Metallica are synonymous with heavy metal throughout the world. So it makes sense that many internet searches focus on the group — especially regarding Metallica tours, band members and albums.

What's the last thing you searched about Metallica?

Well, here at Loudwire, we've decided to answer some of the internet's burning Metallica questions. After all, researching Metallica is what we love. So why not spread more of that information around?

READ MORE: Woman Who Let Metallica Use Her Home to Practice Remembers What They Were Like

Is there anything in particular you want to know about Metallica? The time is ripe for a review. 72 Seasons, Metallica's 2023 effort, arrives April 14. The album's preceded by the singles "Lux Æterna," "Screaming Suicide" and "If Darkness Had a Son."

Now let's get started on some Metallica questions.

Tim Mosenfelder/WireImage
Tim Mosenfelder/WireImage

Why Did Metallica Fire Dave Mustaine?

In 1983, Metallica ejected their first lead guitarist, future Megadeth bandleader Dave Mustaine, due to his behavior surrounding substance abuse. Even though, as rock writer Jon Weiderhon notes, other Metallica members also imbibed to the point of the band receiving the nickname "Alcoholica."

Mustaine subsequently admitted his young reactions while intoxicated were excessive. "When you're around a lot of people that like to drink and get silly, they just want to have fun," he explained.

"I would drink and have fun until someone would refute something I had said," Mustaine continued. "Then that was war, baby. I'd be aggressive and confrontational because I was a violent drunk. I lost all inhibitions when I was drinking, and that didn't go over too well."

Without prior warning, Mustaine's time in Metallica concluded on April 11, 1983. Metallica had already hired Kirk Hammett as their new guitarist. That morning, the group awoke Mustaine, who was suffering a hangover, and told him he was out. He formed the first ideas for Megadeth on the bus ride home.

Why Did Metallica Cut Their Hair?

When Metallica returned with 1996's Load after a five-year gap betwen albums, they came back with short hair. But the much-lambasted (by metal fans) decision wasn't actually a decision, per Lars Ulrich.

"There was this perception that the four members of Metallica went to a barber shop together and ordered like a 4-for-1 discount," the Metallica drummer quipped in 2017. "That wasn't the case at all. [Jason] Newsted, actually — he shaved his head on the 'Black Album' tour. … Load came out in '96. So there was an almost three-year span where — shock, horror — all four members of Metallica got haircuts at various times."

Indeed, onetime Metallica bassist Jason Newsted concurred when addressing the issue in 2021. "I cut my hair in 1992, and so those guys didn't do it until '96," he said, adding, "I did crazy shit from '92 to '96."

Newsted continued, "You know what's really funny? When we started getting to more countries, and as the borders started to get a little squirrely and those guys all still had their shaggy hair, and I was slick, and sometimes just freaking nice — like a cop or something. I just cruised right through customs, bro — cruise right through. 'This way, mister.' And those fuckers would get left and right."

Metallica AOL commercial screenshot
YouTube: Bert Martin

Why Did Metallica Sue Napster?

The 2000 suit Metallica v. Napster, Inc. pitted the then-new peer-to-peer file-sharing service Napster against Metallica when the band alleged that Napster was guilty of copyright infringement and racketeering for distributing their songs without permission. It was the first widely-covered case of an artist taking a P2P company to task.

READ MORE: Metallica Just Bought Their Own Vinyl Record Pressing Plant + Jack White Is Stoked

Metallica sued Napster because, as Lars Ulrich explained in Senate Judiciary Committe testimony that year, Metallica found out that a demo version of their Mission: Impossible II soundtrack contribution "I Disappear" — the movie set to release that May — had leaked and was receiving radio play, as Exclaim! remembered. After tracing the leak to Napster, Metallica sought $10 million in damages or $100,000 for each illegally downloaded song.

Lars Ulrich Senate Testimony - July 11, 2000

In 2001, a judge issued a preliminary injunction in Metallica's favor and forced Napster to remove all copyrighted songs by Metallica. Other artists then sued Napster. Subsquently, a $94 million deal to bring Napster in line with copyright holders fell through before the P2P company filed bankruptcy and folded. Napster is now the name of the music streaming service formerly called Rhapsody.

Where Did Metallica Get Their Name?

The name Metallica originates from a friend of Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich's named Ron Quintana, who was then starting to make a fanzine about metal. He shared his ideas about possible names for the zine — Metallica or Metal Mania — with Ulrich, who liked Metallica enough to slyly suggest he use the other.

“He told me he wanted to start his own fanzine, like a hard rock fanzine, where he wrote about all his favorite bands," Ulrich explained in 2018. "He asked me whether he should call the fanzine Metallica or Metal Mania. So I suggested that he call it Metal Mania."

“I was happy to give the name for him,” Quintana has stated. “I was a metal fanatic so I chose Metal Mania, actually before he used the name Metallica because I actually did not want to use it. There was already the [other name] Encyclopedia Metallica, which is a very good name. But for me, Metal Mania was better. And when he told me he was going to call his band Metallica, I told him to make good use of it.”

Where Did Metallica Start?

Metallica actually started out in Los Angeles before heading to Northern California and making the Bay Area their home. The geographic transition happened quickly — Metallica formed in LA in October 1981, and they arrived in San Francisco within a year.

"We absolutely did not fit into anything in Los Angeles — the Sunset Strip, Hollywood, any of that," Ulrich recalled. "We felt like complete outsiders. When we came up here in September of 1982. … We were embraced and we were taken in and we felt so welcome."

Metallica Tour 2023 – What Are the Dates?

Metallica are prepping to again tour the world this year and into the next on their massive "M72 World Tour." Supporting acts include the re-formed Pantera, Five Finger Death Punch, Greta Van Fleet and others, depending on the date. Get tickets here. See all of the tour dates down near the bottom of this page.

Tim Saccenti

Metallica will play each city on the tour for two shows without repeating songs. The concert also features a new in-the-round stage design that relocates the famed "Metallica Snake Pit" to center stage for a complete 360-degree view. See the dates below.

Metallica Band Members

For the last 20 years, Metallica has contained lead singer and rhythm guitarist James Hetfield with drummer Lars Ulrich, both founding members, alongside lead guitarist Kirk Hammett and bassist Robert Trujillo. Hammett replaced original lead guitarist Dave Mustaine, who went on to found Megadeth, in 1983.

READ MORE: See Lars Ulrich's 1985 Answer to What Makes Metallica Different in Thrash Metal

Trujillo joined in 2003 after bassist Jason Newsted left in 2001. Newsted replaced late bassist Cliff Burton in 1986 after Burton's death in a tour bus crash. Burton joined in 1982 after original bassist Ron McGovney left a year after Metallica was formed in 1981. (Metallica producer Bob Rock plays bass on St. Anger.)

Metallica Albums in Order

Metallica's main studio albums, in order, are: Kill 'Em All (1983), Ride the Lightning (1984), Master of Puppets (1986), …And Justice for All (1988), Metallica (or the "Black Album," 1991), Load (1996), Reload (1997), St. Anger (2003), Death Magnetic (2008), Hardwired… To Self-Destruct (2016) and 72 Seasons (2023).

That adds up to 11 studio albums for Metallica. However, the band actually considers 72 Seasons their 12th official album — they count 2011's Lulu, their album collaboration with the late Lou Reed, as canon.

There are also live Metallica EPs and live albums, including The $5.98 E.P. / $9.98 CD: Garage Days Re-Revisited (1987), Live Shit: Binge & Purge (1993), S&M (1999), Beyond Magnetic (2011) and S&M2 (2020). Garage Inc., a compilation of Metallica's cover songs, came out in 1998; it encompasses the Garage Days EP.

Metallica album art collage
Blackened Recordings

Metallica Albums Ranked

Is there a definite ranking of Metallica albums? That's surely up to the listener to decide, don't you think? But here at Loudwire, we've ranked Metallica albums as well as their opening songs and closing songs.

See if you agree with our rankings, which span from Kill 'Em All through Hardwired. We also have a photo gallery that covers Metallica's entire history.

Were Metallica on Stranger Things?

Last year, a Metallica song in Netflix's Stranger Things gave the band renewed mainstream visibility. On the Season 4 finale, the character Eddie Munson plays "Master of Puppets" on guitar in a scene. Metallica subsequently welcomed new fans before some seemingly attempted to "cancel" the band.

Tye Trujillo, Robert Trujillo's son, contributed the guitar solo used on the recording for Stranger Things. The scene was written by series creators the Duffer Brothers with the metal band in mind. Metallica subsequently duetted the scene in a TikTok video.

Metallica + Pantera – Their Connection

How are Metallica and Pantera connected? The two bands will play together when Pantera embark on their first U.S. tour in two decades in 2023. As part of Metallica's M72 trek, Pantera will do multiple dates with them in the U.S. and Canada. Get info here.

Of course, the Metallica–Pantera parallel goes back further than that, seeing as how both bands made a lasting impact on metal. Back in 1984, Pantera even covered a Metallica song.

Jason Newsted, Lars Ulrich, James Hetfield, Robert Trujillo, Kirk Hammett
Michael Loccisano, Getty Images

Metallica Tickets – Where Can I Get Tix?

Where can you get Metallica tickets? We got your Metallica tickets right here! Click here to pick the date you're ready to attend and make your purchase.

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Metallica 2023 World Tour Dates

April 27 – Amsterdam NL @ Cruijff Arena
April 29 – Amsterdam NL @ Cruijff Arena
May 17 – Paris FR @ Stade de France
May 19 – Paris FR @ Stade de France
May 26 – Hamburg DE @ Volksparkstadion
May 28 – Hamburg DE @ Volksparkstadion
June 16 – Gothenburg SE @ Ullevi Stadium
June 18 – Gothenburg SE @ Ullevi Stadium
Aug. 4 – East Rutherford, N.J. @ MetLife Stadium
Aug. 6 – East Rutherford, N.J. @ MetLife Stadium
Aug. 11 – Montreal, Quebec @ Stade Olympique
Aug. 13 – Montreal, Quebec @ Stade Olympique
Aug. 18 – Arlington, Texas @ AT&T Stadium
Aug. 20 – Arlington, Texas @ AT&T Stadium
Aug. 25 – Inglewood, Calif. @ SoFi Stadium
Aug. 27 – Inglewood, Calif. @ SoFi Stadium
Sept. 1 – Glendale, Ariz. @ State Farm Stadium
Sept. 3 – Glendale, Ariz. @ State Farm Stadium
Nov. 3 – St. Louis, Mo. @ The Dome
Nov. 5 – St. Louis, Mo. @ The Dome
Nov. 10 – Detroit, Mich. @ Ford Field
Nov. 12 – Detroit, Mich. @ Ford Field
May 24, 2024 – Munich DE @ Olympiastadion
May 26, 2024 – Munich DE @ Olympiastadion
June 7, 2024 – Helsinki FI @ Olympic Stadium
June 9, 2024 – Helsinki FI @ Olympic Stadium
June 14, 2024 – Copenhagen DK @ Parken Stadium
June 16, 2024 – Copenhagen DK @ Parken Stadium
July 5, 2024 – Warsaw PL @ PGE Narodowy
July 7, 2024 – Warsaw PL @ PGE Narodowy
July 12, 2024 – Madrid ES @ Estadio Cívitas
July 14, 2024 – Madrid ES @ Estadio Cívitas
Aug. 2, 2024 – Foxborough, Mass. @ Gillette Stadium
Aug. 4, 2024 – Foxborough, Mass. @ Gillette Stadium
Aug. 9, 2024 – Chicago, Ill. @ Soldier Field
Aug. 11, 2024 – Chicago, Ill. @ Soldier Field
Aug. 16, 2024 – Minneapolis, Minn. @ US Bank Stadium
Aug. 18, 2024 – Minneapolis, Minn. @ US Bank Stadium
Aug. 23, 2024 – Edmonton, Alberta @ Commonwealth
Aug. 25, 2024 – Edmonton, Alberta @ Commonwealth
Aug. 30, 2024 – Seattle, Wash. @ Lumen Field
Sept. 1, 2024 – Seattle, Wash. @ Lumen Field
Sept. 20, 2024 – Mexico City, Mexico @ Foro Sol
Sept. 22, 2024 – Mexico City, Mexico @ Foro Sol
Sept. 27, 2024 – Mexico City, Mexico @ Foro Sol
Sept. 29, 2024 – Mexico City, Mexico @ Foro Sol

All Metallica Songs Ranked

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