Metallica say their next album will be more “collaborative” than their last

Their studio dynamic has been given a refresh in lockdown, it seems.


Image: Kevin Winter / Getty

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Metallica have revealed that the recording process for their next record is set to be a much more collaborative process than that of their 2016 record Hardwired…To Self-Destruct.

In an interview with Metal Hammer, bass player Robert Trujillo said that: “I’m not gonna speak on behalf of the other guys, but to me, it feels like this could be a very collaborative [writing process].” Hardwired… was mostly written by frontman James Hetfield and drummer Lars Ulrich, which Trujillo and Hammett accepted – begrudgingly, but accepted nonetheless.

“For me personally, I love that,” Trujillo continued. “I love that we are in that headspace to be more collaborative, and I think that’s very exciting for where we’re at now, the journey we’re about to take, the fact that those doors are opening like that.”

Metallica’s dynamic in the studio is somewhat infamous – being the subject of much fan discussion and the documentary Metallica: Some Kind Of Monster. In part, this film followed the internal struggles and group therapy the band underwent as they began writing their 2003 record St. Anger. Trujillo’s comments confirm that they’re set to continue on a trajectory away from this kind of atmosphere.

He also praised Hammett’s work ethic, saying “Kirk has so many ideas. It’s funny because sometimes it’s literally him in the kitchen and he’s cooking, and at the same time he’s playing you a riff, or you’re sitting on the toilet and he’s playing you some ideas.

“But when we started to understand that [the lockdown] was gonna happen, it was like, ‘Hey, let’s be creative’, you know? Let’s just get on it. A lot of times, when there’s a band that’s been around as long as Metallica has, you find that one of the biggest problems is, ‘Man I can’t come up with a riff, I can’t come up with any good lyrics, it’s just harder to write songs’, but that just doesn’t seem to be the problem with us.”

The as-yet unofficial studio album will be Metallica’s 11th, and the third to feature Trujillo on bass. It will also follow the recent release of S&M2, a commemorative sequel to the band’s original collaboration with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra.

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