Phoebe Bridgers has released a totally reimagined take on Metallica's Nothing Else Matters.
Arriving as part of The Metallica Blacklist – a gargantuan compilation album in which 53 different artists each offer a cover of a track from the thrash titans' seminal 1991 self-titled record – Bridgers' Nothing Else Matters omits James Hetfield and Kirk Hammett's chorus-drenched clean guitar lines, opting instead for an even softer arrangement driven by piano and orchestration.
Speaking to Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1's New Music Daily, the singer-songwriter says her version of the track “almost sounds baroque”. Her intention, she explains, was to perform the track “kind of the opposite to [how Metallica does].”
On her vocal approach, she explains, “James does all sorts of weird octave jumps that I can't do. I almost have like a Billie Eilish approach [where I sing] right by the microphone.”
“I've always been a big Metallica fan,” Bridgers adds. “[When I was a teenager], I definitely knew Metallica songs from video games and stuff, but I went to Outside Lands [Music and Arts Festival] and saw their set and [said], ‘This is like a rock band.’
“It's kind of like a gateway to metal because they're so hooky and you can hold onto so much of it, and it actually can get stuck in your head. So that's what I've always loved about Metallica is that they don't shy away from a great hook.”
The Metallica Blacklist is set to arrive September 10 via Metallica's label Blackened Recordings. Several tracks have been released thus far, including a mostly faithful take on Enter Sandman by Weezer, a galloping rendition of Don't Tread on Me by Volbeat and a hip-hop reworking of Wherever I May Roam by reggaeton star J Balvin.
“The [album's] 53 tracks find singer-songwriters, country artists, electronic and hip hop artists sharing their love of these songs alongside punk rockers, indie darlings, icons of rock, metal, world music and many, many more,” Metallica explain.
“It’s a truly staggering, at times mystifying assemblage of musicians, dozens of whom have little to nothing in common other than the shared passion for the music that’s united them for this album: 1 Album. 12 Songs. 53 Artists. Unlimited possibilities.”
Proceeds from the record will be split evenly between Metallica's All Within My Hands foundation and over 50 charities chosen by artists who appear on the record.