Metallica Bringing the Noise

"Heaviest" album yet due in June, tour to follow

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Metallica have set a tentative June release date for their as-yet-untitled upcoming album. According to a source close to the group, the material is "the heaviest, hardest music they've ever made," and the album is close to completion.

Although Metallica have yet to nail down a bass player to replace departed member Jason Newsted, the band plan to hit nine European festivals and tour the U.S. this summer. Among the bassists who have recently auditioned is former Kyuss member Scott Reeder, but there is no word yet as to how his tryout went.

"I'm starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel on the record, in between what seems like endless meetings about tours, production, art work, bass dudes," posts drummer Lars Ulrich on the band's Web site. "It's all a bit overwhelming, but challenging and, in rare moments of not pulling out what little hair I have left, pretty fucking exciting to be doing this all over again . . . There will be a tidal wave coming your way soon. It's called Metallica, motherfucker. Jump in, strap yourselves down and come along for the ride if you can handle it."

Metallica's European festival dates:

6/6: Nurnberg, Germany, Rock Im Park
6/7: Berlin, Germany, Wuhlheide
6/8: Nurburgring, Germany, Rock Am Ring
6/13: Imola, Italy, Heineken Jammin' Festival
6/26: Roskilde, Denmark, Roskilde Festival
6/28: Werchter, Belgium, Werchter Rock Festival
8/21: Dublin, Ireland, TBA
8/22: Leeds, UK, Leeds Festival
8/24: Reading, UK, Reading Festival