Happy 30th: Metallica, …AND JUSTICE FOR ALL

Wednesday, September 5, 2018
Metallica, ... AND JUSTICE FOR ALL

30 years ago today, Metallica released the album that proved to their fans that they wouldn’t just survive the death of one of their members, they’d thrive to a degree that would surprise just about everyone.

Recorded at One on One Recording Studios in Los Angeles between late January and early May 1988, …AND JUSTICE FOR ALL was always destined to be a difficult album for Metallica, as it was their first collection of original material since the death of Cliff Burton. There were those who wondered if the band could possibly stay the course in the wake of losing someone who was so key to the band’s sound, but with the help of Burton’s replacement, Jason Newsted, along with producer Flemming Rasmussen, Metallica found the path to commercial success and – somewhat startlingly – it didn’t involve them changing their sound in any substantial way.

Well, except for the limited amount of bass guitar in the mix. Newsted wasn’t entirely happy about that, as you might imagine. But the fans still loved it.

“We took the RIDE THE LIGHTNING and MASTER OF PUPPETS concept as far as we could take it,” drummer Lars Ulrich explained to MTV in 2008. “There was no place else to go with the progressive, nutty, sideways side of Metallica, and I’m so proud of the fact that, in some way, that album is kind of the epitome of that progressive side of us up through the ‘80s.”

Of course, the album’s most famous song was and remains “One,” thanks to its immortal video. But the whole album is phenomenal, and it still rocks as hard now as it ever did.


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