Sound — 8
This album the group seemed to experiment with something that I tend to like in music. Unpredictability. There are random tempo changes and sometimes it just seems that the layers themselves don't fit together. I liked that. It's Electic (yes, they are rich so we can call them ecclectic and not crazy).
Lyrics — 6
The lyrics I must say are some of the weakest that have come form Metallica, I grudgingly agree to that point. Is that mean they are complete crap? Not even close. How do you compete with yourself when you've created some of the greatest songs in metal/rock history? You just don't. You write what you need to write and thats it.
Overall Impression — 8
Ok for all you tools out there that complain that this album is awful and "I was expecting another Blakc album" thats your problem. They didn't give you the expectations. This is another good album by a great band. No, it's not Master, or Black, but it's not awful. After 20 years of making awesome music, a band is going to grow and evolve. Did people cry when the Beattles changed styles from a pop sensation to a respectable rock band? No. On it's own it's a good album. The Hack has spoken.