Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Metallica - 'Until It Sleeps' from Load (1996)

I really like both Load and ReLoad and don't find them a falling-off from the Black Album but a logical progression from that album's Adult Contemporary Thrash-Influenced Rock into a broader array of Classick Rock Jamz. The Black Album was pristine but kind of homogeneous, whereas Load and ReLoad go full-hog, which I dig. 'Until It Sleeps' justly won the MTV Video Award for best video as it is both strange and gorgeous, evoking allegorical medieval painting and tapestry-work. The song, too, is apparently about James Hetfield's watching his mother deal with cancer and the struggles within and without. I have always maintained that at his heart, James Hetfield is a 70's singer/songwriter type, not unlike Jackson Browne, James Taylor or Bob Seger, and this song is a beautiful example of that. I was going to file this under NapTime Jamz because it came on VH1 as I was dozing and realized it is a good song to sleep to or to be partially awake to, the mid-to-late-1990's being like a bad interregnum slash evil dreamworld of the triumph of a certain modality of Capital, but that would sell it and its attendant album short. The albums that Metallica is detracted for are not bad at all, in fact, all of them are good, they are just not the first four (or five) Metallica albums. St. Anger is both fascinating and endlessly relistenable and Death Magnetic is kind of the Black Album turned inside-out, making a kind of Adult Contemporary Thrash for Bush II USA. I got to see Metallica for the first and only time on the Death Magnetic tour and I was really ill so couldn't appreciate it as much as I should have but it rocked nonetheless. And hey, that concert movie is awesome.

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