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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

14 Days of Metallica: Day 4

An amazing metal trilogy spanning almost 20 years, all three Unforgiven make it to the list.

The first reversed the usual style of prior ballads the band had released.  Instead of a soft, melodic verse and heavy chorus, it had the opposite.  Although slower, it definitely had one of the heaviest chord progressions on the Black Album.  It's a story about a child being punished, locked in a windowless room, carving one into the stone wall until he is an old man, once he finally succeeds, he dies.  Favorite lyrics have to be "The old man then prepares, to die regretfully, that old man here is me".

Hit the jump for UN2 and UN3.

The second version switches the structure, going back to the soft verse and heavy chorus.  It features the same boy/man, tearing down a wall.  This one is more retrospective, we learn that the boy/man was trying to get to a woman, but he doubts her, asking if she's "Unforgiven too", a clever play on the title, being the second song in the trilogy. This time, the boy/man has some success, as the lyrics change from the beginning "No sun shining through", to "Now I see the sun" at the end.  I love that you can hear the main lick from the first song towards the end for further continuity.

The third... oh boy.  Long awaited and man does it kick ass.  Back to the original structure of heavy verse and soft chorus it has a piano intro as well as a moving guitar line for the verses.  The lyrics are more metaphorical and general than the last, and I can't find an official explanation anywhere from the band.  I feel like this one is about "me", whereas the first was about "him" and the second was about "you".  All 3 solos are some of the rawest and emotional solos I've heard from the band, although the one from the third is absolutely facemelting with the quick progression and Kirk's lightning fast tapping mixed with a (beautifully) overused wah pedal.  Favorite parts include the (what seems like) closing chapter themed lyrics, where Hetfield repeats "Forgive me, forgive me not, forgive me, forgive me, why can't I forgive me?!", after the line "And how can I blame you, when it's me I can't forgive?".

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