Metallica, San Francisco Bay Area's hometown heroes of thrash metal, learned Wednesday that their landmark 1986 LP, Master Of Puppets will be the first metal album entered into the Library of Congress's National Recording Registry.
The Library of Congress included the album in the 2015 registry, which means it was determined by the federal government to be preserved for all time because of its historical significance. It joins 24 other seminal recordings, including John Coltrane's A Love Supreme, Gloria Gaynor's "I Will Survive" and George Carlin's Class Clown.
Master of Puppets, the band's third album and last with influential bassist Cliff Burton (he would later die in a bus crash while touring for the album 30 years ago), was not only the band's first release on major label Elektra, but it saw the band move away from the "Thrash Metal" sound it helped develop in the Bay Area in the '80s. Songs like "The Thing That Should Not Be" (posted below) saw the group move away from the breakneck speed and bludgeoning riffs of their first two records, and concentrate on the more subtle aspects of songwriting, such as dynamics.
"Thrash, a reaction against the pop metal of the early 1980s, aimed to renew metal by emphasizing speed and aggression. For example, the song 'Battery' on this album — with rhythm guitarist James Hetfield's galloping power chords, Lars Ulrich's machine-gun drumming, and lead guitarist Kirk Hammet's blinding tapped leads — is as rousing an example of the sub-genre as one could find and the technical proficiency is astonishing," the Library of Congress wrote in an announcement about the 2015 registry.