It’s well-known that Metallica’s 2003 album St. Anger provokes a pretty strong reaction in Metallica fans. And more often than not, that reaction is not a good one.
But it would appear that James Hetfield and co. take criticism in their stride. On a recent Metallica tour, Hetfield has been asking the audience what they think of the divisive album, and the results are online for all to see.
One video from an un-named gig shows Hetfield saying to the audience: “Question for you, you can honestly answer it to the best of your knowledge: St. Anger?”, asking them to respond with a thumbs up or thumbs down. Greeted by a selection of cheers and (mostly) boos, Hetfield laughs and says “I’m trying to encourage you. Let’s give it another shot, shall we?” before the band plunge into Dirty Window, the fourth track on St. Anger.
Another video shows Hetfield joking with the audience, saying, “That one’s from your favourite album, St. Anger!” And reacting to the boos with, “Oh come on, it’s growing on you now. Just give it a little more time buddy, you’ll get it!” And then adding, “OK, eight more songs from St. Anger, ready? Just kidding!”
Fans in the comments are digging Hetfield's sense of humour, with one saying "Gotta love Hetfields sense of humour, even about his own album", while many agree that St. Anger doesn't deserve the hate it gets.
Another commenter says: "I love how he's says, 'Give it time buddy, you'll get it.' Yep, you'll find this album in your deepest lows and it will all make sense one day."
You can watch the videos below.
Metallica's next live appearance will be at the Global Citizen Festival in New York's Central Park on September 24. We have a sneaking feeling that the set-list that night will be St. Anger free.