News Segment


June 10, 2004

METALLICA’s LARS ULRICH has spoken out about the illness which forced him to miss last week’s DOWNLOAD FESTIVAL.

As previously reported on NME.COM, the group had to play their Download headline slot (June 6) with Slipknot and Slayer drummers Joey Jordison and Dave Lombardo.

NME.COM understands that the drummer had “a turn” while travelling in a private plane between Lisbon in Portugal and the UK. The decision was made to land in Germany, where an ambulance was waiting for Ulrich.

Now Ulrich has recorded video message on the band’s official website explaining what happened.

He said: “I had the strangest dream last night, I dreamt I missed a Metallica show. It was so scary, It’s the kind of dream I have, not once a year, but once every couple of years, it was a big show and I miss it!”

“Seriously though, we’d been going pretty heavy for most of the year, as you’re aware. We had to take a bit of chill out time in October, as some of our Latin American friends will remember (the band cancelled some dates their last year) and it all kinda caught up with me the other day and I had to chill out.

“There’s no reason to bore anyone with the details, but I’m fine as you can see, and I’m looking forward to playing tonight, but I had a little episode on the airplane going to Donington the other day, and I thought I would be best to get it checked out cos I was having a weird half hour there.

“I think that part of the past six months of playing super-duty metal and travelling the world, at my age, kinda caught up on me a little bit.

“So I still have this strange dream that I missed a Metallica gig for the first time in 23 years, its so surreal, but I want to thank, obviously, all the fans in Donington for being so supportive, and I want to thank – and from what I heard fromJames and Kirk and Rob, it went well — Joey from Slipknot for stepping up, and Dave from Slayer.

“God I wish I could’ve seen that… on second thoughts it’s probably better I didn’t. But that’s pretty cool that Joey and Dave, and of course Flemming Larsen, my trusted companion and drum roadie for 20 years, for stepping up, so I appreciate the three of those guys, I appreciate my 50,000 friends in England for being supportive and understanding.

“This is the first Metallica gig I’ve ever missed — so I still have the best track record, but sometimes you just gotta do what you gotta do, though I apologise to all our friends once again who travelled and we’ve had an awesome run in England. So I’m sorry I missed it, but I’m back here in Ludwigshafen (Germany) and we’re just gonna keep going until we fall over… Hopefully that won’t be for another 20 or 30 years.”

Courtesy of NME