Rating:
8.0
Metallica - ...And Justice For All
25 August 1988


01. Blackened
02. ...And Justice For All
03. Eye Of The Beholder
04. One
05. The Shortest Straw
06. Harvester Of Sorrow
07. The Frayed Ends Of Sanity
08. To Live Is To Die
09. Dyers Eve
10. The Prince [Japanese bonus]
11. One [live] [digital reissue bonus]
12. ...And Justice For All [live] [digital reissue bonus]


It can easily be said that music is a photo in time. A fragment in where society is once shot, forever leaving the remembrance of where and who we were. This translates directly and more so intently to an artist or band, and where they were in their lives and careers when a piece of work was released. For Metallica in 1988, two-years removed from a loss of a brother, a friend and a band mate, bassist Cliff Burton, they showed their scars in an album that I can only help but adore. "…And Justice For All" is a long, (65-minutes long, 10 less than the maximum) drawn out, epic, loud, angry, and emotionally charged record that sweeps its listeners up into its messages and endless musicianship.

After possibly some of the best albums in recent metal history, Metallica ripped open their scabs and poured themselves into an album, stretching the limits set in music and their own as four members of a band, with what I interpret as with the intent to use it as a passage into which to pound out and relieve all stresses and painful memories. After a "Fight Fire With Fire"-esque opener in "Blackened" and back-to-back politically laced epics following, "One" captivates the audience with its melodies and heart-wrenching lyrics, before charging hard into what can be described as one of the more orgasmic climaxes and outro's I've heard . The album doesn't really hit home until after hidden gems in "Harvester of Sorrow" and "The Frayed Ends of Sanity" are in the books, and the opening acoustic strums that make up the beginning of "To Live is to Die" begin.

For Metallica, track-nine was time for reflection, remembrance, and the vow to carry on. The near ten-minute instrumental rips and tears at the emotional sheath that outline every man and woman, breaking will, shedding pride, leaving only tears and permanently dedicated fan hood.

And knowing what was best for the moment, the Justice album closes with a track that's only purpose is to jump on the reigns and gallop for aggression, for life, for Metallica.

Call it progressive. Call it the last great thrash metal album by a short-lived King of Metal; I'll call it a true classic that bears the colors and scars of a band that needed to release such an album. It wasn't just an album to follow Master, or an album for finding one's boundaries, it was those things and mainly the next step in not forgetting, but dedicating and recommitting; recommitting to what Metallica was and will forever be, no matter who makes up its members list; that the past stays with you but does not hinder you; that what don't kill you make you more strong.

Aside from any musical shortcomings in production, most notably the lack of bass - which I find no issue with - the Justice album, is consistent in its mission, pressing at the seams as to what's acceptable in metal and keeping with the themes and the messages that are their result. Its unwavering strength, both its content and the men that made it is what should be its legacy.

Performance: 10
Songwriting: 10
Originality: 10
Production: 7


Band profile: Metallica
Album: ...And Justice For All


 


written by !Mac! | 03.12.2008


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.

Guest review by
Joey Jo Jo

Rating:
5.0
Hmmm, so this is the last "true" Metallica classic? Let me start off by saying a lot of fans consider this to be their "progressive" album, while after hearing it through, the only thing I can point out that has "progressed" is the band's ability to bore the listener into a deep coma after a couple tracks.

Read more ››
published 05.08.2005 | Comments (88)

Guest review by
Powerslave16

Rating:
9.0
When I came across Aguirre's review of Metallica's '...And Justice For All', I immediately spewed Coca-Cola everywhere and threatened the non-stickiness of my keyboard. I didn't see it coming, I guess. Aguirre is entitled to his opinion, but what follows is my review of Metallica's 'last great' and 'progressive' album.

Read more ››
published 29.09.2007 | Comments (39)

Guest review by
Hermann Langke

Rating:
8.9
Metallica! Need we say anything more about this band? They are the biggest Heavy Metal band ever to have existed, sold more records than any other Metal band and have performed in almost all the countries on the planet. They are the fathers of Thrash Metal and are one of the most influential bands of all time. Most of you know a great deal about them so I won't be elaborating anymore.

Read more ››
published 04.07.2010 | Comments (24)



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Mindheist - 15.12.2008 at 11:32  
Brilliant! One of the best well-written reviews I've read during the current month, I especially like the intro...Justice has been done.
K†ulu - 15.12.2008 at 13:09  
I agree with the previous comment and I agree with the ratings in the four categories, but why an 8 if you call it a classic. And plus, you called "To Live is to Die" track nine, which is a mistake, and consequently a pain in the neck to correct it.

A few weeks ago I listened to Justice after having not listened to it for quite a while and I realized that at that moment it was my favorite album. It's indeed just a really great album.
Luciferion - 21.01.2009 at 20:55  
Well done review but i agree that the rating seems a little off, considering the way you portrayed the album as well as how you scored it based on performance/songwriting/etc. (considering 3/4 you gave 10's).

Personally this is top 2 if not their best album for me (tight competition with Master of Puppets). Too bad it was their last good album :[
Valentin B - 22.01.2009 at 00:02  
Hmmmm... 10 for everything except production? while i agree it's a pretty damn solid album, with some really awesome riffs(title track, Dyers Eve, One)

also i've said this in another review thread, but i like the song "Dyers Eve" mainly because it's easily Hetfield's most emotional performance in any song in Metallica. i mean, you can almost touch the anger he's expressing.

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