Metallica pay tribute to Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong at Voodoo Festival - watch

The metal band play 'American Idiot' at the New Orleans event

Metallica paid tribute to Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong during their headline performance at Voodoo Festival.

The metal band had stepped in to replace Green Day, who pulled out of the New Orleans festival so that front man Billie Joe Armstrong could focus on his rehab treatment, and gave their support to the singer by briefly playing 'American Idiot' - you can watch them play the track above.

According to MTV, after two songs into their headline set, Metallica front man Hetfield joked: "We are Green Day…except a little taller." The website also states that the singer dedicated 'Battery' to the trouble Green Day front man, saying: "This one's for Billie."

During the encore, Hetfield asked the crowd if they were still there, adding: "You're hoping Green Day are going to show up, right? So am I. They're getting help. They're getting it sorted out. The world needs them."

Before launching into 'Creeping Death', Metallica then played the opening of Green Day's 'American Idiot' to rapturous applause before cutting the cover song short, as Hetfield explained to the crowd, "we can't play that song".

Meanwhile, Green Day announced earlier today (October 29) that they have cancelled all their scheduled live appearances for the remainder of 2012 and early 2013.

"Obviously the timing for this isn’t ideal, but Billie Joe’s well-being is our main concern,” Mike Dirnt said in a statement on the band's website. "We are happy to say that Billie Joe is doing well, and we want to thank you all for the outpouring of support and well wishes that we have received, and we can't wait to see you all again soon."

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