Metallica’s Lars Ulrich: ‘There’s a Trace of Residue’ From ‘Kill ‘Em All’ on New Album
Yesterday (Aug. 18), Metallica dropped the details about their long-awaited 10th studio album. Entitled, Hardwired... To Self-Destruct, the double album will boast 12 new songs, including the punchy opener, "Hardwired" for which a music video was released. Drummer Lars Ulrich opened up about the song and the album with Rolling Stone, even discussing how Kill 'Em All "crept into the songwriting."
First, Ulrich took the time to describe how "Hardwired" came to be, explaining the band was "taking stock of the record and thought maybe we should write one more fast, little crazy song, and that became 'Hardwired.'" The drummer said he and James Hetfield wrote and tracked the song in under a week, "which, for us, is basically a nanosecond," he joked.
Turning back the clock on the writing process, Ulrich described listening to over 1,500 song ideas off his iPod on a long road trip. "I'd write down, '912 sounds like a good idea.' [Laughs] Then James and I started connecting the dots about a year, year-and-a-half ago. That's when the songs started taking shape," he said, adding that a majority of the tunes were written in two sessions: the fall of 2014 and the spring of 2015.
Moving on to how Metallica's debut record, Kill 'Em All had an impact on the writing, Ulrich reflected on playing the album in its entirety at the band's Orion Music + More festival in Detroit in 2013. "I was dismissive of that record because Ride the Lightning and Master of Puppets may be a little more intellectually stimulating and challenging – they were deeper records – and it wasn't until 2013 when we played it that I realized Kill 'Em All had a cohesiveness," he offered.
"It had its own thing with the speed, but it's simpler – the songs are longer but not quite as progressive. It's a world all its own," Ulrich added, going on, "And I think there are some elements of that that rubbed off into this. I'd say there's a trace of residue from rediscovering Kill 'Em All that crept into the songwriting."
With a Nov. 18 release date locked down, it would appear that the record is ready, but Ulrich revealed that there's still some work left, stating, "It's pretty much done. We should have that last song mixed this weekend."
Pre-orders for Hardwired... To Self-Destruct can be placed at Metallica's website. Fans have a variety of options to choose from, including deluxe editions, box sets and more.
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