktulu
11. One
12. For Whom the Bell Tolls
13. Blackened
14. Fade to Black
15. Enter Sandman


16. Helpless (w/ MEGADETH, ANTHRAX)
17. Battery
18. Creeping Death

When asked if there are plans for METALLICA, MEGADETH, SLAYER and ANTHRAX to take part in more joint jams at the upcoming "Big Four" shows in Europe and North America, Ian recently told RockAAA, "I did have a talk with Lars [Ulrich, METALLICA drummer] about something for the Yankee Stadium show [in New York City] in September . . . We talked about doing something different at the Yankee Stadum."

He added, "It's great getting up and doing [DIAMOND HEAD's] 'Am I Evil?' [as the 'Big Four' did twice before in Sofia, Bulgaria in July 2010 and in Indio, California in April 2011], but we're on stage for, like, two and a half minutes, and we all wanna be up there longer. So we're not gonna play the full 'Am I Evil?', because then it's just too much, but we talked about some other things to do that will enable us to all be up there and enjoy that time for a bit longer."

During a November 2010 interview on "The Kevin & Bean Show" on the Los Angeles radio station KROQ-FM (106.7), METALLICA drummer Lars Ulrich was asked about the "Am I Evil?"jam in Sofia. "It just seemed like because this thing was being broadcast to a couple of thousand movie theaters around the world and there was such a historical element to this that to get everybody up and play a song together would be cool," he said. "So, obviously, we didn't wanna do a METALLICA song, so we felt that something that would be close to home for everybody would be the song called 'Am I Evil?' by this very influential and inspirational band to all of us called DIAMOND HEAD. And the great thing about 'Am I Evil?' with no disrespect to [DIAMOND HEAD guitarist] Brian Tatler, who wrote the song it's sort of like the... call it the 'Smoke Of The Water' of '80s metal songs. It's not the most challenging song to play on the guitar. It was certainly one of the easier songs and in a big stadium of 75,000 people, it sort of translates, sound-wise, to sound probably pretty good. So we got everybody into the tuning room before the show and everybody sort of learned the basics of 'Am I Evil?' and then pretty much all the other musicians in the other three bands came up and joined us. And we had a couple of extra snare drums and some other stuff up there."

Photos below courtesy of


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