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James Hetfield: Metallica Don’t Pick Supporting Acts Based on Who Is ‘Hot Right Now’

Johnny Perilla, Loudwire
Johnny Perilla, Loudwire

Metallica are in the midst of a massive North American stadium tour as they continue their ‘WorldWired’ trek in support of 2016’s long-awaited Hardwired… To Self-Destruct album. As if the stadium run wasn’t big enough, the band tapped Avenged Sevenfold, Volbeat and Gojira as the openers on select dates and in a new interview, frontman James Hetfield offered some insight as to how the band goes about choosing their supporting acts.

Talking with ABC 7 prior to Metallica’s Chicago concert at Soldier Field, James Hetfield shared some of his favorite memories from the Windy City, also revealing his first leather jacket was stolen in the city. Moving forward, he later commented on the bill for the North American trek, stating, “When we go out and tour, we try and bring bands out that have either done well on their own or we get along with or we just like their music. There’s got to be some connection.”

Continuing, Papa Het explained, “It’s not, ‘Oh, they’re hot right now, bring them out.’ But you have a history with them, you get along really well. That’s one of the main things about touring — just getting along with people. Maybe it happened in the old days, where there’s fighting between bands and all this crap. But that’s kind of… It’s old hat. But as far as bands going out with us now, we’ve got Volbeat, who I think is really great, on some of the legs. Avenged is out. There’s a band called Gojira, who we’ve had out quite a few times. And, yeah, they’re good and they’re heavy.”

When Loudwire Nights host Toni Gonzalez spoke with Metallica’s Robert Trujillo prior to the North American tour announcement, she asked the bassist what bands were in line for the heavy metal crown. He responded, “I love Gojira because they’re a great band and I love their new album. Avenged Sevenfold has some nice stuff coming out. I am not going to pick one band, but I think that it would be great for young bands all across the planet to embrace hard rock and heavy metal and start making great music and really take it to another level.”

For a list of remaining stops on Metallica’s North American leg, click here.

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