November has been a good month for new releases, with A7X’s The Stage being released at the beginning at the month, quickly followed by Metallica’s Hardwired…To Self-Destruct which hit the shelves—and our ears— with a bang, bringing joy to our dark hearts.
Fans have been either extremely happy or disappointed with Metallica’s work in the last 20 years. People have been wondering if they lost their edge or if they would ever be back to their original roots, and generally hated St. Anger. You can’t please everyone, but why can’t people just be more accepting?
This album for example, is awesome. And I’m not just saying that; it truly is a heavy, cool, and full of riffs we will spend hours trying to learn. You hear some of the old influences as well as a lot of Sabbath in quite a few songs. James Hetfield is a man who can’t be stopped, a riff machine, with vocals that ring deep inside of you. Hetfield and Lars Ulrich are responsible for the writing of this album, and that may have been a really good idea. Tracks like Spit Out the Bone, Atlas, Rise! and ManUNkind (co-written with Trujillo) are standouts.
It is a double album, and with the first one you get more of an aggressive, fast groove, while the second one has the Black Sabbath-style dark and heavy rhythm we all love. The solos are typical Kirk Hammett with lots of fast runs and wah. Trujillo and Lars keep a steady, tight rhythm that really gets you into a head banging mood.
As fans, we need to stop criticizing our favorite bands and just appreciate the work they put into these albums. You may ask, “Should I say it’s good even if it’s garbage?” No, of course not. But let’s just keep in mind that time goes by, influences change, inspiration changes, and people move in different directions. Opinions differ and what I like might not be what you’re into, and that’s okay. No album is ever the same as the previous because artists evolve, and we can’t be disappointed because they don’t sound like they did 30 years ago. So let’s all just be reasonable, listen to the album, and let that groove get you, because trust me, it will.
If you get the chance, Guitar World this month features James Hetfield and Kirk Hammett on the cover, discussing the new album, the writing and recording process, and their inspirations for it. Turn this rockin’ album up to 11 and enjoy!
Have you picked up album copy yet? What is your favorite track?
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