Metallica at Twickenham Stadium: Fire, fury and thrills
“What kind of music are you guys listening to now?” asks Metallica frontman James Hetfield. “It doesn’t matter,” he continues, “as long as it’s in your head, in your ears and in your heart, ‘cos music moves you!” After 38 years the Californian heavy metal band still manages to move a huge fanbase at the spectacular Twickenham Stadium. The elephantine “Metallica family” were immediately upon familiar grounds as the group began, as they always begin, with Ennio Morricone’s The Ecstasy of Gold from their album S&M (1999), as featured in The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, while the screen showed clips of the film.
The fury and heavy riffs for which the crowd have gathered is present from the first song Hardwired from the album Hardwired… to Self-Destruct (2016), proving that Metallica are still moving forward with great music, not trapped by their own glory. Hetfield’s vocals are still powerful and lead guitarist Kirk Hammett runs around the stage with an impressive agility that makes sure everyone at the furthest corners of the stadium feels the music as if it is meant for them alone, their delivery let down only by the quality of the sound that cannot encompass the vastness of the venue.
The dazzling visuals and the huge pyrotechnics scorching the open space capture the thrill of watching a band moving through the legacy of a history spanning almost four decades, including Seek & Destroy from their first album Kill ‘Em All (1983), Creeping Death and For Whom the Bell Tolls from the album Ride the Lightning (1984), and The Unforgiven and Sad but True from the eponymous album Metallica (1991).
Hammett and bassist Robert Trujillo’s solo of No Leaf Clover was an added bonus that served to demonstrate the skill and versatility of this phenomenal rock band. With only a few songs from their new record and even a track from the notoriously infamous St Anger (2003), the four-piece, now well into their 50s, performed many of their hits from the early days. Hetfield reminded audiences that this was “the best job in the world” because of the love of the fans and to reciprocate, the evening’s show included the iconic Master of Puppets (1986), which showcased Lars Ulrich on the drums, Nothing Else Matters and Enter Sandman (1991), closing the night on a high with the same fire and thrills with which it began.
Photos: Virginie Viche
For further information and future events visit Metallica’s website here.
Watch the video for the single here: