Kevin Winter, Getty Images
Following the Nov. 10 deluxe edition release of Metallica’s Master of Puppets, it would only make sequential sense to be prepping …And Justice for All as the next in line for the reissue treatment in the band’s catalog. The seeming inevitability of the the expanded LP coming out raises the question of whether the longstanding issue regarding the absence of Jason Newsted’s bass will be remedied.
Toby Wright, who handled some of the engineering duties on Justice including Newsted’s bass, says he would “love to remix” the album. Speaking on the Talk Toomey podcast, the producer reveals what happened during the original recording process.
“Here’s the real story: The bass was recorded by me and Jason Newsted, in all of its glory,” Wright says. “At the time, the theology in the room between Lars [Ulrich] and James [Hetfield] was that if you can hear the bass it’s 2dB too loud. So when it moved over to Steve Thompson and Michael Barbiero mixing it, they brought that same theology with them. No matter how hard Steve and Michael tried to fight them on that’s not right, that’s not right, they still insisted that’s what they wanted so that’s what the world got.”
When the topic of the 30th anniversary edition of …And Justice for All comes up, Wright then expresses his desire to present the album with Newsted’s bass intact. “I’d like to remix it and I’ll show you exactly what was laid down on tape and then the world will be stunned, I think,” he says. “Keep in mind I would love to remix it, Lars if you’re hearing me, I’d love to remix it.”
“I think it would be a bit more powerful,” Wright continues. “Fill out some of that tonality that’s missing from it. If you listen to the Black record which was done a year and half, two years later under Bob Rock, that’s a full band right there. I don’t know if anybody fought him on all that kind of stuff, because I wasn’t in the room, but you never know. And it turned out how it turned out and 20 million records later. There was some success there.”
Thompson told Loudwire in an exclusive recently how Ulrich was the one who specifically requested his drum sound be turned up and Newsted’s bass be turned down. That interview can be viewed below.
…And Justice for All Mixer Steve Thompson on Album’s Missing Bass
[embedded content]Subscribe to Loudwire on
Metallica Albums Ranked