Metallica: 'We're Completely Financially Independent, We Don't Have to Suck Up to Anybody'

Lars Ulrich muses on band's continued success in new interview.

Metallica: 'We're Completely Financially Independent, We Don't Have to Suck Up to Anybody'
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In a new interview with the London Metro, Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich has shed some light on the band’s success, stating that the band's continued popularity comes from their independence. "Metallica exist in our own bubble. We're not part of a genre, we're not part of a wave, we're not part of a moment. We're completely financially independent. We own all our own records. We own all our own masters. We financed this film by ourselves. We don’t have to suck up to anybody or deal with the man. We just live in our own little world. We're our own entity, completely autonomous. And that's a very unusual situation to be in.

"It's a place we don't take for granted and we’re very aware of the luxury of being in that position. And with that comes a desire to want to always be the best and give back as much as possible without selling out. But we've put way too much money into this film (the band's upcoming concert documentary "Through the Never") in the past couple of years. If I told you how much, I'd probably have to kill myself." Ulrich also mused on the prospect of retirement, noting that he inspired to keep playing by the Rolling Stones drummer Charile Watts. I saw the Stones last Sunday and Charlie Watts is 72, and it inspired me to keep going. The hardest thing is the physicality of it. The two hardest working people in the Metallica organisation are the two who massage us every night after each show. That is a gig you would not wish on anybody. We'll see how long they can keep stitching us together but so far, so good."

72 comments sorted by best / new / date

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    HighVoltageMT
    The perfect place for any band to be in, really.
    Baia
    indeed it is the perfect place for them to be, but it's a shame that they aren't really kicking that much ass in the last couple of years
    thenextkirk92
    Have you seen their live shows recently? Their stage show has had so much effort put in to make it bigger and better.
    Maiden95
    It's not just the stage show, their playing has seemingly been on the rise the past 2-3 years too. I will say one thing though. When I saw them at the Orion fest in Detroit, my only problem was the GIGANTIC screen behind them, which kinda took something away from watching them play.
    Democrab
    I saw them this year...I'd personally say they're kicking as much ass as they did on the tours they did in 1991-1993. James' voice is as good as it's ever been live, Lars is practicing again and it shows too. Only thing I miss is Jason's backing vocals or Cliffs solos.
    filipe26
    Indeed they should be making more records. Live they are great though.
    henrihell
    Not more records, better records. I'd rather hear them make an astounding record, even if I had to wait until 2018.
    juzza1
    Meh, Lars and Hammett should retire and perhaps the world could get a glimpse of how good 'Tallica could've been
    jordo246
    Tallica would suck without Hammett and Lars.
    Skycaptin34
    Granted, Lars isn't that great of a drummer, and Kirk isn't that great a guitarist. But if they left, Metallica wouldn't sound like Metallica. Cliff and Jason were perfect for Metallica, but since Rob has joined you can definitely note the change. I'm not saying he's a bad bassist, it's just like his playing style isn't right for the band.
    DaniArrow
    They're financially independent ever since they sued Napster which is why they now like Spotify.
    Woffelz
    No one to push them in a direction they don't want to go and I like that.
    RCA1186
    How'd you like to be the one to rub down a sweaty ass Lars after a show haha
    Squirtlebrah
    ¨And with that comes a desire to want to always be the best and give back as much as possible without selling out¨ lol Lars...that ship has sailed a long time ago
    Doomzdayxx
    I miss Metallica. They we're taken from us far too early. R.I.P. Metallica, 1983-1988
    cmonkey81
    Dido...I think the only good thing since was the Merciful Fate medley cover.
    Doomzdayxx
    I agree, that cover medley was pretty cool. The Metallica imposters have made a few good rock songs, I'll admit.
    jschexna
    They sucked up to mainstream crap with St Anger.....They may have loads of money, but they haven't been heavy or relevant for 20 years.
    Darth Crow
    St. Anger is hardly mainstream...
    BlackLabel5150
    I'm confused about the "relevant for 20 years" statement. help me out here... does that mean that say The Beatles or Zeppelin or Cream aren't relevant to music? or not relevant to the "scene" ? honest question here.
    Skuzzmo
    They can sell millions of tickets and albums so I don't think they need to be relevant.....
    leo4sf
    Its hard to stay in the frame of mind to make heavy music when you are getting f'king massages after every show. Go back to the days of loading up the gear, hauling it to the trailer, drinking all night, then passing out on the vomit covered floor of a rented van. THAT is metal!
    guitarist5477
    People all have to grow up eventually. In my opinion I don't think it's very metal to have a wife and children and act like a 22 year old.
    SkepsisMetal
    Then get liver disease, arthritis, high blood pressure and be found by your family and friends dead in pool of piss and puke the next morning when you're due to play to 100k people who are excited to see their favourite band? Sounds like a pretty retarded thing to do if you ask me. Glad they don't follow your childish advice.
    vash1990
    That doesn't make you metal, that makes you a cancer to society and an overall ass if you're 50 years old and acting like you still have 60 years left.
    Anjohl
    It's about being hungry. Any band with a big album loses a lot of their essence, this is nothing new.
    thf24
    Sounds like a great way to burn out or die by age 40. Contrary to popular belief, not many bands who are successful in the long term actually do this, at least not for any sustained period of time.
    ne14t
    They more douchey Metallica gets the less I like them...I was a hardcore fan through the 80s and 90s but now its like they keep defending the shit they do.
    Unf
    Well, then there would be no excuses not to put album you want the way you want , but not echoes of your past glory with modern dumb sound.
    Mootallica
    It's really difficult to please anybody nowadays. If Metallica choose to go in a different direction one half of the populous will complain because they're selling out. If Metallica choose to play to the style or influence of their roots then people will complain just as you have above.
    Unf
    Going different direction doesn't mean selling out. I don't think that if metallica writes avant-garde album anybody would call it sell-out
    Democrab
    If Metallica buy food at a restaurant someone will call it selling out.
    Unf
    Maybe someone will , so what? DM was album for fans (basically a sell-out) , it has good songs , but some parts sound really forced and ridiculous , so it's kinda sell-out AND self repeating. I think Load/Reload is their thing , cause even on DM there are plenty of bluesy riffs disguised as thrash.