Hero of the Day

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
"Hero of the Day"
Single by Metallica
from the album Load
B-side (See below)
Released October 22, 1996
Format CD single, Cassette, Vinyl
Recorded December 13, 1995
The Plant Studios
Sausalito, California
Genre Heavy metal
Length 4:21
Label Elektra
Writer(s) Kirk Hammett, James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich
Producer(s) Bob Rock, James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich
Metallica singles chronology
"Until It Sleeps"
(1996)
"Hero of the Day"
(1996)
"Mama Said"
(1996)
Music video
"Hero of the Day" on YouTube

"Hero of the Day" is a power ballad by Metallica on their 1996 album Load. The song was first recorded on December 13, 1995, and was the first song on Load to be recorded.[citation needed] The song was also Metallica's second single release from the album. A promotional video for the track was also filmed. It became their second consecutive number-one hit on the US Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks chart. It is one of the few Metallica songs written primarily in a major key.

According to article in Kerrang around time of Load release, the demo for the song is entitled "Mouldy" due to the main riff reminding James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich of a typical Bob Mould sound. The demo was recorded on December 10, 1994, one of the earliest demo recordings for the Load sessions (the first demo to be recorded was for Wasting My Hate on November 28, 1994).[citation needed]

The song was last played live with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra (conducted by Michael Kamen), which is recorded on the album S&M In 1999.

This single is notable for including four Motörhead cover songs, recorded live direct to two-track at The Plant Studios during a rehearsal for Lemmy's 50th Birthday Party at the Whiskey A Go-Go, Los Angeles. These b-sides were later released on the second CD of the Garage Inc. compilation in 1998.[1]

Structure[edit]

The song begins with an overdriven plucked Ab-major-scale guitar riff from James Hetfield, then the vocals, drums and bass kick in respectively for the light first verse, which also includes acoustic guitar. The song then suddenly becomes heavier with distorted guitars and more intense vocals. After the second chorus there is a more heavy metal sounding bridge with aggressive instrumentation. The bridge returns after the final chorus and is extended, acting as the song's outro.

Music video[edit]

The music video for this song was directed by Anton Corbijn and features a drug-addled youth watching a television, with every channel featuring Metallica in some way. A Western movie titled Load is featured, starring Newsted and Hetfield, followed by a boxing match with Hetfield as coach, and Newsted and Kirk Hammett as the fighters. After a drink called "Load" is advertised by Ulrich and Hetfield in matching suits, a game show called "Hero of the Day" (which is a parody of Jeopardy!) is seen being played. Then, it cuts to the news with the anchorman played by Hammett and featuring a clip of Hetfield singing the lyrics to the song. A girl calls at the youth's house and they later have sex. The girl later leaves. At the end, the youth passes out and dreams of tiny robot creatures, rendered in stop motion, emerging from his ear. He awakes from the dream and vomits into his toilet. [1]

Track listing[edit]

US single
No. Title Length
1. "Hero of the Day"   4:24
2. "Kill/Ride Medley" (Live) 10:17
International Single Part 1
No. Title Length
1. "Hero of the Day"   4:22
2. "Overkill"   4:07
3. "Damage Case"   3:53
4. "Hero of the Day" (Outta B-Sides Mix) 6:34
International Single Part 2
No. Title Length
1. "Hero of the Day"   4:22
2. "Stone Dead Forever"   5:06
3. "Too Late Too Late"   3:18
4. "Mouldy" (aka Hero of the Day - early demo version) 5:22
Limited Edition CD (MotörheadACHE)
No. Title Length
1. "Hero of the Day"   4:23
2. "Overkill"   4:09
3. "Damage Case"   3:39
4. "Stone Dead Forever"   4:52
5. "Too Late Too Late"   3:12
Japanese EP
No. Title Length
1. "Hero of the Day"   4:24
2. "Mouldy" (aka Hero of the Day - early demo version) 5:25
3. "Hero of the Day" (Outta B Side Mix) 6:37
4. "Stone Dead Forever"   4:50
5. "Damage Case"   3:38
6. "Too Late Too Late"   3:12

Charts[edit]

Chart (1996) Peak
position
Canada Top Singles (RPM)
17
Polish Singles Chart[2] 19
UK Singles Chart 17
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 60
U.S. Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks 1

References[edit]

Preceded by
"Me Wise Magic" by Van Halen
Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks number-one single
December 7, 1996 – December 21, 1996
Succeeded by
"Blow Up the Outside World" by Soundgarden