The Metallic-Era CD 1996 UK Neat Metal. Original artists’ recordings of tracks covered by METALLICA. NWOBHM stars. Check videos
Basically it’s the original versions of all the songs that METALLICA cover on GARAGE INC. This CD is a must for any true Metallica fan. Music that inspired the Metallica guys.
Neat Metal – NM013
CD, Album, Compilation, Stereo
Heavy Metal, Hard Rock
1 –Savage Let It Loose Written-By – Dawson*, Bradley* 3:34
2 –Diamond Head Sucking My Love Written-By – Tatler*, Harris* 9:35
3 –Sweet Savage Killing Time Written-By – Bates*, Haller*, Fleming*, Campbell* 2:39
4 –Diamond Head Am I Evil Written-By – Tatler*, Harris* 7:45
5 –Blitzkrieg Blitzkrieg Written-By – Ross*, Jones*, Sirotto* 3:11
6 –Diamond Head The Prince Written-By – Tatler*, Harris* 6:14
7 –Holocaust The Small Hours Written-By – Mortimer* 7:08
8 –Diamond Head Helpless Written-By – Tatler*, Harris* 6:48
9 –Budgie Crash Course In Brain Surgery Written-By – Shelley*, Phillips*, Bourge* 2:39
10 –Killing Joke The Wait Written-By – Killing Joke 3:45
11 –Budgie Breadfan Written-By – Shelley*, Phillips*, Bourge* 6:07
12 –Anti-Nowhere League So What Written-By – Anti Nowhere League* 3:10
Front cover text:
The original tracks by the original artists as covered by Metallica collected on one album for the first time
Rear cover text:
Original artists’ recordings of tracks covered by METALLICA together for the first time on one album!
This head-banging compilation contains the original versions of 12 Rock classics that are best-known for Metallica’s impressive interpretations. Devoted Hard Rock, Metal and Punk fans may be well acquainted with these original versions, but the legions of Metallica followers will certainly be interested in this collection, which is an essential look into the roots of James Hetfield and Co. Includes cuts from Killing Joke (‘The Wait’), Diamond Head (‘Am I Evil’), Budgie (‘Crash Course In Brain Surgery’ and ‘Breadfan’), Anti Nowhere League (‘So What’) and many others. Neat Metal Records.
The band that has had the most influence for these initial bands has been Metallica. Throughout their career, Metallica has always paid homage to their influences, with some songs having remained in their own set lists for decades now. They have also been active in re-recording these songs that they loved, and putting them on the B side of singles, on EP’s, and even special albums dedicated entirely to cover songs of the artists they loved. In many ways, their own huge popularity has helped those early bands regain or improve their own status.
And so we come to this album. The Metallic-Era contains 12 songs that Metallica has either performed or published cover versions of – or both – over their career. Gathered here though are the original versions of the songs as performed by the original bands. For those that have not heard them before, or do not own the albums they came off, it is a great collection in order to hear what these songs sounded like before Metallica came along and made them, for the most part, their own. Some of the originals still hold up in a modern setting, and can sit beside the Metallica versions on an even pedestal. Some perhaps do not contain or hold the power that Metallica has added to them in their own way.
When listening to and judging the original versions of these songs against the Metallica versions of the songs, perhaps the toughest part is accepting that on the whole Metallica improves each and every one of them. The majority of people who first hear this album will never have heard the original versions before, and will only know the Metallica versions. That can make it very difficult to appreciate the originals given that it is not the versions of the songs that you know. To really fully appreciate these songs, you need to put out of your mind what you know to be the cover version, and remember the time and place and the lack of technology these songs were recorded under. That perspective can help to hear what Lars and James in particular heard with their ears all those years ago.
The Diamond Head tracks in particular all hold up from the original recordings. “Am I Evil”, “The Prince” and “Helpless” still sound great today from that amazing demo debut Lightning to the Nations. I am probably not one to judge “Sucking My Love”, as I have never really enjoyed the song at all, and it has too much of a free-form-jazz attitude to it for me to like. Sweet Savage’s “Killing Time” and Blitzkrieg’s “Blitzkrieg” are also great songs. I probably enjoy these band’s original versions more than I do Metallica’s cover versions, as good as they are as well. Holocaust’s “The Small Hours” is also brilliant. It must have been something to witness it in a live setting. I do enjoy the two Budgie songs, “Crash Course in Brain Surgery” and “Breadfan”, but I think the extra metal and James’ vocals tip the Metallica versions in front of these versions. Killing Joke’s “The Wait” is just a great song, and I love both versions for what they are. Savage’s “Let it Loose” and Anti-Nowhere League’s “So What” are two very good examples of songs that Metallica has lifted and improved dramatically by their cover versions.
As an historical artifact this is a terrific album and a great listen. It’s nice to hear what influenced one of the biggest bands of recent times, and also to know how they chose to use this material and transform it to their own. It also highlights the very good material that was being produced in those days, much of which lays in the mists of time and would be difficult to come across without the help of releases like this.
Rating: Motives changing, day to day… 4/5