It’s not uncommon nowadays for bands to consider other distribution options outside of record labels. However, it’s slightly a bigger deal when the band in question is Metallica. Ever since they completed their recording contract with Warner Music Group with the release of 2008’s Death Magnetic, Metallica have been contemplating going the DIY route with their next album. And now that the band has started writing music for a new album, the question pops up again: will Metallica resign with WMG, their label home since 1984?
Well, according to Lars Ulrich, the band is still in the middle of figuring that out. In an interview with Spin, Ulrich revealed the following:
“This whole thing about who can come up with the coolest [release strategy] so it can be written about on 12 different blogs for six hours — I mean sure, that’s all pretty cool and hip, but at the same time you have to remember we have a very global audience. We have fans in India and the U.A.E. and Russia. In a lot of these places there are still more conventional ways of getting music to people. We’re not just selling Metallica music to people in Los Angeles, New York, and London. We have to think of the whole globe to try to find the right balance.”
It should be noted, though, that both Lulu and the physical version of Beyond Magnetic were released via Warner Bros. last year. If any band could continue to do well without label support, it’s definitely Metallica. However, Lars makes the good point that labels still are of some use when it comes to making your music available in harder to reach markets. Metallica still have time to decide how they’ll release their next, since according to Lars they’re still in writing mode.
In addition to talking about Metallica’s distribution options, Lars also gave Spin an interesting update regarding the Orion Music And More festival. Supposedly, the band is putting the “final touches on a stage that’s going to host mostly thrash and punk — kind of extreme stuff.” As to who will be on said “extreme” stage is currently unclear. However, we’ll likely know soon enough since another round of announcements will be made next week.