Metallica

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Emilio D’Angelo
Metallica: Master of Puppets
Master of Puppets by Metallica was released March 3,1986 out of Vertigo Records. This was the bands third studio album released officially. The album had come under the thrash metal genre when it had been released. It is often said and proven by many that Master of Puppets is one of the greatest albums of all time. Although there is not much history behind the album, it is still considered a big part of rock history. Adding on, a countless amount of people have regarded that Master of Puppets has been said to be the most influential metal album created.

All of the lyrics in the albums track list were written by James Hatfield and was produced by Flemming Rasmussen. Rasmussen was asked to produce this album because of his work on his recent album with the Rainbows Difficult to Cure. In Master of Puppets, the basic rock instruments were used such as the electric guitar, the drums, the bass, vocals and some studio effects. On many of the albums that were sold, there had been placed a PMRC “explicit lyrics” label on each album due to the explicit lyrics and content in the song “damage, inc.” This is the only song in the album with cuss words or explicit lyrics. Master of Puppets is the last album that you will hear Cliff Burton, the bassist, play in. Cliff Burton had ended up in a fatal bus crash in Sweden in September of 1986 while touring with the band for the album. The band and Danish producer Flemming Rasmussen had also paid a tribute to their fellow bass player. The album was recorded between September 1, 1985 through December 27, 1985 at Sweet Silence Studios in Copenhagen, Denmark. When the album was finally finished, it came out to 54 minutes and 46 seconds.

On the album Master of Puppets, the song “Master of Puppets” happens to be the most listened to song out of all the tracks. According to Gibson.com’s “top 50 metal songs of all time,” “Master of Puppets” had taken the number one spot on the chart and also had been used by ESPN to promote the NASCAR Nationwide Series. The title track had also been used in the comedy film “Old School” with Will Ferrell. Another interesting fact about the album is that a few of the songs such as “Leper Messiah”, “Damage, Inc”, and “Battery” had appeared on the music video games “Guitar Hero” and “Rock Band.” In the there can be many different meanings to each song, it just depends on how a person interprets it individually. For example, in the title track “Master of Puppets,” the song is about how you can become addicted to something (drugs in this case) to the point where it ruins you and tears you apart. Another example is “Welcome Home (Sanitarium),” which is about a sane person who is locked in an insane asylum and turns insane because of the environment. Basically this song is about being locked in a mental prison. Anyways, in this album there are many messages to interpret in many different ways.

The original album cover for Master of Puppets was painted by Don Brautigam in 1986. The cover of the album shows a graveyard with all the white tombstones shaped as crosses with white strings attached to each one of them all leading to the hands of the “master of puppets.” On one of the crosses there is a military helmet and on another there is an ID tag from one of the soldiers who had died in the war which relates to the music in the album. “This album had sold well over 6 million certified copies in the US,” it says in donbrautigam.net. On everyone of Brautigam’s album art works, he is said to sign them in the bottom right corner.

The two songs that I have analyzed are “Welcome Home (Sanitarium)” and “Disposable Heroes.” Both of these songs are very interesting lyrically and are great songs to listen to. “Welcome Home (Sanitarium)” is about a perfectly sane person becomes trapped in his own thoughts and becomes insane. The cause of his insanity is the environment he is in which seems like a jail. This leads to his mind to...
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