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America's Captain 

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- Metallica! Do you think they sold out?

Our prior thread makes me think we'll answer no.

There's a definite difference in their music as the years went by. Some may say they became more commercial. Personally, I say their music got better. They evolved and in my opinion their trajectory was positive. Their earliest songs could be described as "head-banger" whereas their later songs were more melodic. I don't like their earliest songs. I like their later stuff. How about you?







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Nose Norton


Location: Plainville
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 6,626


I really don’t know much about Metallica beyond the few songs that get played on the radio, which I like.
When people say bands “sell out”, I sometimes wonder if it’s more out of resentment or jealousy. When you’re in on the early days of a band before they break through, you tend to resent the new fans when the band does break through. Just look at YouTube comments when some kid posts that he likes a song that came out before he was born. Instead of accepting a young fan who has embraced the music they love, some old fans will ridicule them. It doesn’t make sense to me.
Also, I think some bands get jealous when another band breaks through. I admit there is some luck involved when one band gets discovered over another but sometimes that band is just better.
While I love Green Day’s early stuff, I think they’ve shown their merit and talent over the past 25 years. Yet lots of people think they sold out. But look at the classic punk bands:

The Sex Pistols only released one album. While I don’t think Johnny Rotten ever sold out, Malcolm McLaren was selling rebellion from the start.
The Ramones, a band I love, played virtually the same concert every night for 20 years.
The Clash quickly moved into pop and raggae sounds, even hip hop, with success but no one ever says they sold out.
The Pretenders haven’t been regarded as a punk band in 30 years or so, but their early stuff was very punk.

As long as the music is good, I’m ok with a band trying to move to that next level.




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The Black Guardian

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Location: Paragon City, RI
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008


Re: The Pretenders

Hynde had her roots in punk, but when the band was forming, members were coming from other styles (iirc, they have a connection to Mott the Hoople). I hesitate to really call even the early stuff purely punk. And the New Wave movement, which they were part of, was sort of this fusion of rock, punk, disco, reggae, pop, r&b, techno, et al. Their debut album was including the classic pop-rock Kinks song "Stop Your Sobbing." "Brass in Pocket" and "Kid" were just straight rock, almost throwing back to the 50s and 60s.

As for Metallica, many people point to when they went from metal to grunge as a sellout, but truth is, most of those people probably only knew of them because they commercialized for Justice For All.

And they commercialized for Master of Puppets before that... and probably Kill Em All and Lightning before that.

----------

Paul Westerberg (The Replacements) says this about "selling out": "People get panicky when you’re not their little pocket group anymore—their favorite little group that only they know about."

The term might have a point when it comes to politics and ethical/moral things, but it really doesn't when it's applied to music. Like it or not, the main point of these bands is to sell themselves. And then some fans get upset when they sell.




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Superman's Pal

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    Quote:
    As for Metallica, many people point to when they went from metal to grunge as a sellout, but truth is, most of those people probably only knew of them because they commercialized for Justice For All.



    Quote:
    And they commercialized for Master of Puppets before that... and probably Kill Em All and Lightning before that.

Were they commercialized at that point? It looks like And Justice For All won their first Grammy. They had critical acclaim before that.

I thought it more aimed at the self-titled "Black Album." This is where the 7 or 8 minute thrash metal odysseys were reduced to 3 to 5 minute melodic metal more fit for radio. They continued that tradition with Load and Reload, and started getting onto a lot of movie soundtracks. Well that's what a friend of mine swears by, anyway. Everything before the black album was great and everything including and after it was trash.

It didn't help that they sued Napster which is when people started thinking they were backing the big corporations over the music fan.

Anyway, the black album was my introduction to Metallica and I loved it. But then I went back and listened to the old stuff and I like a lot of it, but not all of it. The same is true of Load and Reload, they have their moments but I can't just sit and listen to the whole album like I can the black album. I didn't find much to like in St. Anger though.



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The Black Guardian

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Location: Paragon City, RI
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008



    Quote:

      Quote:
      As for Metallica, many people point to when they went from metal to grunge as a sellout, but truth is, most of those people probably only knew of them because they commercialized for Justice For All.

      Quote:

        Quote:
        And they commercialized for Master of Puppets before that... and probably Kill Em All and Lightning before that.

      Were they commercialized at that point? It looks like And Justice For All won their first Grammy. They had critical acclaim before that.


Not much, but I would consider simply getting a record contract to be commercialization. That's the initial "sellout" for every popular band.




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Nose Norton


Location: Plainville
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 6,626



    Quote:
    Re: The Pretenders



    Quote:
    Hynde had her roots in punk, but when the band was forming, members were coming from other styles (iirc, they have a connection to Mott the Hoople). I hesitate to really call even the early stuff purely punk. And the New Wave movement, which they were part of, was sort of this fusion of rock, punk, disco, reggae, pop, r&b, techno, et al. Their debut album was including the classic pop-rock Kinks song "Stop Your Sobbing." "Brass in Pocket" and "Kid" were just straight rock, almost throwing back to the 50s and 60s.


Looking back on the track list for the first album, I have to say you're right. I was introduced to the band with songs like "Precious", "Porcelain" and "Tattooed Love Boys", but also "Message Of Love", "Mystery Achievement" and "Talk Of The Town". Definitely some punk background but not really a punk band.


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Dakota


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008



    Quote:

      Quote:
      As for Metallica, many people point to when they went from metal to grunge as a sellout, but truth is, most of those people probably only knew of them because they commercialized for Justice For All.

      Quote:

        Quote:
        And they commercialized for Master of Puppets before that... and probably Kill Em All and Lightning before that.

      Were they commercialized at that point? It looks like And Justice For All won their first Grammy. They had critical acclaim before that.



    Quote:
    I thought it more aimed at the self-titled "Black Album." This is where the 7 or 8 minute thrash metal odysseys were reduced to 3 to 5 minute melodic metal more fit for radio. They continued that tradition with Load and Reload, and started getting onto a lot of movie soundtracks. Well that's what a friend of mine swears by, anyway. Everything before the black album was great and everything including and after it was trash.



    Quote:
    It didn't help that they sued Napster which is when people started thinking they were backing the big corporations over the music fan.



    Quote:
    Anyway, the black album was my introduction to Metallica and I loved it. But then I went back and listened to the old stuff and I like a lot of it, but not all of it. The same is true of Load and Reload, they have their moments but I can't just sit and listen to the whole album like I can the black album. I didn't find much to like in St. Anger though.


Yes, the Black album is where the die-hards tend to draw the line. You had "Enter Sandman" on heavy rotation on MTV and they became considered "mainstream" rock.




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Grey Gargoyle


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008


Black Album is my favorite and it is supposed to be their most commercial.

It was released at just the right time for me (1991, I was a teenager back then).

Nothing Else Matters remains one the best comforting songs ever.



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America's Captain 

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Location: Bayville New Jersey
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 12,139



    Quote:
    Black Album is my favorite and it is supposed to be their most commercial.



    Quote:
    It was released at just the right time for me (1991, I was a teenager back then).



    Quote:
    Nothing Else Matters remains one the best comforting songs ever.


For the record (see what I did there?) Metallica's Black Album is my favorite too.

Every song I associate with the band is on that album with the exception of "For Whom the Bell Tolls" which was on Ride the Lightning.








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Superman's Pal

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Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 5,675


Whoa, I'm right with you on that. The black album is my favorite and of the older songs, For Whom The Bell Tolls is my favorite. I like the S&M version, I think just because Hetfield says "you betcha!" more so than the symphony. Although Master of Puppets is a good tune, too.



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Nose Norton


Location: Plainville
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 6,626



So who DID sell out?

I looked up selling out on wikipedia, and the only two bands they mention, as examples of bands that people claim sold out, not necessarily bands that sold out, are Metallica and Green Day.

I really can't think of any stand out examples.

The J. Geils Band? After the success of Freeze Frame, Peter Wolf left the band due to creative differences and they released the much more commercially friendly but less successful, and brilliantly titled, "You're Gettin' Even While I'm Gettin' Odd" with the single "Concealed Weapons". Is this really selling out, though, since they lost the face of the band in Wolf and needed a new direction.

Aerosmith? After nearly self-destructing due to drug use, Aerosmith started their comeback in the 80s by teaming up with Run-DMC to release the hip hop version of Walk This Way. I remember kids not liking this back in the 80s as Aerosmith was seen as stalwarts of hard rock. But I think their problems were more severe than just trying to be more commercial.  Plus they were actually ahead of the game with regard to the melding of metal and rap.

I remember a rockabilly band called Roman Holliday who wore sailor hats and cut off sweatshirts. They had some moderate success on MTV with their quirky videos and catchy beats on songs like Don't Try To Stop It and Stand By. Their follow up after their MTV exposure was to become a Flock Of Seagulls-type band, ditching their personality for a more "hip" image and sound on the video One Foot Back In The Door. I always felt they sold out, but how long could they really keep the sailor thing going?



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Grey Gargoyle


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008



    Quote:
    For the record (see what I did there?)


(^_^)


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