10 Facts About Metallica’s ‘Master of Puppets’ Only Superfans Would Know
"I MISS CLIFF!!!"
That's how James Hetfield opened the introduction of Back to the Front: A Fully Authorized Visual History of The Master of Puppets Album and Tour. For Metallica—and really, the world—there is no way to discuss Master of Puppets without lamenting the tragic loss of bassist Cliff Burton, who died in a bus accident while touring in support of the record months after its release.
Beyond the bittersweet memories of Burton's inimitable presence on Master of Puppets, though, Hetfield also acknowledged a clear, undeniable truth in that same introduction: "Master of Puppets was the turning point to hugeness for Metallica."
In so many ways, Metallica would never be the same after Master of Puppets hit the streets on March 3, 1986.
Because fans already know a lot about the record—like how the title for "Leper Messiah" was inspired by lyrics to David Bowie's "Ziggy Stardust" or that "The Thing That Should Not Be" has roots in H.P. Lovecraft's writings—we decided to dig deep into the history of Master of Puppets to pull out 10 facts that only superfans would know.
In honor of the anniversary of the release of Master of Puppets, we hope you learn something new about one of the most important metal records of all time. And if you already knew all of these stories, well then, you can officially call yourself a superfan.