The Many Faces Of Metallica : 1996 Kirk Hammet

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Metallica
Lollapalooza ’96
Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre
Laguna Hills, CA
August 4, 1996

To put things lightly – a lot had changed.  Metallica were now a corporate giant and were pulling in big enough numbers to headline the once-alternative Lollapalooza Tour. Load had just been released not too long before this gig and it was the first time they rolled through town in support of the new CD.  I had seen a handful of photos showcasing Metallica’s new image.  To be honest, I thought it was some sort of joke or publicity stunt, or at least something that wouldn’t last.

As Metallica took the stage that summer evening, I stood there – stunned.  I couldn’t believe what I was seeing through my lens.  Short hair, designer clothing, nicely trimmed facial hair, facial piercings and (it still keeps me up at night) eyeliner.  It was at this point that I realized that Metallica was no longer influencing bands…they were now being influenced.

One of my favorite moments in Metallica history was when Hettfield barked at the 1984 Donnington crowd, “If you came here to see spandex, eye makeup, and the words ‘Oh baby’ in every fuckin’ song, this ain’t the fuckin’ band.”  Now, it looked like I might be seeing that band.

Photographed with my Canon EOS-1 and a Canon f5.6 80-300mm lens.  Shot on Fujichrome film.
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One Response to “The Many Faces Of Metallica : 1996 Kirk Hammet”

  1. One of the many reasons I took an 11 year Live Metalli-Sabbatical. It was like a police officer telling my brain “move along, nothing to see here”. I’ve seen 5 shows of the current tour, really pleased at where they’re at.

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