In the course of an interview granted by the band to Metal Hammer, the members of Metallica said that their partner’s relapse came completely by surprise and that they would not have expected it to happen again.
“We are sorry to communicate to our friends and fans that we have to postpone the tour dates to Australia and New Zealand. As you probably already know, our brother James struggles and has struggled with his addiction for and for many years. Now unfortunately he has had to re-enter a treatment program to work on his recovery again ”.
Hetfield’s problems are well-known and can be traced back to alcohol, an addiction that, between ups and downs, he just doesn’t seem to want to give up.
The postponed dates are those between October 17 and November 2 in Australia and New Zealand, while for now those scheduled for March 28 in America remain confirmed.
“We weren’t expecting it,” explained Robert Trujillo, the bass clerk in the Four Horsemen ranks, continuing: “It seemed that James was fine, but then you look back and try to analyze the situation over time and see where it is. ‘they were red flags… Being on the road can be very challenging, and I can imagine for James what it’s like to wake up there in front of all those people and stand up while your family is not with you and all things are moving on, accumulating “.
Same feeling for Kirk Hammett, who tells Metal Hammer how the news, “deeply destabilizing”, was “a shock” for him. These are the words of the drummer and co-founder of the band Lars Ulrich: “These guys have been in my life for longer than anyone but my relatives”. And again: “We know what the process is. When you see your siblings, your friends, your partners going through ups and downs for decades, you know what the process is like “.
In 2001, the “Enter Sandman” band went through one of the hardest moments of their career while Hetfield was in rehab, even though Metallica had been in troubled waters for some time. The turbulence was persistent to the point of leading the group to decide to turn to a “performance enhancement coach”, undertaking therapy to be able to resume working, as a band, in peace.
Despite the fallout of Hetfield, Metallica is working on their next recording chapter, an ideal sequel to the previous “Hardwired … to Self-Destruct” (2016). After having worked individually, in the most intense days of the social distancing linked to the Covid-19 pandemic, Metallica finally gathered, with a mask, in the studio to work together on the ideas collected in recent months.
In truth, however, the video through which the band documented the meeting in the studio shows the Four Horsemen grappling with old material, specifically the intro of “Creeping Death.” Hope, according to the most recent statements of training, is that that was just a warm-up.