Metal Blade Reissues Compilation Featuring Metallica’s First Song
On the occasion of the 40th anniversary of Metal MassacreMetal Blade Records is re-releasing the highly influential 1982 compilation which included tracks from local Los Angeles bands, including a then-unknown Metallica and their very first song, “Hit the Lights”.
Without this compilation, made by metal enthusiast Brian Slagel, founder and CEO of Metal Blade, it is likely that Metallica, or at least the Metallica we know today, would not have existed.
“When I was editing the compilation, [Lars Ulrich] called me,” Slagel recalled of the conversation between himself and the teenage drummer who was looking to form a band.
“He was jamming with James [Hetfield] and a couple other guys in their garage playing Diamond Head covers and everything,” Slagel continued and detailed, “Lars asked me, ‘Hey, if I get a band together and give you an original song, you’ll put it on the disk?’ And I said, ‘Of course, of course.’ So that was basically the beginning of Metallica.”
At the time, Slagel and his friend John Kornarens had teamed up on the project – he was handling the artwork and mastering and Kornarens was in charge of finding a studio to record the upcoming songs.
“On mastering day, Brian and I had all the songs ready except for Lars’ new band called Metallica,” Kornarens explained. “The session was supposed to start at 3 p.m. and we were standing on a sidewalk in Hollywood waiting for Lars to show up with some material from his new band, and moments later he finally arrived and pulled a tape out of his pocket. back.”
The track appeared as the final cut on Metal Massacrewhich was first published by The New Heavy Metal Reviewa fan’zine Slagel had started to help spread the good word of global heavy metal to local fans.
The first installment of what would become a series of compilation sequels also featured future hair metal stars Ratt with a song called “Tell the World”.
With an April 22nd set as the release date for the limited edition vinyl reissue of Metal Massacre Volume 1fans will have the opportunity to relive this exciting time in the annals of heavy metal history and get a sense of what the Los Angeles metal scene was like in the early 80s.
Ruby Red copies (limited to 5,000) are available on Metal Blade’s online store and, for clear vinyl (limited to 2,000 copies), head to Metallica’s site. “Exclusive designs” by famous metal album cover artists Ed Repka (Megadeth, Venom, Nuclear Assault), Eliran Kantor (Testament, Soulfly, Helloween), Travis Smith (Opeth, Overkill, Slayer) and Sam Didier (Amon Amarth , HammerFall) also available for a limited time.
Metal Massacre Artwork + track list
01. Steeler, “Cold Day in Hell”
02. Bitch, “Live for the Whip”
03. Malice, “Captive of Light”
04. “Ratt, “Tell the World”
05. Avatar, “Octave”
06. Black ‘N Blue, “Chains Around Heaven”
07. Cirith Ungol, “Death of the Sun”
08. Demonic Flight, “Dead of the Night”
09. Pandemonium, “Fighting Upside Down”
10. Malice, “Kick You Down”
11. Metallica, “Hit the Lights”
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