Metallica strikes back with ‘Death Magnetic’October 3rd, 2008 - 9:33 am ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Oct 3 (IANS) Metallica is the thinking man’s metal band. Unlike the more indigenous metal brethren, its genius is to infuse, adapt and synthesise alien sounds to create music that is loved by hardcore fans and mainstream fans.It is now back with a new album called “Death Magnetic”, and it rocks.
The band has survived the onslaught of almost three phases of music history from the likes of Madonna, Michael Jackson and Bon Jovi in the 1980s to the alternative scene spearheaded by Nirvana and Pearl Jam in the 1990s to the fluff of boy and girl bands ranging from the Britneys to the Backstreet Boys. All have fallen by the wayside, while Metallica stands alone.
The band members got together in the early 80s and belted out music called trash metal. It was fast and furious with a thumping drumbeat underpinning sometimes very long songs.
Their 1983 album “Kill ‘Em All” made everyone take notice and they transplanted trash metal, which till then was strictly underground, to a more mainstream audience.
With “And Justice For All” in 1986, they displayed their musical range and lyrical depth. This was also the year where they lost their bassist Cliff Burton. He was replaced by James Newsted who stayed with lead singer James Hetfield, drummer Lars Ulrich, and guitarist Kirk Hammett till 2001.
But it was in 1991 that the band members established themselves as superstars with the release of “The Black Album”. It spawned monster hits like “Enter Sandman”, “Unforgiven” and “Nothing Else Matters”.
They went on a gruelling tour in support of the album and took a long hiatus. They released some live material in the interim to return with the confounding “Load” in 1996.
The band found itself in the midst of an alternative music wave and tried to make adjustments. It toned down more heavy sounds to create more rock sounding songs. The Metallica members even managed to alienate a few hard core fans by cutting hair and staying away from the colour black in style and design.
A few years after this the band began to show signs of disintegration and this ugly though brutally honest process was captured in the award winning documentary “Some Kind Of Monster”. Lesser bands would surely have self-destructed. But Metallica stuck it out to rise phoenix like.
Metallica prides itself in reinventing itself and experimenting.
It has done this throughout its career at the cost of losing quite a few fans. But now Metallica finds itself at the place it started, at least musically.
Its new album “Death Magnetic” features songs of pure trash metal. The band has gone back to its roots to re-establish itself as the premier metal band. They are back and here to stay.