Metallica will put out their S&M2 concerts — where they performed alongside the San Francisco Symphony last year — as a box set this summer.
Lars Ulrich announced the release Wednesday night on Jimmy Kimmel Live! when he surprised Long Island nurse Tracy Bednar during the host’s #HealthcareHero segment. She told Kimmel that to deal with the anxieties of her job, treating children with COVID-19, she likes to blare Metallica’s “Enter Sandman” when it comes on the radio. She was visibly shocked and delighted to see Ulrich when he popped on her screen and thanked her for taking care of kids during the pandemic.
Ulrich further surprised her by holding up a copy of the S&M2 box set, due in August, and telling her that Metallica would be giving her a copy of it. “You’ll have the first signed copy of this special box set from me and the fellas coming your way shortly,” he told her. He also invited her out to the next Metallica concert in her area, whenever that is, and said, “I look forward to meeting you and thanking you in person for everything that you do.” She held her hands to her mouth in astonishment.
Last September, Metallica performed two nights with the San Francisco Symphony, revisiting songs they’d recorded with that ensemble 20 years earlier for their original S&M release and working up new arrangements for a variety of other songs. The setlist included a mix of hits (“Enter Sandman,” “Master of Puppets”), deep cuts (“The Call of Ktulu,” “The Unforgiven III”) and unique rarities (a rendition of Cliff Burton’s iconic “Anesthesia” solo performed by the Symphony’s principle bassist and several classical performances).
“Where the original was an intimate affair for less than 3,500 concertgoers, this concert was supersized,” Rolling Stone wrote in a review. “The idea behind the concert was risky — what if the orchestra ruined the band’s songs? — but the group picked songs that worked well with weepy strings and puffed-chest horns … making each song its own mini symphony.”