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Review: Metallica "Beyond Magnetic" A Forgotten Mini Album by One of the Greatest Heavy Metal Bands

Ara is a journalism graduate from California State University, Northridge, who is always looking to explore his writing opportunities.

Beyond Magnetic Mini Album Cover


Track Listing for the mini album Beyond Magnetic

1. "Hate Train"

2. "Just a Bullet Away"

3. "Hell and Back"

4. "Rebel of Babylon"

Give the Very Good Extended Play Album "Beyond Magnetic" a Chance!

Beyond Magnetic is a four song mini album or EP that may be forgotten by some Metallica fans. Give this music a chance because it has creativity, improved vocals by James Hetfield, and the heaviness that you guys are looking for. I've reviewed pretty much every full length Metallica album even their album called Metallica "the black album." So enjoy these four songs and see why this band is the greatest American metal band!

How Did "Beyond Magnetic" Come to Fruition?

The creativity of American heavy metal band Metallica is present in their career. Their 2012 EP (extended play) called Beyond Magnetic is an example of this. There are four high quality songs for 30 minutes of enjoyable thrash metal. These songs were originally recorded for the band’s Death Magnetic sessions but they were never released. In 2011, the band celebrated their 30th anniversary and then these songs were released. Metallica had kept these songs and decided to release them as a present to their fans and members of their fan club. During the recording sessions for Death Magnetic, they had recorded 14 songs. But they decided to only include 10 in that album. So that’s why these four songs were left over. As of 2013, Beyond Magnetic has sold 162,000 copies in the United States.


About the song Hate Train

The first song called "Hate Train" sounds somewhat like one of the songs that Metallica covered on their 2 CD set Garage Inc. I also see a sort of resemblance to the song Fuel in some the guitar riffing but this song is better than that one. Be careful not to get into too much of a rage, for if you do, you will be very sorry later on. The band transitions into a short acoustic part and James’ voice shows not only power but it really fits well in this song.

"Hate Train"

Musical Style on "Beyond Magnetic"

What we see on Beyond Magnetic is an example of thrash metal with a modern twist. Those fans that were complaining about Metallica having sold out can now rest assured that Metallica went back to their roots especially with this release. The groovy song called "Just a Bullet Away" is probably my favorite song on this EP because it is heavy and has lots of hooks. I think Metallica should write and release more EP’s because they do a pretty good job of it. In the four minute mark of the second song, we hear a time change to a softer acoustic part that really fits in with the song beautifully! I really think that Metallica started to incorporate time changes in their songs in the era of Master of Puppets and we are hearing this again after all these years. I think the song "Just a Bullet Away" is a humorous attempt to show what can happen if you are not careful in knowing how to handle a weapon.

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Favorite song on Beyond Magnetic

"Just a Bullet Away"

Why is "Beyond Magnetic" so great?

Beyond Magnetic does not have the raw sound and aggression that we hear on St. Anger but it is groovy and well-written thrash metal and James Hetfield delivers a vocal performance to remember. At the time this mini album was released, the members of Metallica were in their late 40’s but that did not affect their ability to compose good songs. Once again, Metallica proves that they are the elite American heavy metal band. "Rebel of Babylon" starts out slowly but there is a lot of fast picking followed by a mid-tempo part. Beyond Magnetic gets a very solid 95 out of 100 points for its remarkable consistency in the songs, good guitar playing by Hetfield and lots of aggressive vocals. This one is worth it for Metallica fans and heavy metal fans in general. Whether it is 1980's style thrash metal, 1990's blues style rock or some heavy, raw album like St. Anger, Metallica does all of these very well and for that they get my vote as the greatest US heavy metal band ever!

"Hell and Back"

About the songs Hell and Back and Rebel of Babylon

"Hell and Back" is about someone who is in a relationship with someone who is a wretched person but he still somehow gets comfort from her. As the sun goes down and the moon comes up signaling nightfall, he feels that he is left on his own. It seems that he is cursed by some force, having to run to hell and back. "Rebel of Babylon" starts with some slow picking that is kind of like a country music influenced. But then it gets fast and heavy. The song is about the fact that if someone is suffering so much in his life, he might as well sign his life away as he floats in the ocean.

Bassist on the Mini Album Beyond Magnetic

For each question, choose the best answer. The answer key is below.

  1. What is the name of the bassist on the mini album Beyond Magnetic?
    • Robert Trujillo
    • Bob Rock
    • Jason Newsted

Answer Key

  1. Robert Trujillo

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2017 Ara Vahanian


Ara Vahanian (author) from LOS ANGELES on June 25, 2017:

Fullerman5000: thank you for contributing your thoughts about Metallica. I also agree with you that there isn't an album that these guys have created that I did not like. Their music has also served as kind of a coping mechanism for me because there's so much going on in the world that is sometimes hard to deal with. Death Magnetic is really good!

Ryan from Louisiana, USA on June 25, 2017:

Metallica has always been one of my favorite bands. Death Magnetic was an awesome album. Beyond Magnetic was a good addition. I wish they would have just combined them. Hardwired to Self Destruct is a great one. I'm glad they have gone a different direction from St. Anger. Never thought there would be a Metallica Album I didn't like.

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