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Garage, Inc.

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(642 Reviews)

Metal Album Reviews[RSS]

  • If there’s anything out of 90s Metallica that can be salvaged it’s this. Too bad it’s not new Metallica at all but just some more covers.

    First off, the first disc comprises a return back to the garage for much-needed inspiration. It’s good but my goodness! On “Tuesday’s Gone” they’ve turned full Alternica! It’s the worst cover on the disc, being not just overlong but sums up in about ten minutes what’s wrong with BOTH Load/Re-Load. It’s so bad that it just sunk the first disc.

    It’s not all bad, though. It does stay with you as for the remainder of the disc you ponder, “Where was *THIS*?” I really felt cheated in knowing that it was all right there and not elsewhere. Maybe Metallica is better as a cover band after all.

    Ah, but the second disc! Oh, now we’re talkin’! *THIS* is ALL of the classic riffing, drumming and much much more back from the days when Metallica didn’t suck. Just the first five tracks on this disc which comprise the reissue of 1987’s “Garage Days Re-Revisited” brings back the memories like a flood. And it just keeps getting better after that.

    From the two tracks formerly available on “Kill ‘em All” to the covers recorded during the Justice/Black sessions right on down to FOUR (!) Motorhead covers, doing Lemmy proud in 1995!

    1995? Y’mean there was a time between Black/Load where Metallica didn’t suck too? Now I’m REALLY beginning to feel cheated now!

    Overall, if you kick “Tuesday’s Gone” to the curb and can get over the feeling of being cheated this is a damn fine set. It’s not original but damn, *THIS* is the Metallica oldskool fans know and love. Nicely mixed, somewhat produced and containing a big *FAT* inlay booklet (it’s really thick at about 30 pages, filled with tons of text, photos and track info), it’s that rare treat from the 90s.

    Now, if only Metallica could only make that inspiration stick to some new material…

    Posted on January 12, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • Unless you’ve been raised in a dark, bottomless pit, you’ve most likely encountered, in any various form, the rich, driving, passions of the band who were undoubtedly one of the pivotal instigators of not only thrash metal, but mainstream metal: Metallica. In their humble beginnings, the band raged, an endless barrage of furious riffs and soulful vocals. As they progressed, the band matured, ever more noticeably; by their second album, they were approaching profound issues, suicide, self-destruction, genocide, and as the years passed, they kept growing. …And Justice For All’s “One” hit us hard, and “Enter Sandman”, claimed as the bands first assault into the Mainstream medium gave the band their first real taste of worldwide addulation. Gone were the complex riffage of “Master of Puppets”, the symphonic intricacies of “To Live Is To Die”; the band had matured unexpectedly, and now favored the soul of the epic over the neckbreak speed of their founding fathers. Their 6th album, “Load”, became their ultimate progression, and deviation. Tracks like “Mama Said” and “Ronnie”, tributes to James Hetfield’s lifelong love of Southern Rock, shocked us all. The band still rocked, as “Ain’t My Bitch” and “The Thorn Within” showed, but for some the change was just too much. When the band released their 7th album, “ReLoad”, we saw a mild return to the roots that birthed them. Tracks like “Fuel” and “Devil’s Dance” were undoubted onslaughts of pure metal; and yet, other tracks, like “Low Man’s Lyric”, and even the heartfelt “Unforgiven II” were still considered offset. The band was growing up, and nobody quite knew why. They still knew how to rock, so why didn’t they? Why were the magnificent stylings of “Battery” being discarded? Why couldn’t the band just, well, rock? It’s hard to say; it’s all based on individual opinion, and some would argue that now, more than ever, the band has reached their ultimate capacity, and has never rocked harder. The new album, “Garage Inc.”, is hailed in halves: Some leap in ecstatic joy, praising the return to the “Old Style” found on parts of the album. Others rejoice, finding the band has matured even more, as tracks like Seger’s “Turn the Page” and Sabbath’s “SabraCadabra” illustrate. They can still pound out the riffs, but they do it almost strategically now, however unconventionally. They explore new realms, and it’s apparent that the band has never enjoyed themselves more. You can feel James Hetfield pouring his soul into his work; He’s doing what he loves, and it’s very self-evident. “Garage Inc.” is sure to please both Metallica generations. Those who crave the old Metallica, who want to meet an endless barrage of metal in it’s purest form, will find their desires fulfilled on this album. Those who need a matured perspective, a steady stream of soulful expression, will find their hopes were not in vain. The album is almost perfect, and will no doubt be one of the most momentous and provocative of Metallica’s ventures.

    Posted on January 11, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • Many of these reviews are obviously biased to one of the two CD’s as preferred. I’d like to say that I’ve been a huge Metallica fan since the beginning (and along with most of you, lost faith with Load/Reload…) and I think both discs rule in their own respects. I bought the CD set originally because I wanted a digital copy of the EP (my vinyl is showing the wear). All of these tracks are classic Metallica. The Prince is one of the most blistering hard-core Metallica tracks ever- check out the solo’s. They don’t make em like that anymore… It took me several months before I even tried disc one, which is now a favorite as much as disc two. Disc one really demonstrates Hetfields incredible vocal power and range that is not as apparent on some of the noisy stuff. While disc 2 is an incredible adrenalin rush a la early Metallica, disc 1 really sticks with you long after the listen if you give it a chance… (My faves: Whiskey, Astronomy, Die Die Die My Darling, and Loverman).

    Posted on January 11, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • THE BAND: James Hetfield (lead vocals, guitar), Kirk Hammett (guitars), Jason Newsted (bass), Cliff Burton (bass on “Am I Evil” and “Blitzkrieg” only), Lars Ulrich (drums & percussion).

    THE DISC: (1998) 27 total tracks clocking in at approximately 137 minutes (disc-1 approximately 66 minutes, disc-2 approximately 71 minutes). Included with the disc is a 28-page booklet containing song titles/credits, Metallica band pictures old & new, album covers and/or band photos of artists being covered, and 20-pages of written bio by David Fricke (Managing Editor, Rolling Stone Magazine). Disc-1 recorded Sept/Oct 1998 at The Plant Studios, Sausalito, CA. Disc-2 recorded at numerous locations from 1984-95. This is their 8th album. Label – Elektra.

    COMMENTS: All cover tunes. Brilliant idea. Metallica pays homage to the bands they grew up with and admired. Many of the songs they cover here are hard to find – and you may not find them anywhere else but here. A few of my all-time favorite Metallica tracks are here… “Blitzkrieg”, “Stone Cold Crazy”, and “Killing Time”. New classics from disc-1 include “Sabbra Cadabra” (Black Sabbath), “Astronomy” (Blue Oyster Cult), “Tuesday’s Gone” (Lynyrd Skynyrd), and “It’s Electric” (Diamond Head). Two great covers of “Turn The Page” (Bob Seger) and “Whiskey In The Jar” (Thin Lizzy) were also excellent, but sadly destroyed by being over played on the radio. Other artists being covered on “Garage Inc.” include those listed above as well as Danzig, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Killing Joke, Motorhead (4 songs featured), Queen, Budgie (2 songs), Mercyful Fate (the track “Mercyful Fate” is a medley of their songs – “Satan’s Fall”, “Curse of the Pharaohs”, “A Corpse Without Soul”, “Into The Coven”, “Evil”… at over 11 minutes, it’s Metallica’s longest song ever recorded), etc. “Garage Inc.” enjoyed success on the charts – reached #2 on the Billboard Top 200 Album charts for 1998; singles “Turn the Page” (#1 on the Mainstream Rock charts), “Whiskey In The Jar” (#4 – also won a Grammy Award for best hard rock performance), and “Die, Die My Darling” (#26). This release – Great idea. Lots of music. Great songs (some more classic than others) played by one of the best metal bands of the ’80’s/90’s. Something for old/new fans alike with plenty of thrash and mainstream heavy metal. Great sound production. Awesome set of discs (5 stars).

    Posted on January 11, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • The return of Metallica as I like to call it. Yea these boys aren’t as hard and heavy as they used to be, but the material on both CD’s is their best since 1991’s S/T effort, a.k.a.The Black Album. The new songs, all non-originals, sound convincingly enough like Metallica wrote them. They play the songs as though they wrote them which seperates a weak and lame cover album to those who perform the songs as if they were the bands own. Out of the new comes a ripper versions of Bob Seger’s Turn The Page, Lizzy’s Whiskey In The Jar, Nick Lowe’s Loverman, another Diamond Head tune It’s Electric and BOC’s Astronomy. The centerpiece has to be the Mercyful Fate medley, clocking in at over 10 mins., it takes balls to do King Diamond, and James and Crew pull it off fantasticly. The down side of disc 1 is Tuesday’s Gone, in acoustic form is fine, but it pales in comparison to the studio tracks. On disc 2, the band’s covers and B-sides from the start of their career all the way up to Lemmy’s 50th birthday party bash are all here. The 9.98 Garage Days Ep is here in it’s entirety, making it an essential purchase for those who don’t already own it. Other gems are pretty much all the rest of the songs as well, So What, Breadfan, Stone Cold Crazy and Killing Time. But the centerpiece of the 2nd CD is the Motorhead covers. Live, raw, energetic, and with the Lemmymeister himself sound amazingly awesome. Well I’ve bored you enough, buy it if you haven’t already.

    Posted on January 11, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now