Today, Rina Sawayama became the most recent artist to release her contribution to the Metallica cover album, The Metallica Blacklist. The album is being produced in celebration of the 30th anniversary of Metallica’s iconic 1991 record, The Black Album.
The tribute record features contributions from the likes of Pheobe Bridgers, St Vincent, Mac Demarco and Idles, with the latter releasing their cover of ‘The God That Failed’ yesterday.
In a bold move, Sawayama has taken on what is arguably Metallica’s most famous hit, ‘Enter Sandman’. The track was originally written by Kirk Hammett, James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich, and was the opening track on The Black Album. When it was released in 1991 the single reached number 16 on the US Billboard charts, before going on to become platinum.
Rina Sawayama’s version of the track utilises the original track’s intoxicating main riff and pounding drums, whilst imbuing it with an anthemic pop sensibility. Profits from the track will be split between Metallica’s All Within My Hands Foundation and Rina’s chosen charity Positive East.
The cover comes after the release of Rina Sawayama’s debut album SAWAYAMA. The album, released to rave reviews, was co-produced by Sawayama herself, alongside executive producer Clarence Clarity. The album saw Sawayama work with some of the music industry’s top pop songwriters, including Nicole Morier who helped create some of Britney Spears biggest hits, and Kyle Shearer who has written for Carly Rae Jepsen.
Sawayama’s debut record has marked her out as the future of pop. It is a record that showcases her superhuman vocals, and knack for producing pop songs that evoke the sound of ’00s classics. In the same breath, Sawayama embraces the metal production style of bands like Metallica and Korn, bringing a hard-edge to her experimental brand of stadium pop.
Next year, Rina Sawayma will embark on her sold-out UK tour. Listen to her rendition of ‘Enter Sandman’ below: