Metallica – 72 Seasons

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Year: 2023
Total Time: 01:17:13
Label: Blackened Recordings

The calendar shows April the 14th, 2023 and the Metal community has in its possession the new album of the greatest band in Metal music! Seven years after the release of the remarkable “Hardwired to Self-Destruct”, the mighty METALLICA returned with their new effort “72 Seasons”, ready to offer joy to their fans but at the same time to give opportunities to their “haters” for negative comments! Of course we should mention that “Load”, “Reload” and “St.Anger” created us some mixed opinions, ok. However, there has to be a limit and to realize that MASTERPIECES such as “Master Of Puppets”, “Ride The Lighthning” etc. are composed once in a lifetime! As all these are familiar to everyone, so let’s move on in 2023…

We should also note that in the time between the previous album and the release of “72 Seasons” the conditions in METALLICA’s camp were not ideally, as James Hetfield once again had to follow a rehab program. If we add his divorce from his wife (for 25 years) and mother of his children, we understand that the band’s captain had to deal with and overcome several inner demons. So, when the album of METALLICA was announced, everybody was surprised! On the other hand, I would say that previous similar situations for the band, brought up some music junk entitled “St.Anger”. Also, the first new singles (besides the title track) did not create any high expectations…..

As I was listening to the whole album, I had the feeling that METALLICA released as singles for “72 Seasons” some less good songs. The album has a harmonious flow/rhythm and its audition is enjoyable, avoiding of course any comparison with the METALLICA’s first five releases! I would characterize this album as James Hetfield’ s purgatory’, as his performance overcomes some few negative points of the album. As a great leader, he carries the music and the band on his shoulders. His vocals are amazing and it could be said that now, his voice has the best shape of his carrier. He sounds renewed, dynamic and his right hand makes the difference on the guitar! Also. In this album he has written some of the most personal lyrics of his career, as “72 seasons” is a concept album talking about the struggles one might find in his first 18 years of life.

Regarding the musical direction of “72 Seasons”, I would say that there is a combination of the band’s musical influences and elements we hear in “Load/Reload” and “Black Album” era. In “Inamorata” (which is the longest song in METALLICA’s career), and in “Chasing light” we can hear influences from BLACK SABBATH, while a “My Friend Of Misery”-spirit haunts parts of this arrangement. “You Must Burn!” is the new “Sad But True”, “Lux Æterna” song shows METALLICA’s love for MOTORHEAD, “Sleepwalk My Life Away” could have been included in “Load/Reload” albums, while  “Too Far Gone?” has some of “Olier Than Thou” aura. The album moves mainly in mid-tempo rhythms, including enough moments of groove as it happens in the dynamic “Shadows Follow”. The only songs that have faster tempo are “Lux Æterna” and “Room of Mirrors” which, with its Punk aesthetics, have the “Garaze Days” EP attitude. Regarding the production, it seems that the band gave extra attention, giving fresh aura at the songs!

It’s a fact that almost the whole metal community has already heard the album, having a personal opinon. The first ridiculous situations and “civil” conflicts about whether the album is good or not, have made their presence. Personally I think that METALLICA managed to release a decent album with a pleasant sound, with the long duration not becoming boring or annoying. I think it is a gift for all of us having great bands like METALLICA still active. They are releasing good albums even at their age and they are giving amazing live performances!

The band is still thriving and strong, that’s for sure! Regarding comments like “the cover of the album is yellow and not black”, “Kirk Hammet is bored to play better solos”, “some songs have long intros” and all these negative voices, I would leave them aside. “72 seasons” is just a music album, without being a matter of life or death to have it in your collection. Some people like it, some others don’t. Personally I would still wish to hear METALLICA playing like in their first four albums but this is not going to happen. So, I am very satisfied  that such a huge band still continues in a decent music shape! In the end, I prefer to enjoy their music than to hunt ghosts of the past…

Rating: 7/10
Editor: Nikos Manousis
Related Link: METALLICA – Official Page

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  1. Kostas B.

    Πολύ σωστός! Συμφωνώ σε όλα. Μια προσωπική παρατήρηση απλά…θεωρώ ότι το μεγαλύτερο μειονέκτημα του δίσκου είναι ότι δεν έχει αυτά τα 1-2 τραγούδια που θα σου μείνουν στο μυαλό. Είναι όλα από καλά έως πολύ καλά. Και όπως έχω ξαναπεί όταν σε 5-10 χρόνια όλες αυτές οι ιστορικές μπαντάρες που βγάζουν ακόμα δίσκους σταματήσουν να είναι ανάμεσά μας, θα κλαίμε με μαύρο δάκρυ οπότε ας τους απολαύσουμε τώρα που είναι καιρός!

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