30 years ago Metallica transformed the landscape of heavy music forever with the release of their seminal Black Album. The self-titled release from the band was fifth and proved to be one of the biggest commercially-successful records of any genre, going on to tally more than 35 million copies worldwide, 17 million in the U.S. alone.
The album fruited timeless heavy music staples in singles like "Nothing Else Matters," "The Unforgiven," "Wherever I May Roam," "Sad But True," and the undeniable opener in "Enter Sandman". While there has been no formal announcement thus far about any kind of anniversary celebration, (though the rumors are making their rounds online), the first of the anniversary celebrations have begun with their Blackened American Whiskey.
Launching back in 2018, Metallica teamed with distiller Dave Pickerell of Sweet Amber Distilling to launch Blackened. Tragically, Pickerell would pass away later the same year, though the spirit of the partnership carried on with Blackened Master Distiller Rob Dietrich. For their latest showing of American Whiskey craftsmanship, the tandem have released Batch 114 - which utilizes Pickerell's transformative BLACK NOISE™ process that uses low-frequency sound to change the whiskey at a molecular level.
Batch 114 of Blackened American Whiskey is aged for an average of 8 years and is then finished in black brandy casks hit with that low-frequency music - in this case, the whiskey was serenaded with Metallica's Black Album in its entirety, to enhance the flavor notes by ultimately changing how the whiskey and the wood interact.
The latest batch of 114 comes with a 750ml bottle of Blackened along with a collectible whiskey coin, a Snakebyte Cocktail Booklet, a finishing playlist and packaging all inspired by the iconic album art of the Metallica masterpiece.
“So many things changed for us externally after The Black Album release,” said Metallica co-founder, vocalist, and guitarist, James Hetfield. “The perception of the importance of Metallica changed greatly. Obviously with songs like ‘Sandman,’ ‘Unforgiven,’ ‘Nothing Else Matters’ becoming embraced by a lot of the world, we became a household name. It changed our lives and hopefully helped the world connect.”
“The Black Album was one of the first albums that I truly took up as a personal anthem. It is such a bad*ss record and it carried me and my buddies through some intense times during our military deployments in the early ’90s and beyond,” added Blackened Master Distiller Rob Dietrich. “Just like the record, The Black Album Whiskey Pack’s Batch 114 has been masterfully crafted and is heavy-hitting and well-balanced, with buttery caramel and oak on first sip, rolling through notes of apricot and almond, followed by an earthy chipotle, walnut, and maple finish. So good! Now it’s time to sip a little whiskey, throw this record on the turntable, and crank it until the windows blow out!”
Metallica’s BLACKENED The Black Album Whiskey Pack is available - HERE