In a recent chat with Total Guitar, Metallica‘s lead guitarist, Kirk Hammett, opened up about the creation of their latest album, ’72 Seasons,’ and brought to light a disagreement between Lars Ulrich and James Hetfield over the track ‘Crown of Barbed Wire.’

As revealed by Hammett, the origin of the song’s riff was a tape he had made. Ulrich instantly took a liking to it, much to the surprise of Hammett himself. In contrast, Hetfield expressed his reservation, stating that the thought of incorporating such a riff into their music would never have crossed his mind.

The guitarist said the following about the making process of the track:

“We haven’t really ever had a riff or part that has ever sounded like this. It was on a tape that I made, and Lars just loved it. I was like, ‘Really?’ James said, ‘I would have never thought of using that.’ But Lars just went with it and said, ‘This riff has something you guys aren’t hearing.’ Then we came up with this song, and, you know, he was right. I think that song will become a deep cut that eventually people will start asking us to play live.”

So, trusting in Ulrich’s musical instinct, the band decided to follow his lead, developing the song around the contested riff. The outcome was ‘Crown of Barbed Wire,’ a track that Hammett believes will eventually rise to prominence among Metallica’s repertoire.


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