Prior to their Black Album,, Metallica entered the American Top 40 for the first time with their hit album ... And Justice for All. This album garnered the attention of world famous producer Bob Rock, who had just finished working on Mötley Crüe’s 1989 album Dr. Feelgood. With twelve tracks and many timeless hits, The Unforgiven, Wherever I May Roam, Sad but True, Nothing Else Matters, etc., Metallica built a bridge between metal and radio, normalising a whole genre of music that suddenly became palatable to a mainstream audience. As of January 2021, Metallica has sold over 30 million copies of their Black Album, and during the 90’s it very quickly became a household staple. Bob Rock, when asked about the impact of the album said, “There was a musical transition when the album came out, and it changed radio because that heavy sound was now on the radio. So culturally, it had an impact, and I don’t think I’ve made a record that had done that before”. So to celebrate this landmark album on its 30th anniversary, the Black Album is receiving its definitive re-release… yet that is not all.
On the 10th of September we can be expecting the ultimate remaster as well as one of the most ambitious projects every conceived by the Metallica team. The Metallica Blacklist is more than just a mere tribute album, it is a compilation of covers of songs from the Black Album by over 50 artists, spanning all genres, styles, cultures and continents, each contributing their own unique interpretation of their favourite track. With a 53 long tracklist, releases from The Blacklist have already started trickling through, the first being a collaboration no one could have imagined. Miley Cyrus teamed up with WATT, Elton John, Robert Trujillo, Chad Smith and Yo-Yo Ma to record a goosebump-inducing rendition of Nothing Else Matters.
Artists featured on the album were encouraged to pick whichever song they felt most connected to, even if there were multiple versions of that song already. This collaboration album demonstrates that a cultural icon like The Black Album can transcend genre, culture and generational gap. Other covers already released include Sad but True taken on by St. Vincent and Sam Fender in two very different renditions, Holier Than Thou covered by OFF!, The Unforgiven performed by Vishal Dadlani as well as many others to look forward to by the likes of Mac DeMarco, Royal Blood, Portugal. The Man, Phoebe Bridgers and Kamasi Washington.
The best part of this incredible project is that all profits will be divided evenly and donated to a charity of the artist’s choice, and to Metallica’s All Within My Hands Foundation.
1 album, 12 songs, 53 artists and 53 good reasons to start discovering the album now.