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 Metallica's Black album-25 years old today

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Sword Of The Heretic
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PostSubject: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Fri Aug 12, 2016 9:11 pm

I remember when it was released. I had just turned 14, and was excited beyond measure when I got it on cassette
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mc666
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 12:48 am

I was disappointed when I first heard it. I can listen to it now & enjoy most of it, but it took a while to grow on me.

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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 3:04 am

I didn't hate it, but it left me scratching my head. I had to play it twice wondering where metallica went. No fast songs, two ballads, and where the hell was the thrash!!! It was okay, but I was really disappointed. I did see them twice on that tour, and they were amazing shows. But then Load came out, and my metallica days were officially over after hearing that garbage.
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Fat Freddy
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 9:54 am

Good Lord, that was a quick quarter century.

At the time of the Black Album's release I was about to start my senior year of college and I was a full blown obsessed, borderline-stalker Metallica fan boy - I probably would've willingly taken a bullet for any of the band members at that stage of my life. Needless to say, I was looking forward to the record. Justice had come out just as I'd started my freshman year and that album had pretty much been the soundtrack to my entire college experience ... so I thought it was kinda cool that I'd finish my schooling with the new one playing in the background, kinda like bookends.

I got more & more psyched every time I went into my Tower Records store cuz they had a big tear-off countdown calendar behind the front counter marking the days till the release date: "29 days! 28 days! 27 days!" etc., etc.

Then the video for "Enter Sandman" hit MTV a week or two before the release date, and.... it didn't bowl me over. I remember my brother and I watched it together and at the end we both said "Well, that was... okay.... I guess." Haha. Still, I convinced myself that "Sandman" was just "the radio song" and the rest of the album would thrash, crush, kill and annihilate as usual.

Anyway... I was in New York City on the release date, working at my college internship in Midtown. There was a Sam Goody store a few blocks from the office so I went down there on my lunch break to pick up a first day copy.  I listened to it in my Walkman on the walk back and three songs in I was already going "What the hell is this?" It was too slick, too slow, too polished, too... middle of the road.

I listened to the rest of it on the bus ride home that night, and by the time I got back to Jersey I was practically homicidal. "WHAT THE F***? IT SUCKS! THEY SOLD OUT! DAMMIT!" The idea that my formerly bulletproof favorite band had released a sub-par record was like finding out there was no Santa Claus. (haha)

By the time I went back to school a week or three later I'd been playing the album frequently, really trying to like it and hoping it would eventually click for me, but finally I had to admit that I was beating a dead horse. I wrote a very lukewarm review of it in the first issue of the college paper that semester, while my buddy Gary wrote a slobberingly positive review of it right next to mine, so at least we were "fair and balanced" about it. (Haha)

I did attend two shows of the Black Album tour that year, both were great gigs, but I remember thinking to myself at the 2nd gig, "Twice on this tour for me and I don't even like the album? Nah, I'm not a fanboy," haha.

Time has cooled my hatred of the record. It took years but I actually kinda sorta like some of it nowadays, though it'll never be a frequent player. The singles, especially "Enter Sandman" and "Nothing Else Matters," are so overplayed by this time that I never really need to hear them again.

After 25 years, I understand the reasoning behind Metallica's decision to change in sound - if they hadn't tweaked their formula they would've stagnated. They were looking at the long-term picture and saw that staying strictly "thrash" would be a dead end for them. Obviously it worked out very well for their career (haha), but they were never the same for me after the black album.

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Last edited by Fat Freddy on Sat Aug 13, 2016 10:47 am; edited 1 time in total
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Lari
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 10:34 am

Great story, Freddy!
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Fat Freddy
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 10:46 am

Lari wrote:
Great story, Freddy!

Thanks. I have told it so many times in so many forums over the years that I can practically recite it in my sleep. Maybe I should turn it into a entry for my blog Very Happy

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007
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 12:02 pm

I never quite got the hatred for it. I mean, I understand where the haters were coming from, but for what it is, it's a great album (and the first Metallica I bought on CD).
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MoonChild
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 1:37 pm

007 wrote:
I never quite got the hatred for it. I mean, I understand where the haters were coming from, but for what it is, it's a great album (and the first Metallica I bought on CD).

Same sentiments here.......... Never liked any albums of Metallica after the black
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Wrecked Neck
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 1:43 pm

I don't agree with that last part Freddy. There are still many bands out t h ere that stayed true to their roots, and made some great albums. I was thinking about it the other day when a megadeth song came on my mp3 play e r in the car. If you took megadeth entire body of work and put it up against metallica, megadeth blows them away. Sure they never became the gigantic superstars metallica did, but they did alright for themselves.

Other bands like slayer, over kill, testament, exodus, etc etc all stayed true to form, and still ended up making some great stuff.yes there are some duds, but overall I'd say they had great careers. Again not megastars, but great musicians with a respectable catalogue of music.

Metallica on the other hand were already selling out arenas on the justice tour. They were one of the biggest bands in the metal scene since MOP came out. No, they just sold out, plain and simple. Would they be as big today as they are now if they stuck to thrash? Probably not, but I bet they would still be playing arenas and selling tons of records.
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manny
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 3:25 pm

I liked the album but I was a bit disappointed. The production was outstanding, no denying that but I was expecting I suppose more of the same as they had done in the past.

Also, as a snubbish fanboy I was a bit shocked when I saw chics who hated metal liking them, jocks, all sorts of members sneaked into my fraternity while I was out casing for beer. Maybe my reaction had more to do with how there audience had changed overnight then any of the music they had created.

Now adays I like the album quite a bit but will always prefer their earlier material.
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tohostudios
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 3:52 pm

Since I'm not a fan of thrash at all I actually enjoyed the Black album.  But I can understand why fans of early Metallica hate it.  I also agree with FF that much of it is soooooooo overplayed.  Hell, you hear Enter Sandman between innings at baseball games now.

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Gilbert
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 4:10 pm

My first introduction to metallica back in high school and one of their best releases ever imo. Not pure thrash but still brutal while being mature.
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chewie
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 7:02 pm

The Struggle Within has been the only song with any staying power, for me, at least.
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muckie
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 7:29 pm

I like Nothing Else Matters, but honestly don't see the hype about that album. It was drudgy 90's angst metal that was characteristic of my least favorite kind of music of that decade. It seems everything in the 90s was about angst, really creepy, crass, dark and brooding.

This album is one of the most overrated 90's metal albums just like Green Day's Dookie was overhyped for punk. I only recently listened to Dookie and skipped through most of it. I don't like the guitar sounds they use on it, and the songs were not particularly interesting.
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Witchfinder
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sat Aug 13, 2016 7:45 pm

Huge disappointment for me when it was released. I lined up at my local record store to get the cassette at midnight on the day of release. That's what us old people did back in the day, kids! Exactly like FF I tried to like the album and convince myself that it was good, but I found it to be underwhelming. I listened to it recently and my opinion hasn't changed. Some of the tracks aren't bad - "Holier Than Thou," "Through The Never," and "The Struggle Within," but I've heard the single cuts so many times I feel like I never need to hear them again. I can see how a younger person at the time or a new fan might have loved it because it's so accessible, but I had been a Metallica fan for years at that point and it didn't do much for me. I didn't even go see them on this tour, which was quite a feat considering they toured for roughly 11 million years on this album.
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Thelemech
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sun Aug 14, 2016 3:11 am

Hated it when it first came out and I am quite indifferent to it now. It just was not the sound I wanted from Metallica, though it sold a truckload of copies and was a great financial move on their part.
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sun Aug 14, 2016 9:53 am

Had a similar reaction to FF...... a WTF album for a band that could do no wrong had done wrong...... it did grow on me quickly once I took the songs for what they are. Still better than anything they released after it.
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Boris2008
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Sun Aug 14, 2016 1:48 pm

I liked it at first, now I think it's dull as toast.
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Mon Aug 15, 2016 10:16 am

I can clearly remember sitting in my buddy's car, fresh from Tower Records midnight release, and popping the cassette in. When 'The Unforgiven' came on, we were looking at the liner notes to see who was singing lead vocals. Jason? Lars? It couldn't be James, could it?

Like others here, I was disappointed with it and after years of overplay, it's not a frequent listener for me. It was probably the last Metallica album that I really kinda liked for a time.

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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Tue Aug 16, 2016 9:22 am

When the album came out, I had basically been listening to Justice on repeat for the past year after discovering it, so a new record had huge shoes to fill for me.

I liked Enter Sandman when the video was released. Not as much as Justice, but I was into it. When the album came out, I was definitely not into at all, as a whole. I gave it a couple listens, and never bothered with it again. I did, of course, hear all the singles all the time, but other than that, nothing.

About 5 years ago, a co-worker convinced me I should give it another shot, and that it was basically a good album and that some of it even sounded like leftover and chopped up Justice riffs.

So I gave it another shot, and damn, did I really like it. I love it now, aside from The Unforgiven and Nothing Else Matters. Since I took those two off the Black Album entry on my iphone, it plays as a really solid 10-song album.

I tried going back to Load to see if there was anything there I mighta been missing out on. There's not.
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corplhicks
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Tue Aug 16, 2016 2:33 pm

I loved it, but I was pretty young when it came out. Mtv was a big reason for getting me hooked, and mind you this was my first taste of the band. After discovering their first three, this album became a bit of a bore. And overplay was the ultimate killer.

But it is damn heavy, and at least we finally got to hear Jason haha.
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Tue Aug 16, 2016 5:38 pm

My introduction to Metallica was in junior high when the AJFA album had been out for a couple years already, and I really liked the song and video for "One". At the time, I thought they would never make a crap album... I had just got into the Thrash stuff after my initial introduction of late 80s commercial pop metal like Winger and Skid Row. My taste in music got heavier and more aggressive within one year. My freshman year in high school started with listening to Facelift by AIC and Faith No More's The Real Thing to Suicidal Tendencies, Testament, Megadeth, and then onto Sepultura and Death. (Sorry about the detour)


Anyways... I was very disappointed after seeing the video premier of Enter Sandman on MTV. It was slow and boring as far as I was concerned (at the time). But after many years, I finally like some of it. Songs like Sad But True and Holier Than Thou are pretty good.
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bgsully
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PostSubject: Re: Metallica's Black album-25 years old today   Tue Aug 16, 2016 6:18 pm

It was definitely a shocker for me and my circle of friends. It wasn't everything I loved about Metallica. It did grow on me, but I still view it as the beginning of a downward spiral.
That being said, I liked death magnetic so maybe there's hope for the future.
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