While the Grammys have been out of step with metal and hard rock since 1989, the first year there was a metal category (Jethro Tull famously won out over Metallica), the nominees have gotten somewhat better in the past few years. This year is no exception, and we’ll go into it in a bit more detail, but here’s who’s nominated”
Best Metal Performance
August Burns Red, “Invisible Enemy”
Body Count, “Black Hoodie”
Code Orange, “Forever”
Mastodon, “Sultan’s Curse”
We’ll start here. Good for August Burns Red picking up their second metal Grammy nomination in three years. They’re fine and all, but it’s interesting how they continually get nominated. Code Orange are buzzworthy, and it’s cool to see them get the nod as well for such an interesting album, but voters might’ve bought into the hype. If either Meshuggah or Mastodon won, that’d be kind of awesome, since neither band has picked up a Grammy yet. Seeing Body Count pick up a nomination is great too, as we’re sure Ice T. is psyched, as is his producer, Fit For An Autopsy’s Will Putney.
Best Rock Album
Mastodon, Emperor of Sand
Metallica, Hardwired… To Self Destruct
Nothing More, The Stories We Tell Ourselves
Queens of the Stone Age, Villains
The War On Drugs, A Deeper Understanding
Metallica will win. That’s a given. Queens of the Stone Age put out an amazing record, and it’s cool that Mastodon got recognized in the larger rock category, but this is Metallica’s to lose. Good on Nothing More for being recognized, as their relentless touring and good live show must have paid off.
Best Rock Song
“Metallica, “Atlas, Rise!”
K. Flay, “Blood in the Cut”
Nothing More, “Go To War”
Foo Fighters, “Run”
Avenged Sevenfold, “The Stage”
We never heard of K. Flay before today. This might be the first time a song nominated for “Best Rock Song” is actually #1 at active rock. Avenged Sevenfold finally got recognized a year after The Stage was released, and we wouldn’t be surprised if Foo Fighters pick up the Grammy, but “Atlas, Rise!” is objectively the best of the nominees.