There are two predominant fears I have as my career at Far Out continues.
The first is that I become the ‘Country Music Guy’. That’s unlikely to happen, as there will most likely never be a ‘Country Music Guy’ at Far Out Magazine. At least not until we found out our predominant readership hails from Alabama, and even then we’d probably have to consider our options. But every time I do a piece on a worthwhile artist tangentially within the Country realm like Kacey Musgraves or Brandi Carlile, plus my nationality here in good ol’ US of A, it makes me more likely to have a country story land on my desk.
The second is that I become ‘The Metallica Guy’. This has nothing to do with my fandom of the band, which is admittedly tepid but there’s no disrespect or snarky commentary that comes with that position. It’s just that I don’t want to have to do an article like “All 287 times James Hetfield says ‘Yeah’ in Metallica songs” (that’s a rough guestimation, and I might be lowballing it).
Whatever the future holds, one thing is for sure: I’ve written a decent amount about The Metallica Blacklist. That includes covers done by St. Vincent, Sam Fender, Weezer, and just yesterday, Phoebe Bridgers. There are going to be 53 different covers available on the new compilation album, so might as well prepare yourself now.
Today, my two greatest sources of anxiety have joined forces to torment my psyche as Chris Stapleton has released his cover of ‘Nothing Else Matters’. For what it’s worth, Stapleton is pretty cool as far as country artists go. He’s badass in an old school rock and roll way, not the cliched hillbilly beer-swilling redneck kind of way. But that does little to satiate my mental anguish.
Stapleton’s take on ‘Nothing Else Matters’ is also pretty cool: it’s stretched out to eight minutes, includes spacey desert and psychedelic rock influences, detuned guitars, plus Stapleton’s whiskey-soaked shouts. The diverse interpretations of Metallica’s work makes them out to be more diverse than I would have initially given them credit for. Or maybe I’m giving them too much credit. Either way, this makes me want to go listen to their cover of Bob Seger’s ‘Turn the Page’, for some reason.
Check out Stapleton’s take on ‘Nothing Else Matters’ down below. The Metallica Blacklist is set for a September 10 release date.