METALLICA

Thrash Metal / Heavy Metal / Hard Rock / Alternative Metal / Symphonic Metal / Non-Metal • United States
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Metallica are an American metal band formed in 1981 in Los Angeles when drummer Lars Ulrich posted an advertisement in The Recycler. Metallica’s line-up originally consisted of Ulrich, rhythm guitarist and vocalist James Hetfield, and lead guitarist Dave Mustaine. Mustaine was later fired due to problems with alcoholism and drug addiction - he went on to form the band Megadeth. Exodus guitarist Kirk Hammett took his place. Metallica has been through several bassists, including Ron McGovney, Cliff Burton (who died in a bus crash while the band was on tour), and Jason Newsted. The current bassist is Robert Trujillo, who joined in 2003.

Metallica’s early releases included fast tempos, instrumentals, and aggressive musicianship that placed them as one of the “big four” of the thrash metal sub-genre alongside Slayer, Megadeth, and Anthrax. The band earned a growing fan base in the underground music community and critical acclaim, with the 1986
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METALLICA Discography

METALLICA albums / top albums

METALLICA Kill 'em All album cover 3.79 | 187 ratings
Kill 'em All
Thrash Metal 1983
METALLICA Ride the Lightning album cover 4.45 | 228 ratings
Ride the Lightning
Thrash Metal 1984
METALLICA Master of Puppets album cover 4.53 | 278 ratings
Master of Puppets
Thrash Metal 1986
METALLICA ...And Justice for All album cover 4.30 | 216 ratings
...And Justice for All
Thrash Metal 1988
METALLICA Metallica album cover 3.45 | 179 ratings
Metallica
Heavy Metal 1991
METALLICA Load album cover 2.70 | 130 ratings
Load
Heavy Metal 1996
METALLICA ReLoad album cover 2.25 | 122 ratings
ReLoad
Heavy Metal 1997
METALLICA Garage Inc. album cover 3.41 | 98 ratings
Garage Inc.
Heavy Metal 1998
METALLICA St. Anger album cover 1.83 | 134 ratings
St. Anger
Alternative Metal 2003
METALLICA Death Magnetic album cover 3.50 | 137 ratings
Death Magnetic
Thrash Metal 2008
METALLICA Lulu (with Lou Reed) album cover 1.72 | 79 ratings
Lulu (with Lou Reed)
Heavy Metal 2011
METALLICA Hardwired... to Self-Destruct album cover 3.30 | 46 ratings
Hardwired... to Self-Destruct
Heavy Metal 2016

METALLICA EPs & splits

METALLICA Creeping Death / Jump in the Fire EP album cover 3.00 | 21 ratings
Creeping Death / Jump in the Fire EP
Thrash Metal 1984
METALLICA The $5.98 E.P.: Garage Days Re-Revisited album cover 4.11 | 43 ratings
The $5.98 E.P.: Garage Days Re-Revisited
Thrash Metal 1987
METALLICA Live at Wembley Stadium EP album cover 3.62 | 4 ratings
Live at Wembley Stadium EP
Heavy Metal 1992
METALLICA Hero of the Day EP album cover 3.80 | 6 ratings
Hero of the Day EP
Heavy Metal 1996
METALLICA St. Anger EP album cover 2.83 | 3 ratings
St. Anger EP
Alternative Metal 2003
METALLICA The Unnamed Feeling E.P. album cover 2.79 | 8 ratings
The Unnamed Feeling E.P.
Thrash Metal 2004
METALLICA Some Kind of Monster album cover 2.71 | 17 ratings
Some Kind of Monster
Thrash Metal 2004
METALLICA Six Feet Down Under EP album cover 2.69 | 4 ratings
Six Feet Down Under EP
Thrash Metal 2010
METALLICA Six Feet Down Under Part II album cover 2.81 | 4 ratings
Six Feet Down Under Part II
Thrash Metal 2010
METALLICA Live at Grimey's album cover 4.50 | 3 ratings
Live at Grimey's
Thrash Metal 2010
METALLICA Beyond Magnetic album cover 3.39 | 23 ratings
Beyond Magnetic
Thrash Metal 2011
METALLICA Musicares MAP Fund Benefit Concert album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Musicares MAP Fund Benefit Concert
Non-Metal 2014

METALLICA live albums

METALLICA S&M album cover 3.09 | 60 ratings
S&M
Symphonic Metal 1999
METALLICA Through the Never album cover 3.75 | 8 ratings
Through the Never
Thrash Metal 2013
METALLICA By Request: Bogota, Colombia - March 16, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Bogota, Colombia - March 16, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Quito, Equador - March 18, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Quito, Equador - March 18, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Lima, Peru - March 20, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Lima, Peru - March 20, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: São Paulo, Brazil - March 22, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: São Paulo, Brazil - March 22, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Asunción, Paraguay - March 24, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Asunción, Paraguay - March 24, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Santiago, Chile - March 27, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Santiago, Chile - March 27, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Buenos Aires, Argentina - March 29, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Buenos Aires, Argentina - March 29, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Buenos Aires, Argentina - March 30, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Buenos Aires, Argentina - March 30, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Helsinki, Finland - May 28, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Helsinki, Finland - May 28, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Stockholm, Sweden - May 30, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Stockholm, Sweden - May 30, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Oslo, Norway - June 1, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Oslo, Norway - June 1, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Horsens, Denmark - June 3, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Horsens, Denmark - June 3, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Hamburg, Germany - June 4, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Hamburg, Germany - June 4, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Nuremberg, Germany - June 6, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Nuremberg, Germany - June 6, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Nürburg, Germany - June 8, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Nürburg, Germany - June 8, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Landgraaf, Netherlands - June 9, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Landgraaf, Netherlands - June 9, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA Glastonbury Festival, England - June 28, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Glastonbury Festival, England - June 28, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Rome, Italy - July 1, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Rome, Italy - July 1, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Werchter, Belgium - July 3, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Werchter, Belgium - July 3, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Basel, Switzerland - July 4, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Basel, Switzerland - July 4, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Knebworth, England - July 6, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Knebworth, England - July 6, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Prague, Czech Republic - July 8, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Prague, Czech Republic - July 8, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Vienna, Austria - July 9, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Vienna, Austria - July 9, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Warsaw, Poland - July 11, 2014 album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
By Request: Warsaw, Poland - July 11, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Istanbul, Turkey - July 13, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Istanbul, Turkey - July 13, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA By Request: Montreal, Canada - August 9, 2014 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request: Montreal, Canada - August 9, 2014
Thrash Metal 2014
METALLICA S&M 2 album cover 4.86 | 5 ratings
S&M 2
Symphonic Metal 2020

METALLICA demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

METALLICA '82 Garage Rehearsal Tape album cover 2.14 | 3 ratings
'82 Garage Rehearsal Tape
Thrash Metal 1982
METALLICA Power Metal album cover 2.00 | 1 ratings
Power Metal
Thrash Metal 1982
METALLICA No Life 'Til Leather album cover 4.50 | 6 ratings
No Life 'Til Leather
Thrash Metal 1982
METALLICA Live Metal Up Your Ass album cover 3.50 | 2 ratings
Live Metal Up Your Ass
Thrash Metal 1982
METALLICA No Remorse/Whiplash Demo album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
No Remorse/Whiplash Demo
Thrash Metal 1983
METALLICA Mandatory Metallica album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Mandatory Metallica
Thrash Metal 1988
METALLICA Fan Can 1 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fan Can 1
Thrash Metal 1996
METALLICA Fan Can 2 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fan Can 2
Thrash Metal 1997
METALLICA Fan Can 3 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fan Can 3
Heavy Metal 1998
METALLICA The Garage Remains the Same album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Garage Remains the Same
Thrash Metal 2000
METALLICA Fan Can 4 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fan Can 4
Thrash Metal 2001
METALLICA Fan Can 5 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fan Can 5
Thrash Metal 2005
METALLICA Fan Can 6 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fan Can 6
Thrash Metal 2010
METALLICA The 30th Anniversary Celebration album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The 30th Anniversary Celebration
Heavy Metal 2012
METALLICA Fifth Member Exclusive Deluxe Box Set Sampler album cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
Fifth Member Exclusive Deluxe Box Set Sampler
Thrash Metal 2016

METALLICA re-issues & compilations

METALLICA The Good, The Bad & The Live: The 6½ Year Anniversary 12 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Good, The Bad & The Live: The 6½ Year Anniversary 12" Collection
Thrash Metal 1990
METALLICA Live Shit: Binge & Purge album cover 4.35 | 28 ratings
Live Shit: Binge & Purge
Thrash Metal 1993
METALLICA Vinyl Box album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Vinyl Box
Thrash Metal 2004
METALLICA By Request Box Set album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
By Request Box Set
Thrash Metal 2014

METALLICA singles (39)

.. Album Cover
4.25 | 2 ratings
Whiplash
Thrash Metal 1983
.. Album Cover
3.67 | 3 ratings
Jump in the Fire
Thrash Metal 1984
.. Album Cover
4.40 | 6 ratings
Creeping Death
Thrash Metal 1984
.. Album Cover
5.00 | 2 ratings
Master of Puppets
Thrash Metal 1985
.. Album Cover
3.28 | 5 ratings
Harvester of Sorrow
Thrash Metal 1988
.. Album Cover
2.93 | 3 ratings
Eye of the Beholder
Thrash Metal 1988
.. Album Cover
3.43 | 3 ratings
One
Thrash Metal 1989
.. Album Cover
2.67 | 5 ratings
Enter Sandman
Heavy Metal 1991
.. Album Cover
2.50 | 3 ratings
The Unforgiven
Heavy Metal 1991
.. Album Cover
3.50 | 1 ratings
Nothing Else Matters
Heavy Metal 1992
.. Album Cover
3.75 | 2 ratings
Wherever I May Roam
Heavy Metal 1992
.. Album Cover
3.31 | 4 ratings
Sad but True
Heavy Metal 1993
.. Album Cover
2.50 | 2 ratings
One (Live)
Thrash Metal 1993
.. Album Cover
2.25 | 4 ratings
Until It Sleeps
Hard Rock 1996
.. Album Cover
3.83 | 3 ratings
Hero of the Day
Hard Rock 1996
.. Album Cover
1.83 | 3 ratings
Mama Said
Hard Rock 1996
.. Album Cover
4.33 | 3 ratings
King Nothing
Heavy Metal 1997
.. Album Cover
2.56 | 5 ratings
The Memory Remains
Heavy Metal 1997
.. Album Cover
1.50 | 1 ratings
The Unforgiven II
Hard Rock 1998
.. Album Cover
4.00 | 2 ratings
Fuel
Heavy Metal 1998
.. Album Cover
4.50 | 1 ratings
Live in London: Antipodean Tour Edition
Thrash Metal 1998
.. Album Cover
4.33 | 3 ratings
Turn the Page
Hard Rock 1998
.. Album Cover
4.25 | 2 ratings
Whiskey in the Jar
Heavy Metal 1999
.. Album Cover
4.50 | 1 ratings
Die, Die My Darling
Heavy Metal 1999
.. Album Cover
3.08 | 2 ratings
Nothing Else Matters (S&M version)
Symphonic Metal 1999
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
No Leaf Clover
Symphonic Metal 2000
.. Album Cover
0.50 | 1 ratings
I Disappear
Hard Rock 2000
.. Album Cover
3.67 | 3 ratings
St. Anger
Alternative Metal 2003
.. Album Cover
2.38 | 8 ratings
Frantic
Alternative Metal 2003
.. Album Cover
2.25 | 2 ratings
The Unnamed Feeling
Alternative Metal 2004
.. Album Cover
1.69 | 4 ratings
The Day That Never Comes
Thrash Metal 2008
.. Album Cover
1.93 | 3 ratings
My Apocalypse
Thrash Metal 2008
.. Album Cover
3.00 | 2 ratings
Cyanide
Thrash Metal 2008
.. Album Cover
1.00 | 1 ratings
The Judas Kiss
Thrash Metal 2008
.. Album Cover
3.08 | 2 ratings
All Nightmare Long
Thrash Metal 2008
.. Album Cover
2.50 | 2 ratings
Broken, Beat & Scarred
Thrash Metal 2009
.. Album Cover
1.88 | 4 ratings
The View (with Lou Reed)
Heavy Metal 2011
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
One (Awards Show Rehearsal Version)
Thrash Metal 2014
.. Album Cover
3.50 | 2 ratings
Lords of Summer (First Pass Version)
Thrash Metal 2014

METALLICA movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
3.71 | 22 ratings
Cliff 'Em All!
Thrash Metal 1987
.. Album Cover
2.69 | 9 ratings
2 of One
Thrash Metal 1989
.. Album Cover
5.00 | 1 ratings
For Those About To Rock: Monsters In Moscow
Thrash Metal 1992
.. Album Cover
4.04 | 12 ratings
A Year and a Half in the Life of Metallica
Heavy Metal 1992
.. Album Cover
3.98 | 17 ratings
Cunning Stunts
Thrash Metal 1998
.. Album Cover
3.77 | 25 ratings
S&M
Symphonic Metal 1999
.. Album Cover
3.88 | 11 ratings
Classic Albums: Metallica - Metallica
Thrash Metal 2001
.. Album Cover
3.50 | 20 ratings
Some Kind of Monster
Thrash Metal 2004
.. Album Cover
3.75 | 11 ratings
The Videos 1989-2004
Thrash Metal 2006
.. Album Cover
3.44 | 8 ratings
Français Pour Une Nuit
Thrash Metal 2009
.. Album Cover
4.05 | 10 ratings
Orgullo, Pasión y Gloria: Tres Noches En La Ciudad de México
Thrash Metal 2009
.. Album Cover
4.05 | 11 ratings
The Big 4: Live from Sofia, Bulgaria
Thrash Metal 2010
.. Album Cover
3.67 | 6 ratings
Quebec Magnetic
Thrash Metal 2012
.. Album Cover
3.50 | 4 ratings
Metallica Through The Never
Thrash Metal 2013

METALLICA Reviews

METALLICA Kill 'em All

Album · 1983 · Thrash Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Tupan
The first Metallica album, like most debuts, has the energy and excitement generally found in young musicians. The sound is rougher and cruder than any of their late albums, the songs have an urgency that would be more polished later. We are talking about thrash metal, so these aren’t bad characteristics in this context.

And like most the debuts, their early influences are more obvious here. Kill E’m All is basically a mix of Motorhead, Diamond Head, Budgie, Misfits, even some Iron Maiden… Again, nothing wrong, they manage to package all these influences with a Metallica flavour after all. Songs like Seek and Destroy and Whiplash would become immortal thrash classics, and other less known tracks, like Hit the Lights and Metal Milita are pretty great too! There’s even some experimentalism, with the instrumental (Anesthesia) Pulling Teeth.

And I have a personal story with this album. When I was a kid, I remember seeing a brazilian TV show named Fúria MTV. It was, for a long time, one of my only sources for metal these days, since the radio was crap (still is…) and only few friends shared my musical tastes. Anyways, the opening theme of this show was Metal Militia, the closing track of this album! And only years later I would know it, because in that pre-internet era all we could listen were the songs from the Black Album onwards, which played ad nauseam in the media at the time. So, Kill ‘Em All has a place in my metal heart since I’ve listened to it first time. Recommended!

METALLICA Garage Inc.

Album · 1998 · Heavy Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Vim Fuego
The 1990s saw Metallica start the decade as thrash metal’s biggest band. The band and genre was somewhat niche, and not particularly well known outside metal and alternative music scenes. By the turn of the millennium, Metallica had become the biggest band in metal bar none, and was surpassed in popular music by only a handful of artists, but in creating new music thrash metal had been left far behind. “Garage Inc.” as a covers and B-sides compilation album lays bare the influences mixed in to Metallica’s thrash metal roots which made “Metallica”, “Load”, and “Re-Load” the albums which led the band to world domination.

Disc 1 of this double album is freshly recorded covers. These run the full gamut of Metallica’s musical tastes, and some work better than others. Metallica can do punk, and do it well. We know this because of their covers excellent of The Misfits, and Anti-Nowhere League’s utterly filthy “So What”. However, Metallica aren’t too good at Discharge, with “Free Speech For The Dumb” and “The More I See” bookending this disc. These versions are too… clean. Discharge’s originals are scuzzy and discordant, from a band on the verge of starvation. Metallica just can’t reproduce the same feel. It’s hard to sound desperate when you’re a multi-millionaire living comfortably. Bob Rock does big, fat, and comfortable as a producer, with the latest in studio technology at his fingertips, while Discharge would have been recorded as quickly as possible on zero budget. The guitars are too warm, and too big. The bass doesn’t have enough distortion. And Lars just can’t play D-beat drums. Still, without Discharge, thrash metal wouldn’t have been thrash metal.

Metallica’s love of NWOBHM band Diamond Head is well known, so a Diamond Head song was inevitable here, and while “It’s Electric” is no “Am I Evil?”, in the same vein as that famous cover, it’s not far removed from Metallica’s own style.

Covering Black Sabbath isn’t always as easy as it seems. Slayer stumbled with their version of “Hand of Doom”, and Megadeth’s “Paranoid” is almost an unintentional parody. Metallica don’t fuck it up as badly as those covers, but “Sabbra Cadabra” isn’t particularly impressive. They just can’t reproduce Sabbath’s whacked-out stoner groove.

The first really impressive track here is “Turn The Page”, originally by Bob Seger. It’s a brooding tale of life on the road. James Hetfield’s vocals and the ruminating main riff seem to be an indicator of where “The Memory Remains” came from.

“Die, Die My Darling” is a welcome addition to the existing collection of Misfits covers. It’s not near as rough as “Last Caress/Green Hell” recorded a decade earlier, but it retains the boisterous energy and wicked dark humour of the original.

The inclusion of Nick Cave and The Bad Seed’s “Loverman” is the biggest what-the-fuck on the whole album. The original switches between minimalist restraint and raucous post-punk anarchy, and Metallica doesn’t attempt to pull it off, but instead smooths out the rough edges and makes it their own. Cave’s introspective oblique lyrics are somewhat different to the Metallica norm, but like “Turn The Page”, the song illustrates James Hetfield’s varied vocal abilities.

The five song Mercyful Fate medley is more traditional fare. The songs don’t exactly merge seamlessly, and of course there’s no King Diamond helium vocals, but it’s 11 minutes of 80s satanic metal goodness.

Blue Öyster Cult don’t often get the love they deserve, even though they are the band who wrote monster rockers like “Godzilla”, “Burnin’ For You”, and “Don’t Fear The Reaper”. “Astronomy” isn’t one of those monster rockers, but Metallica turn it into one.

“Whiskey In The Jar” is the best song on the first disc. It’s a boisterous, catchy party anthem, and a new take on Thin Lizzy’s take of the traditional Irish folk song.

“Tuesday’s Gone” was recorded during a radio broadcast in 1997 with a number of guest musicians, including members of Alice in Chains, Corrosion of Conformity, Lynyrd Skynrd, and even Les Claypool on banjo, and… it’s fucking tedious. Yep, it’s an all-star acoustic jam that’s an all-star acoustic bore. It also indicates where Metallica found the Southern rock and country influences which popped up on the Load albums.

Disc 2 is older stuff which already existed, but was sometimes hard to come by until this release. The first five tracks come from “The $5.98 E.P.: Garage Days Re-Revisited”, which had been out of print for the best part of a decade, and dedicated collectors had been paying exorbitant prices for copies of it. The E.P. also featured the first recordings of Jason Newsted with Metallica. This sloppy spontaneous recording is a little rough around the edges, but that’s a big part of it’s charm.

The next pair of NWOBHM covers were initially recorded as B-sides for the 12” vinyl version of “Creeping Death”, released as a single in 1984. The epic “Am I Evil?” is Metallica’s most famous cover, and is so well known it may as well be their own song. Diamond Head have done very well from it over the years, with Metallica’s cover helping revive their career and earning the band a decent sum from royalties over the years too. The other song is “Blitzkrieg”, originally by Blitzkrieg, is an up-tempo blitzkrieg of a song (is that too many blitzkriegs?), and it’s choppy riffing shows how influential the NWOBHM was on thrash metal.

“Breadfan” (originally by Budgie) and “The Prince” (originally by Diamond Head) were B-sides to the 1988 single “Harvester of Sorrow” may have been another couple of Metallica’s favourites, but these are two of the lesser tracks here, and aren’t particularly exciting.

In 1990 Elektra Records marked the label’s 40th anniversary by releasing a compilation of covers by their current roster of artists from their historic catalogue of artists. Metallica’s contribution was a version of Queen’s “Stone Cold Crazy”, which didn’t need much tarting up to make it a thrash metal song. It was later used as the B-side for the “Enter Sandman” single, and it also won Metallica the consolation Grammy for Best Metal Performance in 1991.

“So What” is Metallica’s most notorious cover. The filthy song by Anti-Nowhere League was originally a B-side for their own single “Streets of London”, and had at one stage been seized as an obscene publication in the U.K. The simplistic structure of the song and it’s exaggerated profane lyrics make it a lot of fun, and it remained a live staple for many years.

“Killing Time” by Sweet Savage is another NWOBHM cover, another B-side, and another not particularly remarkable song.

There are four Motörhead songs that aren’t exactly live, but were recorded during a rehearsal for a live performance in 1995. The performance was to celebrate the legendary Lemmy’s 50th birthday, where all the members of Metallica dressed as Lemmy and banged out some Motörhead tunes. A recording of the live performance would have been better, even if it was technically worse, because these four songs are flat and lifeless, especially “Too Late, Too Late”. Even a really rough recording of a live performance would have had more energy, and maybe a bit of spirit which is missing here.

Overall, the entire album is something of a mixed bag. The new tracks on disc one show a surprising breadth of musical likes and influences, and despite a couple of missteps is about as good as cover albums ever get. The second disc gathered together in one place all the covers recorded for various different releases, which was something of a relief for fans of the band struggling to collect them all.

That it followed the relatively poorly received Load albums (relatively – "Load" and "ReLoad" have both sold more than five million copies, as has this album) may contribute to how "Garage Inc." is perceived, but it is still a strong release in Metallica’s catalogue.

METALLICA Ride the Lightning

Album · 1984 · Thrash Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
LightningRider
OK, I've been getting into A LOT of metal recently. In my younger days, like many other young peeps, my knowledge of Metallica was practically limited to The Black Album and a couple of singles from the earlier days like “Master of Puppets” and “For Whom the Bell Tolls.” I wasn't fully in tune with thrash. Well as I got more in-tune with thrash I had Master of Puppets ranked as the number 1 metal album of all time. But I didn't put in in my top 20 despite how much I love metal because I always considered it a little bit bloated. Well after a lot of personal growth and re-evaluation of my life, I also re-evaluated how I rate some music, especially metal.

At first I was NOT willing to give Ride the Lightning a spot above Master of Puppets (I even had And Justice for All ranked above it). Why? Simple. Puppets' production is much cleaner, the rhythms are more developed and progressive, and Metallica's style fully matured. After re-assessing myself, I realized that the big question was not “What's the best Metallica album,” but “what's the best METAL album?” If my metalcore phase taught me anything, it's that any type of production is acceptable depending on the situation. Let's be honest. Ride the Lightning's production but not be as clear as that of Puppet's, but it really is way more metallic. They obviously came a long way in that short one-year time when the were one of the best up-and-coming metal acts playing typical early thrash, and became the very band that defined thrash.

Believe it or not, my first encounter with Metallica's “Fight Fire with Fire” was not a pleasant one. Before I was used to the idea of thrash metal (or even heard of it for that matter), I would originally type the name in to look for a Kansas song. I wouldn't hear the actual album until four years later when I first started exploring music forums and charts. It would take a few years more for me to grow fully accustomed to the harshest side of metal, and that included death metal and black metal. I have Symbolic by Death to thank for that. It was the first death metal album I had ever heard and I gave it a 100/100 right then and there. The whole point of making this the opener is to give you an idea of how much power your exposing yourself to. By the time you're done with the album, you'll already be glowing blue. Da ba dee. I mean, after that soothing guitar solo at the beginning, you're dealing with BOOM BOOM BOOM! They don't call it “Ride the Lightning” for nothing! The way that atmosphere in the production works just makes it more metallic! Sure, the intro to the opener isn't as good as the one from Puppets, but it's overall a better song than “Battery.”

I have this crazy ability to instantly visualize any word I hear on a second nature level. I even visually freakin' “the.” It's pretty cool. So you can imagine the crazy imagery I got from “Ride the Lightning.” The varying visual interpretations of death range from hands made of lightning to the reaper with a sleek blue scythe (Sleek Blue Scythe should be my speed metal band name). And some of those solos are just mindblowing. The title track has the perfect balance between energy, melody and flat-out craziness.

I admit, I'm not so well emotionally connected to “For Whom the Bell Tolls” as many other Metallica fans are, but I'm not denying that it's one of the high points of an album loaded with high points. Taking a literally dramatic shift from the thrashing thunder of the gods, the early stages of the poetry that would be seen on Master of Puppets drives this song as much as the heavy metal melody. “Take a look to the sky just before you die, It is the last time you will. Blackened roar massive roar fills the crumbling sky, shattered goal fills his soul with a ruthless cry.” Edgar Allen Poe's getting owned here. Screw the talking raven (OK, that's my screamo band name). Much of Metallica's best "guitartistry" is boasted on “For whom the Bell Tolls,” each player doing their part to add their unique vibe to the aura and all work as well as any harmonized group while still being very creative.

Now we get to the crown jewel of Metallica's songs: “Fade to Black.” This was Metallica's first ballad, and it was recorded at a time when James Hetfield not only had some obsession with death, but had to deal with much of the band's equipment being STOLEN, including his favorite Marshall amp! Damn. As you can imagine, that helps set the mood for one of Metallica's most iconic songs. The poetry of “For Whom the Bell Tolls” continues as one of the most beautiful and emotional moods in all of power ballad history ends side B of this album. There's no need for crazy solos when you can feel the sadness touching you. How human can a song get? It does get heavier towards the end, but that's a Metallica staple right there. That doesn't stop Hetfield from delivering some of his most heartfelt vocals in his career.

Alright, the first half of side B is considered the weak point of Ride the Lightning, but what album doesn't have a weakness? I admit, I'm not in love with the intro to “Trapped Under Ice.” It slowly gets better until WEEDLY-WEEDLY-WEEDLY comes along, returning to the raw thunder of the first two songs! Even though it's more like one of the basic thrash songs like on Kill 'Em All, the Ride the Lightning energy is still there, never damaging the album's flow or consistency. I mean, come on. Is speed metal not the perfect subgenre to feature on a thrash album? Besides, for a song about literally being trapped under ice, the lyrics are really freakin' good. The song almost feels crossover-thrash-esque the way it rides on energy and quick reactions.

“Escape” is considered the worst song on the album, but I like the intro more than I like the intro of “Trapped Under Ice.” It's more rhythmic and true to the Metallica style. I think the problem here is that it's written more like a song from your average hard rock / heavy metal album instead of one of the first thrash albums. Maybe that actually works, considering that the roots of thrash come from acts like Deep Purple and Black Sabbath. Hell, I wouldn't mind a good Scorps cover. Besides, the song still rules overall. The solos are still great and the lyrics are still human and relatable.

“Creeping Death” is one that I find particularly interesting because of its lyrical content. As opposed to the satanism often showing in albums at that time, Metallica decided to write a song about the Angel of Death from the book of Exodus! Well, you gotta keep the concept strong somehow. Although the song is more formulaic to the thrash stereotype, the badassery is at its peak. “Creeping Death” is balanced out between Metallica's energy, sense of rhythm, and lyrical drive. Unlike every other song on the album, it doesn't rely on solos to make its mark because of its balance.

“The Call of Ktulu” is the closer, and the only instrumental on the album. This nearly nine-minute epic pretty much covers everything that was going on throughout the album but with a deeper sense of mystery than every other song. Starting out with that slightly creepy solo was the perfect way to go. Like other prog-infused epics of its time, it slowly gets heavier and relies on a clever collection of combined solos to make its mark on the album. I don't know about you, but I think that's a perfectly epic way to end such an incredible album.

It's so utterly weird when you finally catch on to why an album is so great, because a whole new world opens afterwards. Ride the Lightning opened up a whole new level of understanding in the world of thrash (and maybe metal) for me, and I plan on making the most of it. In my opinion, it's the single greatest example of metal in the world. It's atmosphere is flawless, the energy of the album is rivaled only by a select few like Pleasure to Kill by Kreator, and the theme and concept never suffer. In fact, Ride the Lightning is much better at delivering its concept (of death and humanity) than most albums are at delivering their own concepts. It goes without saying that Ride the Lightning is an indisputable essential for any metal collection, and I'm glad I love the album as much as I do now.

METALLICA S&M 2

Live album · 2020 · Symphonic Metal
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Vim Fuego
21 years ago when “S&M” came out, I eviscerated it.

I was being paid to write album reviews. Well, yeah, they were only a minor part of my job as an underpaid, overworked hack reporter for a small regional daily newspaper, but they got printed in the paper, so it counts! I called Metallica “…bloated rock dinosaurs of the type they once despised.” I said the double live album recorded with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra should have been cut back to a four-song EP, and the rest of the album should have been shelved as a failed experiment.

So much for the power of the poisonous pen. Metallica fans loved “S&M”.

It went at least gold in two countries, platinum in eight more, double platinum in four countries (including my home country of New Zealand), and triple platinum in Canada. And that’s just the audio version. The DVD concert film went gold in Austria, platinum in Brazil, six times platinum in the United States, and seven times platinum in Australia. In short, the whole “S&M” venture sold millions and millions of copies worldwide, and was an outstanding success.

With such a success the first time why not do it again on the 20th anniversary of the first collaboration? So once again, Metallica and the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra performed together on 6 and 8 September 2019, and this album is the record of that occasion.

It’s a bit different to last time though. Personnel-wise, orchestra conductor Michael Kamen had passed away in 2003, with Edwin Outwater now in place. Robert Trujillo had long since replaced Jason Newsted in Metallica. And producer Bob Rock was also long gone, with Greg Fidelman now the man in charge of the mix.

The collaboration between band and orchestra seems more thorough than the original version too. There were times on the original “S&M” where the band just completely drowned out the orchestra, who seemed only to be there for decoration. This time, it seems the orchestra is more integral to the performance.

Metallica’s introduction music, Ennio Morricone’s stirring “The Ecstasy of Gold” is usually played via a tape. This time it gets a full orchestral rendition, and segues into the classically inspired “The Call of Ktulu”. Right from the first few notes, it’s immediately obvious the collaboration between band and orchestra is more thorough than the original “S&M” concerts. There were times on “S&M” where the band just completely drowned out the orchestra, who seemed only to be there for decoration. This time, it seems the orchestra is more integral to the performance.

The extra facets added to “For Whom the Bell Tolls” and “The Day That Never Comes” by the orchestra give both of these songs a fresh new sound. The rendition of “The Memory Remains” is beautiful in a heavy yet melancholic way. The audience filling in for Marianne Faithful is particularly moving.

Even the tracks from “Hardwired… to Self-Destruct” (another Metallica album I’m not keen on, but the hordes love) work really well here. “Confusion” shines with the orchestration. Lars sounds a bit puffed during “Moth Into Flame” though, lagging slightly behind the beat in the first faster section, but hey, it’s a live performance, so such things are always a possibility. Mr Ulrich gets a free pass on this one.

“The Outlaw Torn” gets it’s full ten-minute airing here, which includes the wonderful jam at the end of the song, which was foolishly trimmed from the studio original. “No Leaf Clover”, the better of two tracks originally written for the first “S&M” gets a repeat performance, with a sparkling new finish. Thankfully, the dire “-Human” doesn’t reappear.

Metal crowds aren’t really used to conductors explaining songs mid-show, but this is a reasonably common occurrence in orchestral performances. The spoken introductions to Prokofiev’s “Scythian Suite” and Mosolov’s “The Iron Foundry” do just this, and gives these pieces some context. It starts with Lars welcoming Metallica fans from dozens of countries attending the performance, and then introducing musical director Michael Tilson Thomas, who shared the background behind “Scythian Suite”. It is performed by the symphony orchestra without Metallica, and fits the program perfectly, proving classical music can be as heavy as metal. Written in 1915, the piece was originally intended for the ballet “Ala i Lolli”, but was rejected.

The collaborative performance of Russian futurist piece “The Iron Foundry” is outstanding, and is possibly the break-out performance of the entire concert. The orchestral/metal/industrial track is unbelievably heavy and mechanical, but still quintessentially organic. It segues into a beautiful introduction and rendition of orchestra and voice arrangement of “Unforgiven III”.

Apparently the late Cliff Burton first floated the idea of Metallica performing with an orchestra. In memory of Cliff, his writhing bass solo “Anaesthesia (Pulling Teeth)” gets an airing here. Principal bassist Scott Pingel had played in metal cover bands in his teenage years and was drawn to “Anaesthesia (Pulling Teeth)”, but never did anything more with it. His music interests strayed away from rock and metal, and via R&B, jazz, and fusion, ended up with a career as an orchestral musician. Pingel came up with the idea of playing the song on an upright electric bass with a bow. Initially, the song was to be a duet with Robert Trujillo, but on hearing Pingel play the song to the band, Trujillo insistent Pingel play it solo. It was the right decision. He nails Cliff’s sound and feel, but adds a modern warmth and nuance.

The final few tracks are the old classics you would always expect to hear at a Metallica concert. The orchestral representation of a battlefield at the introduction to “One” are particularly evocative. “Master of Puppets” is far more convincing a collaboration than the 1999 version. “Nothing Else Matters” was written and originally recorded with a string section, and a full orchestra only adds to the emotional depth of the song.

Overall, the orchestra adds a warmth and depth to the Metallica songs here. It seems to be a better mix than the first “S&M” album. The brass and horns add power, the strings emotion, the woodwinds beauty, and the percussion clarity. Another factor in making this the far superior orchestral collaboration is song selection. This time round it is mostly slower songs - there are no total mismatches like the dreadful messes that were “Fuel” and “Battery”. When the band does play fast, the arrangements are such that it doesn’t seem the orchestra are being left behind or just marking time until their next fill.

This could have been a pretentious mess, but it’s not. Metallica is not done as a creative force just yet. Don’t let any hack reviewers try to put you off. This album is incredible.

METALLICA ...And Justice for All

Album · 1988 · Thrash Metal
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SilentScream213
Metallica enter a slight stylistic shift towards the progressive, slowing down a bit and delivering more complex, technical rhythms. This is actually quite possibly their least accessible album, not only lacking any sort of anthemic rockers, but also being pretty much a downer in mood the whole time. In addition, it tends to focus more on technicality and rhythm instead of instantly memorable riffs. That’s not to say the music here is really complex, but certainly more so than previous albums.

From that, you can pretty much tell what the strengths and weaknesses are. Here is Metallica at their darkest, most technically proficient, and most serious. It’s definitely got more points in terms of “thinking man’s music” than their other stuff, but on the other end, it definitely loses memorability. The songs are all quality, but most of them lack any insanely good riffs that get caught in your head. It’s also supposed to be their angriest album, but since the straightforward aggression is swapped for rhythmic precision, it certainly comes off as less passionate, and James is yelling in time more than he is in melody. This unfortunately sacrifices mood, which leaves songs a bit flat.

Now, there are two songs here that completely evade those weaknesses. “One”, as everyone knows, is an incredibly powerful “ballad” that basically goes through stages of grief, starting slow and somber before breaking out into manic frustration. Then there’s the closer, “Dyer’s Eve.” It’s possibly Metallica’s heaviest, angriest song ever recorded, detailing child abuse and showcasing Lar’s best performance yet. This song is so strong because James sounds very convincingly full of anger and hurt, and everyone is playing at the apex of their ability.

It’s certainly a “different” album even considering Metallica’s varied discography, but it was very much a success and resulted in some of their best material.

METALLICA Movies Reviews

METALLICA Some Kind of Monster

Movie · 2004 · Thrash Metal
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martindavey87
‘Some Kind of Monster’ is an interesting look at the personal problems that arise amongst band members after having worked together throughout careers that span decades. The biggest rock band in the world is on the verge of breaking up, with one member leaving, one member in rehab and one member being the most hated man in music. It’s compelling viewing, that’s for sure.

However, it’s been often stated that this will appeal to Metallica fans and non-fans alike, and I do consider that a bit of an overstatement. I’m a huge, huge die-hard fan of the band, but at two hours and 10 minutes in duration, and a couple of hours of extra material, even I find this quite a tedious viewing at times.

Essentially, it boils down to the egos of two men, James and Lars, and goes on to become nothing more than “Temper Tantrum: The Movie”. Still, it’s always fun and interesting to see what musicians I admire get up to when they’re not on stage. The process of recording their 2003 dud of album ‘St. Anger’, what they do in their spare time, the auditions for a new bass player and the endless promotional events they partake in.

While this isn’t essential viewing to the average movie-goer, fans of the band will enjoy this stripped and bare movie that shows that even rich and famous rock stars have egos and emotions, and the tolls that that stardom takes on them.

METALLICA Classic Albums: Metallica - Metallica

Movie · 2001 · Thrash Metal
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martindavey87
This is basically a DVD highlights package of the two Metallica VHS releases, ‘A Year and a Half in the Life of…’ that the band released in the early 90’s. A harmless enough watch, which looks at the making of one of heavy metal’s most iconic albums, we’re given a track-by-track look at the process of writing and recording each song, and there’s some additional material with band members reflecting upon the album years later.

It’s interesting to watch, but it mostly comprises of footage we’ve already seen in countless other videos, and it lacks all the emotional depth of Metallica’s 2004 movie ‘Some Kind of Monster’.

Still, while it’s hardly going to be the most riveting thing you’ve ever watched, if you’re a fan of Metallica it’s certainly not a bad way to kill two hours.

METALLICA The Videos 1989-2004

Movie · 2006 · Thrash Metal
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martindavey87
Let’s face it, when it comes to music videos, Metallica have had some absolute bangers, and some absolute stinkers. Some of them, such as the iconic ‘One’ and ‘Enter Sandman’, have become heavy metal classics, which stand up as well today as they did upon release. Then there’s the not-so-classic ones… ‘Hero of the Day’, ‘King Nothing’ and ‘The Unforgiven II’, all of which are great songs, but the videos could easily be any other generic rock band from that era.

With that said though, this is a cool disc for any die-hard Metallica fans. Music video compilations are obsolete now thanks to YouTube, but it’s still cool for a collector to have these on DVD, especially if they insist on owning everything a band puts out.

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