‘Murder in the Front Row’: An interview with director Adam Dubin

When Adam Dubin set out to film Murder in the Front Row, a documentary about the beginnings of the Bay Area thrash metal scene, it wasn’t supposed to be through the eyes of a musicologist &mdsah; which he admits he is not. “I’m interested in how people felt,” Dubin says. “What was going on at the time and what people were responding to — the musicians themselves and their fans.” Dubin — well-known director of many Beastie Boys music videos, including the hilarious “Fight for your Right” — had worked with Metallica for over 25 years before he approached them [...]

Best Of 2019: Ian Young’s favorite show photos from 2019

Princess Nokia (photo: Ian Young) It was another year of incredible live music, from catching my favorite artists playing at my favorite festivals to discovering new acts playing in new cities and new venues. In total, I photographed 104 shows and 9 festivals, seeing a total of 394 performances. (Thank goodness for earplugs and insoles.) It was also a year where I explored new ways to express myself artistically, expanded my photography comfort zone, met some amazing new photographers, and of course had a helluva time in the pit. It may only last for three songs, but the photo pit [...]

Review + Photos: Metallica and the San Francisco Symphony bring ‘S&M2’ to Chase Center

Metallica and the San Francisco Symphony (photo: Ian Young) There's a new stadium in town, and it was christened in style on Friday night when Metallica took the stage with the San Francisco Symphony to reprise the unexpected mashup that took place 20 years ago. In 1999, the SF Symphony, helmed by the late Michael Kamen, joined Metallica at the Berkeley Community Theatre to perform all-new interpretations of the band's songs. Singer James Hetfield credits the collaboration to Cliff Burton, Metallica's bassist from 1982 until 1986. Burton tragically passed away in a bus accident. At Chase Center, the band paid [...]

Photos: Metallica: Helping Hands Benefit Concert + Auction at the Masonic

Metallica (photo: Jon Bauer) Over the weekend, the Masonic hosted a benefit for All Within My Hands (AWMH), a nonprofit foundation focused on creating sustainable communities by tackling the issues of hunger and workforce education and encouraging volunteerism. The organization was formed by none other than classic metal band Metallica, where they performed a rare acoustic set for their beloved Bay Area with the help of fresh local faces like Cody Rhodes and Avi Vinocur. The evening’s auction featured autographed music memorabilia, collectibles, and more, helped raise more money for their foundation. Bidding on items continues to November 9 and can [...]

By |November 8, 2018|Tags: |

Review: Metallica at The Fox

As far as legendary musical acts go, it's undeniable that the Bay Area has been home to some of the greatest in the world, and if the sold-out Fox Theater on Saturday, December 2016 is any indication, one of those bands will be coming back in a big way. Metallica has been a top contender in heavy metal since their 1981 inception, coming up with Slayer, Megadeth, and Anthrax as the "big four." They seemed unstoppable and nearly inimitable (despite several cover bands' best attempts). But they proved that they were not inalienable, as legions of die-hard fans felt sold [...]

By |December 21, 2016|Tags: |

Review: Metallica delivers message at pre-Super Bowl show

Sunday’s Super Bowl 50 had all the glitz and glam, the biggest celebrities in the world, and a halftime show that pandered heavily to Top 40 music lovers with Coldplay, Beyonce, Bruno Mars, and Mark Ronson. The night before, Metallica headlined a show of their own at AT&T Park, and judging by the words of frontman James Hetfield, getting the coveted halftime show on their home turf would have mattered to his band. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XbsRdDVNpZ8 “I knew there was a petition going around; everything happens for a reason,” he said, a couple songs into Metallica’s two-hour, 18-song set at the show [...]

Shredification: Thrash Attack

The last column took on a bifurcated Death Metal/Stoner Metal focus, so I'm happy to return today with an update that concerns the Bay Area's favorite kind of metal: Thrash! To bring the uninitiated up to speed, let us note the fact that these Nor-Cal shores were at the epicenter of a musical movement, at a time when bands like Exodus, Testament, Death Angel, and everyone's favorite Napster-enemies were beginning still-extant careers amid an orgy of polka-beating violence. In recent years, heavy music has witnessed an explosion of so-called "retro-thrashers," all attempting to capture the glory and furious fecundity that [...]

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