Metallica: 'Writing Music Is Somewhat Important to Us'

Meanwhile, 'Through the Never' confirmed as the band's biggest expense ever, costing more than all albums combined.

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Metal titans Metallica recently discussed the work they've done so far when it comes to their new album. Although still in the earlier stages, the band definitely got the writing process under way. "Writing music is somewhat important to us," frontman James Hetfield told Huffington Post Canada. "We focus. Focus."

"That's the plan," Kirk Hammett added. "We'll start writing the album. We were supposed to start last year [laughs] but there you have it; we'll see how it goes." Drummer Lars Ulrich revealed a few more details regarding the time spent in the studio. "We are looking forward to making a record," he said. "Up at HQ in northern California, we've already done, what, two or three dances there. We've got a lot of the basic stuff waded through. When we write, we have a very peculiar writing process; we don't sit down and go, 'Okay, A to E to let's come up with something.'" Lars continued, "Ninety-five percent of our records come from jams - literally pre-concert jams, tuning room jams, all this kind of stuff - so everything we do is always recorded. The biggest time consuming element of us making a record is listening to all the stuff that we've recorded. So there's five years worth of stuff. We've listened to about 80 percent of it. We've done two or three dances maybe, collectively six weeks to just listen through the ideas and kind of grade them." Meanwhile, "Through the Never" 3D movie was confirmed as the biggest single expense in the group's history. According to Bloomberg, the film's $30 million budget made it more expensive than all Metallica albums combined. But back to the new album, bassist Rob Trujillo also gave his thoughts on the process so far, sharing an optimistic stance regarding studio work. "We're having a blast, really a lot of fun doing it," he said, "so if we can continue with that spirit, we're gonna have a good time making this record."

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    Metallica are one of my favourites but ****in hell do I get sick of seeing news about them everyday
    that's UG's fault, not Metallica.
    No one said it's Metallica's fault. UG is draining Metallica news using the words "writing, new record, album" in their titles. This isn't NEWS this is information, we know already! They've told us they will be working on an album in 2014, unless something actually CHANGES, stop it with all the useless news messages please.
    Don't you know that this site is essentially a Mustaine-Metallica-Grohl circle jerk. Still waiting for the "Dave Mustaine said a thing today" daily column.
    In other words, we'd rather pursue other endeavors like movies and playing in Antarctica.
    And who are you to tell them to do otherwise?
    I'm not saying they should do otherwise. Where, in my comment, does it say "they need to write music."
    The part where your comment makes what they're saying sound like they'd rather be doing anything else?
    Nope. You just interpreted it that way. All I'm saying is they have other priorities right now. Writing music isn't one of them. It may look like a smart ass comment, but I'm not saying "Metallica needs to start writing new music!!!"
    Well, let's think about this for a sec; maybe they would rather make a movie and play to penguins than write new shit because they're sick of putting out half-assed material and causing their popularity to further decrease? I don't see what's incorrect about that implication at all.
    Somewhat important? See, thats the main problem here. Writing music should be the priority for a band, not just "somewhat important".
    A band also has to put live performances of their previously written music and what not into the mix too.
    A band shouldn't be a nostalgia band living off their old music they wrote years ago. They should be able to write good enough new music for live shows.
    Or a band should be able to do whatever the hell they want to do. My only gripe with Metallica is that they could take more up and coming bands under their wings and foster a new age of metal. They have the money and influence to do so much good in the metal community - whatever that might be.
    I'm not sure if your sarcasm gauge is off with their comments, or if mine is with yours..?
    Isn't it fun when we take one phrase out of context and use it as the headline of the article?
    How is it used out of context, it's what he said ?
    what batman said... like if I'm talking a nuclear reactors and say that a meltdown of the core would be kind of a big deal, with my usual sarcasm. Then a reported says, "nuclear engineer says reactor meltdown is only "kind of a big deal". clearly doesn't care of public safety." see how it twists the initial intentions?
    Seemed obvious, at least to me, that he wasn't using the term "somewhat" literally. It was followed up by "We focus."
    Two or three dances in the studio? That's gonna be an interesting record!
    "Somewhat" important. "Somewhat". All of a sudden so many things make so much more sense.
    Actually I think these guys are playing it right. These guys do not need to prove anything to anyone anymore, including themselves. arguably the biggest metal act we have seen to date, they clearly do not need the money. they'll record an album when they feel like it, they have no obligation to anyone. they got older the albums come when they come, the sell out every seat every show. And if anyone thinks these guys still care if they lose a fan here and there, your balls will drop soon don't worry. Metallica have this game licked. hats off to them.
    Word Up, Man. Sometimes it is hard for us mere mortals to comprehend what folks who have ascended as high as Metallica are doing. I don't worry about it. I just enjoy the show.
    Personally, I'd like to hear an album that isn't just jam material. That's not how masterpieces are made.
    That's the most decent reaction you can actually give to their current state. Writing involves storytelling. And storytelling is diffferent from anecdotes being glued together.
    Can we please stop this argument? I love Megadeth much more, but they're both great bands that are very stylistically different. Everybody compares Kill Em All and Killing is My Business and albums like those. They're both great, but they're too far different to begin to judge one by the other
    I agree with you. No reason to argue over things like this. You can't compare bands from different genres, or that have different styles. It then becomes more of an opinion. The bands would have to be almost identical for you to bring in the question "who is better"
    Killing is My Business > Kill 'em All. Master of Puppets > Rust in Peace both bands have solid material, as well as turds (Risk, Super Collider) (St. Anger, Lulu)
    I love it. You're in a mega successful band that is your lively hood and writing is "somewhat important" to you. What a statement. It definitely shows in their last few releases.
    The "somewhat" is just a playful understatement by the band. James is a fun guy, and he threw in a bit of sarcasm. People are taking that one statement too literally. If it truly was only "somewhat" important, they wouldn't be talking about how fun the writing process is, or about how much possible material they have.
    Yeah. "Somewhat" important. You can tell. Back in the 80's it was extremely important. R.I.P. Metallica. 1982-1988
    The key word to this is "somewhat". That explains a lot about their attitude nowadays. 2015 for the new LP is an optimistic release date.
    Geez, people around here get up in arms about the dumbest stuff. Metallica is at a point where they have nothing else to prove. They have written great albums, and they are financially in a place where they don't have to keep producing albums if they don't want to. I wouldn't take "Somewhat" as meaning that they don't care, they are just having fun doing whatever they hell they want (i.e. Antartica, Movies etc.) Here's a little secret . . . they don't owe you a damn thing.
    Kill em' all is over with, Metallica sucks now. that's why their movie tanked.
    Now be fair, Ride, Puppets, AJFA were pretty good too.....back to the sucking part you mentioned from that point on.
    Death magnetic didn't really show this.... Good album none the less but the lyrics sounded like they were just thrown together
    I like Metallica, but there has to be one day where I don't see them on the news here. Other than that. songwriting is important to every musician.
    For ****s sake Metallica, you're not trying to discover cold fusion, you just have to record an album, stop talking about it and do it.
    Another slow news day. Metallica "might" work on a new album soon? Whats next UG, water is wet and the cold war is over???
    I feel like their heart isn't in making new music anymore. When they focused on a movie instead of making new music, that was a red flag. I feel like this is gonna be worse than death magnetic.
    After seeing this article I'm pretty sure that the next article about Metallica will be "Metallica: 'We ate some food today'"
    My concern is that is is "Somewhat" important, not just important, just "Somewhat". Shows their commitment to new material...
    Come on man...stop messing around and write a new album. -From a die hard MetallicA fan
    I hate to say it but Lars is showing signs of bringing Metallica's downfall. He seems to be the most money-hungry. However, if he left or was kicked out I doubt James would carry on with it.
    without lars you would probably never heard of them, you do realize that, right? he's like the brain of metallica
    looking through past articles, there has been metallica articles more than once every other day on average. jesus christ already, this isn't edit: holy shit there actually is an
    i cant believe its been so long since death magnetic, time flies. Luckily we have so many other bands to listen to in the mean time
    If the hardest part is going through 5 years of recordings, why not just make them more often and you'll have less to go through?
    W1LL P1L50N
    good god obviously, what kind of band sais that writing music isn't important to them. Huge Metallica fan but this daily updates just make the process feel slower