Saturday, March 14, 1992

Metallica “Nothing Else Matters” charted

Nothing Else Matters


Writer(s): James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich (see lyrics here)

Released: April 20, 1992

First Charted: March 14, 1992

Peak: 34 US, 31 CB, 27 GR, 35 RR, 11 AR, 6 UK, 41 CN, 6 AU, 1 DF (Click for codes to charts.)

Sales (in millions): 0.5 US, 0.6 UK, 2.16 world (includes US + UK)

Airplay/Streaming (in millions): -- radio, 1100.0 video, 870.1 streaming


Click on award for more details.

About the Song:

Metallica was formed in 1981 in Los Angeles. They built a loyal following with their brand of thrash metal throughout the 1980s. Each album charted higher and sold more than its predecessor. With their 1988 album And Justice for All, the band even managed a top-ten album which sold eight million copies and even landed a song (“One”) in the Billboard top 40!

It wasn’t their commercial peak, though. With their 1991 self-titled album, they rose to unimaginable heights. The album reached #1 and has sold more than 16 million copies in the U.S. The first single, “Enter Sandman,” reached the top 20 and two more singles made it to the top 40. This was no longer a band just for the metal heads.

Lead singer and rhythm guitarist James Hetfield said that Metallica songs were supposed to be “about destroying things, head banging, bleeding for the crowd, whatever it is, as long as it wasn’t about chicks and fast cars.” WK However, “Nothing Else Matters” is about missing his girlfriend and being depressed about being on the road away from home. WK He explained that it was written in such a way, though, that “it connected with so many people…it was about a connection with your higher power, lots of different things.” SF

Hetfield was reluctant to share the song with the band, but once drummer Lars Ulrich heard it, he pushed for it to be considered for the album. The song is one of the few in Metallica’s repertoire that doesn’t feature guitarist Kirk Hammett. Instead, it is Hetfield who plays the guitar solo. WK The song also features orchestration by Michael Kamen.

The song’s “relative softness was more accessible…and it opened new doors for the band.” SF This was no longer a band just intent on showing off how fast they could play. This was a band intent on showing how powerful they could be even when they slowed things down.


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First posted 12/27/2022.

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