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Metallica’s James Hetfield Names His Favorite Thrash Bands Outside the Big Four, Sends Loving Message to Cliff Burton

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Metallica frontman James Hetfield recently sat down with Little Punk People for an interview right before taking the stage May 14 at New Jersey’s MetLife Stadium. Along with a bunch of other topics, Hetfield spoke with Elliot Fullam about his favorite non-Big Four thrash bands and what he’d say to Cliff Burton if possible.

Metallica’s stadium show in New Jersey went off over the weekend and we were there to grab come close-up photos of the giant metal celebration. Before the show, Hetfield was asked what’s one thing he could change in the world if he could. Of course, Metallica’s frontman would bring late bassist Cliff Burton back. “Maybe I could fix Cliff Burton and have him come back,” Hetfield said.

As for what he’d say to Cliff if he knew the bassist was listening, Hetfield responded, “He hears me, I know he does. What I’d say is, ‘I miss you, man. I miss you, brother.’ He’s dearly missed by a lot of people. He was an insane character.”

As for non-Big Four thrash bands, Hetfield picks Exodus and Testament as two of the essentials and even went further back to the punk-inspired age. “Punk rock was kind of the beginning of it for me. Motorhead — kind of thrashy but rock and roll. I loved G.B.H., or still do, and I love Discharge a lot. That’s kind of really cool thrash music to me.”

Metallica are trudging on touring North America with Avenged Sevenfold, Volbeat and Gojira opening up on different occasions. Click here to check out the full tour routing.

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