Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich opened up about the frontman James Hetfield’s alcohol addiction and the consequences of his relapse for Metallica last year and also revealed his bandmates’ opinions about Hetfield’s condition during an interview with So What.

As you may recall, Metallica’s lead vocalist James Hetfield has been struggling with alcohol addiction throughout the years. It all started during the recording of Metallica’s eighth studio album, ‘St. Anger,’ back in 2003 when Hetfield decided to enter rehab and emerge committed to sobriety since his heavy drinking started to affect his family as well.

While James Hetfield remained clean throughout many years, releasing albums like ‘St. Anger,’ ‘Death Magnetic,’ and ‘Hardwired… to Self-Destruct’ with Metallica, he later relapsed. In September 2019, he once again entered rehab for treatment, and the band has canceled its upcoming tour in Australia and New Zealand as the frontman recovers.

During a recent interview, Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich opened up about those hard times for both James Hetfield and the band members and stated that his problem meant many things for band members as friends and in general for Metallica as a band. He revealed that while James’ health was the first thing that they were concerned about, the consequences for the band was also crucial.

Here is what Ulrich said:

“And the same goes for James’ issues and his need to embrace recovery again last year. So what were we, two-three days out from ‘S&M2’? And I was told that James had some issues and that he had to go and deal with that, and nobody at that time really knows what that means. You know, what does it mean for him, what does it mean for us, what does it mean for scheduling, all that shit.”

He added:

“You just kind of sit there, and obviously your first thoughts are, ‘Is he OK? What’s going on?’ Then the Australian dates got moved. Then there was the Helping Hands concert that got moved, so on and so forth. And you start understanding more. We spoke a couple of times. We were texting. Started getting some more clarity, I mean, we’re coming up on 40 years here. You surrender to the elements.”

Lars Ulrich also pointed out the fact that all the band members have each other backs and the devastating incident brought them closer than ever. He stated that bumps are also parts of the road.

Here is how Lars Ulrich explained the relationship between Metallica members:

“We love each other, we believe in each other. We have each other’s backs. We will fight for each other. And we sort of roll with it. And Kirk, Rob, and I were probably talking and communicating closer and more intimately than ever before. This shit is never easy, but it’s also part of the ride, and so you just learn.”

In the end, Ulrich revealed that after a year both James and Metallica are doing better and in a healthier place while stressing the craziness level of the last year since COVID-19 in addition to James’ problems. After all, he stated that he feels positive and confident about the future.

Here is what Lars said:

“But a year later, here we are, all engaged. James is in a very healthy place, the band is in a very healthy place, and obviously, COVID has played a major role in all of it. It’s been a mind fuck of a year; I’m sitting here – I feel confident and excited about the state of the Metallica-nation, and I feel very optimistic about what’s ahead.”

You can click here to see the source of the interview.