The tenth full-length studio album by legendary American Thrash Metal band.
Like "Death Magnetic", Metallica’s latest, "Hardwired… To Self-Destruct", is an attempt to revisit their early days. The only difference is that this time they sound like they’re actually trying, and maybe even having a bit of fun. It is band's first studio album in eight years following, marking the longest gap between two studio albums in the band's career. It is also their first studio album not to feature songwriting credits from lead guitarist Kirk Hammett since he joined the band in 1983. Allegedly, this is due to the guitarist losing an iPhone filled with riffs just prior to recording -- and he's also diminished in terms of solos, leaving an album as a showcase for Metallica's musical constructions. Moreover, its band’s first studio album released through their own label, Blackened.
Sprawling over two discs when it could have fit onto one (an aesthetic choice certainly meant to evoke memories of 1988's double LP "...And Justice for All"), "Hardwired...To Self-Destruct" does indeed rage, roaring out the gate with a title track where James Hetfield bellows "We're so f**ked/S**k out of luck". That palpable desperation recalls the free-floating angst that fueled Metallica's '80s, but "Hardwired...To Self-Destruct" doesn't find the quartet scrambling to sound as ferocious as they did during their heyday. Often, they do unleash the fury - "Moth into Flame" gallops forward in a manner reminiscent of "Battery" - but there's no denying that Metallica are an older band now, either incapable or uninterested in maintaining that intensity over the course of a full double album. When they slow down, it's not exclusively to churn and brood. "Murder One", a salute to departed Motörhead leader Lemmy, may belong in that category, but "Am I Savage?" teeters between ominous dirge and intricate transitions, while "Dream No More" has a backbeat that nearly swings. "ManUNKind" also has a bit of buried Funk in its rhythms and that, along with the preponderance of complicated suites, is a clue that "Hardwired...To Self-Destruct" is primarily the work of Hetfield and Lars Ulrich…
Make no mistake - "Hardwired..." is easily Metallica’s best album since 1991’s landmark self-titled LP. Still, the band couldn't return at a better time...
The album was Metallica's sixth consecutive studio album to debut at number one on the US Billboard 200, selling 291 000 album-equivalent units in its first week, of which 282,000 were pure album sales. The remaining 9 000 units comprised 34 000 song purchases and 9.3 million streams. It was the third-largest debut of the year in the US on pure sales. The album slipped to number 3 on the Billboard 200 in its second week, selling 75,000 units, including 71 000 copies. "Hardwired... To Self-Destruct" was the best selling Heavy Metal album of 2016 in the US and seventh overall, with 516 000 copies sold by the end of December. It became the highest selling debut of the year in Germany with more than 200 000 copies shipped in its first week, earning a Platinum Certification. "Hardwired... To Self-Destruct" had the biggest opening week of 2016 in Australia with 26 000 copies sold, debuting at number one on the ARIA chart. Overall, the album was number one in 57 countries, entered the top three in 75 nations and the top five in 105 countries. On April 12, 2017, the album went Platinum. The album has sold over three million copies worldwide.
Issued in a gatefold cover with two lyric sheets and code for digital download.
Blackened Recordings Inc./Universal International Music B.V., 2016 (00602557156416). Made in EU. First press.
1. Hardwired 3:09
2. Atlas, Rise! 6:28
3. Now That We're Dead 7:01
4. Moth Into Flame 5:52
5. Am I Savage 6:30
6. Halo On Fire 8:14
1. Confusion 6:43
2. Dream No More 6:29
3. Manunkind 6:57
4. Here Comes Revenge 7:20
5. Murder One 5:46
6. Spit Out The Bone 7:09
Total playing time: 77:38 min.