I like the fact how so many new bands i.e. STAIN'D, KORN, SYSTEM OF A DOWN and such have only released a couple of albums or so and they now get the "tribute" to them treatment. Hey, FUCK YOU! What have they done to influence a plethora of bands? I'll tell you...JACK SHIT! Here is a band that rightfully deserves one and Nuclear Blast gives them the royal treatment. This means quality bands with a quality end result, which is what you will get here and nothing less.
METALLICA despite creating a few CDs worthy of being used as coasters for your can of pop, deserve this treatment because they have influenced not only the bands listed here, but countless others. Now, let's move onto the product. PRIMAL FEAR does a scary representation of "Seek And Destroy" that sounds like the original with a lot of balls thrown in from Ralf. Killer job. THERION throws you for a loop with their rendition of "Fight Fire With Fire". It first starts out as a classical piece, which I thought would sound like this till the end, but they kick it into high gear in a Death Metal sort of way. Awesome! Expect nothing less than awesome from THERION.
What is great about this CD is that there are six tracks that are exclusive to this release and that is worthy of picking up alone. DESTRUCTION covers "Whiplash". What a perfect song for this band to handle, right? In true German Thrash fashion, these three let it loose with Schmier's high and screechy vocals. Vintage 80's sound here. "Phantom Lord" by ANTHRAX was released on another comp a few years back called ECW Extreme Music Vol. I. SONATA ARCTICA's rendition of "Fade To Black" is sung beautifully and isn't really a fast number like the original. Not Power Metal like from SONATA, but a killer version that puts a new spin on a classic number here. BURDEN OF GRIEF server up the mighty classic "Master Of Puppets" Metalcore style and may or may not please everyone. You be the deciding factor.
The always vibrant and brilliant DARK TRANQUILLITY tackle "My Friend Of Misery" and put their spin on it with their trademark sound. Simply brutal! The one track here that I was most intrigued with more than anything was CREMATORY's version of "One". The song is chopped down considerably to fit on this one disc. The intro is done with acoustic guitars and adds some odd effects as well which I didn't expect. The vocals come off as gothic. What else would you expect from this band. Mathias vocals are clean of course and then Felix's Death Metal growls chime in. Done in true CREMATORY fashion. A really good song, but should have been done in its entirety and not edited. Oh well. IN FLAMES are up to bat now with "Eye Of The Beholder". They pretty much keep it to the original sound, just slightly more metallic. Anders voice is clear as day. I would have expected more from them, but I think they put zero effort into this as opposed to the other bands here.
New Power Metal freaks THUNDERSTONE do an intriguing version of "Welcome Home", which is rather haunting. There are Power Metal chords here. They keep in the vein of the original and the vocals are much darker and uglier as opposed to his other band. While this song was chopped down in time as well, they did what they could and actually pull it off. Nice surprise here. THE KOVENANT release an electronic/industrial version of "The Memory Remains", which is also on their new CD "S.E.T.I". Slow, haunting, catchy and somewhat poppy is what is offered here. Unique is key here and they nailed it. Hard Rockers SINNER does an amazing job with "Wherever I May Roam". Matt Sinner puts his gritty trademark voice here and it rocks just as hard as the original. Those wacky and drunken Germans known as TANKARD wrap it up with "Damage Inc.", which is a great way to close the disc. All I can say here is that you will thrash till the end here. Typical TANKARD, but lots of energy is being released here.
This is a proper tribute CD to METALLICA as they have influenced countless bands around the world. This should be the official tribute CD and all others should be considered bootlegs and considered bottom of the bottom at best. This is the must have tribute. This is a great product all around. What else would you expect from Nuclear Blast? (Online December 3, 2003)