Jason Newsted – Lars Ulrich Is the Unsung Hero of Metallica’s ‘Black Album’
Comedian and metalhead Bill Burr recently welcomed former Metallica bassist Jason Newsted onto the Thursday Afternoon Monday Morning Podcast (heard below) for a talk about the 30th anniversary of the Black Album. While speaking about the making of the classic record, Newsted gave extra credit to Lars Ulrich, who the bassist sees as an unsung hero of the album.
Ulrich and James Hetfield are credited as songwriters on each Black Album track, while Kirk Hammett and Jason Newsted receive intermittent credits throughout Metallica’s 1991 self-titled album. As solid as each Black Album track is, Newsted feels like the juice of the album lies within the sequencing, which Ulrich slaved over in the studio.
After Burr praised the Black Album’s front-to-back listenability, Newsted explains, “First off all, we’re gonna give credit to Lars for being so absorbed, engulfed in the whole thing, the sequencing of the record and the sequencing of all the Metallica albums as they’ve come out. The sequencing has become more developed and better and better, like the second song has to be that and the seventh song has to be that and so and so. That’s why it’s appealing and listenable in that way, because of his meticulous attention paid to that. Still to this day, he is that guy. That credit should be there first.”
On whether Metallica knew they were capturing lightning in a bottle during the recording of the Black Album, Newsted says, “We had a lot of momentum built up. We knew there was a lot at stake and so did the powers that be, management and so forth. Everybody threw a whole bunch of money into it, so we know that when that much money is invested, then there’s a big chance of something really happening.”
Check out the full podcast with Bill Burr and Jason Newsted below.