I figured this was something i needed to give my opinion on and since i have the time to write again it’s getting tackled. After the recent announcement of Metallica headlining there has been a backlash from those holding tickets, left wing activists and even other bands playing the festival.
Firstly i feel slightly dirty that i had to link two articles from the epitome of indie wankery that is NME, i promise i will never do it again. But this has shown me two things firstly the wider audience is still as unaccepting of metal music as ever and secondly metal still has the power to divide and disgust audiences. However i wanted to make a number of points here about why people should re-evaluate their position.
1) Are You Even Going To Glastonbury? – I’m certainly not, but it doesn’t mean i’m going to complain about Kasabian headlining either, i’m pretty sure this is one of those things, where those who are shouting the loudest are those that having nothing to do with Metallica nor Glastonbury, they aren’t planning on attending and might watch five minutes of the highlights on BBC 1 with some custard cremes whilst accidentally leaning on the remote during a cheeky one to Babestation on the other side. Accepted not everyone has to like Metallica but why on earth would you use social media to complain about a band playing a festival you aren’t even attending?
2) You Bought Your Tickets Blind – This is the one thing i dislike about the Glastonbury audience, if you buy your tickets without the lineup being announced, you are not attending the festival for the music, you’re going simply for the “festival atmosphere” which comprises of the use of illegal drugs in a field somewhere. Added to the fact that you could shift your ticket for five times the price before photo ID was implemented, you’re lucky to have those tickets. They cost an insane amount of money and the festival sells out in minutes every year be thankful you have a kick ass weekend planned. I for example love Download Festival to bit’s i’ve been three times now, however i would never invest my money into a festival with the lineup not being announced, this year is a good example, i’m really not fond of Linkin Park, i saw Avenged Sevenfold on their last UK arena run and felt it didn’t need repeating and Aerosmith alone can’t warrant a festival ticket for me, so i bought one for Sonisphere, so i can see, oh you guessed it Metallica.
3) There Are Other Acts And Other Stages – Guess what? there are 74 other stages at Glastonbury other than the pyramid stage, the biggest festival i ever attended was Download 2010, sold out at 120,000+ in attendance, this festival had 5, i repeat 5 stages. If you can’t find someone else to watch or some illegal drugs to do whilst letting a 40 year old woman from bedford paint your face, there is something wrong. If you’re attempting to make one metal band out of probably over 1000 acts spoil your weekend, you’re trying to hard. Go watch indie tosh Jake Bugg preform if you like CD’s advertised with a voice over from Fearne Cotton. Go see synthpop kids MGMT and remember how much you enjoyed hearing “Kids” on every advert ever in the mid 00’s. Hell go see Dexy’s Midnight Runners preform an acoustic set. Hell even i’ve seen Scroubious Pip preform a spoken word set and it wasn’t my thing, i would rather be watching Metallica, but if an artist that almost sent a Metallica fanboy to sleep is playing another stage that will be perfect for those too quickly to dismiss metal.
4) Have You Actually Given Them A Chance? – Here’s the thing that gets me, when an informed metal fan calls Metallica bad, it’s mainly because they do not produce any material the caliber of their first five albums anymore. Guaranteed most of the people complaining only know Enter Sandman, Nothing Else Matters and at a push Master Of Puppets, For Whom The Bell Tolls or Sad But True. Metallica have 9 albums of original material, an EP, a covers album and a project with Lou Reed. How many Glastonbury goers will have bothered with fantastic ballads such as Fade To Black, upbeat hard rock songs such as Wasting My Heat or unusual covers such as Turn The Page Or Loverman. Metallica are a diverse beast with a tonne of material which you have probably not been exposed to, there is something for everyone.
5) The Setlist Will Probably Be Tailored Towards The Typical Glastonbury Audience – Right my final point, Lars is not stupid, he knows firstly how to write a setlist and secondly how to cater said setlist to an audience, he knows he will be playing to an audience of Mr and Mr’s Ford Focuses at Glastonbury. So unlike me he wont write the setlist to open with So What and then Launch into Dyers Eve. He will play nicey nicey, put a few nice ballads in there and a lot of Black Album songs, at worst you might have to put up with something fast like Battery or Creeping Death, which in all honesty are no where near as aggressive as they used to be back in 1989. So simmer down, shut up grab and ice cream and tell Fearne Cotton to stop whinging and enjoy Metallica at Glastonbury, unlike i will be able to, because i full well know the BBC will pull some form of elitism and not air the set.
I’ll spend my summer with all the true Metallica fans at Sonisphere thank you very much.