Well Amazon finally delivered my Hardwired..To Self Destruct. It’s not as if I was foaming at the mouth waiting for this or anything. Exactly 1 week late. On RSD Black Friday of all days. Everyone else who even has a slight liking for Metallica has had the album to listen to for a full week. Therefore I have decided to split the boxset up into 4 parts. The 3 vinyl albums, and the added bonus cd. Just a note of the quality of this boxset though first. The packaging is amazing. The pictures are cool, the buttons are no good to me, but a nice addition I guess. I also enjoy having a cd that I can listen to in the car, while having the vinyl for at home. The best of both worlds. The coolest part of this is the unique and beautiful coloured vinyl. The 3 slabs are see through yellow, blue and red and all have a marbled effect in them as well. As Borat would say “WaWaWeeWa. Is a very nice.”
Hardwired – We’ve all heard this song by now. It was released on video and to radio stations this past August. It was the song that introduced us to the album. For me, and I think for many others as well, it gave hope that the new Metallica was going to rock. it was going to be a balls out affair. On the gas, kicking ass, and taking names. If you don’t like us, get the hell out of our way. The energy, the attitude, and the volume level meant Metallica were back. Looking for their throne at the top of the musical pile.
Atlas, Rise – The first thing I notice about this song is the guitar tone has a definite 80’s Metallica tone. This is a good thing. A really good thing. On October 31, this was the third single released from the album. (Around the same time, they also released a free mask available at select record stores, and I was able to snag one of those as well.) I had heard it once on the radio, and I liked it right away. Old school Metallica guitar work, great vocals, booming bass, and Lars sounding very un-Lars like.
Now That We’re Dead – This song has a very Enter Sandman beat to it. Some of the drumming sounds a little electronically altered, but the rest of the song is pretty awesome. The guitar work is ace here. The starts and stops. The mellow but yet aggressive tones, and the enchanting rhythmic beat keep you in a trance. Oh, and did I mention that I love the guitar work here.
I grab that gorgeous blue slab of vinyl and after looking through it out the window for a while, flip it over and bask in side b.
Moth Into Flame – The second single released quickly became everyone’s favourite. Everyone I talked to about this album ranted how awesome this song is. To me it almost has an Iron Maiden quality to it. The guitar work especially sounds like some of the best dual guitar metal bands out there. What that means, is don’t count James out. He is a great vocalist of course, but he can shred when the time is right. Kirk is the real star here though. His riffs are loud, fast and awesome. Lars makes up for the last one by just doing what he should stick to. Shut your yap, lose the electronic crap, and pound on the skins as best as you can. He delivers here. James’ vocals are growlingly gorgeous, and Robert keeps the bottom end down low. Of note here, is the wah pedal influenced guitar work and the solos. Did I mention again the guitar kicks ass on this one.
Am I Savage? – The vinyl version has a different track order than the cd. On the cd this is the 4th song on the second disc. This is a slower, but yet aggressive and growly song. This isn’t the new Bon Jovi folks. The Metallica version would be more like This Fucking House Ain’t For Sale Asshole, So Stop Asking Or I’ll Rip Off Your Arm And Beat You With It. Am I Savage? Yes you are James. Yes you are. Of note for me is the guitar tone again. Both Kirk and James experiment here. I almost get a AC/DC meets death metal meets 70’s wah mix if you can wrap your head around that.
Halo On Fire – More guitar experimentation here. The transition between guttural screams/guitar wails and slower, quieter almost peaceful music(for Metallica) really hooked me in. Of note for me is the sound of Robert’s bass. He must have confused Lars with something shiny and cranked up his bass amp. I wish he was allowed to crank it up on every song. This song sounds nothing like Black Sabbath, but this song reminds me of great Dio era Sabbath songs that start all peaceful and then suddenly blast you into next week. This is possibly my favourite song so far on this album. I love it. LOVE IT.
If the rest of the album is like this I am in like Flynn.