Sound — 9
Metallica have been instrumental in making the Thrash Metal genre what it is today with their earlier albums such as "Master Of Puppets". They adopted a different style of music for "Metallica" which was a mainstream success but when "Load" and "Reload" were released they had formed a more "bluesy" sound. The release of "St Anger" recieved mixed reviews as the guitar solos that Metallica are famous for were not in the songs. "Death Magnetic", Metallica's newest release was produced by Rick Rubin which is probably why the album sounds like the older albums. The album has been compared to "Master Of Puppets" because the music is fast and has very fast and very good guitar solos. "That Was Just Your Life" starts off slowly with a starting riff similar to "The Thing That Should Not Be" which was on the "Master of Puppets" album but then builds up into one of the fastest songs of the album with James Hetfield's singing as fast as the music. "All Nightmare Long" mixes a number of riffs with speed and a very complex guitar solo with a number of effects. "Suicide & Redemption" is a great instrumental track with a number of completely different riffs and solos. "The Unforgiven III" is the final version of the "Unforgiven Trilogy" and is a great track. It starts off with a slow piano intro and into a medium paced verse and the bridge which is very simple starts off slowly and gets faster and breaks into a guitar solo which is insanely fast and is very well written. Although the album is one of Metallica's best albums to date, it is very similar to many of their other albums and it isn't original enough.
Lyrics — 8
The lyrics on the album are somewhat simple but very good. The chorus of "All Nightmare Long" is very haunting but is catchy. "The Day That Never Comes" has wonderful lyrics that can be applied to many different themes. The album has a number of themes to it such as the reference to slaves on "Broken, Beat and Scarred" and the metaphorical lyrics on "That Was Just Your Life". The feeling of being alone and unloved is well described on the ballad "The Unforgiven III". Overall, the lyrics are well written even though they are simple.
Overall Impression — 9
The album certainly compares to Metallica's older stuff which is great but isn't very original. "My Apocalyspe" demonstrates a very simple guitar riff but is one of the best riffs I have heard. "The Unforgiven III" is a great structured song and sounds amazing also. The guitar solos from the album are as good as the ones from the older albums. The album is certainly an improvement from their last album "St Anger" and it also has more good songs than bad songs on it, in fact all the songs are good but there are only a few which are really amazing.