Metallica have long had an interesting history with music videos. Their first “real” video was made for “One” back in 1988, and that really started the train moving. Then as “The Black Album” was released and was making history (and still is to this day), they band really stepped up their game with their videos. In 1996, as the band was beginning to release their very underrated album Load, they stepped a little out of their comfort zone and released one of their best music videos. The Samuel Bayer directed video for “Until It Sleeps” made and left quite an impact on the band and its fans. Not only did the song show a different direction musically but, the visual aspect that accompanied the song was right along with that. Lyrically, the song is about James Hetfield’s mother’s battle with cancer and the ensuing anger that he felt as she was going through it and losing her battle with it. The video is quite intriguing as a lot of it deals with the “Fall Of Man.” A lot of the imagery was also taken from various paintings by Hieronymus Bosch, as well as other surrealist art pieces. The video would go on to win Best Rock Video at the 1996 MTV Video Music Awards. This video is truly one of the best the band has put out.
Metallica’s “Bleeding Me” is one of the best songs the band has ever written. There is no denying it. Everything about this song is simply perfect. It’s also one of those songs that the band really needs to start playing live a lot more. This alternate version is from the S&M album. What conductor Michael Kamen did with the orchestral arrangement is absolutely lovely and deep. I’ve personally always loved this record. “Bleeding Me” from this album is truly amazing and epic which takes the song to a whole new level. So, enjoy this gem of an alternate version.
What else is there to say about Metallica that hasn’t already been said? Over the past few days I’ve been on a Metallica kick, and while listening back to all their albums (yes even St. Anger), I noticed how strong their ending songs all are. From their newest, “Spit Out The Bone,” all the way back to “Metal Militia” and probably the best one “The Outlaw Torn,” there is no doubting Metallica knows how to properly end an album. (more…)
Since Metallica released Hardwired… To Self Destruct, I haven’t been able to take it out of rotation. In fact I don’t think I’ll be able to for quite some time. Because they have a new album out I thought, why not update the album rank of Metallica.
Keep in mind, this is just my personal order of how I see it.
In every bands career there are times when the band changes things up and tries to take a chance and expand upon what they’ve already done. Sometimes this works out great, and other times it seriously backfires. In 1996, coming off the monster success of their “Black Album,” Metallica shocked their fans and released “Load.” Granted Load came in at number one on the billboard charts, it seemed to have left many of Metallica’s fans wondering what the hell is going on with the band. Gone was the band’s trademark thrash metal style and instead of that, the style was replaced with a more blues centered structure. The speed and complexity that the fans had grown to love was entirely disregarded on Load.I still remember seeing the video for “Until It Sleeps,” wondering what happened to Metallica. I was one of those fans that was left scratching their head as to why Metallica would do this. Then as the years went on and I experienced more of what life has to offer, I took another listen to Load. What I found was an album that was ahead of it’s time. This was Metallica being vulnerable and laying it all out there. This is a great example of a band growing up and stepping outside their comfort zone. It is also an album that takes on a different meaning once you’ve lived life a bit. One of the best songs Metallica has ever written appears on Load. That song is “Bleeding Me.” The lyrics alone are enough to resonate deep. The music is solemn and moody, allowing all the emotions to flow with the song. Other songs like “Until It Sleeps,” “Hero Of The Day,” “Ain’t My Bitch,” “King Nothing,” and “The Outlaw Torn,” are steeped deep in misery and toil. The entirety of Load is astounding. There might be a song here and there that seems out of place but this album is a true gem. There is something about this album that, like a fine wine or a really good scotch only gets better with age.
Load wasn’t right for the time it was released. The fans still wanted more heavy from the band, and were caught completely off guard by this. This record is an exceptionally underrated metal/hard rock experience that takes the band’s music into entirely new territories. Load is an excellent album with great songwriting and a high level of diversity. Giving something for everyone. Sure it’ll never top what Ride The Lightning, Master Of Puppets, And Justice For All and The “Black” Album are, but it’s definitely an album worthy of your time and patience. Give it another chance and you’ll see what I mean. Leave all your preconceived notions about Metallica at the door when you listen to this album.
The past few days I’ve been on a huge Metallica kick. So I thought it would only be fitting that I do an album rank of Metallica’s albums. So here they are from not their best to the best. This is also my personal opinion!