Exit Light, Enter Night: Metallica (aka The Black Album)by Metallica — Review (2022)

Let’s get something straight. Everyone from your nan to the postman to Longboi knows of Metallica. You may not know Metallica well, but you’ve definitely heard of them.

Exit Light, Enter Night: Metallica (aka The Black Album)by Metallica — Review (1)

(Video) Metallica - Black Album ( Full Album )

For the metalheads out there, Metallica are titans, behemoths, legends of rock and the thrash metal from whence they sprung, inspiring many other bands in their wake. The band was formed in Los Angeles, later relocating to the Bay Area of San Francisco, (since considered a thrash metal hotspot). Founding members rhythm guitarist/singer James Hetfield and drummer Lars Ulrich (SIT DOWN, LARS!) went through a host of instrumentalists before settling on lead guitarist Kirk Hammett, and bassist Cliff Burton (the current incarnation featuring Robert Trujillo in Burton’s place). Though their road has been rocky, highs and lows abounding, they’re still going strong in 2021, with a new album currently in the works.

Now, I know that there are people for which metal might not be their thing, and that’s perfectly fine. Personally, much of the more extreme side of metal isn’t my cup of tea. But Metallica’s self-titled fifth album, known unofficially as The Black Album due to its distinctive jet-black sleeve, is for me and many other metalheads, one of metal’s more accessible records.

The first four Metallica albums are all worthy of reviews and praise, but it was their fifth album that changed the game.

There are many stories about the recording process of the fifth album; I’ll spare you the details, but famed producer Bob Rock pushed the band to their limits, and through all the pain The Black Album was created.

(Video) Metallica- Black album (Full album)

The Black Album deftly bridges the gap between standard 90’s rock and the metal of Metallica’s past, providing what metal enthusiast and comedian Andrew O’Neill refers to as ‘a gateway drug’ in The History of Heavy Metal. On a first listen, the riffs may sound alien, the production unorthodox, the speed and power of the songs unnerving. But all 12 songs are their own, legendary, pure metallic bangers.

We start with the now iconic opener Enter Sandman. Having sung this on stage, I can assure you it’s as exhilarating to perform as to listen to. Lyrically, the song concerns nightmares, the Sandman entering the sleep of a child to spook them silly, but this song is the stuff of dreams. The riff starts off quiet and unassuming, then slowly builds up into a terrifying groove to which you can’t help but headbang to. Enter Sandman is credited with Metallica’s rise to the mainstream. It’s a departure from the raging speed and ferocity of their previous content, cementing Metallica as global icons. Hetfield’s voice is characteristically gruff here, adding venom to both this song, and the subsequent Sad But True. The main riff is too powerful for superlatives, It’s primal, monolithic and most of all, heavy. The greatest one-two punch of an opener in metal’s history.

Holier Than Thou, is, in my mind, the closest thing you can get to surf-based rock (think ‘Misirlou’ by Dick Dale, the theme from Pulp Fiction) with Metallica. It’s pacy, tetchy, and sonically punchy. The Unforgiven, is, according to Classic Rock ‘a true masterpiece,’ and I wholeheartedly believe it. The Western theme rumbles in some form throughout the entire song, from the little guitar noodles at the start and during the chorus, to the dynamics worthy of the late great legend Ennio Morricone, a long-time inspiration to the band. Lyrically, it’s a stunning and powerful story of liberty, manipulation and bitterness.

A song about the life of the band on the road is up next, Wherever I May Roam. Again anchored by a strong central riff, and pounding drums, you could almost feel the wheels turning under a tour bus, the flickering light in distant cities beckoning further. This is followed by Don’t Tread on Me, a strangely patriotic song for a band who rejected authority and the government on their previous album, beginning with a guitar rendition of America, from West Side Story. A chunky shuffle beat rockets through this anthem of American pride, linking to the rattlesnake on the album’s cover. The song most reminiscent of their thrash past is next, Through The Never, also the title of their semi-concert film released in 2013. The lyrics might not be their finest, but with a song that speeds like a freight train (except for a crushing mid-section), who needs lyrics?

(Video) Metallica: One (Official Music Video)

Next, Nothing Else Matters, a Metallica ballad. At first, it was questioned. Why would Metallica, of all bands, produce a ballad? Whatever the cause (a love song from James to his girlfriend), it’s a touching and romantic song, pledging loyalty to someone you love through thick and thin, amid the ‘things they say,’ and the ‘games they play.’ With the addition of Michael Kamen’s orchestral arrangements, this song is another stone-cold Metallica classic. In my humble opinion, this is the most accessible, and commercial song, along with Enter Sandman, on the entire album. It divided opinion, with some hardcore fans saying they hate the song for this precise reason. I, for one, love it; it proves they can paint in colours other than black.

The last four songs are less well-known, but each has its own merit: Of Wolf and Man is a semi-serious tale depicting a werewolf transformation, with a grounded earthiness that seems to come straight out of a horror movie. Next is The God That Failed, a darker song than most of the others on the album (in part due to the rumbling opening bassline) concerns Hetfield’s troubled relationship with religion as a result of his upbringing. He blames God for life’s meaninglessness, spitting ‘Deceit, deceive, decide just what you believe’ with anguish, making this song one of the most impactful of the album. My Friend Of Misery goes to show what Jason Newsted brought to the album, the central bass riff and structure being his only writing contribution. It’s brooding, moody and blissful at times, yet tinged with a sadness that permeates. The album’s closing track, The Struggle Within, ends on a high, another rapid-fire tune that showcases Hetfield’s emotional vocal range with Ulrich’s speed and pace. The song is haunting with hints to mental instability, seen in the chilling lyric ‘you seal your own coffin.’

And that’s it. Twelve songs of pace, power and even poignancy packed into just over an hour. From the sonic punch behind the first two tracks, to the sweeping grace of The Unforgiven and Nothing Else Matters and the melancholy of The God That Failed, this album contains songs for everyone. As shown by a variety of artists such as Miley Cyrus, Ghost and Royal Blood celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, by contributing to its tribute album The Blacklist.

Metallica have had their lows, but this is definitely a high for any fan, be they into adventurous progressive epics; pulse-pounding bloody metal, or exploring brave new worlds via power metal. I sincerely hope that you’ve been inspired to listen to it, and, if you like it, explore more of their albums and the genre (and diverse seemingly infinite subgenres) as a whole. Metal is for some an acquired taste, so I say to all those who think ‘Yeah, I’ll have a listen to this,’ to have an open mind. But if you like it?

(Video) Metallica - Enter Sandman lyrics

I’ll see you in the mosh pits.

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FAQs

Is Enter Sandman about SIDS? ›

The song's original inspiration was quite disturbing, as it was meant to be about Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), and Hetfield states that this sudden passing was because of the Sandman.

How good is Metallica Really? ›

Metallica are the third-best selling music act since 1991, and are one of the most influential bands in the genre. They have also surpassed 1 billion streams on Spotify. James Hetfield & co must, therefore, be considered the greatest metal act of all time.

What is the meaning behind Enter Sandman? ›

In the spring of 1991, Hetfield brought the band his lyrics for "Enter Sandman" and, of all topics, it was about crib death — "y'know, baby suddenly dies, the sandman killed it," the Metallica frontman described it in 2007 — and it's destructive effect on the family unit.

How old is The Black Album? ›

The album received widespread acclaim from music critics and was a massive commercial success. It debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200, selling 463,000 copies in its first week.
...
The Black Album (Jay-Z album)
The Black Album
ReleasedNovember 14, 2003
RecordedJuly – October 2003
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What does crib death mean? ›

Overview. Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is the unexplained death, usually during sleep, of a seemingly healthy baby less than a year old. SIDS is sometimes known as crib death because the infants often die in their cribs.

What's the meaning of sad but true? ›

This song is about blind faith in religion and the lengths people will go to to practice their faiths. The line, "I'm inside, open your eyes" means that god only exists in people's heads. >>

Who is considered best metal band of all time? ›

Top 50 Metal Bands of All Time
  • Motorhead. Robert John Potography. Motorhead. ...
  • Megadeth. Capitol. Megadeth. ...
  • Pantera. Atco. Pantera. ...
  • Slayer. Metal Blade. Slayer. ...
  • Judas Priest. Columbia. Judas Priest. ...
  • Metallica. Elektra. Metallica. ...
  • Iron Maiden. Epic. Iron Maiden. ...
  • Black Sabbath. Vertigo. Black Sabbath.
20 Jul 2016

Is Metallica the most successful metal band? ›

Metallica is officially the Biggest Band in the world for Heavy Metal based on sheer revenue, longevity and popularity. With a Net Worth of over $900 million dollars Metallica has sold over 125 million albums worldwide and has sold upwards of 22 million tickets equaling 1.5 Billion dollars in sales.

Is Metallica the biggest band in the world? ›

They're the biggest band in the world,” says Another Planet Entertainment CEO Gregg Perloff, who has been promoting Metallica shows in the Bay Area for decades. “A lot of bands can claim to be — and certainly there are huge bands like U2 and the Rolling Stones.

Is Enter Sandman hard to play? ›

Enter Sandman's pretty easy, given he has rhythm to begin with. This. If your cousin is starting to play the instrument, make sure that he starts off playing right. 2 tone power chords should be the least of the beginner guitarist's worries.

Is Enter Sandman about nightmares? ›

Written by band members James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, and Kirk Hammett, "Enter Sandman" is about nightmares and things that go "bump" in the night. It has by far the most radio play of all of Metallica's songs. >>

Is Enter Sandman an easy song? ›

It requires an intermediate level of guitar playing. Guitar solo is not that hard, either, especially in comparison to other Metallica's solos. Enter Sandman is perhaps among the 'easier' songs in Metallica's repertoire. In this article we're going to analyze parts of the song.

Why did The Black Album sell so well? ›

Bob Rock encouraged Metallica to use the drums to drive each song forward instead of lagging behind the guitars. It was a technique that propelled the band into the stratosphere, and helped “The Black Album” sell 600,000 in its first week, hitting No. 1 in 10 countries and topping the Billboard 200 for four weeks.

Why is The Black Album so popular? ›

It's got loud guitars and drums and it sounds like a metal album, of course, but if you take those away the songs on there are almost pure pop. It's got an amazing production, which paved the way for a more accessible version of metal. It gave so many bands from that genre the confidence to go big.

Who has sold the most albums? ›

Perhaps unsurprisingly, British rock band The Beatles are top of the list for best-selling artists worldwide, with 183 million units certified sales. Second is Garth Brooks with over 157 million units sales, followed by Elvis Presley with 139 million units.

What is the number 1 cause of SIDS? ›

While the cause of SIDS is unknown, many clinicians and researchers believe that SIDS is associated with problems in the ability of the baby to arouse from sleep, to detect low levels of oxygen, or a buildup of carbon dioxide in the blood. When babies sleep face down, they may re-breathe exhaled carbon dioxide.

What are 3 things that can cause SIDS? ›

Babies are at higher risk for SIDS if they:
  • Sleep on their stomachs.
  • Sleep on soft surfaces, such as an adult mattress, couch, or chair or under soft coverings.
  • Sleep on or under soft or loose bedding.
  • Get too hot during sleep.

Why can't babies sleep on their stomach? ›

If baby usually sleeps on their back, putting them on the stomach or side to sleep, for a nap or at night, increases the risk for SIDS by up to 45 times. So it is important for everyone who cares for babies to always place them on their backs to sleep, for naps and at night, to reduce the risk of SIDS.

What is Metallica's darkest song? ›

Harvester of Sorrow (1988) [Single]

Harvester Of Sorrow is a dark, doomy and foreboding song that is basically the darkest song Metallica has ever written.

What are some sad but true quotes? ›

So it's true, when all is said and done, grief is the price we pay for love.” “We could have been happy. I know that, and it is perhaps the hardest thing to know.”

Who wrote the sad but true riff? ›

James Hetfield Lars Ulrich

What is the #1 metal band? ›

1 Metallica Metallica is an American Heavy/Thrash Metal band formed in 1981 . The original lineup was James Hetfield (Vocalist and Rhythm guitarist), Dave Mustaine (Lead Guitar), Lars Ulrich (Drums), Ron McGovney (Bassist).

Who are the top 3 early heavy metal bands? ›

In 1968, three of the genre's most famous pioneers, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath and Deep Purple, were founded.

Who is more popular AC DC or Metallica? ›

According to Pollstar, Metallica have sold approximately 22.1 million tickets since 1982, bringing in around $1.4 billion. This is in comparison to AC/DC (14 million tickets sold) and Ozzy Osbourne (13.2 million tickets if one combines both Ozzy and Black Sabbath sales).

Who is the biggest band in the world? ›

The 10 Best-Selling Bands in History
  1. THE BEATLES. ~ 290 million record sales worldwide.
  2. EAGLES. ~ 160 million record sales worldwide.
  3. QUEEN. ~ 150 million record sales worldwide.
  4. LED ZEPPELIN. ~ 140 million record sales worldwide.
  5. PINK FLOYD. ~ 130 million record sales worldwide.
  6. AC/DC. ...
  7. MAROON 5. ...
  8. U2.
12 Oct 2022

Who is the most streamed metal band? ›

Metal's Most Streamed
  • Enter Sandman (Remastered)Metallica.
  • Paranoid - 2012 - RemasterBlack Sabbath.
  • PsychosocialSlipknot.
  • Ace of SpadesMotörhead.
  • Coming DownFive Finger Death Punch.
  • Freak On a LeashKorn.
  • BodiesDrowning Pool.
  • Breaking the LawJudas Priest.

Is Metallica bigger than Iron Maiden? ›

In certified album sales, Metallica wins hands down with 103 million (and an estimated 125 million total). While Maiden is reported to have sold more than 100 million albums, the evidence isn't there in the certified numbers. (Most often, the number publicized is 75–80 million.)

What's the longest Metallica song? ›

Mercyful Fate is the Disc 1 seventh track from 1998's album Garage, Inc. It was written by King Diamond and Hank Shermann, and has a length of 11:10. It's the longest Metallica song featuring in a studio album.

Who has sold the most concert tickets in the last 40 years? ›

These Artists Have Sold the Most Tickets Over the Past 40 Years
  • U2, which has sold more than 26 MILLION TICKETS.
  • Dave Matthews Band.
  • The Rolling Stones.
  • Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band.
  • Elton John.
  • Metallica.
  • Bon Jovi.
  • Billy Joel.
3 Aug 2022

Is Master of Puppets hard to play? ›

Anyhow, Master of Puppets is easy to play until you get to ze spider riff. If you're a beginner, then that part will come quite hard to you (it did to me). The rythm bit of the interlude is pretty easy, it's reptitive and comes naturally if you know your chords. The lead bit is easy at first but gets relatively harder.

Is Enter Sandman easy on guitar? ›

EASY GUITAR LESSON | ENTER SANDMAN by Metallica - YouTube

Is Enter Sandman palm muted? ›

Composed by Kirk Hammett, James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich, Enter Sandman is a great riff to work on your palm mute and your movements on power chords (bar 5).

Is Metallica black metal? ›

Metallica (commonly known as The Black Album) is the fifth studio album by American heavy metal band Metallica. It was released on August 12, 1991, by Elektra Records.
...
Metallica (album)
Metallica
GenreHeavy metal
Length62:40
LabelElektra
ProducerJames Hetfield Bob Rock Lars Ulrich
11 more rows

What was the first Metallica song? ›

In early 1982, Metallica recorded its first original song, "Hit the Lights", for the Metal Massacre I compilation. Hetfield played bass, rhythm guitar and sang while Lloyd Grant was credited with a guitar solo and Lars Ulrich played drums.

Is sandman a hit? ›

As the showrunner elaborates, since The Sandman was a very costly production, its current performance doesn't exactly make a second season inevitable. There is no doubt that the show has been a hit, but the decision would ultimately come down to if The Sandman lives up to Netflix's mounting expectations.

What does pm mean in Guitar Tabs? ›

Notation. In guitar tablature, palm mutes are rendered with a "P.M." or "PM", and a dashed or dotted line for the duration of the phrase to be muted. If the pitches of the muted notes are discernible, the fret numbers are given accordingly, otherwise they are represented with an X in lieu of a tab number.

What does a slash mean in Guitar Tabs? ›

A slash ( / or \ ) in Guitar TAB is the symbol for a slide. The type of slash used tells you whether you need to slide up to a note '/' or slide down to a note '\'. To know which slash symbol is which, think of the slash symbol as a slide you walk up to from the left.

How do you read sheet music for guitar? ›

How To Read Guitar Sheet Music - Guitar Lessons - YouTube

What is the highest selling metal album of all time? ›

I mean, Metallica's “The Black Album” seems like a safe bet to be the best-selling heavy metal album of all time. I did a little research to determine the No. 1, and as it turned out, it is “The Black Album!” According to Wikipedia, Metallica has sold 31 million copies of the record worldwide on physical media.

What is Metallica's biggest selling album? ›

According to Universal Music Japan, METALLICA sold over 120,000,000 albums worldwide, including 64,018,000 in the United States and 2,600,000 in the United Kingdom. The best-selling album by METALLICA is METALLICA, which sold over 33,000,000 copies .

What is Metallica's most popular album? ›

Metallica

How many albums does The Black Album sell? ›

With over 20 million copies sold worldwide, Metallica's eponymous fifth album, better known as the 'Black' album, is one of the biggest-selling metal albums ever.

How many copies has The Black Album sold? ›

The self-titled “The Black Album” is the most popular album by the band. In 2022, the album has sold over 28.3 million copies around the world which means that it is the top-selling album of Metallica.

Was The Black Album recorded to a click? ›

6. The album also marked the first time that Metallica had ever recorded their basic tracks “live” together in the studio. “We wanted a live feel [to the album],” James Hetfield told Guitar World in 1991. “In the past, Lars and I constructed the rhythm parts without Kirk and Jason, or Lars played to a click by himself.

What is the #1 album of all time? ›

Michael Jackson's Thriller, estimated to have sold 70 million copies worldwide, is the best-selling album.

Who is the greatest solo artist of all time? ›

Michael Jackson is now the Greatest Solo Selling Artist of All Time!
#ARTISTPHYSICAL SINGLES SALES
1The Beatles116,080,000
2Michael Jackson79,350,000
3Elvis Presley135,210,000
4Queen49,960,000
6 more rows
27 Jun 2021

Who used Enter Sandman first Rivera or Wagner? ›

There was only one problem, though. Wagner entered the game with Metallica's “Enter Sandman” playing from the Shea Stadium speakers. Mariano Rivera had used “Enter Sandman” for nearly a decade at that point.

What is the meaning of One by Metallica? ›

Written by band members Lars Ulrich and James Hetfield, the song portrays a World War I soldier who is severely wounded—arms, legs and jaw blown off by a landmine, blind and unable to speak or move—begging God to take his life.

Who is the old man in Enter Sandman? ›

Recorded in Los Angeles, it premiered on July 30, 1991, two weeks before the release of the album. The plot of the music video directly relates to the theme of the song, combining images of a child having nightmares and images of an old man (R. G. Armstrong) with shots of the band playing the song.

Is Enter Sandman hard to play? ›

Enter Sandman's pretty easy, given he has rhythm to begin with. This. If your cousin is starting to play the instrument, make sure that he starts off playing right. 2 tone power chords should be the least of the beginner guitarist's worries.

What is the best baseball walk up song? ›

Here are our top picks for Walk Up Songs:
  • Whole Lotta Love by Led Zeppelin.
  • Dangerous by Ying Yang Twins.
  • Flex Ooh Oh by Rich Homie Quan.
  • Carmina Burana: O Fortuna.
  • Paranoid by Black Sabbath.
  • Partition by Beyonce.
  • Thunderstruck by AC/DC.
  • Blow the Whistle by Too Short.

How does Mariano Rivera throw his cutter? ›

How To Throw A Cutter Like Mariano Rivera! (BEST CUTTER GRIP)

Does Mariano Rivera like Metallica? ›

The newly elected baseball Hall of Famer admits he's not a fan of the metal band: "As a Christian, I don't listen to that kind of music."

What is the longest Metallica song? ›

Mercyful Fate is the Disc 1 seventh track from 1998's album Garage, Inc. It was written by King Diamond and Hank Shermann, and has a length of 11:10. It's the longest Metallica song featuring in a studio album.

Is Metallica one anti-war song? ›

Written by frontman James Hetfield and drummer Lars Ulrich, 'One' is an anti-war song, which may come as a surprise. However, this is precisely the type of density that has made Metallica one of the most well-respected metal bands of all time.

What is Metallica's number One song? ›

The band never had a No. 1 hit, though they've released six albums that reached No. 1 on the Billboard 200, specifically, their self-titled album, Load, Reload, Hardwired… to Self-Destruct, Death Magnetic, and St. Anger.

Is Enter Sandman about nightmares? ›

Written by band members James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, and Kirk Hammett, "Enter Sandman" is about nightmares and things that go "bump" in the night. It has by far the most radio play of all of Metallica's songs. >>

Who was Metallica inspired by? ›

Influenced by the late 1970's new wave of British heavy metal bands including Iron Maiden and Diamond Head, Metallica was formed in 1981 by the Danish immigrant Lars Ulrich (1963), a drummer.

Is Enter Sandman a good song? ›

The legendary dark lullaby 'Enter Sandman' is one of the most beloved and widely played metal songs of all time — certainly one of the best Metallica have ever written. It reached number 16 on the US Billboard and went platinum after it sold more than 1,000,000 copies in the US alone.

Is Master of Puppets hard to play? ›

Anyhow, Master of Puppets is easy to play until you get to ze spider riff. If you're a beginner, then that part will come quite hard to you (it did to me). The rythm bit of the interlude is pretty easy, it's reptitive and comes naturally if you know your chords. The lead bit is easy at first but gets relatively harder.

Is Enter Sandman easy to learn? ›

Enter Sandman is not so hard to play. It requires an intermediate level of guitar playing. Guitar solo is not that hard, either, especially in comparison to other Metallica's solos. Enter Sandman is perhaps among the 'easier' songs in Metallica's repertoire.

Is Enter Sandman easy on guitar? ›

EASY GUITAR LESSON | ENTER SANDMAN by Metallica - YouTube

Videos

1. Metallica - Whiskey In The Jar (Official Music Video)
(Warner Records Vault)
2. Miley Cyrus and Metallica “Nothing Else Matters” Live on the Stern Show
(The Howard Stern Show)
3. Stone Brewing x Metallica - Enter Night - 5.7% ABV
(Joe Senigaglia)
4. First Time Hearing Fade to Black by Metallica | Suicide Survivor Reacts
(Mental Amanda)
5. Stone Enter Night Pilsner Review! (Metallica Beer)
(KyBrewReview)
6. songs metallica dont like playing
(beinmetal)

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