Anthrax guitarist Scott Ian has paid Eddie Van Halen the ultimate tribute by saying his musical skills were those of both John Lennon and Paul McCartney combined.
Ian talked about Eddie’s legacy during a recent appearance on Dean Delray’s “Let There Be Talk” podcast.
“There’s not a bad song from ‘Van Halen I’ to ‘1984’ — for me, there’s nothing that I don’t love. Every song, for me, is as important as the big songs. Every song. I love ‘You Really Got Me’ — of course I do. But for me, on the first record, my favorite song is ‘I’m The One’… His solo on ‘So This Is Love?’ Oh my God. He cleaned the tone up. And just the feeling in that solo and the way he moves around. ‘Top Jimmy’… You can go and on. Every song is a fucking masterpiece.”
“He was the complete package in every way — in every way,” Ian continued. “He was the [John] Lennon and [Paul] McCartney of hard rock, or heavy metal. They were metal before people were saying metal. ‘I’m The One’, ‘Romeo Delight’, ‘Light Up The Sky’ — those are metal tunes. ‘Atomic Punk’ — it’s fucking metal. Unbelievable songwriter and arranger and just overall musician. Just a fucking master.
“I think you could argue that he was the greatest overall talent, he was the biggest talent of the last… from 1975 on,” Scott added. “To me, there’s nobody more talented in any field of entertainment. For me, Eddie Van Halen would be the biggest talent of all. And where does that go? What a void that leaves.”
You can hear Ian’s entire interview on “Let There Be Talk” below:
On October 30th Ian, along with his bandmates in the expiremental rock /metal band Mr. Bungle (featuring Faith No More singer Mike Patton), performed a cover of Van Halen’s “Loss of Control” from 1980’s ‘Women and Children First’ during a live streaming concert. Ian can be seen playing the song’s riff on a replica of Eddie’s signature “Shark” axe.
Below is a clip of the performance Mr. Bungle posted to Twitter: