METALLICA's JAMES HETFIELD: 'We're Not Afraid To Show Our Dorky Side'

January 25, 2017

METALLICA frontman James Hetfield was recently interviewed on "The Rubber Room" radio show, which airs on Australia's Triple M. You can now listen to the chat using the audio player below. A couple of excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).

On METALLICA continuing to play with the same intensity as it did more than thirty years ago:

James: "This is what we do. This is what we're good at. There's no other way to do it. We're not interested in phoning anything in, and that's kind of obvious. We're explorers and we love being an artist and doing what we want. And we are writing music that we like to hear. That kind of simplifies it tight there."

On METALLICA's honesty:

James: "We're not afraid to show our dorky side, our funny sides, our non-serious… our mistakes sides. Everyone makes mistakes, and we fuck up — we make bad investments or we do the wrong thing, but it's all in the name of trying to do our best. So you can fault people for that all you want, but at the end of the day, hey, we're out here at least trying to do something. And I agree — this world is really polluted with a lot of B.S. and crap that people don't need to see or hear, 'cause it's fake. People just want your clicks and your hits, and it's all about the money. We're out here doing this, because if we don't — I don't know — we wither away. I mean, this is breathing for us. I think everyone thinks that they know the truth, and at the end of the day, my truth, what I believe in passionately, if I just imagine or even make up that you have the same view about what you believe in, then we can get along. I mean, yes, it's a difference of opinion — okay — but we're trying to do the next best right thing. Everyone's trying to tear each other down instead of join together and make some good decisions."

On not wanting to play more than fifty shows a year:

James: "I have plenty of friends that say, 'Fifty? Are you crazy?' It's, like, well, no. We were doing a lot more than that. But we love the touring, we just want to be able to survive it — mind, body and spirit. We're pretty wise guys; we know what our body can and can't do. Why punish ourselves out here? This should be fun. And if we're not playing a hundred ten percent for every show, then it's not fun."

On singer Amy Winehouse being the inspiration for the METALLICA song "Moth Into Flame" after he watched the 2015 documentary "Amy":

James: "The word 'sad' definitely comes to mind. Obviously, I can relate to a lot of that, where the fame portion of that is such a drug that draws you in, and then it's not what it seems to be, so you start maybe doing drugs or drink to make it what you want it to be. And then you're surrounded with people that are just saying 'yes' to everything and you lose touch with reality and all of a sudden you're gone — you're not you anymore. And I can relate to that. It was sad to see that in the movie, and, obviously, she's not the first or the last to have gone that pathway. In the heavy metal world, there has been people that have disappeared, so it doesn't have to be the pop world. Fame is something not to take lightly."

METALLICA's latest album, "Hardwired... To Self-Destruct", came out in November. The effort consists of two discs, containing a dozen songs and nearly 80 minutes of music.

METALLICA has shows booked in Denmark, Mexico and South America over the next three months, but has yet to unveil its full 2017 tour plans, including its first North American tour in eight years.

The band's sole North American date so far is May 21 at the Rock On The Range festival in Columbus, Ohio.

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