Listen to Chris Stapleton’s Eight-Minute Country/Blues Transformation of Metallica’s “Nothing Else Matters”


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Rock Cellar Magazine
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The best cover songs are the ones that take the source material to the next level, the artist doing the tribute finding the balance between injecting personality and personal style while honoring the original track as it deserves. Country/rock superstar Chris Stapleton definitely achieved this with his contribution to The Metallica Blacklist, the huge new compilation honoring the thrash titans from a wide array of artists all over the musical spectrum.

Stapleton took “Nothing Else Matters,” the soaring power ballad from Metallica’s self-titled 1991 Black Album, and made it entirely his own. For eight minutes (!), Stapleton’s bluesy vocals and a deliberate, wailing guitar sound take the song a direction it’s likely never been:

His is the second brand new cover of the same song, as acclaimed indie/rock singer/songwriter Phoebe Bridgers gave the track her own stylistic makeover with a haunting piano-led take, as premiered on Wednesday:

The Metallica Blacklist features an eye-popping collection of talent, and promises to be quite a special way to commemorate the lasting legacy of the Black Album. Recently shared covers from the project include Weezer tackling “Enter Sandman”:

Click here to pre-order The Metallica Blacklist on 4-CD Box Set
Click here to pre-order The Metallica Blacklist on 7-LP Box Set

Also shared recently from the Blacklist album were “Don’t Tread On Me” from Volbeat and SebastiAn,  “The Unforgiven” by a trio of eclectic acts, “Holier Than Thou” covered by Biffy Clyro and OFF! and  covers of “Sad but True” from Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit, St. Vincent and Sam Fender, which followed “Nothing Else Matters” from Miley Cyrus/Elton John/Yo-Yo Ma and Juanes’ “Enter Sandman.”

2021 marks the 30th anniversary of the now-timeless record that defines both the band and an entire era of music (even if its smooth production and more pop-oriented compositions ruffled the feathers of old-school Metallica heads more interested in thrash metal), and to mark the occasion the band has put together both an elaborate reissue package and the Blacklist covers compilation.

There will be a standard remastered edition of The Black Album made available in a variety of formats including 3-CD, 2-LP, and box set formats accompanying the Blacklist compilation, and both are due on Sept. 10.

Click here to pre-order Metallica: Remastered on CD
Click here to pre-order Metallica: Remastered on 3-CD
Click here to pre-order Metallica: Remastered on 2-LP
Click here to pre-order Metallica: Remastered on Deluxe Box Set

As part of the regular Black Album reissue, Metallica also debuted “Nothing Else Matters (Orchestra/Clean Guitar/Vocal Mix),” an alternate recording of the track from July 1991:

Here’s the track listing, which features quite a few different takes on the album’s hits, “Enter Sandman,” “Sad but True” and, most abundantly, “Nothing Else Matters”:

“Enter Sandman” — Alessia Cara & The Warning
“Enter Sandman” — Mac DeMarco
“Enter Sandman” — Ghost
“Enter Sandman” — Juanes
“Enter Sandman” — Rina Sawayama
“Enter Sandman” — Weezer
“Sad but True (Live)” — Sam Fender
“Sad but True” — Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit
“Sad but True” — Mexican Institute of Sound
“Sad but True” — Royal Blood
“Sad but True” — St. Vincent
“Sad but True” — White Reaper
“Sad but True” — YB
“Holier Than Thou” — Biffy Clyro
“Holier Than Thou” — The Chats
“Holier Than Thou” — OFF!
“Holier Than Thou” — PUP
“Holier Than Thou” — Corey Taylor
“The Unforgiven” — Cage the Elephant
“The Unforgiven” — Vishal Dadlani, DIVINE & Shor Police (ft. Metallica)
“The Unforgiven” — Diet Cig
“The Unforgiven” — Flatbush Zombies (ft. DJ Scratch)
“The Unforgiven” — Ha-Ash
“The Unforgiven” — Jose Madero
“The Unforgiven” — Moses Sumney
“Wherever I May Roam” — J Balvin (ft. Metallica)
“Wherever I May Roam” — Chase & Status
“Wherever I May Roam” — The Neptunes (ft. Metallica)
“Wherever I May Roam” — Jon Pardi
“Don’t Tread On Me” — SebastiAn
“Don’t Tread On Me” — Portugal. the Man
“Don’t Tread On Me — Volbeat
“Through The Never” — The Hu
“Through The Never” — Tomi Owo
“Nothing Else Matters” — Phoebe Bridgers
“Nothing Else Matters” — Miley Cyrus (ft. WATT, Elton John, Yo-Yo Ma, Robert Trujillo and Chad Smith)
“Nothing Else Matters” — Dave Gahan
“Nothing Else Matters” — Mickey Guyton
“Nothing Else Matters” — Dermot Kennedy
“Nothing Else Matters” — Mon LaFerte
“Nothing Else Matters” — Igor Levit
“Nothing Else Matters” — My Morning Jacket
“Nothing Else Matters” — PG Roxette
“Nothing Else Matters” — Darius Rucker
“Nothing Else Matters” — Chris Stapleton
“Nothing Else Matters” — TRESOR
“Of Wolf and Man” — Goodnight, Texas
“The God That Failed” — IDLES
“The God That Failed” — Imelda May
“My Friend of Misery” — Cherry Glazerr
“My Friend of Misery” — Izia
“My Friend of Misery” — Kamasi Washington
“The Struggle Within” — Rodrigo y Gabriela


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