The more things change in the music biz, the more they stay the same. And you know what, that’s so cool. Because as I’m being exposed each day to more and more crap like the Jonas Brothers (uh oh, don’t get me started!) and these artsy bands trying to be hip, I’m realizing that the new stuff from some very familiar bands is good if not better. The legends are starting to realize that if the formula works, don’t stray from it. And if the band has already strayed, it’s okay to go back to their roots as the fans are forgiving and will welcome them back with open arms.
Take for example, Metallica. Their new single, The Day That Never Comes, has just been released, and it kicks ass. Now I haven’t heard the complete album yet, but let me just say that this new single is pure bliss and was not what I expected at all. I was expecting something that sounded liked Nickelback. What I got was eight minutes of non-radio friendly fare that eerily sounds like their staple hit One with a bit more guitar shredding. The Metallica fans are going to love it. Why? Because it sounds like old Metallica. The casual music fan who doesn’t have time to appreciate anything more then three minutes won’t care for it. Metallica’s last album, St. Anger, was an atrocity because they were trying to broaden their horizons and experiment with a new sound. Guess what? The critics didn’t like it, the album was a financial disaster, and the fans figured it was the end of their band. So Metallica decided to stick to their guns and say to hell with the critics and new fans, we are going to make an album that will appeal to our real fans and will remind critics why we became as big as we are in the first place. Don’t think this trend just applies to Metallica. There are a bunch of other bands doing the same thing with successful results.