METALLICA – Beyond Magnetic

METALLICA - Beyond Magnetic
  • 8/10
    METALLICA - Beyond Magnetic - 8/10


Warner Bros. Records
Release date: December 13, 2011

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

Metallica has arguably been the most criticized band of all time. They began their storied career nearly 30 years ago as an underground Thrash Metal band and have evolved into a musical icon, even being inducted in the Rock ‘N’ Roll Hall of Fame. Fans who have followed their career since their inception are very well aware of the transformation the band has undergone both cosmetically and musically.

The band released their ninth studio album in 2008 called Death Magnetic. The album was widely praised as a return to their Thrash Metal roots. Since that release they have reconnected with early contemporaries like Slayer, Anthrax, as well as former bandmate Dave Mustaine and Megadeth, to embark on the Big Four Tour and live album. Some would say Metallica have come full circle in their calling.

It was rumored there were several unreleased tracks from Death Magnetic, and in December of 2011, Metallica played four songs in a concert series that celebrated the band’s 30th anniversary. The songs, “Hate Train”, “Just A Bullet Away”, Hell And Back”, and “Rebel Of Babylon” were subsequently officially released exclusively on iTunes as the Beyond Magnetic EP.

Regarding the music, these four songs are an obvious extension of the music released on Death Magnetic. The subpar production is still intact, as well as the straining vocals of James Hetfield. These tracks are very notably signature Metallica songs, using the same basic formula incorporated by the band since their self-titled, post Thrash “Black Album” in 1991, which is a Hard Rock format featuring heavy, pounding riffs and melodramatic themes.

Each of the four tracks is around seven minutes in length, so fans will not feel cheated in the four-song EP package. For the fans that are stuck in the past and have never forgiven Metallica for abandoning their Thrash Metal roots, they should be pleasantly surprised with these songs. There is one evident piece of the “Old Metallica” during the track “Just A Bullet Away” … the track not only has great, classic Thrash Metal riffs and fiery vocals, but right in the middle of the track it comes to an abrupt halt … it then delves into a soft melancholy guitar solo that crescendo’s back to its original theme in fierce passion.

Although Metallica may not be eons away from that little known underground Bay Area Thrash Metal band, they have served multiple generations of Metal, have become a household name, and single-handedly put Metal on the map in people’s everyday lives. Beyond Magnetic may be a small part of their historical significance, but it’s a piece which cannot be ignored.


  • Sean Meloy

    Sean Meloy was a reviewer, interviewer and DJ here at Metal Express Radio, based out of Iowa , USA. By day he is a straight laced, buttoned up, number crunching accountant; armed with his portable calculator. All other times he is a hard rocking Metal head! He spent many hours listening to records and 8-tracks with his father. Classic bands such as Deep Purple, Pink Floyd, Kansas, Led Zeppelin, and Eric Clapton just to name a few. His father bought him his first record, Kiss Alive II, at age 6. By the time he reached his teens he was discovering all the Classic Metal of the 1980’s; Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Twisted Sister, etc. He became a huge fan of the Thrash Metal of the time as well; Metallica, Megadeth, Anthrax, Exodus, and Overkill. During the 1990’s he experimented with the Grunge and Hard Rock. However, by the time the millennium came he found himself going back to his roots and rebuilt the music collection he started in his teens.

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