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Metallica - Reload CD (album) cover




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2.20 | 411 ratings

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3 stars If 1995's 'Load' didn't put you off Metallica, 'Reload' certainly won't win over any new converts, but that's not going to stop me from trying to defend this hugely underrated hard rock album.

It's understandable why these songs are often regarded as leftovers from its predecessor, since they're pretty much identical in sound, structure, tone and lyrical themes. But that doesn't necessarily make them bad. Which is why it's a shame so many people view with this album with utter contempt, as there's some seriously hard-rocking tunes here that might not hark back to the days of 1980's thrash metal, but certainly show a band who have grown and matured over the years.

With hard-hitting tracks such as 'Fuel', 'The Memory Remains', 'Devil's Dance', 'The Unforgiven II' and a number of vastly underrated gems in Metallica's discography such as 'Bad Seed', 'Better Than You' and 'Attitude', it's hard to imagine why people would so casually discard this album simply because it sounds different to the Metallica of ten years prior. However, I'll be the first to admit that 'Low Man's Lyric' is awful.

The band are probably at their most comfortable on this album when it comes to playing. Guitarist Kirk Hammett has become more than capable with his wah pedal while frontman James Hetfield has his growl nailed to perfection. Jason Newsted's bass isn't mired by his limited input, and drummer Lars Ulrich is... well... he's Lars Ulrich... 'nuff said.

If anything, the only real detriment is the duration. Clocking in at over 75 minutes, sometimes it can be quite tiring to listen to in one sitting. But otherwise, 'Reload' may be far from perfect, but it definitely gets a lot more slack that it deserves. Stop comparing it to past Metallica releases and enjoy it for the solid hard rock album that it is.

martindavey87 | 3/5 |


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