According to the official web site of METALLICA‘s project with legendary singer and former VELVET UNDERGROUND frontman Lou Reed, the musicians’ collaborative album will be released on November 1 in North America and one day earlier (October 31) in the rest of the world.
METALLICA and Reed reportedly tapped Dutch photographer, music video and film director Anton Corbijn to take a picture for the cover of their LP. According to the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet, Corbijn and Reed were seen hanging around with METALLICA inn early July in Gothenburg, Sweden where the band performed as part of the “Big Four” concert at Ullevi stadium. METALLICA guitarist Kirk Hammett and bassist Robert Trujillo were also spotted a couple of days later at Lou Reed‘s concert at Grand Rex in Paris, France.
METALLICA‘s collaboration with Reed was made public in June via the band’s official web site. The group wrote in a statement, “We are more than proud to announce that we have just completed recording a full-length album that is a collaboration with none other than the legendary Lou Reed. Ever since we had the pleasure of performing with Lou at the 25th anniversary of the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame at Madison Square Garden in October of 2009, we have been kicking around the idea of making a record together.”
The statement added, “We have indeed been working at our home studio at (METALLICA headquarters in San Rafael, California) on and off over the last few months. In what would be lightning speed for a METALLICA-related project, we recorded ten songs during this time and while at this moment we’re not exactly sure when you’ll hear it, we’re beyond excited to share with you that the recording sessions wrapped up last week.”
Rolling Stone spoke with both Reed and members of METALLICA about the surprising announcement. Writer David Fricke described the disc as “a raging union of [Reed‘s] 1973 noir classic, ‘Berlin’, and METALLICA‘s ’86 crusher, ‘Master Of Puppets’.” The songs were all written by Reed with extensive arrangement contributions by METALLICA.
Reed called the collaboration “a marriage made in heaven. I knew it from the first day we played together: ‘Oh, man, this is perfection, right in front of me.'”
METALLICA drummer Lars Ulrich said, “I don’t think we’ve ever felt this free. There’s nothing that’s totally outside of the boundary for us, nothing that feels like ‘Oh, what happens if we go there?'”
Frontman James Hetfield added, “Lars and I listened to [Reed‘s demos] and it was like, ‘Wow, this is very different.’ It was scary at first, because the music was so open. But then I thought, ‘This could go anywhere.'”
Songtitles on the record include “Pumping Blood” and “Mistress Dread”.
Reed does not have a record deal and METALLICA is no longer signed to Warner Bros. Music after completing their contract with “Death Magnetic”, so it is not clear how they intend to release the yet-to-be-titled album.