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Metallica's James Hetfield Enters Rehab Print E-mail
Wednesday, 01 August 2001
Metallica frontman, James Hetfield was admitted to an undisclosed rehab treatment center on July 19, 2001, delaying the recording of the band’s eighth studio album.

When the singer/songwriter/guitarist will rejoin the band is cloudy but he will definitely miss the forthcoming launch of the Metallica.com web site. In a statement on the official Metallica fan club website, MetClub.com, Hetfield admitted it was difficult to admit his substance abuse problems. "It's a great feeling to have the support and comfort for me as a person from all the friends I've made out there. Thanks very much, it means a lot" says Hetfield.

Creative questions persist. Some critics argue that Metallica’s best work is behind them and they had been riding on their past creative successes since their wildly successful self-titled or "Black Album" shepherded by super-producer Bob Rock. While still a strong concert draw, drummer Lars Ulrich’s public fight against Napster and free downloadable music formats has clearly hurt the group’s coveted position as "the biggest rock band in the world" with unprecedented negative press and flames from even the loyalist of fans.

Metallica’s core fans say it is the fiery songs written by Hetfield, inspired by his Christian Scientist upbringing, that are the band’s best. The question is will James Hetfield rebound from rehab and refresh the now stale Metallica sound or will his problems lead to the end of one of rock and roll’s most powerful acts. Only time will tell.

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