Metallica’s Lars Ulrich is now “just happy” people “still stream or buy or steal our records”

Ulrich famously spearheaded the takedown of P2P file-sharing platform Napster in the early 2000s.

Though he might be the poster boy for anti music piracy in the noughties, Metallica’s Lars Ulrich now says that he’s “just happy” people are listening to their music – however they choose to do it.

Ulrich famously spearheaded the takedown of P2P file-sharing platform Napster in the early 2000s, but as the drummer explains in a new podcast, times have changed and so has his stance on the whole ‘piracy’ conversation.

“Well, obviously it’s changed quite a bit,” he tells SmartLess hosts Jason Bateman, Sean Hayes, and Will Arnett. “And in your guys’ industry, some of the same things that we were dealing with 20 years ago are happening.”

“Big picture, and I know this may sound like a little bit of a cop-out, I’m just happy that fucking anybody cares about what we’re doing and shows up to see us play and still stream or buy or steal our records or whatever.”

Ulrich adds: “The engagement itself, I think, is the triumph and the victory. Obviously, it’s way, way harder for a lot of the younger bands nowadays because they don’t get the support of the record companies for basic things – just like gear and tour support. So there is very much of a different thing.”

While Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett has said that the band “did not make a difference” with their lawsuit, the case is often cited as a turning point in the history of digital music sharing. In particular, it marked the beginning of the debate surrounding the ethics of online file-sharing and its impact on artists’ livelihoods.

In other news, Metallica are currently on their M72 world tour in support of their latest album, 72 Seasons. The tour sees the band host “no repeat” weekends, where they play two shows in the same city, each with a different set list. To see dates and tickets, head to the band’s official website.

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