Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett talked about the impact Soundgarden had on “Enter Sandman,” telling Toucher & Rich in a new interview:
“It was very specific. I have a very specific memory.
“It was about two or three o’clock in the morning. I had just been listening to ‘Louder Than Love’, the [second] Soundgarden album.
“It was when Soundgarden [was] still somewhat underground and on an independent label.
“I just love that album; it’s a great Soundgarden album. And I heard that album, I was inspired, I picked up my guitar and out came that riff.”
“[‘Sandman’] was a cool riff. You kind of get an idea that a riff is cool, ’cause when you play it, if it’s a cool riff, you can just instantly groove on it.
“So, yeah, [I thought], ‘Yeah, this is pretty cool. It’s a good feel, it’s a good sound, it’s a good combination of notes.
“When Lars heard the riff, he said, ‘Repeat that first part four times,’ and I did, and he said, ‘There you go.'”