By Jenn Devereaux
An estimated 40,000 fans piled into Atlanta, Georgia’s Suntrust Park, the new home for the Atlanta Braves, on July 9th, 2017 for none other than the LA based 4-piece hard rock band and godfathers of thrash metal, Metallica. Hitting the road in support of their platinum selling album, Hardwired…to Self-Destruct, the WorldWired tour is the first time in nearly a decade that we have seen Metallica touring in support of a new album— the last time being Death Magnetic in 2008.
This isn’t Metallica’s first rodeo and they know exactly how to give fans their money’s worth by bringing heavy hitters Avenged Sevenfold and Danish rockers Volbeat on as their supporting acts. First up was Volbeat, coming out to the Rocky theme song which complemented their boxing ring set up. Avenged Sevenfold followed next and brought the fire with them and I’m not referring to the massive pyro they masterfully executed in broad daylight but more so their setlist of crowd favorites including “Hail to the King”, “Bat Country” and “Nightmare” as well as their new single “The Stage” off their latest album of the same name.
When Ennio Morricone’s “The Ecstasy of Gold” hit the loud speakers along with a scene from The Good, the Bad and the Ugly on the gigantic LED screens, every Metallica fan knew who was up next as this has been Metallica’s intro for the past three decades. Guitarist and lead singer James Hetfield, guitarist Kirk Hammett, bassist Robert Trujillo, and drummer Lars Ulrich charged the stage leading with two songs off of their new album, “Hardwired” and “Atlas, Rise!.”When you are a band that has a music catalog as deep as Metallica’s, the process of narrowing the setlist down to only 17 songs can be rather daunting. The metal juggernauts pulled it off by featuring a wide range of songs from throughout their career, including “Seek and Destroy”, “Master of Puppets”, “One” and “For Whom the Bell Tolls” to name a few. Unsurprisingly they saved “Enter Sandman” for the last song of the night and they did it with a bang, literally. The song started of with that famous riff and proceeded with a magnificent explosion of fireworks all while the crowd sang along at an almost deafening pitch. They closed out their set with an even bigger display of fireworks as James Hetfield showed his admiration for the city by stating, “Metallica loves Atlanta.”