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Review: Metallica - Master of Puppets
Master of Puppets

Label: Elektra
Year released: 1986
Duration: 54:50
Tracks: 8
Genre: Thrash Metal

Rating: 5/5

Review online: June 3, 2018
Reviewed by: MetalMike
Readers Rating
Master of Puppets

Rated 3.48/5 (69.7%) (33 Votes)

I was kind of surprised to realize Metallica's Master of Puppets didn't have a review here at The Metal Crypt. Then I thought of their status as poster boys for selling out and my surprise waned. Regardless of what you think of them today, their first three albums, Kill 'Em All, Ride the Lightning and Master of Puppets, are immensely important in the history and development of heavy metal, thrash in particular.

Master of Puppets is where it all came together and for many it represents the peak of Metallica's career. The songwriting had been honed to keen edge and at the time few bands wrote more captivating 6+ minute songs on such a regular basis. James actually sang instead of simply shouting, Kirk's solos provided the blueprint for thrash guitarists of the late 80s and it was sadly the last time the world would get to hear the amazing Cliff Burton on bass. Non-musicians didn't realize it at the time, but his musical acumen and varied influences were a huge part of Metallica's sound and they've essentially stagnated since his untimely death.

You've got the pounding, speed-fests "Battery" and "Damage, Inc.", the social commentary and insanely catchy chorus of the title track, proof that thrash doesn't have to move at a million miles an hour on "The Thing That Should Not Be" and "Sanitarium (Welcome Home)", anthemic tracks "Leper Messiah" and "Disposable Heroes" and Burton's swan song, "Orion". Not a bad song in the bunch.

If you haven't heard this album (and where have you been, if that's the case?), chuck all you know or think you know about Metallica for an hour and just listen, keeping in mind Master of Puppets was released 32 years ago. There was a time when Metallica were leaders (if not innovators) in thrash metal in this album shows them at the height of their powers.

Other related information on the site
Review: Hardwired... to Self-Destruct (Deluxe Edition) (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
Review: Ride the Lightning (reviewed by Caspian)
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