Album of the Day
Master of Puppets
By the time of their third studio release, MASTER OF PUPPETS, Metallica were absolute masters of thrash metal. The final set with bassist Cliff Burton, the 1986 collection was recorded in Copenhagen with producer Flemming Rasmussen, and its technically proficient sound and well-focused fury display an authority that belies its themes of powerlessness and alienation. The 8 originals here are more refined and complex than anything the band had written before, and are played with almost-unimaginable intensity, inspiring outlets like Rolling Stone and Time to cite the set as one of the greatest albums ever. There's new Metallica on the way - S&M2, a live album the band cut with The San Francisco Symphony, is available for pre-order at Rhino.com – but for now, we'll give MASTER OF PUPPETS another spin to wish vocalist James Hetfield a happy birthday.