Metallica still tweaking album... 9 weeks before release


Metallica frontman James Hetfield says the band are still making small adjustments to 10th album Hardwired… To Self-Destruct – even though there are just nine weeks to go before it’s released.

He reports that the music for the double-disc title has now been completed, but says the continuing work is down to their perfectionist attitude.

And he adds that the band are taking a “can’t please them all” approach to the fact that some people have started criticising the follow-up to 2008’s Death Magnetic without having heard it.

Hetfield tells 93.3 WMMR: “You can call us perfectionists if you want, and I will too. But there’s always something – you know, ‘Ah, this is a little too long-winded. Let’s cut this out. Let’s make this a little more potent.’

“We’re craftsmen and we want to make this as sharp and potent as possible. So all the way up to the last minute, even running order, there’s always something we’re thinking about and trying to make it the best.”

He adds: “It is, by all means, done as far as songs go. So it’s just artwork and little things here and there we’re still working on.” The frontman describes Hardwired… To Self-Destruct as “diverse” but says that lead track Hardwired is “a summary of a lot of the feel around the album.”

He continues: “That’s definitely one of the shorter songs on the record. We’ve been known to have long songs and there’s a few of those.”

That’s the reason the title will be delivered on two discs: “We’ve got 12 songs on there, so to make it sonically the best, that’s what has to happen,” he says. “We want it to sound great, so however it’s got to work, that’s how it’s going to work.”

Guitarist Kirk Hammett last month said he’d refused to read any online comments about Hardwired, and Hetfield accepts there are plenty of haters out there, who feel Metallica have “sold out” in recent times.

“They’ve got a resentment from 10 years ago and they’re bringing it up on this new album – they haven’t even heard it,” says the frontman.

“It’s like, ‘All right, this is not a musical critique. This is, someone’s pissed off and needing to get it out.’ So we don’t give a crap.

“We love what we do and we’re doing it because we love doing it. We’re making music we want to hear. We’re artists and it’s as simple as that. You can judge it all you want – but we’re going to do what we feel is right for us.”

Hardwired… To Self Destruct arrives on November 18. Metallica tour Latin America starting next month, with further dates to be announced soon.

Metallica's epic journey from Death Magnetic to Hardwired... To Self-Destruct

The Hardwired... To Self-Destruct cover

The Hardwired... To Self-Destruct cover

Metallica: Hardwired… To Self-Destruct tracklist

Disc 1

  1. Hardwired
  2. Atlas, Rise!
  3. Now That We’re Dead
  4. Moth Into Flame
  5. Am I Savage?
  6. Halo On Fire

Disc 2

  1. Confusion
  2. Dream No More
  3. ManUNkind
  4. Here Comes Revenge
  5. Murder One
  6. Spit Out The Bone

Metallica 2016 Latin American tour dates

Oct 26: San Juan Coliseo De Puerto Rico, Puerto Rico
Oct 29: Quito Parque Bicentenario, Ecuador
Nov 01: Bogota Hipodromo De Los Andes, Columbia
Nov 03: Guatemala City Estadio Cementos Progreso, Guatemala
Nov 05: San Jose Estadio Nacional, Costa Rica

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Not only is one-time online news editor Martin an established rock journalist and drummer, but he’s also penned several books on music history, including SAHB Story: The Tale of the Sensational Alex Harvey Band, a band he once managed, and the best-selling Apollo Memories about the history of the legendary and infamous Glasgow Apollo. Martin has written for Classic Rock and Prog and at one time had written more articles for Louder than anyone else (we think he's second now). He’s appeared on TV and when not delving intro all things music, can be found travelling along the UK’s vast canal network.