In Your Head

People are scared by any number of things. Some people are scared to fly on an airplane for fear of crashing, some folks wouldn’t think of seeing a horror movie or reading a scary book. Other people are afraid of going to certain parts of a city for fear of being robbed or worse. All these fears can be rational or irrational, depending on the situation. What could be even more frightening than things that are right in front of you and quite possibly real?

Things in your head…

“Enter Sandman” was the first single from Metallica’s 1991 self-titled, or “Black Album,” and contained the recordings that brought Metallica to the mainstream of rock music. They had already been very successful and wildly influential in their own “thrash metal” sub-genre of heavy metal, but most listeners, myself included, knew all about them but had never been interested in hearing them largely because of their reputation as the hardest of the hardest. Then came “Enter Sandman.”

“Exit light
Enter night
Take my hand
We’re off to never-never land.”

Opening with a bit of picked guitar, “Sandman” builds quickly. Lars Ulrich comes in with tom-toms and then the increasingly larger and larger guitars join the show. Lead singer James Hetfield’s vocals are suitably malevolent, matching the really disturbing vibe of the song, which is quite unmistakably Metallica, but also more mature and refined than their earlier work.

It certainly got my attention when it first hit the radio and MTV and it made me revisit their earlier material, which I soon came to really admire and enjoy. They changed my opinion, completely.

There is a very good overview of “Enter Sandman” here for those interested. Whoever wrote it did a terrific job, so I’ll let that be the more in-depth information for the hardcore folks.

“Enter Sandman” is one of those great songs that does everything it was meant to do, making the listener slightly uncomfortable while they love every second of it.

About Pete

Pete is a professional-musician-with-a-day-job based in California's Inland Empire, as well as a veteran sound engineer in the studio and for live shows. He's been a lover of classic rock since back when it was known as "rock" and has in more recent years developed a country habit as well.
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One Response to In Your Head

  1. Michele says:

    I love the video that accompanies this song,
    and the song itself is one of the better ones I think.
    Don’t get me wrong,
    I listened to Metallica from the time they appeared on the scene,
    they just were not one of my favorites.
    Couldn’t escape it at my place though as they were one of my brothers favorites.
    Thanks for the link to the song itself,
    the history of the making of it is pretty awesome in and of itself.

    Thanks for this one Pete,
    it truly has a place for this Halloween experience you two have created