We all know them, you heard about the album. Maybe you heard it, maybe not. But you should. Why?
Metallica has been tagged, fairly, as the biggest metal band in the world. Yeah, it sounds cheesy, maybe because metal isn’t about getting to the masses (sometimes). But what about the fight to get to the top? They did it, they won it. They are there, and they are still those thrashy kids who just happen to take the world on their hands and expose their messy minds for all to see. And “72 Seasons” is pretty much a personal portfolio of feelings canalized by James’ voice.
It starts with the song that gave the album it’s name. “72 Seasons” comes from the 18 first years of our lives. That’s what the album cover depicts too. James said it was inspired partly on the lives of his children’s. I’ll share my impressions in order of appearance on the album. It is a high octane, straight to the point, NWOBHM speed metal song, with slow passages that derive into more speed. James and Lars connect making a solid base. Robert is following the tonic, nothing amazing happening there. Kirk goes soloing fairly good for what he has done lately. It talks about someone abusing on the 18 years passed of a man. Abusing of his existence, his story. Pretty decent, for a group of old men depreciated by their fans. 6.5/10. But it’s not their best. There is more. Nothing too flashy, just the right amount of arrogance and power that Metallica tends to give us to enjoy and project on them.
“Shadows Follow” is a slower, heavier, swaggy song, that makes me remember the ways they played their music on the Load era, but with a new edge, more mature. It’s groovy, with a catchy main riff. It talks us about, in first person, how someone runs from his demons, but they still follow. He needs to face them. Pretty good, 7/10. Now we are getting ahead into the new Metallica.
Now comes one of the singles, and it’s called “Screaming Suicide“. A pretty straight to the point song, with a catchy riff, very in the NWOBHM style too. It talks to us from the society perspective to someone thinking about commiting suicide. You should keep it to yourself, doesn’t matter how much you suffer and, what you pass on every days life. And maybe I will be teaching you how less you worth. 6.5/10, pretty good, enjoyable. Not too cheerful, straight to the bone, even harsh. Maybe it’s your cup of tea.
“Sleepwalk My Life Away” is a mid paced song where James shines on his vocal performance. With a catchy chorus and riffs to walk to, it seduces you to listen more of it. I’m not a fan of those kind of lyrics though. Talks about a man who is living in a dream, a fog, where he cannot awake and asks for someone else to wake him. Not the kind of mood for everyday’s life, but it’s something Metallica keeps doing. Not my cup of coffee. 6/10.
Then, here comes one of the peaks. “You Must Burn!” brings us heavier, slower riffs, that makes you feel the weight of your balls. Collects the anger and passion burning in your heart, and encourages you to burn the witches in your life, even yourself if it is the case. Making you responsible of your situation. It even has some Black Sabbath vibes that makes you feel yourself at home. It sounds fresh, it sounds heavily catchy. Solid. Kirk delivers. 8/10.
Here it comes the first single, the one that you already heard, and you will hear again. “Lux Aeterna” shows what Metallica are capable of, where they came and where they go. Fun riffs, cheery lyrics, totally stadium song. The one you want to hear while driving, working out, or doing something that needs that happy boost. An instant hymn! If it weren’t for the shitty solo Kirk gave, it was a solid 10. 9/10 this one 👌.
“Crown of Barbed Wire” is another swaggy song, that tells us about the weight and rust of someone who has an empire of his own. The weight as a barbed wire over his head. That mood that “Load” and “Reload” brought us. The pain of a man that thinks too much, feels too much, and not too happily , even having an empire of his own. I liked this one more. James is pretty straight forward on his lyrics, for good and bad. 7/10, will company you on the days you need to fight.
“Chasing light” is about a boy and his struggle dealing with people around him. Making him trust, letting him down. Knowing darkness. Catchy riffs, solid drums, Kirk giving us a recognizable Metallica solo. Good song, 8/10.
“If Darkness Has a Son” starts with a militar drum drill, following guitar riff by James on the same pace. Kirk enters with some melodies that open the song to some vibrato charged riff that has some Load era mood on it, it opens to James singing about temptation, and how dark it is. Pretty good, but it gets boring as it lengths 7 minutes, could have been shorter. Kirk delivers some good solo on it. 6.5/10.
“Too Far Gone?” gives us adrenaline from it’s walking through catchy riffs and a pretty good chorus. Kirk’s solo is messy. Talks about a troubled man and his thoughts about how saveable is himself. Catchy. 7.5/10.
Now comes what i consider the best on the album. “Room of Mirrors” opens with some melodies to drive you to a solid paced riff and a melodic riff to some well placed vocal efforts by James, in a way that creates a melodic scheme to keep you listening, banging your head and singing to it immediately. Then after the chorus, some doubled guitars make you want to learn the song on the instrument of your preference. Kirk plays a fun solo on it. Great song. 9.5/10.
Last song, “Inamorata“, was cited to be the favorite of some journalists. It is a slow paced song, that tells us about the love of a man (first person) and the so called misery, which sounds pretty much like the love between a man and a woman. It has ballsy riffs from the “Load” era, dragging drums. James sings us, invites us to know his personal life, how he feels, how he needs to get away from someone. But he is in love with misery. A marriage, pretty much. Pretty good song, i can tell why it is loved so much. 8/10.
How hate them? Yeah, they are popular. They changed styles. But let’s be fair, how “Load” and “Reload” can be commercial, if they are not good? Those albums are harsh. I can feel James’ pain on them. They are who they are and nothing more, those weren’t masks.
This album compiles what they are. In a mature way, without denying but facing. Metallica delivered an album that comes from years of road behind them, the world on their feet passed years ago, but there is new attention to them, given their Netflix feature, that drived a wave of new people to listen to them. I’m happy for them, and that we can share the music they give us, to new people. Yeah, we are not the rockstars they are, they were. But if you are not the star of your own life, you are doing something wrong. Just saying. Just enjoy.
Final score? The mean for what i gave is a 7.46. I can’t say it has a sinergy to make it bigger as a whole, so i’ll keep it.
You should listen to it, it will definitely have something for you.