How long do Metallica plan to keep playing for?

"We hope we can get another 20, 25 years out of Metallica."

Metallica have resolutely rejected any rumours that they could be hanging up their guitars for good.

Despite Slayer beginning their farewell tour earlier this year, the metal icons claim say that they’re instead capable of playing together for another 25 years.

“A lot of people are retiring, and we feel very energized and rejuvenated. I mean, we wanna go [a] long [time],” Ulrich told Philadelphia radio station 93.3 WMMR backstage at a recent concert.

“We hope we can get another 20, 25 years out of Metallica. I don’t know what it’s gonna look like, I don’t know what it’s gonna sound like, but that’s in our heads.”

Ulrich added: “We’re not sitting there thinking retirement or this or that; we’re sort of more the opposite. So I would say, for us, everything we do is kind of a long game.

“And back then, when you were 17, you only think of, like, the next five minutes. ‘Where is the next beer? Wooh!’ So that’s kind of different mentality nowadays.”

The legendary drummer also claims that the band’s longevity is being aided by a whole new generation of younger fans.

Metallica’s James Hetfield

“It’s crazy. It’s unbelievable. There’s more younger kids at our shows than I can ever remember”, Ulrich said of his new found devotees.

“Half the audience is under 20. And it also feels more like it’s [a] 50-50 [split] between boys and girls now, which obviously [wasn’t the case] 20, 30 years ago.”

Meanwhile, Metallica are still going as strong as ever and will return to the UK for huge shows in Manchester and London next summer.