Phil Anselmo: 'Metallica Never Should Have Released 'Load,' It's a Terrible Record'

"I just don't get it," the vocalist says.

Ultimate Guitar

Phil Anselmo had some harsh words to share about Metallica's 1996 album "Load," saying that it never should have seen the light of day.

Asked by Metal Hammer to single out the album that should not be, Uncle Phil stated, "I would have to say 'Load' by Metallica. I mean, it's a terrible record, man. I just don't get it. If you're gonna put out a record like that, just do a f--king side project or something, ya know?"

Anselmo already criticized the metal giants in a similar manner back in 2003 when they brought Linkin Park and Limp Bizkit on tour as supporting acts.

"Why the hell would Metallica be worried about ticket sales? Bring out some f--kin' good bands," the singer said (via Blabbermouth). "That was due to a conversation James Hetfield and I had years ago when I was talking to him about their new album. I think that was when 'Load' was out, and it kind of shocked everybody - everybody was freaked out."

In a subsequent interview, Phil claimed that Metallica never would have shared a stage with Pantera in the States "because they know what would f--kin' happen. We would f--kin' eat them alive! That's the end of the f--kin' sentence. We would crush 'em."

Drummer Lars Ulrich then responded to Anselmo's comments by saying, "Is he that desperate to tour? I love all these challenges," adding that Phil "has a tendency to talk a lot of horses--t most of the time."

About a year ago, Lars described "Load" and "Reload" as "creatively on par" with the rest of Metallica opus.

167 comments sorted by best / new / date

    It's kinda ridiculous seeing guys in their 40's and 50's talking smack about each other like high school chicks.
    "(Phil) has a tendency to talk a lot of horses--t most of the time." Think what you will about Lars, but he's right about that.
    Saying they would crush them and all that is ridiculous. All it would have been was a great show. Phil is just making an ass out of himself... because sadly he doesn't have much left. Voice is completely gone..
    Lmao that's hilarious. Pantera would crush Metallica. Metallica doesn't really have any "legendary" records besides Master Of Puppets and ...And Justice For All. Pantera doesn't either besides, in my opinion, Far Beyond Driven. When I think of Phil saying Pantera would crush Metallica I think of the heaviness of the music. The people who listen to Metallica may prefer Pantera just because of how much heavier they were.
    what's ridiculous about it? older males do nothing but b1tch about this and that lol. you never hung around with your dad and his buddies when you were younger? the only thing that's changed nowadays is that males have gotten so sensitive and very know, like fvck you if ya can't take a joke.
    Phil really must be trying to be edgy by talking smack on Load instead of St. Anger.
    Phil is the kind of guy who would appreciate St. Anger. Raw, angry, lo-fi metal.
    No. They wanted to experiment so let it be. You can't really tell anyone what they should write and record. Actually I like both Load and Re-load, they aren't bad, just so different from all the previous material they released, that a lot of people can't accept it.
    Yeah. I think it's just great that Metallica had the balls to experiment with new things and not do the same album 20 times like bands like AC/DC (and I have nothing against AC/DC - I like their albums and they do their thing). Metallica has always been experimenting and all their albums sound different.
    I don't even consider them to be that different, they are less heavy, but still very melodic and to me the melodic aspect has always been the most important element in Metallica. But that's just me.
    'DC fan
    I actually like Load, there's a few real good songs on there, granted it isn't Thrash (before anyone slates me) but man it's funky
    For me, Load and Reload are pretty good albums. The production is great, great vocals (my favorite Metallica album vocal wise) and good songs (Thorn Within, Prince Charming, King Nothing, Fuel, Low Man's Lyric etc.). I guess people slam it because they were expecting another thrash album.
    a drummer
    Load was good. it was different but still good. The House Jack Built, Until it Sleeps, Outlaw Torn, Bleeding Me are all great songs. But i still skip "Mama Said" every time. Sorry James, i love ya, but hate that song, regardless of how "heartfelt" it was
    Load and Reload have great songs in them, but as albums they are not great. Good, but not great. I never understood Metallica's fascination putting mediocre-at-best filler songs into their albums to make them all last 70+ minutes. If you removed the bad songs from Load and Reload, they would be pretty ****in' tight albums.
    I always felt that Load and Reload considered as a whole were like a band not having been able to cut a songwriting phase down into the single 9 or 10 best songs, but rather releasing a whole bunch as a double album (Chili Peppers I'm looking at you!... ಠ_ಠ). If you took the best songs from off Load and Reload and made them into one album, you'd have to admit that while not a groundbreaking album, it would still be a quality and enjoyable one from an objective musical perspective (as in, not as someone expecting another thrash album). I wish they had done that, then people would have just viewed it as their "softer" phase, rather than the Load phase.
    This guy sometimes seems like the stereotypical metalhead douchebag. YEEEEAHHAAA \M/ METAL THAT'S ALL I LISTEN TO EVERYTHING ELSE SUCKS \M/ Open your mind.
    Pantera eating Metallica alive? I like Pantera alot, but that was the most ****ed up statement ever...
    More surprising than this article is that UG decides "Hey, let's upload articles on news that happened 18 years ago!"
    Load and Reload were the first Metallica albums I ever listened to. They were enough to get me hooked and check out ...And Justice For All and The Black Album, on to the rest of their stuff. Looking back on it, I'm not prejudiced towards those albums for some genre-centric reason. Sure, some of the songs haven't aged as well for me as others, but come on, the albums weren't THAT bad.
    Anselmo has never been a guy who keep his mouth shut. I'm a big Metallica fan but the Loads albums are not very great records so I agree with him on this.
    In other news, "UG has slowest news day thus week" UG has not issued a response yet to these accusations and it looks like they probably never will, more at 11
    Personally I think Reload is worse. That one's my least favorite from the band.
    lol says the man whose band refuses to acknowledge their glam past
    To be fair, Phil wasn't part of any of those albums (unless you count Power Metal, but that's actually a pretty heavy and underrated album).
    I love Load, less so Reload, but it's not bad. That guys quotes read like something from a 14-year-old.
    This from the guy who sang on the "Power Metal" album. Makes Load look like a Beethoven symphony by comparison.
    Yabba Who
    Metallica was my favourite band in the world from the day Master of Puppets was released until Load came out, so I gotta agree with Phil there. Haven't bought another Metallica album since. I'll never forget the looks of disappointment on my friends faces when we first listened to Load.
    I agree, most anyone that I know that really digs anything that Metallica did since the Black album is more than likely born in the 80's. The Metallica they know is not thrash and what we all fell in love with in the 80's. Everything they did before the black album still outshines most all metal made before and after.
    I am in the same camp. After the black album, and especially after load, I just lost interest. I also agree with Phil. If you want to do something that drastically different musically do it under another monicker. Phil's music with Down is amazing, but if they tried to tie that influence of music into Pantera, epecially how each Pantera album got heavier and darker with every release, fans would have been like WAH! Plus, Metallica is great live. I have seen them twice, but I seen Pantera live 8 times and they were like a fvcking atomic bomb exploding onstage.
    No that you mentioned it, I haven't seen Metallica since the And Justice for all tour. I've been to Hundreds of concerts since. Seen Pantera every chance I could right to the end, I was always told they they were the tightest band live before I ever seen them and it's true. What does that say? I would have loved to see Metallica but was too afraid that I would be subject to even just one song that was not written in the 80's by them.
    He was asked a question and he answered...YOUR ALL IDIOTS, he's not bashing he's stating how he feels, go cry about it...GOD PEOPLE!
    Some people have said the same thing about Down, Phil. Settle down, experimentation is the key to growth. If you don't do it, you fall apart.
    I saw Metallica in 86 and 89 and thought they were the best live band. Then, that all changed in 96 when I saw Pantera. Wow!
    Still better than all of Pantera's glam albums, those are shit! - except for Power Metal, which is pretty OK.
    Why the **** are UG using historic quotes to make an article..... ? Over half this article seems to be from 2003..... Must be slow news day.
    To be fair, Blabbermouth used the history quotes. UG just ripped the whole thing in its entirety.
    Now I've followed the link I can see that....dunno if that's better or worse.... either way, still a terrible article.
    Metallica get called sellouts all the time. If you're a sell out you remake master of puppets 10 times over not go into heavy metal blues with load and reload, then release an entire album with no guitar solos and a disconnected snare drum. All of their stuff is good for what it is. Also a lot of people like to blame Bob Rock.... If you hate Load, be thankful Bob Rock used his wizardry on it. They stood the test of time despite their rapid changes in direction... If Dime was still here I don't think Pantera would have carried on as strong as Metallica have. DON'T KNOCK HETFIELDS ANGRY MOODY BLUES
    How many of you guitar players can play many if not all of Metallica songs they written before the Black album but did not bother learning even one riff of any song after?
    Phil's wrong. Reload is the sucky album - it's boring, so very boring.
    come on and SLAM and welcome to the JAM but in all honesty i don't think Load is that bad Aint My Bitch, 2 x 4 , King Nothing, Cure, Wasting My Hate (literally best song on the album) are all fantastic