Metallica’s Lars Ulrich On His Cult Heroes

This week’s issue of the magazine celebrates music’s Ultimate Cult Heroes, from Syd Barrett to Jay Reatard, Mark E. Smith and The Sonics. Here, in an extended extract from the mag, Metallica’s drummer Lars Ulrich talks us through his own cult heroes, Television…

NME Cult Heroes

To me, Television’s first record still sounds as fresh today and as all-round awesome as it did in 1977. I grew up in Copenhagen, and pretty much I got everything I knew about music came from this tiny record store there. There weren’t any Danish music periodicals, so it was all word of mouth in this place, and I remember this guy called Tim who put me onto all kind of things – including ‘Marquee Moon’.

Television played Copenhagen around the time it came in, and I saw them in this tiny venue. The Pistols had played in Copenhagen in June or July of 77, the Ramones played as well. ACDC came down too, and played in early September. So in the span of about three months the Pistols, Ramones, ACDC and Television had all played in my home town as headline acts. Excellent! Those concerts were actually what kept me alive at that time.

With Television, I got the sense that here was a real band who were really connecting with each other. Obviously Tom Verlaine was the mainman, but some of the songs on that first album, like ‘Friction’, are just so intricate. That one’s actually like this real hard rock track too. Don’t tell anyone this but ‘Marquee Moon’ is one of my secret tracks for Metallica to play. I’m gonna try and sneak that one in there without anyone noticing!

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