While Metallica Mondays are now a thing of the past, today, we got a delivery in the mail, and it is pretty epic. Last September, the boys, and the San Francisco Symphony combined forces for the second time for S&M 2, a sequel to the 1999 S&M collaboration that became one of the most legendary Metallica events in the history of the band. The concerts helped open the new Chase Center in San Francisco, and finally, almost a year later, the concerts are available to own. I preordered the deluxe vinyl set the second it was available, and after receiving the box today, I couldn't be happier with what the contents are.
Metallica Proves The Sequel Can Be Better
This set is already in the running for release of the year as far as I am concerned. Housed in a deluxe box, the Metallica S&M 2 set contains a Blu-ray copy of the show, the album on CD, and on four colored vinyl discs. So, any way you want to listen, they have you covered. Also included in this set are sheet music used by the symphony, guitar pics commemorating the night, a full size folded poster, and a photo book with into by Lars Ulrich. Super impressive on the quality of the items as well. None of it feels cheap, which is a trap a lot of bands fall into with these deluxe sets.
As for the music itself, this one surpasses the original in almost every way. Even repeated songs like "Master of Puppets," "No Leaf Clover" (which was a debut song on the original S&M), "The Memory Remains," and "Nothing Else Matters" benefit from what feels like a more collaborative process this time around. That the setlist is missing Metallica live staples live "Sad But True," "Battery," and "Seek and Destroy" tells you everything you needed to know about these shows. The band let the music come to them this time, and the symphony responds in kind, adding layer after layer to the original music so that they become something more. Nowhere is that more evident than the below performance of "All Within My Hands."
Quite simply, even if you cannot get your hands on this deluxe release, go out and snag this one, stream it on Spotify, whatever you prefer. Especially if you were a fan of that original show 20 years ago now, S&M 2 proves that Metallica's intensity and need to push things forward creatively make them a band that will stand the test of time.