Destination Jam: Metallica to live stream 'S&M2' with the San Francisco Symphony, here are their top 5 tunes
Need something to keep you entertained while at work or play? Our daily Destination Jam playlist has been fine-tuned with some great selections for you
Hey there, music-loving friends. One of the world's hardest rocking bands, Metallica, recently announced that they will be hosting a live stream of their 'S&M2' performance with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra. The online concert will stream at 6 am PDT on July 15 and we're as excited as the rest of their fans to see this epic reunion.
Metallica famously played with the San Francisco Symphony for the first spectacular 'S&M' concert, conducted by the late great Michael Kamen, in April 1999. After receiving universal acclaim for this venture, a sequel was planned and finally 'S&M2' came to fruition 20 years later in October 2019. The music event was notable for being one of the biggest cinema releases on a global scale and went on to earn over $5.5 million at the box office. 'S&M2' was conducted by Edwin Outwater and Michael Tilson Thomas, and featured compositions from the original 'S&M', as well as some new arrangements. So in light of this upcoming live stream event, here's our Top 5 Metallica tunes as performed with the San Francisco Symphony. This is an exclusive 'S&M' playlist, so harder-rocking Metallica classics like 'Seek and Destroy', 'Master Of Puppets' and 'Ride The Lightning' will get their own playlist in the future.
Destination Jam: 'S&M' edition
'The Ecstasy of Gold'
Metallica have famously always used this gorgeous tune from 'The Good, The Bad, The Ugly' soundtrack as their entrance music before they begin their sets. As expected, the 1999 'S&M' concert also began with an incredible orchestral version of this 1966 classic. The sweet orchestral music, especially the lilting string section and stirring brass instrumentation perfectly contrasts with Metallica's brand of hard-rocking tunes and the tune has been a fan favorite for years. Considering that the song's original composer, Ennio Morricone, sadly passed away this month, it's only fitting that we paid tribute to the celebrated film composer with this first selection on our 'S&M' DJ playlist. Metallica also famously made a metal cover of this song, featuring minimal vocals, for the 2007 tribute album 'We All Love Ennio Morricone'.
This Metallica classic was first released as the third single from the band's critically-acclaimed fourth studio album, "...And Justice For All" in 1988. The piece was written as an anti-war song, and talked about a soldier who had lost his arms and legs after a landmine explosion, and was rendered deaf, mute and immobile as a result of the horrendous accident. The man's heartbreaking plea for a merciful end to his suffering is expressed via the lyrics "Hold my breath as I wish for death / Oh please, God, help me." With the 1999 orchestral arrangement, the magnificent melodies in the song come to the fore, as the violins, cellos, and swelling brass instruments help elevate the song to another emotional level altogether. The final minutes of the track, including the signature machine gun-like double bass section are absolutely outstanding, as the frenetic pace gathers steam for a resounding and fitting climax.
'No Leaf Clover'
This sweeping track was specifically written for the 1999 'S&M' concert along with another new song, ' Human' (Minus Human) and features a lush orchestral intro section before James Hetfield and Metallica then join the party. The song's title is a twisted play on the rare "four-leaf clover" plant, which was considered to be an item of luck or good fortune if it happened to be found. In keeping with this theme, Hetfield's lyrics also talks about the bad luck that heaps upon the song's protagonist, with one memorable line being "Then it comes to be that the soothing light at the end of your tunnel / Is just a freight train coming your way." The spellbinding track was been hailed as an underrated masterpiece by fans and for good reason too.It's probably the best song that Metallica has ever performed with an orchestra to date and with all due respect to 'The Unforgiven III', that looks unlikely to change.
'Hero Of The Day'
Another criminally underrated Metallica song, this power ballad was released as the second single from their 1996 album 'Load'. The song did prove to be a massive success on its release and became the band's second straight No. 1 hit on the US Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks chart. A cool bit of trivia for you diehard Metallica fans out there is that this song's working title was originally called 'Mouldy,' since its main riff sounded like something from the catalog of the singer-songwriter Bob Mould, of Hüsker Dü and Sugar fame. But despite the fact that it doesn't seem like a typical Metallica song (it was even written in a major key), it definitely sounds like a powerful new beast on the 1999 'S&M' version, with the added orchestral arrangements giving this melodic offering the phenomenal intensity and weighty gravitas it richly deserves.
'Nothing Else Matters'
Let's close out this playlist with Metallica's all-time classic ballad and mega-fan favorite, 'Nothing Else Matters'. It was first released in 1992 as the third single from the band's self-titled 'Metallica' album, commonly known as the "Black Album" to most fans. Originally written as a love song for James Hetfield's partner, the song's intro was actually composed by Hetfield while he was talking with his girlfriend on the phone, which explains why it can be played with just one hand (no fretting necessary). With lyrics like "So close, no matter how far / Couldn't be much more from the heart / Forever trust in who we are / And nothing else matters" it's clear why the song struck such a universal chord with fans and it has been one of Metallica's most-played songs in concerts around the world. The 1999 'S&M' version beautifully preserves the romantic and heartfelt sentiments of the song, while magnifying the emotive factor ten-fold with a sublime orchestral arrangement. Kudos is due to Michael Kamen and the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra for helping enhance this vintage hit.
Destination Jam is a daily list of songs that will keep you entertained and grooving up top in lieu of feeling drained and losing the plot. Look out for a fresh selection of great tunes from MEAWW to refresh your mood every day!