Metallica Guitarist Kirk Hammett: The Next Album Will Be a Heavier 'Black Album'

Fans of "Orion" might want to skip this article.

According to a new interview with Rolling Stone, Metallica are seven to eight songs into the writing for their new album and are aiming for shorter, more concise songs than the ones featured on 2008's Death Magnetic.

"If Death Magnetic was a logical successor to [1988's] …And Justice For All, the next album will be a heavier Black Album," Kirk Hammett told Rolling Stone. "We're not going to the depths of complexity that we did for Death Magnetic. The stuff we're coming up with is more groove-oriented, a heavier version of what we were doing in the early Nineties."

Drummer Lars Ulrich was quick to point out that the band crafting shorter, simpler tracks wasn't limited to the '90s, pointing to one particular track on ...And Justice For All. "Look at 'Harvester Of Sorrow' on that album," he said. "It's a fairly simple five-minute song. And 'Fuel' [on 1997's Reload] is an absolute scorcher live. Right now, I'm thinking shorter, more to-the-point."

The sessions for Metallica's as-yet-untitled new album are being helmed by Rick Rubin, who produced Death Magnetic.

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Josh Hart

Josh Hart is a former web producer and staff writer for Guitar World and Guitar Aficionado magazines (2010–2012). He has since pursued writing fiction under various pseudonyms while exploring the technical underpinnings of journalism, now serving as a senior software engineer for The Seattle Times.