Metallica frontman James Hetfield was asked if Jason Newsted approached him about his bass being mixed low on ‘…And Justice For All’ in a new interview on the band’s official website. A Jason Newsted comeback performance recently stunned Metallica fans.
“He probably did. I don’t know what my answer was then, but it was kinda done. I mean, I will say, it was not all about, ‘Fuck him. Let’s turn him down.’ That’s for sure. We wanted the best-sounding record we could make. That was our goal. We were burnt. We were frigging fried. Going back and forth [between touring and mixing the album]. Playing a gig.
No earplugs, no nothing. You go back into the studio, your hearing is shot. If your ears can’t hear any high end anymore, you’re gonna turn it up. So we’re turning the high end up more and more and more and all of a sudden, low end’s gone. So I know that played a bigger part than any hazing or any ill feelings towards Jason, for sure. We were fried. We were burnt.”
Jason Newsted recently revealed what Gene Simmons did to Metallica. Lars Ulrich recently wrote on Instagram, “30 years ago today on August 7th 1989, we played the Stone Balloon in Newark, Delaware.
It was in the middle of the Damaged Justice summer US tour and we were playing mostly amphitheaters and arenas, but as we got deeper into the run, we realized that we were only two gigs/cities/states away from playing all 50 states in the union on the same tour.
But since there was no arena or amphitheater in Delaware and Vermont we had to look elsewhere …so in Vermont we decided to play a high school gymnasium and in Delaware we found the infamous super cool club, the Stone Balloon.
Playing a pretty radical set which was way different than the arena set we were hitting every night and featuring more songs from Kill ‘em All than any other album, we had a way fun night being back in a small super sweaty club, walls dripping with condensation and energy next level insane and crazy, as band and fans became one… And as happened occasionally at that time when the setting was unique and the vibe right, we all switched up instruments at the ass-end of the set for Am I Evil?…. and I ended up on lead vocals bouncing around like an out of control Energizer Bunny. Fuck yeah..crazy fun days. Bring that shit back!! And so we wound up playing all 50 states on the same tour!!!”
Metallica screwing Jason Newsted was finally called out recently. Hetfield also said in the Metallica website interview, “All this [bass discussion] is after the fact, and it’s, like, who gives a shit, man, really?” Hetfield said. “And why would you change that? Why would you change history? Why would you all of a sudden put bass on it? There is bass on it, but why would you remix an album? You can remaster it, yes, but why would you remix something and make it different? It’d be like… I don’t know. Not that I’m comparing us to the Mona Lisa, but it’s, like, ‘Uh, can we make her smile a little better?!’ You know?! Why?”
He said about the mix, “We wanted [to mix] it tight. We wanted it fucking tight. That’s what we wanted. We wanted the snare, we wanted the guitar, we wanted everything up front and in your face and really tight. And we thought we got it. And, you know, we kinda know what we want to sound like. Can we sit behind a desk and make it happen? No. We ask people to do it, and they do it. So [Steve Thompson] did his job. He’s got nothing to apologize for or point fingers at. No one’s to blame for ‘something.’ It is a piece of art.
It happened and it ended up the way it is for a reason. And for reasons we were just talking about. We were burnt. We’re traveling, we’re playing a gig, our ears were fried. We were not sleeping. He doesn’t need to defend himself. He was a part of an awesome album in history, so I think he should be maybe be a little easier on himself.”