Metallica was a heavy metal band from Los Angeles, California, who played Heavy Metal that was original, innovative and eccentric.

While I have always like Mercyful Fate better than Metallica, Coven featuring Jinx Dawson better than Black Sabbath, Cradle of Filth better than the Whole second wave of over-rated Black Metal combined. Deicide better than Morbid Angel.

Metallica was a World-Class Heavy Metal Band in 1982,1983,1984,1985,1986,1987,1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, and 1983.


One should never forget how killer there unique-one-of-a-kind Heavy/ Power / Speed Metal was, the term THRASH METAL did not exist when I started with heavier heavy metal Summer of 1980. Since the release of the Live Album “Live Shit Binge and Purge”, they simply fell off of my wantlist because I became a huge fan of the DEATH METAL age.

It was more raw and savage than the current popular and trendy BAY AREA THRASH METAL. In 2013 There Back Catalogue of the Cliff Burton-era was repressed by Blackened Records. If you read our top 100, top 150, top 500, top 666, top 700 albums of all-time World-Class Heavy Metal albums of all-time. Metallica left an indelible mark on the history of all things BAD*ASS and all THINGS KICK*ASS


As far as this publication goes we are a very Exodus and Slayer-centric publication. Never believe those in forums who claim Metallica, Exodus and Slayer are “over rated”, because they have taste for the more outdated sounds, so called metal fans, who over collect everything because it was pressing in small limited number between the dates of January 1, 198o until December 31st, 1989.

1983 – 1989, and 1983-1991 is a GOLDEN AGE for Traditional Heavy Metal, the best way to learn of this era, is to obtain the original leading publications from that era. KICK*ASS MONTHLY is the best of this era








Metallica was formed by Lars Ulrich and James Hetfield in the fall of 1981. Ulrich (who originally went to the US to play tennis) had, during that summer, met Brian Slagel of Metal Blade Recodrds and had secured an appearance on an upcoming compilation called Metal Massacre but had no band. He quickly found Hetfield, who was playing in Leather Charm at the time, and one day in December of 1981, they recorded the rhythm tracks to a remake of a Leather Charm song, “Hit the Lights.” Hetfield tracked all guitars and bass on this recording, except for one of the solos which was performed by guitarist Lloyd Grant in January 1982, and the song appeared on Metal Massacre in February.

Permanent guitarist Dave Mustaine  was brought in in February of 1982, and a bassist, Ron McGovney was found. Ron (who also designed the famous Metallica logo) was James’s roommate, and James taught him to play bass, so that the band could play live. This line-up re-recorded “Hit the Lights” for the second pressing of Metal Massacre. The first live show was on March 14th, at Radio City Music Hall in Anaheim. James did only vocals, and Dave was the single guitarist. The band at this point had several rehearsal tapes floating about, but then in response to one of those being pressed to vinyl by Bongus Loadus Records, decided to record their first demo, with the Grant version of Hit the Lights and two covers. This demo was first given out at the March 27th, 1982 gig at the Whisky, when they opened for Saxon. A vocalist named Sammy Dijon, of the band Ruthless, was in for a few rehearsals but no actual gigs (so do not add him to the former members section!).

Two more studio demos were recorded in 1982, one in April and one in July. On April 23rd, 1982, guitarist “Damien Phillips” (real name: Brad Parker) played one gig, before quitting, because Dave wouldn’t let him do duelling leads. James took over as second guitarist live from then on. Extensive live gigging occured, including one show at Lars’s high school on May 25th at which the final attendance was zero. On May 28th, Jef Warner was on vocals, but this show seems to have been a glorified rehearsal. He sang only that one gig. Also, Tygers of Pan Tang vocalist Jesse Cox was considered, but he did not accept.

A live demo was recorded on November 29th, 1982, on a road trip to San Francisco. This road trip would prove useful, as the opener for Metallica on November 29th was a band called Exodus with Kirk Hammett on guitar. Also, Metallica attended a Trauma gig, with Cliff Burton on bass, and immediately tried to convince Cliff to join Metallica.

Cliff was convinced to join, on the condition that Metallica move to San Francisco. Cliff’s first gig was March 5th, 1983. Ron McGovney was later seen in Phantasm. Problems between Dave Mustaine and the rest of the band arose in late March on a road trip to the east coast. Dave was given a bus ticket back home and unceremoniously released, while Kirk Hammett flew in and the band did not miss a gig. At this time, the band stayed with Anthrax and from what the band has said, it was very tough living, as all their little money went towards the band.

The first album, “Kill ’em All,” was recorded for Megaforce Records in the summer of 1983, and after some touring, they cut a four song demo in October. James Hetfield became the vocalist out of necessity and had considered finding a replacement so he could be a full time rhythm guitar player. They contemplated asking vocalist John Bush, vocalist of Armored Saint to join but he declined, deciding to stay with “his buddies band.” In the end Hetfield decided to take over vocals once and for all. The second album, “Ride The Lightning,” came out in the spring of 1984, featuring riffs from Dave Mustaine and also Tom Hunting via Kirk Hammett.

Work on a third album began in the summer of 1985, and the album, “Master Of Puppets,” was released in the spring of 1986. When James Hetfield broke his arm in a skateboarding accident in July, 1986, six weeks of gigs featured roadie John Marshall on rhythm guitar (he would later join Metal Church). On September 25th, James was back. One more gig was played on the 26th, and then on the morning of the 27th, their tour bus hit a patch of black ice and flipped over, killing bassist Cliff Burton. (Morbid aside: he and Kirk had switched bunks just a few hours before.)

The band decided to continue, and began searching for a new bassist. Among those that tried out was Kirk Hammett’s friend, bass freak Les Claypool (Blind Illusion, Primus), who was rejected because he played too well. In the end, Flotsam & Jetsam bassist Jason Newsted was brought in in November, being officially sworn in at a restaurant in Phoenix called Tommy’s Joint. The “…And Justice for All” album was recorded in 1988, with a serious lack of bass presence, and then a world tour followed in 1989.

In 1989, Metallica was nominated to a grammy in “Best Heavy Metal Performance of the Year” alongside AC/DC, Iggy Pop and Jethro Tull. Everybody was expecting for Metallica to take the award, but surprisingly, the award went to classic rockers Jethro Tull. If you look closely, you can tell from the look on Alice Cooper’s face (Alice presented the award along with Lita Ford) that he finds it VERY surprising.

In 1991, the fifth Metallica album was released and this time they had a new producer. Flemming Rasmussen (producer of Pretty Maids and Blind Guardian among others), who had produced the previous 3 albums was out, and the new producer was Bob Rock.