Even Metallica Are Making Fun of the ‘St. Anger’ Drum Sound Now
Over 20 years after the fact, the self-awareness from the Metallica camp is both amusing and affirming.
The unique drum sound on St. Anger remains a point of contention among Metallica fans, and it's often cited as one of the distinctive features of the album, contributing to the polarized reception of the record as a whole. The controversial drum sound, which focuses on an unorthodox snare tone from Ulrich, is also characterized by a lack of traditional cymbals and a raw, unpolished feel throughout.
On Wednesday, with a knowing smirk that can be felt through the screen, Metallica called St. Anger "everyone's favorite album" in their social media post that pointed fans to Fender Play.
The band added in the post, "Dust off your guitar (sorry, the snare drums will have to wait for another day) and get started on 'Frantic,' 'St. Anger,' 'Some Kind of Monster' and 'The Unnamed Feeling.'"
Lars' St. Anger Drum Sound
The sound of Ulrich's snare on St. Anger is still a frequently debated topic, even two decades later. But the drummer fully backs the drum tone that's caught so much flak over the years.
During the 2003 album's recording, Ulrich mostly played his drum sans snares — the stiff wires held beneath the instrument that give it its distinct "pop." Instead, St. Anger emits the telltale "ring" that many musicians would equate with a drummer forgetting to flip the lever that engages the snares.
In actuality, the St. Anger drum sound may have started that way, but the move was ultimately embodied as a conscious decision of Ulrich's. Further, the Metallica drummer still supports it wholeheartedly, as he said in an interview.
"I stand behind it a hundred percent," Ulrich responded when asked about the drum sound that's become such a point of contention among Metallica fans. "Because at that moment, that was the truth."
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Gallery Credit: Bryan Rolli