Load (album)

From Academic Kids

Template:Album infobox Load is the sixth album by American heavy metal band Metallica, released in 1996. (See 1996 in music). For many longtime fans of the band, Load (as well as its 1997 companion, ReLoad) marked the end of Metallica. It was felt that the songs were not, in fact, heavy metal songs, but instead resembled the then-popular grunge and alternative styles of rock (Metallica's decision to participate in the 1996 Lollapalooza tour--arguably the symbol of alternative rock during the 1990s--only solidified those opinions). The album also marked the first appearance of a new Metallica logo, rounding off the stabbing 80's edges of the band's earlier logo. All members of the band had cut their heavy metal long hair prior to the release of the album. Adding to this was a series of "Calvin Klein" style photographs in the album's booklet, showing the band swilling brandy and smoking cigars while fashionably dressed, all in a dramatic departure from their usual street image.

It is fairly easy to hear what disappointed those fans who had hoped for some return to the style of songs written before The Black Album of 1991. Hetfield's riffs dispense almost entirely with most of the sonic markers that characterized Metallica's sound in the 1980's, and he actively incorporates a more traditional bluesy feel, foregrounding components such as pentatonicism and double-stopped bends, and doing away with things such as phyrigian or locrian modalities. More generally, the songs incorporate a much greater range of mood and feel than had their previous offerings, many written to capitalize on the contrast between clean, melodic, almost pleasant sections on the one hand, and grinding, mid-tempo alt-metal on the other. Whereas Hetfield's vocals had previously been distorted high-pitched barks, Load mixes in equal parts bluesy wailing as well as moments (not insignificant moments) of soft & clean.

While this album stands as the symbolic point of departure from Metallica's roots, and will forever be the album that "killed" the band in the eyes of many fans, it also simultaneously forged a replacement fan base that has been just as faithful (or fanatical) in the years since. Many of the converts who were attracted by the new style preferred it, and while many came to respect and even love the older music of the band, some remained as distasteful of that music as much as old fans could be distasteful of the new. If one were to seek out opinions of Metallica in the mid- to late-1990s, more often than not one would enjoy a scathing critique of the heroes who had "sold out." But as time passed, numbers equalized, and proponents of alt-metal became just as common as, if not more common than, disappointed headbangers. In completing the aesthetic changes initiated by The Black Album, Load represents for many fans Metallica's worst and saddest offering; for others, though, it is their best.


Track listing

  1. "Ain't My Bitch" (Hetfield, Ulrich) - 5:04
  2. "2 X 4" (Hammett, Hetfield, Ulrich) - 5:28
  3. "The House Jack Built" (Hammett, Hetfield, Ulrich) - 6:39
  4. "Until It Sleeps" (Hetfield, Ulrich) - 4:30
  5. "King Nothing" (Hammett, Hetfield, Ulrich) - 5:28
  6. "Hero of the Day" (Hammett, Hetfield, Ulrich) - 4:22
  7. "Bleeding Me" (Hammett, Hetfield, Ulrich) - 8:18
  8. "Cure" (Hammett, Hetfield, Ulrich) - 4:54
  9. "Poor Twisted Me" (Hetfield, Ulrich) - 4:00
  10. "Wasting My Hate" (Hammett, Hetfield, Ulrich) - 3:57
  11. "Mama Said" (Hetfield, Ulrich) - 5:19
  12. "Thorn Within" (Hammett, Hetfield, Ulrich) - 5:51
  13. "Ronnie" (Hetfield, Ulrich) - 5:17
  14. "The Outlaw Torn" (Hetfield, Ulrich) - 9:52



  • Producers: Bob Rock, James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich
  • Engineers: Brian Dobbs, Randy Staub
  • Assistant engineers: Brian Dobbs, Jason Goldstein, Kent Matcke
  • Mixing: Mike Rew, Randy Staub
  • Mixing assistant: Curry
  • Mastering: George Marino
  • Digital editing: Paul DeCarli
  • Digital editing assistants: Mike Gillies, Chris Vrenna
  • Programming: Chris Vrenna
  • Design: Andie Airfix
  • Cover Design: Andres Serrano
  • Photography: Anton Corbijn



Year Chart Position
1996 The Billboard 200 1


Year Single Chart Position
1996 "Ain't My Bitch" Mainstream Rock Tracks 15
1996 "Hero of the Day" Mainstream Rock Tracks 1
1996 "Hero of the Day" The Billboard Hot 100 60
1996 "Until It Sleeps" Mainstream Rock Tracks 1
1996 "Until It Sleeps" Modern Rock Tracks 27
1996 "Until It Sleeps" The Billboard Hot 100 10
1996 "Mama Said" The Billboard Hot 100 1
1997 "Ain't My Bitch" Mainstream Rock Tracks 40
1997 "Bleeding Me" Mainstream Rock Tracks 6
1997 "Hero of the Day" Canadian Singles Chart 17
1997 "King Nothing" Canadian Singles Chart 14
1997 "King Nothing" Mainstream Rock Tracks 6
1997 "King Nothing" The Billboard Hot 100 90

da:Load pl:Load he:Load (album)


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