Metallica - Death Magnetic [Only a matter of time until someone did :P haha]
Never, in my lifetime, has there been such an anticipated album in Heavy Metal. With the failed attempt of 'St Anger', Metallica were starting to become a band on life support after nearly splitting many times during the recording of the album [as shown on Some Kind Of Monster]. The band was in turmoil, with arguments raging and what seemed to be a total loss of originality in their songwriting their was only one upside to the whole ordeal, they recruited new bassist Rob Trujillo. For me, this is where Metallica started to get back on track.
With the band completed, All the members have commented on how well the band now fit together and after a few years of getting all the frustration at each other out [finally] they began Death Magnetic. As a fan, id heard all this chatter about how it was gonna be 'back to the roots' and 'old school' Metallica, i took it with a pinch of salt but as soon as they announced they were working with legendary Rick Rubin, i knew this was gonna be AT LEAST better than St Anger. My excitement grew and i started to keep an eye on any leaked material or video's about the album and when in 2006, 2 songs which were apparently destined for the album were played live, im sure everyone, like me, felt the dissapointment rush over them, weak songs and terrible songwriting. My excitement subsided, but how that has changed now that the album is finally here.
The album starts off with a massive riff-fest with 'That Was Just Your Life', already you can sense the spirit of what made Metallica so great all those years back, riff after riff after riff and what all us Metallica fans wanted to hear, a solo! this song grabs you by the balls and never lets go, in fact, it just keeps tightening its grip reducing your testicles to dust. The next track 'The End Of The Line' continues to batter the listener with constant riff's, with a more complex structure than the opening track and the first feature on the album of a slow melodic part, which builds to an almighty ending.
I could go through this album track by track and list everything thats brilliant about it but it could take me hours! The stand out tracks for the rest of the album is the stunning 'The Day That Never Comes' with the structure of 'One' and a similar power behind it in the way its delivered, this song truly holds an extreme emotion that is so hard to find in Metal these days. It features Hetfield's rare slow melodic vocals, reminiscant of 'Nothing Else Matters' and 'Bleeding Me', brilliant dual guitars and a flurry of solo's. Its clear from this one track that they've tried to blend together elements from their first 5 albums, the drums scream 'Kill Em All' the solo's wouldn't have looked out of place on 'MOP', 'AJFA' or 'RTL' and the vocals bring the black album into the mix. Possibly the most stand out track of the album is 'All Nightmare Long', an absoloute power-house of a song that has everything you want from Metallica, marching riffs, powerful solo's, catchy vocals that you can sing along too and a structure that could have been carved out by God himself, Any doubts about this album are shot down by the time this song kicks in.
Other one's to look out for is the groove soaked 'Cyanide', the utterly epic 'The Judas Kiss' which quite simply kicks f
rse and shows that Metallica may have drawn influences from the the first 4/5 albums, but they have clearly aimed this album towards a modern audience and to some degree have updated the Metallica sound. Other corkers include the gorgeously constructed 'Unforgiven III' which finishes the trilogy and the ultimate return to thrash, 'My Apocalypse' which finishes this album off with a bang.
But in all honesty, the tracks i haven't mentioned [Broken Beat & Scarred and Suicide & Redemption] are still great tracks which re-enforce the fact that this album is the best thing Metallica have done in over 15 years. A stunning modern Metal album, with elements of many Metallica albums featured, The structure of 'And Justice For All', the massive riff's featured on 'Master Of Puppets' and 'Ride The Lightning', the speed and excitment of 'Kill Em All' with the hidden melody of the Black Album. Metallica have just thrown a massive 'FU
CK YOU' to everyone who doubted that they could write a truly stunning album.
Leak or no leak, go out and buy this album because not only is it a true return to form from the goliath that is METALLICA..it may very well be the best Heavy Metal album of the last 10 years!
My word, that took a while...im going to bed haha