James Hetfield Admits Metallica Has Tempo Issues During Live Shows

Metallica frontman James Hetfield admitted the boys have tempo issues during live shows, explaining to WRIF:

james metallica

“When we’re on stage, there’s something magical. I don’t feel any pain or anything really. You’re like in this zone.

“Songs tend to be faster live. Like ‘Fight Fire With Fire’ – if I listen to the live recording I’ll think, ‘Who’s playing that?! Frigging chipmunks?!’ [imitates chipmunks]

“I couldn’t play along with it. There’s something that happens live.”

During a Bass Guitar interview earlier this year, bassist Rob Trujillo also said things a bit get out of hand live, pointing out:

“Actually, I developed a three-finger technique to keep up with the pace on some of the songs. When we play live, things get faster, it’s a natural occurrence with Lars and the guys.

“No disrespect – it’s just something that happens with all the energy. So sometimes I’ll play a three-finger gallop technique that starts off with my ring finger and rotates.

“That way I can stay right in the pocket with James and Lars. But I had to learn all this. It was like I was lost when I first joined the band.”

During the remainder of the WRIF interview, Hetfield was asked about how many tracks the band composed during “Hardwired… To Self-Destruct” sessions that ultimately didn’t make the final cut. He replied:

“What we’ve done on other albums also is we’ll write as many riffs as we have. We’ve got 40 riffs…

“Maybe this time, I think, I stopped it around 24. I said ‘Come on, there’s some good stuff here.’

“So usually we start developing [the riffs], and then there are the other ones that you can kind of tell aren’t going to go anywhere.

“They’re like car parts. You start picking riffs off them, or, ‘Hey, there’s a great set of headlights, or something.’

“We’ll use it for that song or the intro, or whatever it may be. So they kinda all get picked and it’s like you get the Frankenstein of songs. You get all the best parts. That’s how that goes.”


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