In celebration of the 30th anniversary of The Black Album, last week Metallica oversaw the release of The Metallica Blacklist compilation album. The four-disc, 53-song album includes covers from the likes of Alessia Cara, Mac DeMarco, Rina Sawayama, Phoebe Bridgers, Weezer, St. Vincent, The Chats, J Balvin, IDLES and loads more.
The collection includes not one, not two, but an extraordinary 12 different versions of the Black Album‘s third single, ‘Nothing Else Matters’. Along with versions by Depeche Mode’s Dave Gahan, My Morning Jacket and Chris Stapleton, the most-hyped version features lead vocals from Miley Cyrus plus instrumental support from Sir Elton John, cellist Yo-Yo Ma, Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Chad Smith and Metallica’s own Robert Trujillo.
Metallica and Cyrus performed ‘Nothing Else Matters’ on the Howard Stern Show on the day of the album’s release. During an interview segment, Sir Elton joined via Zoom to share his thoughts on the track.
“This is one of the best songs ever written to me. It’s a song that never gets old,” he said, causing Metallica frontperson James Hetfield to bring a hand to his face in order to wipe tears away. “The chord structure, the melodies, the time changes—it’s got drama written all over it.”
He continued: “Metallica are the creme de la creme of those kind of bands. They’re a musical band. Their songs are beautiful songs and this is such a melodic song. It’s fucking great actually.”
At this, all Hetfield could do was laugh in disbelief.