Called "the Black Album" by many (due to its monochrome cover), Metallica
marks the group's entrance into the mainstream, with shorter songs, simpler song structures and slower tempos overall. That said, this is an excellent album, featuring some of the best songwriting Metallica has ever done. "Enter Sandman", "Wherever I May Roam" and "God That Failed", despite being slower and more groove-oriented than the band's earlier work, feature the same heavy riffs and heavier rhythms that have always been a feature of Metallica's music. The band goes introspective with "Unforgiven" and proves that they can write a ballad with "Nothing Else Matters", which succeeds better than one might expect. Overall, this is a high-energy album despite its laid-back approach and is in many ways superior to the previous ... And Justice for All
, which was weakened by overly complicated song structures and mediocre production. --Genevieve Williams
(2-LP set) 1991 hit release.