The natural evolution of speed metal, thrash ramped up the aggro. The biggest acts in thrash are known as the 'Big Four': Metallica, Megadeth, Anthrax and Slayer.
Not sure if you’re listening to thrash? Listen out for the double kickdrum and palm-muted rhythm guitars.
As a sub-genre, thrash has stood the test of time and many its biggest names are still touring. It also influenced death metal, black metal and power metal.
Key band: Metallica
Metallica pushed the upper limits of speed and volume but kept technical ability, musicianship and melody at the heart of their complex songs, before jumping ship and joining the hard rock mainstream in 1991.
Key album: Slayer - Reign In Blood (1986)
Reign In Blood is a strong contender for the title of 'heaviest album of all time'. Play it loud and understand what thrash is all about.
A masterclass in thrash rhythm guitar from James Hetfield.
100 Greatest Speed/Thrash Metal Bands