According to The Pulse Of Radio, Lars Ulrich was asked to single out his favorite METALLICA album cover in a recent interview with Maxim. While the band has featured iconic images on the covers of LPs like "Master Of Puppets" and "...And Justice For All", the drummer had a different choice.
Ulrich answered: "I'm not much for favorites... the 'Load' and 'Reload' albums with the amazing pieces by Andres Serrano. They will always hold a special place in my heart. I love him as an artist. I love the imagery. I love the fact that we saw Serrano through as the cover art for those two records. Those are probably my two favorites."
The artwork created for 1996's "Load" and its companion album, 1997's "Reload", was a source of controversy among METALLICA fans. "Load" featured a photo called "Semen And Blood III", which consisted of cow blood and Serrano's own semen between two plates of Plexiglas, while the cover of "Reload" was adorned with a similar Serrano photo titled "Piss And Blood XXVI".
Frontman James Hetfield later expressed his distaste for the cover of "Load" in a 2009 interview with Classic Rock, saying: "I love art, but not for the sake of shocking others."
Ulrich became something of an art collector in the early 2000s and told The Pulse Of Radio a while back that his fascination for fine art went back to his childhood. "You know, I grew up in a household full of music and art and somewhere up through, I don't know, late '80s, early '90s, I just started rediscovering a lot of those roots," he said. "And what happened was it kind of became a sanctuary for me away from METALLICA. It really was my thing away from the rest of the METALLICA guys and it just became just a great passion."
METALLICA kicked off the 2018/2019 U.S. leg of the "WorldWired" arena tour back in September in Madison, Wisconsin. The trek will resume on January 18 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.