Metallica - Beyond Magnetic (2011)Release ID: 53
Jokingly considered an apology to fans for the 'Lulu' album, which saw the band team up with Velvet Underground front man Lou Reed (to absolutely dismal reviews), 'Beyond Magnetic' is an EP consisting of leftovers from the 'Death Magnetic' recording sessions. Somewhat viewed by fans as the band trying to compensate for what was such a poorly-received release, sadly, 'Beyond Magnetic' isn't much better.
Everything about the four tracks featured seems so lifeless and "just there". It feels like the band are trying to be progressive, but the long, drawn out songs just don't favour them like they did in the 80's, and does more to emphasize their weaknesses as musicians than their strengths as songwriters. None of the riffs fit together and they all seem so disjointed, none of them flowing organically.
Three of the songs hit the seven-minute mark, while one of them staggers on to eight minutes, and it's just too much. They all drag with not enough interesting ideas to justify such long durations.
While 'Death Magnetic' is a great album, one of my major criticisms is the length, with each song in need of some serious cropping. However, it's all a moot point here, as no amount of cutting and editing could make these decent songs, and it's no surprise they weren't included on the record. If I had to be generous and find something positive to say, 'Just a Bullet Away' is a catchy track, though also suffers from jarring riff-changes and a tiresome duration.
Overall, this release is dirt cheap and easy to get hold of, but is only really worth the effort if you're a fan who needs to own everything.