Image via Metallica

According to Metal Injection, Metallica’s Hardwired…to Self-Destruct tops the list of metal album sales so far this year. What is considered to be metal is debatable, but I’ll stick with this list for my opining purposes. Considering the 300,000+ sales gap between Hardwired and Linkin Park’s One More Light, I’d say Hardwired will earn top honors. That’s not surprising considering it’d been eight years since the band’s latest studio release of Death Magnetic in 2008, which has left their fans hungering for new material. No doubt the band’s fame and past commercial success have aided in the album sales, but crap won’t sell no matter who the band is.

Now, this isn’t a review of Hardwired…to Self-Destruct, but I will saw a few words on the album’s behalf. For starters, Metallica proves they have the chops to not only play with some speed and “umph”, but they still have plenty of the creative juices flowing. Hetfield reestablishes himself as perhaps the current guitar riff wizard in the metal scene. The album is certainly not Master of Puppets, but as they say in Highlander: “There can be only one.”

Here’s a copy of Metal Injection’s list:

  1. Metallica – Hardwired…to Self-Destruct (487,000)
  2. Linkin Park – One More Light (130,000)
  3. Metallica – Metallica (117,000)
  4. Incubus – 8 (75,500)
  5. Metallica – …And Justice For All (71,500)
  6. Metallica – Master of Puppets (71,000)
  7. Mastodon – Emperor of Sand (71,000)
  8. Metallica – Ride the Lightning (63,000)
  9. Guns N’ Roses – Greatest Hits (58,000)
  10. Nickelback – Feed the Machine (54,000)

Seeing Hardwired at the top of the list didn’t come as a shock to me, but seeing Metallica on the list a total of five times did. Do their albums deserve the number of sales that they receive? Absolutely. There aren’t many bands that have put out a string of groundbreaking, technical masterpieces like Metallica in the 80’s and early 90’s, but there are many outstanding, more current albums that I thought would be on this list. Take for instance, Anthrax’s For All Kings or Megadeth’s Dystopia – both just released last year. Or maybe consider this year’s releases in Sepultura’s Machine Messiah and Pallbearer’s Heartless. The point is, the metal genre has looked really strong the last couple of years, and it’s just unfortunate that these albums don’t get the sales and recognition that perhaps they deserve.