Metallica
S&M


5.0
classic

Review

by Zaine USER (13 Reviews)
November 5th, 2005 | 134 replies | 21,648 views


Release Date: 1999 | Tracklist


20 of 21 thought this review was well written

::Metallica::S&M::

Think of this album like a hotdog. Take a mess of things that sound like they would go awful together and mash them all into one main course and you get something so delicious, its stupid. Sorry to use that analogy, but when people hear Metallica and Symphony in the same sentence, a lot of people might be a little confused. But talk to anybody, ANYBODY who has heard this and ask them if its anything less than extraordinary. They teamed up with the San Francisco Symphony on April 21, 1999. They covered songs from albums spanning from “Ride the Lightning” all the way through “Reload” as well as 2 new songs, “No Leaf Clover” and “- Human.” S&M in this case means Symphony & Metallica. Honestly, this is one of the best compilations of Metallica songs ever put together. Enough chitchat. Lets get into it.

CD 1

The Ecstasy of Gold (2:30): The first CD of the album opens with a live audience going mad. A bell rings, and that only sets the audience even crazier, then not a moment later, they’re chill. The first horns kick in with a slow jam. After a few seconds, violins kick in then another bell. This is where the drums start to take place with some rolls and orchestra gets more upbeat. It kick into a Lord of the Rings celebration music kind of sound after a bit and then just stops. A great way to open the album for audiences to get a taste of what is soon to come.
[5/5]

The Call of Ktulu (9:34): One of Metallica’s more popular instrumentals, and for obvious reasons. The classic guitar comes in and after enough time, drums bass kicks in. When the drums get heavier, the horns blast and the audience bursts in cheers. The beat gets a little faster when the violins begin play, and it goes all uphill from there. The beat is constant and energetic. After a while, Kirk Hammet comes in with a fantastic, yet simple guitar riff. Lars is amazing on the drums here, which is to be expected, and the combo of Kirk riffs, James rhythm, and the orchestra, it is another fantastic epic of a song, and we’re only on track number two.
[5/5]

Master of Puppets (8:54): One of the best metal songs in history, only made better with horns and in a live performance. Begins with the same beat we are all familiar with, only to build up into a non-stop rocking session. James’ vocals are that of the classic album itself, even though his voice has changed through the latter albums. This song is perfectly complimented with the violins and horns line. Violins take part in the epic guitar sessions and the horns fill the gaps of silence between James’ incredible singing and the lightning fast guitar riffs. Around 4:00 the song slows and the horns really shine. Then the guitars and the combo is once again, truly amazing. A nice drum solo comes into play and at the end of the bars, we are treated to some horn play. Directly after the drum solo, a guitar solo along with violins. Simply brilliant one might say. Friggin awesome another might say, but the same idea behind both compliments, and who can disagree.
[5/5]

Of Wolf and Man (4:19): James hollers a 4 count then the music blares. The vocals come right into play with some pretty intense violins and other strings. A damn impressive guitar intro takes place toward the middle of the song and that is only improved mildly by the strings. James shouts “Got any wolves out there?” and of couse, people howl and scream, which is a great showcase of the energy in the arena. However, after the amazing performances previous to this, it seems less impressive. But don’t get me wrong, its still incredible.
[4/5]

The Thing that Should Not Be (7:27): The first song that really opens with a string number, rather nice I might add. The strings build up as guitars kick in. Then the drums give some cymbal crashes and the hard beat kicks in. The strings really shine in this song as the vocals come in. At the end of every verse there is an amazing string number. The guitars and drums are damn near incredible, but the orchestra takes the stage in this song. Again, another amazing number, but not as impressive as the openers. But at least we got to see some hardcore orchestra action.
[4/5]

Fuel (4:35): Guitars and strings build up tension until James releases it with “Gimme fuel” and when audiences realize what song is playing, they go insane. There are many fans of this song, and allow me to say that there is no disappointments in here. When the song gets slower “fuel is burning engines” the string/horn/guitar/drum/vocal/everything else combo is flawless. Everything compliments everything else. A good portion of the famous guitar riffs in this song are done in the horns and sounds really fresh. The guitar solo is partnered by horns and strings and it is just another amazing mix of everything. It ends with James telling the audience “Well that felt pretty good. Well James, it didn’t sound too bad either.
[4.5-5/5]

The Memory Remains (4:42): Personally my fave from the Re-Load album. It begins intensely with “Fortune’s fame” and when he finishes the verse he quiets himself and with one of the best audience participation moments I’ve ever heard, the screams of “But the memory remains.” is so energetic, that when the clashing of the drums and the guitar kick in, you have to do some air guitar or drums or something to release the tension. Then it breaks into the popular guitar riff and then vocals. The strings kick in not too far after. More audience participation with the “La da da da” and then the guitar solo kicks in. One of the better might I add. Anyone who’s heard the song knows what I mean when I say the solo ends with one of the more energetic guitar tunes Metallica has ever shared with us. Another classic Metallica moment, truly a highlight on the album.
[5/5]

No Leaf Clover (5:43): The orchestra opens with this one in an almost tribal or indian sounding beat. Then the guitars come in with a slower tune then without warning kick into a fast riff, one for the metal-heads. The song isn’t very consistent, which some might find as a bad thing, but it takes us back to the “Thrash” moment of Metallica, which some will love and some will hate. This isn’t my favorite song for whatever reason, but its not bad. There are some very nice horn and violin effects. But I’m positive a lot of people will love this song, its just not as much my taste, but still a great song.
[4/5]

Hero of the Day (4:44): One of Metallica’s most popular ballads. For the most part, the intro is nothing but vocals, guitar, and strings. The beat continues with Lars on the drums. The main thing you will notice is that the majority of this song is a lot slower than the regular version of the song. This song features one of the best string action on the CD. Probably because it’s so much slower than a lot of the rest of the album, that it’s more apparent and vibrant. Another highlight, but seems almost too short. The ending is amazing with the orchestra really building up then comes to an abrupt halt. Again, greatness.
[4/5]

Devil’s Dance. (5:26): Another good song where the orchestra really takes the stage. The vocals are Metallica being Metallica and the drumming is pretty good, nothing spectacular. The orchestra however is fantastic, filling in where Metallica leaves off in this song, which is the fastness and fierceness. The song is a rocker, but not like one would hope. A good song in the midst of greatness.
[4/5]

Bleeding Me (3:36): This is one of my favorite ‘Tallica songs to play on the drums. The opening beat kicks in and the crowd sounds out. The string chords really emphasize the tune of the slow opening then it rockets into a blasting of guitars and orchestra, then back to calm. It repeats this formula again as James sings. Then the chorus kicks in. James’ vocals aren’t quite like the original version of the song, which isn’t really bad, just I’m so used to the regular tune. Again, strings emphasize the guitars and drumming as the chorus is repeated. Then the greatest part of all, the riff-heavy solo. Then the regular formula until we reach the very end. It ends with symphony complimenting the guitars and drums as James give a solemn vow that they will return. And then we reach the end of CD 1.
[5/5]

CD 2

Nothing Else Matters (6:47): One of the greatest ballads of all time, only made better here. This might be my absolute favorite song on the whole album. The symphony is so amazing here emphasizing the guitar and making the song sound so epic. James’ vocals are undoubtedly impressive here. And the combination of all the elements that make S&M a legendary album, are most apparent here. The song is one that James wrote to his girlfriend at the time and that no matter what they say or do, nothing else matters. A moving song one might not expect Metallica to write, but as hard as they are, they mastered the art of ballads. I honestly cannot say enough about the symphony and how they, and the band feed so well off each other that it’s scary. Another masterpiece.
[5/5]

Until It Sleeps (4:30): The way this song opens is almost like Chinese with the chimes and the horns. Not my cup of tea, but the rest of the song is fine. It is just like the original version of the song, but with some epic string instrument action when the song goes upbeat. The chorus toward the end has a lot of horns accompanying the roughness and rawness of the chorus. The song ends with the music fading and the strings stringing. Great music yet again.
[4/5]

For Whom the Bell Tolls (4:52): An excellent achievement in the orchestra here. It compliments the guitars so much in the opening riff. This song is a classic among many other songs in the album. James’ lyrics kick in and he sounds amazing. The music/orchestra mix is again, fantastic and there is some audience participation again, which is refreshing. Kirk’s guitar play is incredible, as it usually is. Again, such a fantastic combo of symphonic instruments and non-stop rocking.
[4.5/5]

- Human (4:19): Another original, like that of “No Leaf Clover”. This is IMHO better than “No Leaf Clover” because it seems more like the Metallica I know and love. The vocals are gritty and sound strained, but not bad. The orchestra is very nice here, and the guitars are also. It ends abruptly and leaves your energy to release in the next track which is:
[4/5]

Wherever I May Roam (7:01): Another one of Metallica’s more popular songs. The song starts with some violins and goes right into the haunting intro that everyone is instantly familiar with. The orchestra builds up and goes right into the general beat of the song. James begins to sing and his vocals are again, terrific. The chorus comes in and the orchestra shines. I really love the lyrics to this song, which James really brings to life.
[5/5]

Outlaw Torn (9:59): One of the better songs on the second CD. The intro is epic and the orchestra does a fantastic job of emphasizing the guitars. James’ vocals are incredible and the harmonization of the vocals and the music does a fantastic job of making the song sound even more phenomenal. The solo really focuses on the orchestra and after the orchestra gets its spotlight, Kirk comes in really whaling on the guitar. This song was fantastic on the original version, and is no different here. Truly fantastic.
[5/5]

Sad But True (5:46): One of Metallica’s more popular and radio heavy songs. The orchestra is remarkable as it really brings out the true sound in the verses and chorus. The vocals are a different tone than that of the original version. The guitars are fantastic and Lars’ drumming is up to speed and really fantastic. The violins really shine through in this song, playing throughout the whole song. Really impressive on the side of the orchestra here. Definitely ear candy.
[4.5/5]

One (7:53): “One” opens with the classic war sounds that it does on the original version, then the violins kick in and really set the mood. Guitars come in and it slow, enchanting intro really captures the feel that the song is aiming for. Lars’ drumming is excellent in the opening before James begins singing. The orchestra keeping the sound all the way through. When the bridge kicks in, the orchestra speeds up and James gets more raw with his sound. This is one of the best sounding Metallica/orchestra combo’s on the entire album. The song slowly picks up the pace and the sound really gets intense. The amazing solo’s in the song entrance you with mind blowing harmonization and speed. Honestly, this is the song that highlights the 2nd CD. I know I’ve used the word “epic” a few times before in this review, but this song truly defines it.
[5/5]

Enter Sandman (7:39): The one true element that makes this song is the building intro. It gets more and more intense every second. This is where the symphony comes in handy. The orchestra just adds to the tension. It is finally relieved with James hollering. The violins really come through in the chorus. Really a fantastic song to play with the orchestra due to the intense solo and the building intensity that is accompanies by the increasing intenseness of the strings and horns, it is really something of a masterpiece.
[5/5]

Battery (7:24): Metallica couldn’t have chosen a better way to end it. It begins with some violins and the horns soon follow. This kicks right into the hard rocking guitars that Metallica has mastered so well. Then Lars comes in blasting away at the drums. The orchestra does a great job of following the band. James’ vocals are superb and match the emotion that the song carries. The solo features Kirk blasting away and the orchestra right along side it. Then it goes into an AMAZING guitar riff with drums that mark the end of the song. James gives a speech toward the end as the audience is literally going crazy.
[5/5]

I pretty much covered how I felt about the album in the intro, but I will leave you with a few words of wisdom. This album is honestly something of a masterpiece. Mixing classical music with bone-deep metal, it is truly something to experience.

Metallica Is:
Kirk Hammett - guitar
James Hetfield - guitar, vocals
Jason Newsted - bass
Lars Ulrich - drums
San Francisco Symphony (only for this album)



Recent reviews by this author
System of a Down ToxicitySystem of a Down Steal This Album!
Dream Theater Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes from a MemoryIron & Wine In The Reins (feat. Calexico)
The Immortals Mortal Kombat - The AlbumPearl Jam Ten
user ratings (1365)
Chart.
3.9
excellent
other reviews of this album
1 of

Comments:Add a Comment 
SamRI
November 5th 2005



5 Comments


Awesome review man, I totally agree with that rating. Such a kick-ass album!!!

zyxon
November 5th 2005



15 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Awesome review of a fairly good album. The sound quality isn't 100% but it is live. The orchestra really adds alot to some of the songs like Outlaw Torn and Fuel. Also, I'm pretty sure that Got any wolves out there? bit is actually Jason.

Thor
November 5th 2005



10158 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Pretty good for a track by track. I liked this album and performance, but I still don't think it's a classic because they left out some very key Metallica songs and put in some songs that aren't as necessary.

Digging: Cult Leader - Nothing For Us Here

Zaine
November 5th 2005



199 Comments


thanks for the feedback. it took me a little while to write this, but i tried my best and it really paid off. i had to get away from weird al stuff.

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
November 5th 2005



15693 Comments


Indeed at least your doing some music. (and yes, while Metallica is metal, they are still Real Music. Atreyu=not music)

Digging: Nmesh - Dream Sequins [AMDISCS]

Confessed2005
November 6th 2005



3314 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This album is amazing and the DVD of them live is well worth investing in if you haven't yet. Atreyu are real music, they are just obviously not 'MusicOfficial101's cup of tea. Personally, I think they have ripped off a few bands, but they have some pretty damn good songs (the crimson).

Ace_of_Bass2112
November 6th 2005



257 Comments


this is one of the best live albums ive ever heard. it is one of the few albums i give a 5/5. nice review by the way the other one is a beast to read

Dead_Trench
November 6th 2005



159 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

The lack of Ride the Lightning songs disappointed me.

diefamous
January 29th 2006



281 Comments


Way to many songs from after teh Black Album... and Hetfield's singing was horrible in this. They shoulda played Fade to Black and some songs off Kill em' All. But besides that i think its a good review, and i give the album a 4/5.

Hatshepsut
February 4th 2006



1997 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

dude u have way too much time on ur hands


What?

Lordata
February 4th 2006



17 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I agree with Dead trench but also they needed at least one Kill 'em All song

Zaine
February 5th 2006



199 Comments


i actually think that Fade to Black would've been a great addition. There's only one truly great ballad on the album (Nothing Else Matters) and though all the energy, would've liked another slow fix.

EDIT: Omg. I smacked myself because i totally forgot "One". anyway F2B would've still been choice. but i forgot "One"...i fail.This Message Edited On 02.04.06

CushMG15
February 5th 2006



1802 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Fade to Black would've been choice. That's the only glaring flaw with this cd. Still a classic tho.

Hatshepsut
February 5th 2006



1997 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

One is better than Fade to Black.

Diabulus in musica
February 5th 2006



485 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

i wouldve prefer if they played to live is to die or orion instead of tha call of ktulu

Hatshepsut
February 5th 2006



1997 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

To Live is to Die would have a sick string part. That song is freaking amazing.

Diabulus in musica
February 5th 2006



485 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

best instrumental song by metallica

Hatshepsut
February 5th 2006



1997 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Mehh...I still think Orion is better though.

Bfhurricane
February 5th 2006



6194 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

When i heard there was a cd of Metallica and an orchestra, i thought the world was going to end. I was wrong, my world just got better! Its a really good album, Ktulu sounds amazing and i htink its their best instrumental. In other songs, sometimes the orchestra muffles the guitar a bit, especially in some parts (the beginning) of One. Dont get me wrong though, i still love this album!

Zaine
February 6th 2006



199 Comments


actually, To Live is To Die would've been a great addition. i probably would've preffered it over F2B. and hurricane, i can relate with the metallica and orchestra confusion. its really something you have to hear before you judge it.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2013 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy