The list of individuals in the world of metal that fans unequivocally agree on the importance, talent, and legacy of is very small indeed. Even figures in the biggest, most influential bands can be divisive figures – and none more so than Metallica. That’s just one of the many things that makes the band’s former bassist, the late Cliff Burton, such an extraordinary figure – perhaps no bassist in the history of metal is so universally agreed upon as not just a master of his instrument, but a full on innovator of its use in metal. That’s why today, on what would’ve been the bassist’s 51st birthday, our Sunday Spotify Slaylist is dedicated to Cliff Burton.
We’re not going to go on at length about the life, legacy, and sad demise of Burton here – plenty of words have been written about it elsewhere both on and offline. What you should do is go out and buy a copy of Joel McIver’s excellent biography, To Live Is to Die: The Life and Death of Metallica’s Cliff Burton, which is by far the best and most in-depth book on the man. Hell, Kirk Hammett wrote the foreword, which makes it as close to an “official” Metallica biography of Burton as it gets.
This week’s Slaylist is a compilation of every Metallica song available on Spotify that Burton has a writing credit on. Yes, we know that means not all of his best work is on here, but we think it captures Burton’s creative spirit best. We would’ve put some Trauma on there too, but (somewhat understandably), Spotify doesn’t always have semi-obscure-metal-bands-who-released-just-one-album-in-the-early-1980s in its library.
Spotify is available to most of Western Europe, the USA, Australia, New Zealand, and a few other places for free – though obviously you’re better off shelling out either £5 or £10 a month for one of Spotify’s premium packages, as then you can listen to our Slaylists without having them interrupted by adverts. For our readers in countries not currently serviced by Spotify….you own the first four Metallica albums, right? Then you can recreate this Slaylist from the comfort of your own CD player. Chop chop!
Need more Cliff? Watch all his solos from the Cliff ‘Em All DVD: