Posts Tagged ‘The Unforgiven’

metallicaIt’s Christmas time and I felt like be generous to all you rockers and metalheads out there by giving you a second album of the week. We are continuing our conquest of the top 50 metal albums of all time list that Loudwire.com and we have a bit of a controversial one for all of you. In the world today, there are several different types of Metallica fans with those that believe the band stopped making great albums after …And Justice For All and those that believe that the self titled album which is known passionately to fans as The Black Album was the beginning of the end of their favorite metal band. For James Hetfield (Lead Vocals/Rhythm Guitar), Kirk Hammett (Lead Guitar), Lars Ulrich (Drums), and Jason Newsted (Bass), The Black Album was about to launch the band into a new stratosphere. The album that was produced by Bob Rock (Bon Jovi, Motley Crue) was released on August 12, 1991 and it was a commercial success as it landed the band a Grammy for Best Metal Performance in 1992 and it was the first album from the band to debut at number one on the Billboard Top 200 Charts. It also went number one in the UK, Switzerland, Norway, New Zealand, Germany, Canada, and Australia as it sold over 16 million copies going 16X Platinum in the US. At the end of the 90’s, it was ranked 8TH on The Billboard’s Decade-end Charts.

metallica black album back1. Enter Sandman– The first single off the album that was written by Kirk Hammett as it moves at 123 beats per minute in this track that is all about nightmares and everything that happens due to them. This was actually the last song on the album that received lyrics. 5/5

2. Sad but True– One of the most bad ass songs on the album which was recorded in D standard tuning in this song that is all about addiction and how it controls your every move and thought of the day. 5/5

3. Holier Than Thou– an in your face track that still contains some elements of thrash about people who think because they are religious are better than you. 5/5

4. The Unforgiven– The first essential power ballad from the band that was different than Fade To Black, One, etc. The track’s lyrics deal with the theme of someone who tries his best, but struggles because there are those who would hold him down. 5/5

5. Wherever I May Roam– The track starts off with a gong and Sitar with a 12 stringed bass to give the effect of accented notes before Newsted switches back to a 4 string bass for the rest of the track. It features standard tuning (E A D G B E) and the track is about life on the road. 5/5

6. Don’t Tread On Me– There was a lot of sentiment over anti-America beliefs over …And Justice For All so this track was the response as Hetfield explains, “This is the other side of that. America is a fucking good place. I definitely think that. And that feeling came about from touring a lot. You find out what you like about certain places and you find out why you live in America, even with all the bad fucked-up shit. It’s still the most happening place to hang out.” 5/5

Metallica - Metallica -cd-7. Through the Never-a thrash like track that smashes through your speakers about how mankind looks to gain all the knowledge of the world, but we don’t understand how puny we really are in the universe. 5/5

8. Nothing Else Matters– The other ballad on the album that was initially written by Hetfield while he was on the phone with his girlfriend. It was never meant to be released until Lars heard it and then it was considered. It’s the only track on the album that Hetfield plays the guitar solo. 5/5

9. Of Wolf and Man– an incredible track that while it is talking about werewolves, it’s talking about our more animalistic side and how we have to conquer everything. It’s the point of where we become Of Wolf and Man. 5/5

10. The God That Failed-I have always loved the opening bass riff to this track that kicks it off along with Lars before James and Kirk come in. The track’s lyrics deal with the idea of a God that fails to heal it’s own because James’s mother died of Cancer after refusing medical attention believing that God would heal her. 5/5

11. My Friend of Misery– I have always loved the beginning of the track because the bass riff helps set up the mood of the track which is very dark. It’s about someone who sees their friend wallowing away in self loathing and pity. 5/5

12. The Struggle Within– The track opens up with a military cadence of sorts in the drum department as Kirk plays himself in as the song absolutely rips. The track is about someone who is just wasting away in their own paranoia. 5/5

My Final Thoughts– I am one of those people that believes that this is the best album the band ever wrote which is why it was so successful. They were tested by their producer to reach for the sky when it came to writing and it paid off. Why I love the whole album, my favorite tracks are still My Friend Of Misery and The God That Failed. I am giving the album five stars out of five for a final grade.

 

1Some of you out there may think that this is a typo or just hard to imagine, but it’s not a typo. Lollapalooza once again resonated from Grant Park in Chicago, IL for three days of music and art. Day one featured some great artists like Gary Clark Jr. and Sir Paul McCartney, but it was day two that I was looking forward to when the mighty Metallica hit the stage to close out the Samsung Galaxy Stage. The trash metal titans hit the stage in Chicago to further show how diversified the festival can really be on a day where it featured such artists as G-Eazy, Charli XCX, Django Django, and many more. Fans of the group were also in for a very rare treat as it was only the eighth or so gig that Metallica has done in 2015 so for a metal fan like me I was chomping at the bit to see the reigning kings of metal. It was also the first time since 2009 that the band played in Chicago and the first time they played Lollapalooza since 1996. After the bands usual intro of Ennio Morricone’s Ecsasty Of Gold, James said that he had an announcement to make and it as, “Give Me Fuel, Give Me Fire…” and the band kicked right into Fuel from the Reload record.

2The band was fuel of energy as they delivered their special brand of high octane metal that the crowd was craving to end their day on a high note. At one point in the show, James had asked the crowd how many of them had attended a Metallica show with a lot of cheers and hands flying up in the air. He then told the ones that had ever been to a Metallica show to just follow what the vets did. The band blazed through all of their years as they played songs like For Whom The Bell Tolls, King Nothing, Disposable Heroes, and an amazing rendition of Welcome Home (Sanitarium). I have to admit though that I was a little jealous of the people who got to stand behind the band on the stage during their set as they had the best seat in the house. One of my favorite performances of the night came when the band performed The Unforgiven as James played the acoustic guitar as well as his electric throughout the whole song giving it that dynamic that we all love from the band.

4Every show honestly has their funny moments and the one for me came as the band was about to play their classic from Kill ‘Em All in Seek & Destroy. Apparently Lars wasn’t getting the notes right at first and James laughingly joked that the band had a new drummer and they tried it again successfully the second time around. ¬†After nearly one hour and forty minutes on stage, I honestly thought that the band was done, but they came back out for an encore and the band certainly didn’t look that tired to be honest. The band opened their encore with Whiskey In The Jar and continued with Am I Evil after that before closing with two classics from the Black Album in Nothing Else Matters and Enter Sandman. It was the perfect ending to a night two that was amazing and this performance was further proof that Metallica are still on top of their game despite what anybody might say. They are the kings of metal for a reason and they are non like them.

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