Metallica kicked off the North American leg of their 2023-2024 “M72 World Tour” on Friday (August 4th) at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame band was joined on the bill by fellow metal legends Pantera and rising rockers Mammoth WVH (led by Wolfgang Van Halen).
The tour (get tickets here) features Metallica performing two completely unique sets (no repeat songs) over two nights in each city, with different support acts each evening. They’ll be right back at MetLife on Sunday (August 6th), with Five Finger Death Punch and Ice Nine Kills opening.
The setup has the bands performing in the round, on a circular stage in the middle of the stadium, with some fans in the “Snakepit” (the center of the circle).
While there was a forecast for thunderstorms on Friday night, that never came to be, making for a comfortable summer evening in New Jersey. Wolfgang Van Halen’s Mammoth WVH got the festivities started at 6 p.m. with a seven-song set, featuring a mix of tunes from the outfit’s 2021 self-titled debut album and the just-released sophomore effort, Mammoth II.
The revamped Pantera lineup took the stage next, with classic members Philip Anselmo and Rex Brown joined by guitarist Zakk Wylde and drummer Charlie Benante, filling the legendary shoes of Dimebag Darrell and Vinnie Paul, respectively. Anselmo and company tore through a set that was packed with favorites like “A New Level,” “Mouth for War,” “Walk,” and “Cowboys From Hell.” In the middle of the set, a video tribute to Dime and Vinnie was soundtracked by “Cemetery Gates.”
It was then Metallica’s turn to rock the sold-out football stadium. James Hetfield and company got things rolling with “Creeping Death,” followed by “Harvester of Sorrow,” “Holier Than Thou,” and “King Nothing.” They showcased three songs from their new album, 72 Seasons, including the title track, “If Darkness Had a Son,” and the live debut of “Shadows Follow.”
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Other classics played throughout the 16-song set included “Fade to Black,” “Nothing Else Matters” (which had to be restarted after Kirk Hammett botched the intro), “Sad but True,” “Battery,” and “Fuel” (featuring a major pyro display). The night ended with the one-two punch of “Seek & Destroy” and “Master of Puppets.”
Heavy Consequence will be right back out there on Sunday night, so stay tuned for a more in-depth recap of the entire weekend. In the meantime, check out our photos from Friday night, along with fan-filmed video footage, and the setlists for each band.
Photo Gallery – Metallica, Pantera, and Mammoth WVH at MetLife Stadium (click to expand and scroll through):
Harvester of Sorrow
Holier Than Thou
If Darkness Had a Son (followed by Kirk & Rob doodle)
Fade to Black
Shadows Follow (Live debut)
Nothing Else Matters (Kirk messed up intro, song restarted)
Sad but True
The Day That Never Comes
Seek & Destroy
Master of Puppets
A New Level
Mouth for War
Strength Beyond Strength
Becoming (With ‘Thrones of Rejection’ outro)
I’m Broken (With ‘By Demons Be Driven’ outro)
Video Tribute to Dimebag Darrell and Vinnie Paul (soundtracked by “Cemetery Gates”)
5 Minutes Alone
Domination / Hollow
Cowboys From Hell
Mammoth WVH Setlist:
Like a Pastime
You’re to Blame
Another Celebration at the End of the World
Don’t Back Down