View Poll Results: Which is the Greatest Metallica Studio Album?

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6. You may not vote on this poll
  • Kill 'Em All

    0 0%
  • Ride the Lightning

    1 16.67%
  • Master of Puppets

    2 33.33%
  • .... And Justice for All

    1 16.67%
  • Metallica

    2 33.33%
  • Load

    0 0%
  • Reload

    0 0%
  • St. Anger

    0 0%
  • Death Magnetic

    0 0%
  • Hardwired... to Self Destruct

    0 0%
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Thread: Metallica

  1. #1
    Word Enthusiast Steve's Avatar
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    Metallica

    So, the album has been out for awhile now. I always like to avoid making a snap decision on a new record from any of my favorite artists, just to avoid it being tainted with the sheer excitement of getting new music from a band I love. I also like to give them some room to breathe, just to live in the album for a bit and weed out what just made a good impression and what I genuinely just outright love.

    I think Hardwired has been out long enough to go through that process. I really fucking dig it. It's at least my favorite Metallica release since ReLoad, quite probably my favorite since Load. ReLoad has an awful lot of filler on it but man, are the high points really high, at least according to my personal tastes. Hardwired's more filler feeling songs are stronger than ReLoad's and I think the high points are right up there or exceeding many of ReLoad's high points. I'm still just kinda torn on whether I flat out like more songs on ReLoad than I do Hardwired. I guess I just need to listen to ReLoad more often these days.

    Anwho, yeah, I really dig Hardwired. The title track is strong, Moth To Flame was a new favorite immediately upon hearing it and Halo On Fire is fucking righteous... but with one problem. I feel the same way about it that I do The Day That Never Comes from Death Magnetic. The song takes such a huge change of course midway through, not even giving you another chorus for like the last half of the song. That's cool sometimes, as it was something of a staple of early Tallica songs. Thing was with those is that they always returned to the bridge and chorus after the detour before wrapping things up. My problem with both Halo and Day is that I really fucking love the first half way more than the second.

    My favorite song on the record, though, from the very first time I heard it on the way back home from buying the CD (yes, my old ass still buys CDs) was Now That We're Dead. I fucking love that song. It's pretty much now right up there in the ranks alongside some of my all time Metallica favorites. As it doesn't seem to be headed towards a single release, I compare it a lot in my mind to ReLoad's Carpe Diem Baby, which is another of my all time favorite Tallica tracks but one that ultimately gets very little love because it was "just an album track", if that term is even still valid these days.

    Either way, if I'm ranking a top three favorites from the album it would be Now That We're Dead, Moth To Flame and Halo On Fire.

    How does that compare to you guys' thoughts on it? Or did you think it sucked? If so or if you're one of those "Metallica has sucked since ...Justice" or whatever fans then I can already tell you that we straight up don't agree. That said, I'm always into hearing other opinions on shit that I love. And there are very few things I love more than Metallica.

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  2. #2
    I beat up Kong! Powder's Avatar
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    Metallica is also my favorite band, and have been a fan since 1987 when a young 12 year old found them. I bought my tickets to see them on May 17 the day they came out, and also bought Hardwired the day it came out. I have to say that the more I listen to the album, the more I really like it. At first I was indifferent and thought it lacked something, but then I kept listening. It has grown on me, and now I really like it. However, to disagree with you, Death Magnetic is still the best album they released since the Black Album. Load and Re-Load were appropriately named and they were often called "The Black Album Lite" (for both) with may pop-style songs created to be hits on the radio, rather than epic powerful over 5 minute epics. There were no 8-10 minute kick your ass, signature songs, like The Four Horsemen, Fade to Black, Master Of Puppets, Justice etc.

    The Black Album was the next evolution of Metallica. The "problem" with this album was that broke through into the mainstream music scene unexpectedly. No one expected the album to cross over into pop-music stations, but it did. Sandman opened that door and the other songs (singles) kept coming. Enter Sandman has become hard to listen to as it has become that song that all non-fans love the most, and it is the most widely overused song. Sandman's (Jim Fullington) theme, Mariano Rivera's Theme, and the song that is still played on Z100 and other pop-music stations. It has become a caricature of itself. Upon initial release, this song was great, but now it is my lease favorite song due to overexposure. The rest of the album still holds to the test of time.

    I was in college when Load and Re-Load dropped and no one liked either except those "I love Metallica, Enter Sandman is the best song ever" type of fans. And that is ok. Those people are also allowed to like music, and like what they like, but neither album was good. The albums were completely "sell out" crap. Metallica and their producers made choices. They tried to capitalize on the popularity of the Black Album and go mainstream. They cut their hair, changed their clothes and made generic pop-rock, it backfired to their fanbase. There was a lot of backlash, and many fans lost respect for them. To this day I have never listened to either album fully more than once. To further this point, when Alice in Chains recorded their now infamous MTV Unplugged episode, the bassist Mike Inez had written on his guitar "Friends Don't Let Friend's Get Friend's Haircuts" with Metallica sitting in the front row. That speaks volumes.

    large.jpg

    Now, when I hear Until It Sleeps, King Nothing, Fuel, or The Memory Remains, I can take them for what they are. Good rock songs, but not "true Metallica songs". They aren't. They made some choices and made "popier" music, some songs still hold up, but the rest is complete shit.

    St. Anger...nothing needs to be said about this waste of time. I would even bet that Metallica themselves would rather not even mention this atrocity.

    Then when Death Magnetic came out, it was a throwback to pre-1991. This is the album that should have been released as the follow up to the Black Album. This was 10 songs, all which were "Metallica Epics" with one get in your face, kick you ass "short song" in My Apocalypse. The only filler could be considered Unforgiven III. This album compared to Load and Re-Load make the latter two almost embarrassing. The core 3 member were a decade older and made much better, and harder music, than the pop-infused rock of L & RL. Death Magnetic brings the heavy back to Metallica. When I first listened to it, I was like "holy shit, where has this band been for the past decade?". It was not an all time great, but it was really, really, good.

    But going back to Hardwired. It is good, very good, but you can tell that the band are 50+ years old, and it shows by the songs not being "all out kick you in the teeth take no prisoners metal", but it is good. I would have to say that Spit Out the Bone is the hardest song on the Album, and it is still not a hard as My Apocalypse or anything from the 80s. I will continue to enjoy this album as it is the second best post Black Album record behind Death Magnetic.
    Last edited by Powder; 03-11-2017 at 10:02 AM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member DBPanterA's Avatar
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    Wow, there is some strong feelings here about the career trajectory of Metallica. You can count me in as another "Metallica is my favorite band" guy.

    So, I actually stopped listening to music from about 2010-2015 because the current scene is just garbage and there isn't many rock/hard rock/metal bands that are up and coming. Last summer, Metallica played US Bank Stadium (MN Vikings) w/Volbeat (like them) and Avenged Sevenfold (terrible) and I went with my good buddy where they debuted Hardwired (it had hit the air waves a mere two days prior) and it was probably the best set I had seen out of them out of the 10 or so times I have seen them live. I'm also headed down to Chicago to see them play Soldier Field this summer.

    The beauty of WWE being creatively void and going through the proverbial motions is that I have used that time to pursue other interests, and Metallica has been a topic of my free time. In regards to their touring, they have repeated stated in interviews that they will do 2 weeks on the road, 2 weeks off from here on out and that they do not want to play more than 50 dates a year (they have played over 2000 concerts total, Lars has a list of each and every song they have played and what they have played in each city). So, although I live in a major market, I personally have come to realize I most likely will have to travel to see them from here on out (and I don't care). I remember in January 2000 when I saw them back to back nights (they played 3 times in 4 days in Minneapolis w/Kid Rock and Sevendust).

    I believe Hardwired is their best record since the Black Album without question. When Rob Trujillo joined the group AFTER St. Anger was finished (watch Some Kind of Monster to see WHY that record turned out the way it did), his influence was seen on Death Magnetic. I know both James and Lars have said in recent interviews that they don't intend to play much material off Death Magnetic or And Justice while touring and that's because of the length of the songs (they have been playing Harvester or Sorrow in Asia and down in Mexico City last week). All 4 band members have actually said the most surprising thing is when they meet fans today, most fans are requesting they play songs off of Hardwired, and their set-lists have contained between 4-5 off the album. My favorite song, Spit out the Bone, I don't know how the hell they will play that live, but Lars has said he wants to play each song off the record live at least once. For the recording sessions of Hardwired, Kirk now infamously lost his cell-phone where he said he had all of his riffs and solos, so he literally contributed jack shit to the process. James, Lars, and Robert said they laid down the groundwork together at their HQ over 6 months, and think the one thing that is very apparent is how much Robert and Lars are in synch with one another after playing with each other over the past 15 or so years. Lars has jokingly said in interviews a fun game to play with the record, and one I was doing before I heard him say it is a lot of the songs on Hardwired I can imagine being on other records, where you hear some Kill 'Em All, some And Justice, some Black, some Load, etc. It also passes what James and Lars refer to as "the car test," in that you simply get in your car and drive and play the album.

    @Powder: you bring up a point about selling out, and while I will not judge the creative direction of Metallica over a period of time, I came across this interesting article over on the Metallica forum's when people there were discussing some of the reasons the Black Album became huge. It's an informative and quick read when you have a chance:

    http://ultimateclassicrock.com/billb...togallery-1=24

    The other thing I will recommend/highlight is after sifting through many interviews/articles about Metallica over the past 4 months, the one things that blew my mind was the James Hetfield interview on the Joe Rogan Experience right before Hardwired dropped. It should be easy to find on youtube and it is a little over 2 hours long. In those 2 hours, they might talk Metallica for like 5 minutes. The broach subject matter I couldn't believe in regards to what James enjoys outside Metallica and you could tell he let his guard down a bit as he generally avoids going into personal stuff all that much.

  4. #4
    Senior Member DBPanterA's Avatar
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    Thought I would throw this youtube video here for your viewing pleasure. One thing Metallica has been doing is using social media (because it barely existed during Death Magnetic) to give their fans all sorts of different things. They generally put at least one song from every concert up (a lot of the recent ones have been off Hardwired), but they also have these longer videos of them making the different songs on Hardwired. Simply search for MetallicaTV in youtube and you are set for some time. Here is the making of "Spit Out the Bone."


  5. #5
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    Best Metallica album

    Metallica are always a band that inspire a bit of debate. They're often listed as people's favourite band, too. So I guess that, even though I wouldn't go that far myself, they're a good place to try and kickstart a bit of discussion. I've posted a poll, but let's get some thoughts and reasoning behind it the vote in the thread too: so, which is the best Metallica studio album to date?

    I'll open things off with a vote for Ride the Lightning. I'd say that because most of the albums I find I can move in and out of and could quite happily condense down to just a couple of tracks, and you'd only be left with 1-2 albums where I'm a big fan of the whole thing. When you get down to that level, I'm not sure there's anything in the catalogue that I'd put at the same level of the last 12 minutes or so of Ride the Lightning Side 1 (for the old timers).

    But that's just me - and there'll be much bigger fans with far stronger opinions out there. So tell us - which really is the greatest Metallica album?

  6. #6
    Aint it Fun The Dude's Avatar
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    If you're a fan of guitar over bass and love incredibly technical shit then justice is your album.

    It's so complicated they can't even play half of it live.

    I've got a massive justice poster in my front room.

    Anything before the black album is amazing anyway. No, I wasn't really alive in the 80s but I prefer the older stuff.

  7. #7
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    I don't generally go for the overly intricate stuff, which might explain why I've never liked Justice particularly. Don't get me wrong, I respect the virtuouso stuff like the Steve Vai's of the world, but I never really love it. I guess deep down I'm more of a 'Romantic' than a 'Classicist', if you follow me. But yeah, I guess that's the reason it'd feature in the bottom half for me.

  8. #8
    Senior Member DBPanterA's Avatar
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    Ah man, you are making me vote for their best album? That's like picking a favorite kid!!!

    I just saw Metallica on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert tonight where they performed "Now That We're Dead." It was a solid performance that was edited (they cut a few parts of the song for TV).

    Now, onto my Metallica fandom. I have watched parts of their first 3 shows on their Stadium Tour that started Wednesday in Baltimore. Their live version of "Now That We're Dead" includes these sick tribal massive drums that gives a Sepultura kind of vibe. I have seen Metallica 10 times live, saw them last August in Minneapolis where they essentially performed a "greatest hits" concert. It was epic. I am flying to Chicago next month to see them at Soldier Field, and if my arm is twisted, I see there are tickets available for their Western US dates, so I could see myself traveling for those dates as well. It is possible Metallica will do a North American arena tour in late 2018, but they are pretty much booked for Stadium shows throughout the world until then. So, if you wanna see them, you may have to be willing to travel.

    Here is the set-list from August 20 in Minneapolis, which I bought and have in my car at all times:

    https://metallica.com/tour/18991

    Now for the best album, I honestly think the first disc of Hardwired is damn solid. Over on the Metallica forums, a fun game we have played is put the Hardwired song on the record it sounds most like. I would put St. Anger near the bottom due to the band's turmoil during the recording process that was seen in the documentary "Some Kind of Monster." I have always been partial to the And Justice album as I feel the overall sentiment of the death of the American Dream resonates well today, but there are a few songs I tend to skip. From top to bottom, Master of Puppets has always been my favorite, so I voted for that album. The Black Album since its release has sold more records worldwide than any other album, and they are playing 5 songs (Sandman, Sad, Unforgiven, Roam, Nothing Else Matters) on their current tour, which includes this awesome new intro for Unforgiven. The Load/Reload albums were good, but the problem was that heavy metal was in a very different place at this time with the rise of bands like Pantera, the first several years of the Ozzfest Tour, and they don't hold up to what their peers were creating at that time.

  9. #9
    Follows buzzards Smart_Mark's Avatar
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    Still haven't heard Hardwired. I bought Death Magnetic, and while the album was solid, Unforgiven 3 made it very apparent that Hetfield's vocals just aren't what they used to be. I know that's to be expected, but I guess I'm worried about hearing him today and being severely disappointed.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member DBPanterA's Avatar
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    So, I did a quick listen of Death Magnetic. I agree that it is a solid album but Hetfield's vocals were not a strong suit on that album.

    With Hardwired, the background is something like this: Kirk "supposedly" had over 250 riffs stored on his phone that he proceeded to lose (always back up your stuff!!!), so he didn't factor much into the songwriting at all. Lars, Rob, and James spent 6 months jamming and coming up with ideas. They then entered the studio to record the songs. I personally believe Hardwired is Metallica's best album since the Black Album, and it can be easily found on youtube if you want to give it a listen. The released singles so far are Hardwired/Atlus, Rise!/Moth Into Flame/ and Now That We're Dead. The one song I hope to hear them perform is Spit Out The Bone.

    I did listen to parts of their concert tonight from Uniondale, caught From Whom The Bell Tolls, Ride the Lightening and Atlus, Rise!. The band itself has said that can't play all the damn time and have instituted a 50 concert MAX per year and they don't play back to back nights. 2 weeks on the road, 2 weeks at home. I believe the rest and recovery they put into their tours help them perform at a high level each night. They also sound incredibly cohesive and tight from everything I have heard on their tour since last August. While I have plenty of bootlegs of their stuff from their first 20 years, and there are some insane concerts, the boys were heavily under the influence of various chemicals so there are times things may not be at their peak. While setlists from that time are bonkers, I do believe their approach today really means they perform at a very high level every night.

  11. #11
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    If you're not the biggest fan of the band, and you didn't like St. Anger at all, are either of the most recent two worth a listen? Just wondering if it's worth bothering.

  12. #12
    I beat up Kong! Powder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Dude View Post
    If you're a fan of guitar over bass and love incredibly technical shit then justice is your album.
    Lars, James, and Kirk began their incessant hazing of Newsted with the recording of this album. It is not "guitar over bass", it is simply that they deliberately lowered the bass on the recordings to fuck with Newsted. Newsted has said in may interviews that the band never truly got over Cliff's death and they constantly hazed him and never truly accepted him as the fourth member of the band. Which is one of the reasons he left in 2000. "Metallica" wouldn't let him take a break and do a solo project and he felt creatively stifled.

    I am a huge Metallica fan, but the fact that Lars was a dick and shut down Napster, they never accepted Newsted, and that they put out St. Anger are really dick moves.

    Quote Originally Posted by Prime Time View Post
    If you're not the biggest fan of the band, and you didn't like St. Anger at all, are either of the most recent two worth a listen? Just wondering if it's worth bothering.
    Death Magnetic is their best album since the Black Album, it completely blows Load and Re-Load out of the water (and they are appropriately named - basically Black album lite) and Hardwired is really good. Listen a few times, so the songs sink in. They do not grab you by the balls and kick your teeth down your throat, but they are very good.

    St. Anger was a complete piece of shit. Don't waste your time.
    Last edited by Powder; 06-13-2017 at 03:50 PM.

  13. #13
    Aint it Fun The Dude's Avatar
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    Yeah. I knew that about Jason but I've never found it bothered me too much not being able to hear the bass.

    Yes, pulling teeth and Orion are great I just prefer guitar.

  14. #14
    Word Enthusiast Steve's Avatar
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    This is one of those questions that makes me think too much, sends my brain in multiple directions and leaves me ultimately too bogged down to answer.

    Ride and Puppets are both damn near perfect for what they are. Just top to bottom awesome. The Black Album is fucking iconic, though, and a little too casually dismissed as a result. I've noticed that I tend to avoid considering it just because everyone loves it so much. It kinda creates a bias, of sorts. But then I hear something like The God That Failed or My Friend of Misery at random and remember just how fucking great it is. It seriously seems like I forget that and then am reminded by putting it on and realizing just how much I love every goddamn minute of it.

    Load holds the most personal meaning to me. I recognize that it's divisive and all that, but I've always loved it. ReLoad has some pretty strong moments, as well. I basically consider those albums to be their Use Your Illusion. Probably would've worked better as one album, but each ultimately has enough good shit to stand on its own.

    Really hard question, at least for hardcore 'Tallica fans. Casuals will pretty much pick either Puppets or Metallica every time.

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  15. #15
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    Right, so if anyone comes to this and wants to chip in on the first question, go ahead, the poll is still at the top....

    but for the guys who've already answered, as a way of keeping this going.... you're stuck on a desert island, and you're only allowed three of their albums with you. I don't really care how you arrive at the decision, but which three do you want to have with you, knowing that you'll never hear the others again?

  16. #16
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    Master of puppets, Justice and Metallica. I'm not overly fond of the self titled album but you'd need a bit of pop to stop yourself going mad.

  17. #17
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    Avenged Sevenfold Singer on Metallica's 'Casual Fans'

    Came across this article and given that there's plenty of Metallica and metal fans round and about this place, some of whom love the Black album and some who think it's the beginning of the end, I thought it might generate some strong opinions.

    AVENGED SEVENFOLD's M. Shadows says that the majority of the people who came to see METALLICA during the two bands' joint summer 2017 stadium tour are "casual fans" who only have a copy of the San Francisco heavy metal legends' multi-platinum 1991 album.

    METALLICA's first North American trek in eight years, which was seen by hundreds of thousands people, was also the band's first stadium run in almost two decades. It kicked off in May in Baltimore at M&T Bank Stadium.

    During an October 19 event at the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles, Shadows and his bandmates spoke about the experience of supporting METALLICA on this year's tour. The singer said: "What you learn is that all the complaining and all the [negativity] online, or in this world, when you actually go to a stadium show, to sell out stadiums, it's required that you have The Black Album. You can play deep cuts all you want you can play 'Master Of Puppets', this and that, but when they're playing The Black Album songs, every single person there is going crazy. And it's like sixty percent of their audience are casual fans that only have The Black Album, and that's one thing that's never gets reflected by their hardcore fans."

    He continued: "To go do stadiums, you have to have a record that's worked at radio, or crossed over at some point into the consciousness of the human collective, and they had that with The Black Album. As much as we heard this and that, people complaining that they want deeper cuts from them which I get but when they play The Black Album, they play 'Sad But True', 'Enter Sandman', 'Unforgiven', it's just a different vibe, and you can tell that a lot of their audience are casual fans, which is something they've done and nurtured really well throughout their career.

    "A lot of the metal bands that were around when METALLICA put out The Black Album, now they're playing clubs, and METALLICA is playing stadiums," he added.

    Thoughts?

  18. #18
    Senior Member SirSam's Avatar
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    Honestly I probably fall into this bunch. While it isn't The Black Album I love a few Metallica songs but do not get into the 'deep cuts' and I would also love to see them live one day because I think it would be a really fun experience. I honestly just don't really like the really hard thrash stuff, the songs I like are the ones that blend their more melodic side with their harder, heavier side:
    - Fade To Black
    - Master of Puppets
    - The Day That Never Comes
    - One
    - Nothing Else Matters

    Their new album was pretty fun to work out to so I might go back but that is just what my ears enjoy.

    I understand where they are coming from though, I would probably be the same but for the Chilli Peppers where I could build a full 2 hour set of random album songs. As the guy says, it is a reality of these bands playing huge stadiums, they have to play to the whole crowd, everyone paid to get there, not just the hardcore.

  19. #19
    The Brain
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    Metallica is more of a greatest hits band for me, not specifically the Black Album but more like I know the songs I like best from each of their releases but not a lot if you drill down farther. So not sure I exactly fit in the OP analysis but I get where they're coming from.

    Surprised Steve hasn't hit this thread yet.

  20. #20
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    Yeah, me too!

    I saw them at a festival so it's very much in the line of what this is talking about. Not Black Album specifically, but as you say greatest hits. I've been able to dig up the setlist from the show and they played this:

    Battery
    Master of Puppets
    Harvester of Sorrow
    Welcome Home (Sanitarium)
    For Whom the Bell Tolls
    Frantic
    Sad but True
    St. Anger
    No Remorse
    Seek & Destroy
    Blackened

    Encore:
    Fuel
    Nothing Else Matters
    Creeping Death (with Daron Malakian)

    Encore 2:
    One
    Enter Sandman


    I must say, they did pretty much everything I'd want to hear. I could have played around with the set and changed some stuff in and out but for the most part this hit the right notes.

  21. #21
    Senior Member SirSam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mizfan View Post
    Metallica is more of a greatest hits band for me.
    With one line you have pretty much summed up how I listen to them.

    Steve is probably shaking his head at us casuals and our lack of appreciation for the band.

    Honestly though given their still growing discography (I loved their most recent album), continuing wide ranging popularity, DIE HARD fan base and incredible live presence I think they could well lay claim to being the greatest rock band of the modern age (I'd define that loosley as the 1980s onwards). You could make an argument for a few other bands in that timeframe: my personal fav the Red Hot Chili Peppers, U2, Nirvana for burning so hot for such a short time, even maybe Coldplay or Radiohead depending how loosely you want to define 'rock' but personal preferences aside I don't think any of them stack up to the culmination of what Metallica offer.

  22. #22
    The Brain
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    Just for the hell of it, popped over to my main Spotify playlist to see what Metallica I’ve got on there, and here’s the songs I hit on a regular basis:

    One
    Harvester of Sorrow
    All Nightmare Long
    Die, Die My Darling
    Helpless
    Breadfan
    Stone Dead Forever
    Hardwired
    Spit Out the Bone
    Jump in the Fire
    Phantom Lord
    Seek & Destroy
    Ain’t My B*tch
    King Nothing
    Master of Puppets
    Welcome Home
    Enter Sandman
    Sad but True
    Unforgiven
    Wherever I May Roam
    Don’t Read on Me
    Through the Never
    Nothing Else Matters
    Fuel
    Slither
    Prince Charming
    Fight Fire with Fire
    Ride the Lightning
    For Whom the Bell Tolls
    Fade to Black
    Creeping Death
    St Anger
    Dirty Window

    So, maybe more than just the greatest hits, but far from their whole catalogue, which I am known to do for bands that I like on that top level. Metallica is up there for me but not quite on the level that I want to hear tons of deep cuts.

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