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Vinyl Review: A Look Back At Metallica’s Iconic Covers Album, ‘Garage, Inc.’

'Garage, Inc.'

‘Garage, Inc.’

Since their formation in 1981, Metallica have served as heavy metal trailblazers and continue to push themselves as artists. The band quickly rose to fame and became of the pioneers of thrash with their first four iconic albums; ‘Kill ‘Em All,’ ‘Ride The Lightning,’ ‘Master of Puppets’ and ‘…And Justice for All.’ These albums found the band at their most aggressive, won them legions of devoted fans around the globe and established the as an unstoppable force in rock. Their creative path would lead them to creating what would become their career defining album, ‘Metallica,’ aka ‘The Black Album;’ in 1991; which would be followed by to poppier metal albums, ‘Load’ and ‘Reload.’ Although these three lack the epic range and explosiveness of their albums from the 80s, they launched Metallica to even greater superstardom in the ever-changing music industry.

In addition to fueling their creative fire as a band creating this new material, the boys in Metallica also created some amazing music in the form of covers along the way. ‘Garage, Inc.’ features a few songs released by the band in 1984, 1987’s heavily bootlegged and long-out-of-print ‘Garage Days Re-Revisited’ EP, coupled with scattered B sides and eleven covers created solely for this release. The result is (literally) rock ‘n’ roll history — ‘Garage, Inc.’ This album was a labor of love and  takes the listener down a winding path of bands that had an undeniable impact on the band. One of the obvious influences are bands such as the legendary Black Sabbath and Thin Lizzy but this release also explores other artists not necessarily rooted in heavy metal like Nick Cave and Bob Seger, along with many others.

This collection of cover songs are all song in their own right and Metallica’s take on then never feels forced. You can feel the love of these selections throughout the duration of the album as they put their own spin on the classics and inject them with new life. Although many of the songs were recorded at different points in their career, it captures the individual members at the top of their games. Hetfield’s vocals are as a huge part of Metallica’s sound and appeal. On this release, they are strong and showcase the dimensionality that he brings to the table. Legendary drummer Lars Ulrich shines behind the drums, as always, in the era before he became the poster boy for the war on illegal file sharing. Guitarist Kirk Hammett showcases his legendary guitar skills with some captivating solos, while Jason Newsted’s brings some of his most memorable work to the project.

It was great to go back and revisit this album and soak in the band before the infighting became the subject of rock tabloid journalism and grounds for a documentary feature. Metallica clearly enjoyed bringing this material to the table and the vibe are tangible. Experiencing an album I first encountered on CD for the first time on vinyl was an amazing experience. ‘Garage, Inc.’ had an unbelievable new depth in this format, one I feel could have been overlooked by fans on it’s initial release.

Standout tracks include “Last Caress,” “Am I Evil,” Whiskey In The Jar,” Die, Die, My Darling,” “Turn The Page” and “‘Sabbra Cadabra.” With that said, all of the songs on the album are fully fleshed out and do not disappoint.

LP1

1. Free Speech For The Dumb
2. It’s Electric
3. Sabra Cadabra
4. Turn The Page
5. Die, Die My Darling
6. Loverman
7. Mercyful Fate

LP2

1 Astronomy
2 Whiskey In The Jar
3 Tuesday’s Gone
4 The More I See
5 Helpless
6 The Small Hours
7 The Wait
8 Crash Course In Brain Surgery
9 Last Caress/Green Hell

LP3

1. Am I Evil?
2. Blitzkrieg
3. Breadfan
4. The Prince
5. Stone Cold Crazy
6. So What
7. Killing Time
8. Overkill
9. Damage Case
10. Stone Dead Forever
11. Too Late Too Late

It is cool to see albums like this get a proper release on a format offers fans their money’s worth in both packaging and audio quality. When it comes to vinyl, I have spent the past few years enjoying the thrill of the hunt. Alongside many friends, we have scoured flea markets, obscure music stores, second hand shops, eBay and even high-end boutique shops catering to the rising demand for albums both old and new. However, I have to say I have never had a smoother and more satisfying experience than ordering from SoundstageDirect.com. The online retailer is not only a great gateway for new releases but carries an amazing selection of turntables and related audio products to satisfy all your musical needs. They are constantly updating their website with new releases and products but where they really shine is with their customer service, packaging and speedy shipping. I have quite a few friends who had sworn by SoundstageDirect.com and now I have joined them, as I have never received an album in the mail that is so expertly packed. This is a company that clearly has their ears open to what audiophiles are looking for and are excelling at meeting those needs. Definitely give them a look when it comes time to bring some new music into your life and get the details on this amazing company below.

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About Soundstage Direct

SoundStageDirect.com is the leading online independent record store for all your favorite vinyl LPs.
Covering nearly every genre, the company offers the largest selection of new releases and reissues online.

• SoundStageDirect.com is an online independent vinyl records and equipment retailer. Local customers are invited to their offices to test out merchandise before buying, and their in-house turntable technician is always available to answer questions and assemble equipment. All of the LPs are new and sealed and come directly from the manufacturer.

• Soundstage Direct offers a wide selection of turntables, speakers, amplifiers, pre-amps, DACs and other hardware from some of the most prominent names in the industry.

• Soundstage Direct is authorized full-line dealers for manufacturers such as Rega, VPI, Music Hall, PMC Speakers, Luxman, and Clearaudio, among others.

• Soundstage Direct  carries an assortment of accessories from record cleaners, brushes, and cleaning solutions for all your analog needs.

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