Master of Puppets review by Metallica

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  • Released: Mar 3, 1986
  • Sound: 7
  • Lyrics: 7
  • Overall Impression: 7
  • Reviewer's score: 7 Good
  • Users' score: 9.4 (2,573 votes)
Metallica: Master of Puppets
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Sound — 7
Master of Puppets is composed of mid-paced thrash, in the vain of bands like Megadeth and Anthrax. While it doesn't possess the technicality of, say, Artillery, or the brutality of Slayer, or even the sheer onslaught of thrash produced by such greats as Exodus or Coroner, it does have its own charms. For one, it is highly memorable, if not innovative. This is usually the one that grabs kids and drags them down deeper into the world of metal. There aren't really any frills or gimmicks here, just that catchy kind of thrash that Metallica became known for, and you can tell. This is something of a double edged sword in fact, as this album really loses it's shine after your initial listens. There aren't really any innovations here, because that's not really the purpose of this album. This could be fairly accurately described as "Pop Metal" actually, both for it's now legendary reputation, and for the fact that it is relatively simplistic when compared with the works of Metallica's peers. The real objective of this album (or perhaps that was merely the end result) was to enamour the media to the previously alienating rawness of thrash metal. In reality, all this really did was coozy Metallica up with the mainstream, and spawn a generation of kids hailing this as "THE GREATEST ALBUM EVAH!!!" (said kids being the same ones who hail Slipknot as the most brutal death metal in existence). This is the first Metallica album truly written without Dave Mustaine and it shows. Gone is the memorable barrage of riffs, instead to be replaced by all too frequently repetative song structures and an uninspired instrumental. That isn't to say there aren't some good songs on here ("Battery", "Sanitarium" and "Disposable Heroes" come to mind), but a lot of songs are bogged down by shameless repetition and blandness.

Lyrics — 7
Generally, the lyrics are alright. They won't win any Pulitzer's, but the aggressive lyrics of songs such as "Battery" match the mood, at least. There's even some Lovecraft thrown in (The Thing That Should Not Be) for good measure, and they have some nice rhyme schemes going throughout the songs. Besides, it's not like anyone listens to thrash, of any variety, for literary enrichment.

Overall Impression — 7
Overall, it would not be inaccurate to label this Metallica's true "sell-out album". This is where they generally simplified their previous style of mid-paced thrash into a form that was more easily digestible, and therefore more suited for mass consumption. I have to say that, while I still do enjoy this album, it's lost a lot of the old glamour, and even when I first heard it I can still remember feeling a pang of dissapointment. After all, this is perhaps the most over-hyped album of the 20th century, so I was expecting something truly earth-shaking. Instead, this is an average album, with a mountainous reputation that I believe it is not really deserving of. There are far better albums out there, hell, even it's predecessor, Ride the Lightning, was more enjoyable. My advice is that you spend your cash on the aforementioned album and pass this one up. Besides, you're bound to hear it everywhere you go, so why bother?

14 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Afroboy267
    megadeth2007 wrote: iron maiden is very gay! stop talking about them in a ****ing Metallica Master of Puppets review you damn dick heads.
    Iron maiden are gods of metal and without them there would be no metallica
    Set-Abominae
    Didn't Mustaine write "Call Of Ktulu"? I remember hearing that somewhere... But regardless, whoever wrote that song deserves a ****ing promotion to "God Among Men". "Ktulu" absolutely blows away "Orion", IMO. Oh and Cliff Burton > God.
    Nightstrider
    Yup. Mustaine wrote Ktulu, although its original title was "When Hell Freezes Over". It was renamed by Cliff Burton because he was a huge Lovecraft fan.
    G-man05
    This album is awesome, but imo it can sometimes be somewhat boring
    scottishmob
    demiphoenix wrote: I know for this i'll burn for a thousand years in hell... but no matter how many times i listen to it, I can't like orion...
    Hahaha, I don't usually advocate but try listening to it high/ Then listen again two days later. I loved it from the start but that should help you at least/
    Smithsc
    This is my favorite album of all time and in my opinion, probaly one of the best F***** metal albums ever created!!!!!
    I'm a real boy
    i got turned off by thier song fuel, but now that im good and sick of every freakin dude sayin theyre awesome, im gonna buy this album. they say its thier best.
    orange_juice
    metallica has mad skills, and the guitar and drums are wicked fast, but theres just something they lack that i can't quite put my finger on. no music has been the same since the days of classic rock
    GiR 2.0
    orange_juice wrote: I don't like metal, but the song master of puppets is amazing. lmao the bassist got squished by a bus
    And that's effing funny to you? The fact the god bassist CLIFF BURTON gets killed . If it weren't for him, you wouldn't have Master. Nobody'd be bitching that METALLICA sold out. NOBODY. He's dead, and now you're saying that he's dead and you're apparently laughing your ass off? Is that funny to you?! IS IT?!!! IS IT!!!!!???!!!!! Sorry. But that's not the first time I've lashed out at people like that. I've been on two other articles...and boy do I rant.I rant like a chines bloody hound.
    v2a2n2g2
    awesome album!!!!!heaviest riffs in the world!!!!! the only thing i dont like about master of puppets is kirk's leads on most songs, they're annoying. dave mustain has way better solos now if only Dave could have stayed in the band for master of puppets i wouldnt have to hear kirks crappy solos.
    Afroboy267
    GiR 2.0 wrote: orange_juice wrote: I don't like metal, but the song master of puppets is amazing. lmao the bassist got squished by a bus And that's effing funny to you? The fact the god bassist CLIFF BURTON gets killed . If it weren't for him, you wouldn't have Master. Nobody'd be bitching that METALLICA sold out. NOBODY. He's dead, and now you're saying that he's dead and you're apparently laughing your ass off? Is that funny to you?! IS IT?!!! IS IT!!!!!???!!!!! Sorry. But that's not the first time I've lashed out at people like that. I've been on two other articles...and boy do I rant.I rant like a chines bloody hound.
    I Agree with GiR 2.0 = Orange_juice you eat horse shit
    Nightstrider
    scottishmob wrote: Set-Abominae wrote: Didn't Mustaine write "Call Of Ktulu"? I remember hearing that somewhere... But regardless, whoever wrote that song deserves a ****ing promotion to "God Among Men". "Ktulu" absolutely blows away "Orion", IMO. Oh and Cliff Burton > God. Nightstrider wrote: Yup. Mustaine wrote Ktulu, although its original title was "When Hell Freezes Over". It was renamed by Cliff Burton because he was a huge Lovecraft fan. Cowrote children, cowrote.
    No, actually Mustaine wrote the majority of the song. Look it up. Besides, I find that the generally repetitive and derivative nature of the post-Mustaine years more or less proves that Mustaine had a greater hand in Metallica's early songwriting then the band would like to admit.