Top 10 Reasons Why One by Metallica is Better Than Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana

I'm not a Nirvana hater, but come on guys. Smells like Teen Spirit is beyond overrated! #4 on the best songs while One is below? Nah.

The Top Ten

One is More Powerful

One has a powerful message about how war affects a person. - PhoenixAura81

Even Kurt Cobain said that "Teen Spirit" is about nothing, just random lyrics - RichHomelessGreedyMan

In general, One is a more valuable song (music-wise and lyric-wise). - Metal_Treasure

SLTS has not much powerful vocals or instrumental
One has powerful drumming, vocals, and guitars.

One is Less Repetitive

As much as I like Smells Like Teen Spirit, it is quite repetitive. One always brings something fresh to the table. - PhoenixAura81

Teen Spirit is good but the final chorus is a little too much. There are too many choruses. - RichHomelessGreedyMan

One is much better composed, and more interesting music-wise, with many music ideas that aren't repeated. - Metal_Treasure

More Thought Went Into One

Yes. More thought went into One both musically and lyrically - Metal_Treasure

I agree. The feeling and emotion of the song sonds very realistic. - PhoenixAura81

Smells Like Teen Spirit Sounds Very Generic

They are two different types of songs it is hard to compare the two. Though I agree that metal gets overlooked by the mainstream media which makes them not be able to show up on the list of top songs, but the is what makes metal wonderful it can never be overrated since it will never be thought of as the greatest songs unlike, country, pop, or rock music - germshep24

It feels generic because the song has been extremely overplayed, it didn't sound generic when it was first played in 1991. Also all the alternative & post-grunge bands that tried to imitate Nirvana creating similar sounding songs also didn't help it either - Joeljohns249

The song, while good, sounds too generic and bland. No build up, no intense parts, nothing. One starts very soft and slow and then gets very heavy and fast at the end.

For its time "Teen Spirit" was like no other song out there - RichHomelessGreedyMan

One Has a Better Buildup

This is the best thing about the whole song. - Userguy44

The buildup is perhaps the most impressive thing about this song. - Metal_Treasure

One Has Better Vocals

James Hetfield is better than Kurt Cobain. Enough said.

I disagree, both songs have pretty good vocals which in part led these songs to be successfull.

The vocals in SLTS isn't bad, but One had better.

Kurt wasn’t a bad singer but James is better.

One Has More Meaning

One is about a soldier named Joe Bonham who was in a hospital bed and lost his legs and arms and wasn't able to call for help and begs for god to take his soul.

Smells like Teen Spirit has meaning, but I feel like many other songs also talk about it.

One Has Better Guitar Work


Yes. Both riffs and solo to One are way better. - Metal_Treasure

SLTS has like a few guitar riffs and they just repeat and don't change it.
One first starts off slow and few notes melodic, but gets very fast onwards.

The guitar riffs in One sounds awesome. It's much better than SLTS. - Userguy44

One Has Better Drumming

Both has pretty good drum parts, but I'd say in general Dave Grohl is a better drummer than Lars Ulrich

Great double bass drumming!

The drumming in One when the music gets heavy is one of the best drummings in metal history.

The "Machine gun" part is mindblowing.

Smells Like Teen Spirit has bad lyrics

Well, not bad lyrics, but Smells like Teen Spirit's lyrics are all over the place and I can't even get what they're saying. One however has more thought and much better lyrics such as

"Landmine Has taken my sight
Taken my speech
Taken my hearing
Taken my arms
Taken my legs
Taken my soul
Left me with life in hell"

I personally prefer an anti-war song over an teenage angst song. - Userguy44

It has confusing lyrics, the song is about teenage aggression/rebelliousness. - Joeljohns249

I got confused about the lyrics of smells like teen spirit too. - LightningStrike

The Contenders

One is More Angry

This is true! - RW700

Lots of anger in that song, especially towards the end when James is just screaming

Imprisoning me
All that I see
Absolute horror
I cannot live
I cannot die
Trapped in myself
Body my holding cell - RichHomelessGreedyMan

Again, both are pretty angry songs, but even if this item is true, how does that make a song better? - Joeljohns249

One Has a Better Guitar Solo

Actually all 3 the solos are better. - Userguy44

One Has More Impressive Instrumentation

Better riffs and solos, better drumming, etc. Better means both better created (composed) music and better played. Overall, more interesting instrumental part. - Metal_Treasure

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