Metallica brought their Hardwired tour to the newly renovated Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota on September 4, 2019. It was an excellent way for many in the city to extend their long holiday weekend. The day was rainy as all get out, but it didn’t stop fans from hanging out at the block party in droves all day.
Aside from him being friends of Metallica, I’m not sure why they thought having Jim Breuer as the opener. It’s not that great of an idea to have stand up comedy as your opener for a heavy metal show. It’s certainly not a good idea to have a stand up comedian that the audience doesn’t find funny open a Metallica show. It just didn’t seem to work. His intro to the show, having different sections of the arena shout different syllables of Metallica to make a whole came as corny and too long as well.
I’ve seen Metallica a few times and this is perhaps the lowest energy one I have ever seen. Not on the part of the band, but rather the audience. No one was really moving around. This could be for a number of reasons – song choices, age of the audience, or people just be tired or hungover from the long weekend. Whatever reason it was, it brought down the mood of the show. Audience participation always makes a show.
Metallica did a fantastic job. Their stage show was amazing. It was in the round, which always creates such an inclusive feel for the audience in general. Lars’ drum kit rotated and everything else ran to different spots of the stage throughout the night. They had these cubes above the stage that showed a variety of digital imagery from First Avenue ticket stubs to images of the band to skulls and a melange of different artwork. I’ve never seen anything like that before and it added tremendously to the stage show.
I would have liked to have heard more old Metallica (prior to The Black Album). Honestly, if they only played ‘80’s Metallica, that would be one hundred percent fine with me.  Metallica was so hardcore back then and their music seemed to soften after that. In honor of Minneapolis, they did a cover of “When Doves Cry”. That was certainly the heaviest version of that song I have heard. Did I forget to mention that they all had purple instruments?  They did.  Directly after was a brief tribute to Cliff Burton before they rolled into “Breadfan”.
Overall, the show was pretty solid but not as fun as those in the past. Metallica still has it, but they need to fine tune the set lists a bit. Stage show, again, amazing, so I would always go see that.  The stage show during “Moth to Flame” was incredible as the lights made it look like little fairies were flying all around them. If they mix it up with some older tunes, (or perhaps just cut out so many new songs that cause people to leave) the whole thing would be something I would be sad to leave at the end of the night.
Review Tracy Hansen photo Kyle Hansen RKH Images