I am pretty sure that everybody, by this point, have already listened to the new Metallica album and has formed a solid opinion. Facebook and Twitter has been bombarded in the last couple of days since the album was leaked almost a week ahead of its release date. Naturally, every time Metallica is set to release a new album, there is a logical anxiety and curiosity especially since there has been an 8-year gap this time around. So, let’s write down our won opinion, shall we…?
For starters, the first three songs that were out in the last couple of months –and were sufficient enough to cause a wave of hysteria among the fans as they were awesome- ARE not indicative of the overall style of the band. If we want to be exact, “Hardwired”, “Moth Into Flame”, “Atlas, Rise!” and the closing “Spit Out The Bone” are the only ones that remind the classic, frenzy and breakneck speed of Metallica’s past. The rest of the bunch revolve around a heavy rock, mid-tempo style that reminds a lot of the atmosphere of “Load”! But, have no fear! It’s not like they are bad or uninspired (although I could have lived without “Am I Savage?” and “ManUNkind”). “Now That We’re Dead” and “Dream No More” is probably the highlights of the new record (apart from the four aforementioned fast songs).
The band’s performance is flawless and despite the fact that Hammett hasn’t written a single note on “Hardwired…”, he absolutely shines on the album as his guitar solos are undoubtedly impressive. Another characteristic of “Hardwired…” is the fact that there are many scattered guitar riffs throughout the album that sometimes “save” an indifferent tune like “Halo On Fire” as after the 3.00 mark, the song is transformed into a sonic juggernaut due to Hetfield’s and Hammett’s awesome guitar work.
All in all, is “Hardwired…To Self-Destruct” a good album? The answer is, yes! Is the album that we have all been waiting for after all these years of waiting? The answer is not that easy on this one as I am not, personally, never sure in regards with what to expect from Metallica every time they are bound to come up with new material. Maybe, I was expecting a different approach as the first three songs were most likely deceptive. But, was I disappointed in the heavy rock approach? Not one bit! Having said that, I am not certain as how the traditional fans will react after the dust of enthusiasm will settle down. Time will tell…
Highlight: Greg Fidelman’s production is far superior compared to Rick Rubin’s one on “Death Magnetic”.