Updated: Jul 5
A year into their WorldWired Tour and three decades into their musical career, Metallica are still the reigning kings of thrash metal. Proven effortlessly at Tuesday night’s gig at London’s O2 Arena, Hetfield, Ulrich, Hammet and Trujillo launched into a frenzied Hardwired... to Self-Destruct with an abundance of energy, tearing through Atlas, Rise! Seek and Destroy and an unanticipated Leper Messiah like a hurricane on steroids.
Supporting their 10th studio album, the 20,000 strong crowd ranged between veteran rockers, teenage head bangers, rebel kids and at least one unborn baby metal head enjoying her first concert in the pit. The boys played a generous mixture of new and old, playing the Hardwired material with noticeable enthusiasm that even rubbed off on the fans that thought they were going to prefer the older tracks. It wouldn’t be a Metallica gig without Lars screwing up somewhere along the line, fittingly to the intro of ‘Confusion,’ because he thought the band were supposed to be playing a different song which James explained with accustomed humour.
The stage set for Moth Into Flame had everyone distracted away from the music, as drone controlled life like fireflies ascended from the stage to perform a series of synchronised sequences above the band. Dedicated and written about the late blue-eyed soul singer, Amy Winehouse, the only noticeable technical error that occurred was when one of the firefly drones assumingly malfunctioned, and made a B-line for one unlucky fan, across half the arena, away from its fellow mechanical bugs, never to be seen again.
If Master of Puppets, One and Nothing Else Matters are earthquakes within the Metallica set list, then the encore of Enter Sandman was the meteorite that wiped out the dinosaurs. Crowd members who hadn’t moved a muscle the entire show were out of their seats within milliseconds of the first note, their screams resonating throughout the venue. Undoubtedly the most sought after song of the evening, it seemed the fans had saved all their energy for the last song, by which point more than one pit had opened up in the crowd.
With a dazzling array of pyrotechnics to finish the show, Metallica left the stage to take their trash metal legacy onwards to the rest of the world. As of February 2018, Metallica will be embarking on their 11th leg of their tour, across Europe. You can get your tickets here.