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Metallica's Master Of Puppets Turns 25
MTV newsroom ^ | 3/4/2011 | Kyle Anderson

Posted on 03/04/2011 10:48:23 AM PST by qam1

Considering how immediate the best of it feels, it's always a little bit surprising how well metal music ages. While not everything still sounds fresh, many of the genre's cornerstone releases hold up extremely well. Slayer's Reign in Blood still sounds as fresh and vital as it did when it first came out, and Black Sabbath's Paranoid remains top-shelf. While not all of their albums hold up well, Metallica's Master of Puppets — which came out on this day in 1986, a full 25 years ago — remains a stone cold classic and an album by which other metal albums should be judged.

The thing that stands out about Master of Puppets all these years later is how hard the whole thing is. Every chord crunch, every drum hit and every bellow from the throat of frontman James Hetfield is jagged and punishing, like the musical equivalent of a steel-toed boot constantly stomping on your face. Even the slower, slightly quieter moments (most notably on "Welcome Home (Sanitarium)") are infused with a snarling menace that permeates everything. Most people consider Metallica's self-titled 1991 album (the one with "Enter Sandman") to be their crossover, but Metallica is a full-on heavy album (a vibe they would inhabit for the remainder of the '90s). Master of Puppets is hard, and in retrospect, it actually does a better job than Metallica of splitting the difference between what the band was (the thrash-happy noisemakers of Kill 'Em All, Ride the Lightning and ...And Justice For All) and the band they were becoming (a stadium-filling anthem machine of epic proportions).

Indeed, it's the fact that Master of Puppets is so undeniably catchy that stands out more than anything else. Sure, the pounding rhythms of "Disposable Heroes" and the epic shred jam "Orion" are for hardcores only, but "Master of Puppets and "Welcome Home (Sanitarium)" are absolute singalongs. You can clearly hear the roots of more obvious crowd-pleasers like "Sad But True" and "The Unforgiven," and it's pretty thrilling to be able to heard a band at the top of its game evolving in real time.

Of course, there's a lot of sadness attached to Master of Puppets, as it ended up being the final album the band recorded with original bassist Cliff Burton, who died in a bus accident on September 27, 1986. A certain era of Metallica was over, and a new one began shortly thereafter with the arrival of bassist Jason Newsted (and the creation of Metallica, of course). There's also an argument that Master of Puppets was the last great metal album of the '80s, which is not unreasonable (although fans of Tesla's The Great Radio Controversy would probably raise a stink). And considering Nirvana's Bleach came out only a year after Master of Puppets, change was already in the air for all of rock music. If Master of Puppets sounds like the end of days — and it does — that's probably because it sort of was.


TOPICS: History; Music/Entertainment
KEYWORDS: metallica; xer
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1 posted on 03/04/2011 10:48:27 AM PST by qam1
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To: qam1

That song sucks.


2 posted on 03/04/2011 10:49:47 AM PST by Tzimisce (Never forget that the American Revolution began when the British tried to disarm the colonists.)
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To: qam1; ItsOurTimeNow; PresbyRev; Fraulein; StoneColdGOP; Clemenza; m18436572; InShanghai; xrp; ...
25th anniversary ouch

Xer Ping

Ping list for the discussion of the politics and social (and sometimes nostalgic) aspects that directly effects Generation Reagan / Generation-X (Those born from 1965-1981) including all the spending previous generations are doing that Gen-X and Y will end up paying for.

Freep mail me to be added or dropped. See my home page for details and previous articles.

3 posted on 03/04/2011 10:51:01 AM PST by qam1 (There's been a huge party. All plates and the bottles are empty, all that's left is the bill to pay)
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To: qam1
25th anniversary ouch

In before the obligatory "Who is this band? They're not from the (40s, 50s, 60s,70s, pick one) so obviously they suck!" comments.

ouch is right. Geez, has it been that long?

I'll say, though, that Metallica lost me when they started going after their fans for illegal downloads. Just because they were right, doesn't necessarily make it a good idea.

4 posted on 03/04/2011 10:54:22 AM PST by wbill
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To: wbill

They lost me at and after the black album. And Justice For All was the last decent thing they’ve done IMHO.


5 posted on 03/04/2011 11:04:26 AM PST by Peter from Rutland
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To: humblegunner
ping


6 posted on 03/04/2011 11:04:51 AM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer (biblein90days.org))
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7 posted on 03/04/2011 11:16:05 AM PST by evets (beer)
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To: qam1

I preferred Anthrax over Metallica.

‘Peace Sells, But Who’s Buying’ by Megadeath was much better than Master of Puppets.

F U Lars....

signed: Dave Mustaine


8 posted on 03/04/2011 11:19:01 AM PST by Le Chien Rouge
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To: qam1

Hey, I’m still trying to shake off King Crimson!


9 posted on 03/04/2011 11:21:19 AM PST by eCSMaster (2012 - End of an error)
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To: Peter from Rutland

They lost me with that Load/Reload garbage.


10 posted on 03/04/2011 11:22:42 AM PST by darkangel82 (I don't have a superiority complex, I'm just better than you.)
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To: qam1
There's also an argument that Master of Puppets was the last great metal album of the '80s, which is not unreasonable (although fans of Tesla's The Great Radio Controversy would probably raise a stink).

Tesla was a hard rock band (and a very good one), not a metal band.

11 posted on 03/04/2011 11:25:53 AM PST by Gena Bukin
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To: evets
bwahahaha.

I just put in some old Metallica this weekend. It had been a long time.
12 posted on 03/04/2011 11:26:28 AM PST by NoGodsJustGuns
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To: Tzimisce

They rock live.


13 posted on 03/04/2011 11:27:12 AM PST by goseminoles
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To: qam1

Man do I feel old...


14 posted on 03/04/2011 11:28:05 AM PST by Durus (Don't talk about what you have done or what you are going to do. Thomas Jefferson)
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To: Peter from Rutland

Holy cow, am I that old???

With ya on the Black album and Justice.

I need to sulk. 25?????


15 posted on 03/04/2011 11:30:10 AM PST by ElenaM
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To: evets

LOL!


16 posted on 03/04/2011 11:35:43 AM PST by dfwgator
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To: qam1
I'm to old for Metallica. I just got the CD of Mannfred Mann's Earth Band “Solar Fire.” Great stuff. “Father of Day,Father of Night” is a great old tune!
17 posted on 03/04/2011 11:36:29 AM PST by 4yearlurker (I can't afford anymore hope and change!!!!)
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To: qam1
Paranoid is 40 this year. The year it came out I was a HS junior. But it still rocks. And so do I.


18 posted on 03/04/2011 11:38:12 AM PST by Phlap (REDNECK@LIBARTS.EDU)
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To: qam1

The more I learned about Metallica, the less I liked them. Lars Ulrich comes across as a spoiled prima donna, and the band treated bassist Jason Newstead like crap until he left them. They became poseurs at any rate.


19 posted on 03/04/2011 11:38:49 AM PST by Hacksaw (Puritanism: The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy” — H.L. Mencken)
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To: Phlap

Now we’re Rocking !
F U L U


20 posted on 03/04/2011 11:42:01 AM PST by uddaudd (7 days - 7 ways Guero >>> with a floating, shifting, ever changing persona.....)
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To: 4yearlurker
I'm to old for Metallica. I just got the CD of Mannfred Mann's Earth Band “Solar Fire.” Great stuff. “Father of Day,Father of Night” is a great old tune!

I'm with you there. Fortunately, it is also the anniversary of little Stevie Winwood leaving the Spencer Davis Group to begin his years with Traffic and Blind Faith. It is hard to believe he started playing with SDG when he was only 14.

21 posted on 03/04/2011 11:42:05 AM PST by RobertClark (On a long enough timeline the survival rate for everyone drops to zero.)
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To: qam1

25 years ago, I was blowing my eardrums out with this album.

I still listen to it today.

I also found the orchestral version of this album to be very good as well. It can be found on YouTube.


22 posted on 03/04/2011 11:48:03 AM PST by EricT. (Can we start hanging them yet?)
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To: Peter from Rutland
. And Justice For All was the last decent thing they’ve done IMHO.

I like Justice better than Puppets although Puppets is a great album. I thought Black was good and if you just think that it was like a Metallica cover band with some of their own Original hits, it's not bad.

23 posted on 03/04/2011 11:53:04 AM PST by Malsua
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To: Phlap

Generals gathering in their masses.

Just like witches, at black masses.

Ozzy really knew how to turn a rhyme ; P


24 posted on 03/04/2011 11:55:05 AM PST by Gasshog (going to get what all those libs asked for, but its not what they expected.)
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To: EricT.
I agre. The Day that never comes is also a great song though not as old., and who doesnt like Fuel?

Sarah Palin..."Give me Fuel, give me fire, give me that which I desire!!!! Drill BBY DRILL!

25 posted on 03/04/2011 11:58:35 AM PST by DainBramage
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To: qam1

Lars is an IDIOT
Mustane is better than Hammett
“One” is there best song

Discuss amongst yourselves.....


26 posted on 03/04/2011 12:05:33 PM PST by OL Hickory (Jesus and the American soldier-1 died for your soul/1 died for your freedom)
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To: eCSMaster

“Hey, I’m still trying to shake off King Crimson!”

Funny you should say that! One of my most recent CD purchases was the remaster of Larks’ Tongues in Aspic.


27 posted on 03/04/2011 12:09:11 PM PST by ZirconEncrustedTweezers (Irritating a libtard is fun, and requires very little imagination.)
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To: qam1

25 years? I must be getting old...

But this album STILL packs a mighty punch after all this time.


28 posted on 03/04/2011 12:10:11 PM PST by ZirconEncrustedTweezers (Irritating a libtard is fun, and requires very little imagination.)
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To: OL Hickory
Wrong. Bleach came out in '89.
29 posted on 03/04/2011 12:12:05 PM PST by dk88 (Keep your laws off my body)
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To: OL Hickory

“Lars is an IDIOT”

What is understood need not be discussed.

“Mustane is better than Hammett”

Only if you like mindless doodling with no discernable melody.

““One” is there best song”

No, that would be “The Thing That Should Not Be.”


30 posted on 03/04/2011 12:12:24 PM PST by ZirconEncrustedTweezers (Irritating a libtard is fun, and requires very little imagination.)
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To: Peter from Rutland

I only like Justice songs live. For the album Lars was using those awful electric drums, whole freaking album sounds like he’s banging on cardboard boxes with pencils. They’re good songs, but that “tick-tick-tick” drumming is so wrong for metal. When they play the songs live he uses real drums (apparently having gotten over the whole electric thing) and the songs sound like proper metal.

Can’t believe Master is 25. That makes next year my high school 25th. Must be gettin old.


31 posted on 03/04/2011 12:13:10 PM PST by discostu (this is definitely not my confused face)
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To: Durus
Man do I feel old...

You'll really feel old when you realize that 'Who's Next' and 'Led Zeppelin IV' both turn 40 this year.

32 posted on 03/04/2011 12:18:51 PM PST by dfwgator
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To: qam1

I own the album, it’s a classic. But, it’s the only album of theirs that I own. Any suggestions on “must own” albums by Mettalica?


33 posted on 03/04/2011 12:22:38 PM PST by Professional
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To: goseminoles

All their songs sound the same.


34 posted on 03/04/2011 12:35:43 PM PST by Tzimisce (Never forget that the American Revolution began when the British tried to disarm the colonists.)
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To: qam1

Wow...I feel old.


35 posted on 03/04/2011 12:44:57 PM PST by RockinRight (if the choice is between Crazy and Commie, I choose Crazy.)
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To: qam1
They'll never be IRON MAIDEN!

UP THE IRONS!!!

36 posted on 03/04/2011 12:45:16 PM PST by Niteranger68 (Jared Lee Loughner - Disciple of Michael Moore)
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To: Professional

I have:

Kill ‘Em All (1983)
Ride The Lightning (1984)
Master of Puppets (1986)
...And Justice for All (1988)
Metallica AKA The Black Album (1991)

The Black album in and of itself rocks pretty hard, and if it were any other band’s debut, it would be a classic itself. As it stands its my least favorite album of the ones I have.

After that, nothing worth buying has been released by Metallica.


37 posted on 03/04/2011 12:50:14 PM PST by RockinRight (if the choice is between Crazy and Commie, I choose Crazy.)
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To: dfwgator
When “Master of Puppets” was released I was a Senior in high school and I remember it very well. Not that I liked it very much but it was something I heard too much of. It doesn't seem that long ago at all.
38 posted on 03/04/2011 12:50:48 PM PST by Durus (Don't talk about what you have done or what you are going to do. Thomas Jefferson)
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BRSVkbEUUwg


39 posted on 03/04/2011 1:07:38 PM PST by RC51
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To: Niteranger68; wastedyears
They'll never be IRON MAIDEN!

Mega-dittos to that!

40 posted on 03/04/2011 1:12:13 PM PST by bassmaner (Hey commies: I am a white male, and I am guilty of NOTHING! Sell your 'white guilt' elsewhere.)
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The album ‘Iron Maiden’ came out over 30 years ago. Iron Maiden as a band has been going for over 35 years.

I remember on Cliff ‘Em All, some guy commented about Master of Puppets bringing to his mind drugs, specifically chemicals. Well, Iron Maiden brings to mind mythology, poetry, and history. If I want good story, I know which band I’d rather listen to.

Besides, Metallica sold out to sell more albums.


41 posted on 03/04/2011 1:27:51 PM PST by wastedyears (It has nothing to do with safety, and everything to do with control.)
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To: qam1
A superb record from a superb band.

Only Sabbath compares in the genre.

42 posted on 03/04/2011 1:38:07 PM PST by Mariner (USS Tarawa, VQ3, USS Benjamin Stoddert, NAVCAMS WestPac, 7th Fleet, Navcommsta Puget Sound)
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I had to sign in via Facebook to leave a long comment.


43 posted on 03/04/2011 1:38:38 PM PST by wastedyears (It has nothing to do with safety, and everything to do with control.)
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To: Phlap
"Paranoid is 40 this year. The year it came out I was a HS junior. But it still rocks. And so do I."

Testify.

I still put that one on just to make my Polk Audios smoke. One of the best albums of all time. Master of Reality being just as good.

44 posted on 03/04/2011 1:42:24 PM PST by Mariner (USS Tarawa, VQ3, USS Benjamin Stoddert, NAVCAMS WestPac, 7th Fleet, Navcommsta Puget Sound)
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To: OL Hickory
"Lars is an IDIOT"

Maybe.

He's also one of the top 3 or 4 drummers that ever lived...and my personal favorite.

45 posted on 03/04/2011 1:48:08 PM PST by Mariner (USS Tarawa, VQ3, USS Benjamin Stoddert, NAVCAMS WestPac, 7th Fleet, Navcommsta Puget Sound)
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To: qam1

The first Sabbath album called “Black Sabbath” was (is) the best ever.
Master Of Puppets must be good Savage uses it for his intro.


46 posted on 03/04/2011 1:48:08 PM PST by certrtwngnut
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To: wastedyears
Besides, Metallica sold out to sell more albums.

As Jason Newstead said, "Yep we sell out...every single time, everywhere we play."

47 posted on 03/04/2011 1:53:30 PM PST by dfwgator
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To: wastedyears

I’m not really sure that’s a fair comparison. I mean Master of Puppets the song is ABOUT drug addiction, but also on that album is The Thing that Should Not Be, which is based on Cthulhu, Sanitarium which is a tribute to One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest, and Disposable Heroes about being on the frontline. There’s plenty of good stories based on external things in the album.

I don’t know of Metallica sold out so much as just changed. They happened to change in a way that hit the popular vein and made them lots of money. They needed to change, Justice featured two songs longer than Yes’ Heart of the Sunrise, they were seriously running the risk of drowning in their own musical excesses. I think they over corrected, but what the hell, they wouldn’t make that much money off of me anyway.

Everybody changes. You can say that Maiden has gone too far to the prog-metal extreme. The albums are still musically good but they aren’t nearly as exciting.


48 posted on 03/04/2011 2:01:10 PM PST by discostu (this is definitely not my confused face)
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To: discostu

Good point, it would be silly for guys in their Fifties, to be doing the same kind of material as when they were young punks.

People tend to care more for the early stuff, because that music is a much larger part of their lives. But had Metallica simply redid “Kill ‘Em All” every time, they certainly wouldn’t have had the longevity that they’ve had.


49 posted on 03/04/2011 2:04:33 PM PST by dfwgator
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To: Peter from Rutland

Same here. Lost me after the Black album and I agree...Justice was the one. Damn, I still miss Cliff.

But the one song that wakes me up every morning on MOP is Leper Messiah.


50 posted on 03/04/2011 2:08:40 PM PST by max americana
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