James Hetfield interviewed by Metallica’s official publication So What!. Speaking about Lou Reed and Lulu, Papa Het talked about how Lou Reed and “Lulu” influenced the Metallica’s new album “Hardwired… To Self-Destruct”.

He said:

I would say that having the honor of Lou Reed in our studio, him, you know, kind of driving or I would say steering the ship in the way he saw that record, and how he worked… he’s really… I don’t want to say “was,” but yeah, he was a true artist. Thatmoment happened.

We recorded it, and he wasn’t doing it again. [Speaking as Lou] “I don’t think I could do it again, and if I could it’s just gonna be confusing. Why do I have to decide? I’ve done it.” You know, things like that. A little more “trusting your craft” or “trusting the moment” with Lou. And you know, you can get very, very analytical about all of that, pathologize everything that happens all the time. “He’s just saying that because he really doesn’t want to do it again!” Or, “He thinks it’s good, I think it could be better.” All that crap. But that’s what makes art, art. If you’re the creator then when you say you’re done, you’re done.

When I come into the studio and when Lars starts, there’s this thing that we joke about all the time. I’ll just sit down and goof around, warm up or crunch around and get my sound together and he’ll go, “Hey, what was that? What was that? Na, nana, n-nah, n-nah nah? Play that again and do that.” It’s like, “Dude, I don’t know what I played.” “Play it back.” “Oh, my God, can we move on? I mean, let’s play!!!

He’s really into documentation and knowing histories and maybe hoarding [cheeky grin – ED]. But he has such a memory of things, and he’s really afraid of any little moment not being highlighted.

I’m glad he can do that, because I can’t. So it’s a great team. A great team, I tell you, because he’ll hear something and go, “That was amazing.” And I’m thinking, “I was just warming up,” or you know, “I wasn’t even thinking!” He’s like, “Well, that’s the key,” or “Let’s do more of that,” when I’m saying, “Let’s go forward; there’s something better than that.”

So it’s a good combination. I don’t like the word “jamming,” but creating together and seeing what happens? There was not a lot of that in Metallica until Lulu showed up.

If you want to read the entire interview, click here.


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