When you start making a song, it’s hard not to think of it as one of your musical children. It takes a lot to get a song ready for prime time, and it takes pretty much more than 100% to make it a classic or whatever. That doesn’t mean you have to be in love with how the track ends, though.
On each of these classic songs, the band in question is more content to wash their hands of what they have been doing, thinking that it would have been better if these songs had never been released. It doesn’t mean that they think all those songs were terrible or anything like that. In fact, chances are some of these musicians think the song is really good, only to see it fall apart in the mix or resent their own material when they have to play it over and over on tour. . It might seem a little superficial to see them getting so bitter, but you can really see where they’re coming from.
Songwriting involves making yourself vulnerable in a much more intimate way to your audience, so when it doesn’t go your way, it’s more than just a bummer. It’s an embarrassment to deal with, and each of these artists failed to support their legendary songs when the rest of the world got on the hype bandwagon.
For some of Metallica’s die-hard fans, there’s no real era of the band that exists outside of the ’80s era. Before Bob Rock took over and transformed one of thrash’s greatest bands into metal crossovers we know today, they were already in top form, making long, epic tracks about destruction, war, and the darker side of what life had to offer. That didn’t mean they weren’t afraid to sell back then as well.
Between Ride the Lightning sessions, the band had everything ready for a tight 7-track album, only to be told by their record company that they needed one more song added to the mix. Not being thrilled to go back to the studio, what came out trying to write a hit was Escape, which is actually way better than any other type of pop crossover that most other metal bands could do. . Compared to the other songs on the record, it does its job quite effectively, reaching the kind of stadium audience that Judas Priest was playing at that time.
It would be a while before Escape found audiences in these stadiums, with James Hetfield despising the song, calling it rush work and never playing it live until they had played Ride the Lightning in its entirety. for his birthday. While the crowd might have enjoyed it very much, you can tell by the look on James’ face at the end that it’s far from his top 10 favorite Metallica tracks.