Lars Ulrich Names the Song That Represents Metallica the Best
"'[Master of] Puppets' is definitely a very, very, very close to the top choice, because, I guess, it checks a lot of boxes," says Ulrich (as transcribed by Blabbermouth). "Obviously, it's a longer song, it's kind of a journey, and it's got the light and the dark, the heavy and the more melodic. So it's got the many different moods. Obviously, it's also got an incredible set of lyrics. The lyrics can be whatever you want. And I've had conversations with tons of people about different meanings and so on, but when [James] Hetfield writes lyrics that can be interpreted in any way that the listener wants, that's when I think they are at the best."
But the question deserved some more introspection taking Ulrich down the rabbit hole before he finally solidified his decision. "Another song that checks a lot of those boxes is 'One,' but then there's some deeper cuts," contemplated Ulrich. "I think a song like 'Bleeding Me' has a lot of those boxes checked also. And some of the stuff from the last couple of records. To me, it's a testament to the strength of the last two records, Death Magnetic and Hardwired.
He continued, "A lot of the earlier records, we'd make them, and then we'd kind of sit there six months later or a year later and go, 'I don't know about that mix,' or, 'I don't know what we were thinking on that outro,' or, 'I don't know what was going on in that guitar part,' or that crazy drum fill or whatever. But both Death Magnetic and Hardwired, to me, the shelf life of both of those records in terms of me sitting there and questioning the decisions that were made, they both come in still very, very well on my critique list, or however you phrase it."
Ulrich added, "I think that a song like 'Moth Into Flame' or 'Halo on Fire,' and even going back to Death Magnetic… When I was jamming along downstairs a couple two, three days ago, I was playing 'Cyanide' on drums, I was playing 'Broken, Beat & Scarred' and I was playing 'All Nightmare Long,' and a couple of those tracks still sound as fresh and relevant as they did 12 years ago. But forced [laughs] to make a choice, I guess I would probably nominate 'Master of Puppets' or 'One' as the ones that cover most of the bases and most of what we in Metallica are proudest of in terms of what we do."
The fans would likely agree with Ulrich, as "Master of Puppets" was voted the favorite track in Metallica's "Some Kind of Bracket" knockout tournament earlier this year. Metallica may have some more songs to consider soon, as Ulrich revealed back in June that they were working on music during the quarantine.
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