In conclusion: you want this. You want Mick Wall's Enter Night. The Metallisaga is fascinating, almost an epic, and Wall is well up to the task of telling it. Its core, quite properly, will remain mysterious and unphraseable. How did Hetfield, aged 21, with nothing on his mind except beer and Judas Priest, manage to write the lines "Emptiness is filling me/To the point of agony"? And is Lars Ulrich, whose metrical waywardness early in the band's career would often cause Hetfield to spit on him (Mustaine, in his book, primly recalls being "shocked at [Lars's] mediocrity") actually sort of a great drummer? These and other questions will be answered not by me, nor any book or bio, but only in the great metal hereafter.

METALLICA: ENTER NIGHT | BY MICK WALL | ORION | 520 PAGES | $27.99

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