Here's what Metallica's new single Lux Æterna sounds like with the vocals from Hit The Lights (spoiler: pretty awesome, actually)

James Hetfield in 2022 and in 1984
(Image credit: Getty)

Unless you've been in some kind of self-imposed exile from society recently, you're probably keenly aware that Metallica released their rollocking new single, Lux Æterna, last week, alongside the news that a brand new studio album, 72 Seasons, is coming next year.

The new song has provoked all manner of reactions from the metal community, from waves of delight at Metallica embracing their early 80s roots once again to more cynical fans attempting to undercut the positivity, including one who even went so far as to cheekily re-record Kirk Hammett's solo on the track.

Now, one intrepid YouTuber named johnp82 has rammed home Lux Æterna's nod to Metallica's early days by re-dubbing the new track with James Hetfield's original vocals from 1983 banger Hit The Lights, the opening song from Metallica's debut album Kill 'Em All. We'll take it as a loving homage to the fact that Metallica have injected some youthful vigour into their new material, but either way, you may not be entirely surprised to find out that it actually works rather well.

Have a listen for yourself below.

Released on April 14, 2023, Metallica's new album looks set to be a conceptually loaded affair, with Hetifled noting of the record's title: "72 seasons. The first 18 years of our lives that form our true or false selves. The concept that we were told ‘who we are’ by our parents. A possible pigeonholing around what kind of personality we are.

“I think the most interesting part of this is the continued study of those core beliefs and how it affects our perception of the world today. Much of our adult experience is reenactment or reaction to these childhood experiences. Prisoners of childhood or breaking free of those bondages we carry.”

Metallica will embark on an extensive world tour to support the album next year.

72 Seasons tracklist

1. 72 Seasons
2. Shadows Follow
3. Screaming Suicide
4. Sleepwalk My Life Away
5. You Must Burn!
6. Lux Æterna
7. Crown of Barbed Wire
8. Chasing Light
9. If Darkness Had a Son
10. Too Far Gone?
11. Room of Mirrors
12. Inamorata

Merlin Alderslade
Executive Editor, Louder

Merlin moved into his role as Executive Editor of Louder in early 2022, following over ten years working at Metal Hammer. While there, he served as Online Editor and Deputy Editor, before being promoted to Editor in 2016. Before joining Metal Hammer, Merlin worked as Associate Editor at Terrorizer Magazine and has previously written for the likes of Classic Rock, Rock Sound, eFestivals and others. Across his career he has interviewed legends including Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy, Metallica, Iron Maiden (including getting a trip on Ed Force One courtesy of Bruce Dickinson), Guns N' Roses, KISS, Slipknot, System Of A Down and Meat Loaf. He is also probably responsible for 90% of all nu metal-related content making it onto the site.