Metallica: S&M

It’s been a while since my last post, mainly due to the fact I have been super busy visiting family, going for a weekend away in Gdansk Poland and just get back into a song writing groove.

I wanted to drop a quick post about my favourite albums of all time though, which is Metallica’s S&M. This was the album that introduced me to Metallica, I was born in 1986 (the year of Master Of Puppets, Raining Blood, Peace Sells… Who’s Buying?) so it wasn’t until the late 90’s I started to get in to Metal music. My older brother was the chief catalyst for my love of metal (though my Dad is also a fan of the the likes of Deep Purple, Judas Priest and Black Sabbath) as he had been listening to Metal for quite a few years and he was into, Iron Maiden, Korn, Fear Factory, Sepultura and many more!

I have only had what I like to call musical epiphany’s a couple of times so far in my life, one involves Pink Floyd but that story is for another time. The first one I remember though was hearing S&M for the first time.

We were on our way to Devon to visit my Grandad and I borrowed my brothers Discman on the drive down and in it was disc two of S&M and I listened, then I listened again and again and again. I couldn’t stop playing that disc, Sad But True was the track I had on repeat the most with Until It Sleeps a close second.

I don’t know what it was about the album that caught my imagination, the power of James Hetfield’s voice was certainly one thing, the sound of the band with those thick heavy guitars and of course the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra conducted by the late great Michael Kamen. I didn’t know who Michael Kamen was at this point as film scores weren’t really on my musical radar so it was only years later I realised what an amazing composer he was.

I suppose even back then I had an unknown love of orchestral music but it took a heavy metal band to help spark that love. For me S&M is not just a great album but it was the door to the start of a new musical journey, as all of a sudden James Hetfield became my new guitar hero, and he inspired me (along with my brother) to play the guitar.

I make no bones about it Metallica is my favourite band, I’ve met three of them, seen them over 10 times live, shared a stage with them and sang backing vocals on Creeping Death with my best friend at the UK Sonisphere in 2014. This album though is where it all started and my life forever took a new course.

Below is the three tracks that blow me away every time I hear them, these three songs are simply epic performances and the orchestra takes what are great songs to new towering heights. Thank you Metallic, thank you Michael Kamen and the San Francisco Symphony.

Call of Ktulu: Written by Hetfield, Ulrich, Burton, Muscatine

Available on the albums: Ride The Lightning and S&M


Bleeding Me: Written by Hetfield, Ulrich, Hammett

Available on the albums: Load and S&M

The Outlaw Torn: Written by Hetfield, Ulrich

Available on the albums: Load and S&M

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