METALLICA has released a new song, "Lords Of Summer - First Pass Version", on iTunes via Blackened Recordings. The track, which was first performed in March this year at a concert in Bogota, Colombia, will by synching with all ESPN's programming in the U.S. on Saturday, June 21.METALLICA recently completed a South American tour where the band played a nearly all-request set, with 17 songs chosen online by fans prior to each gig and the last slot filled by "Lords Of Summer". METALLICA drummer Ulrich Ulrich told RollingStone.com that "Lords Of Summer" "is fairly representative of where our creative headspace is at right now. It's one of those things that's like, 'Here, we're writing and we're creating.'" However, according to guitarist Kirk Hammett, even that track is still being refined. "Because of everything we had going on, I didn't have time to work out the guitar solo in 'Lords Of Summer'," Hammett told Guitar World. "The solo that's on the demo track was all we had time to do. I barely knew what I was gonna do and didn't have time to really formulate anything. We told everyone that the song was a demo version…and the solo is really a demo version. [Laughs] If you compare the solo in the demo version to what I've been playing live at those South American shows, it's a lot better and more refined now." As previously reported, Ulrich told "Metal Zone" host Nikki Blakk of the San Francisco, California radio station 107.7 The Bone about the progress of the songwriting sessions for the band's follow-up to 2008's "Death Magnetic": "I can tell you, all kidding aside, I'm pretty convinced that 90 percent of the record is actually written, it's just gotta be kind of assembled between all those riffs. It's just a matter of connecting this to this and sort of shaping it into a song. And so, I'm pretty psyched about that." Ulrich added: "Like I said, I'm pretty convinced that most of the raw material actually exists. It's just a matter of connecting the dots. And we're not busy with all this other stuff that we're doing . . . I've said this before, we've applied for 28-hour days, but we haven't gotten word back yet, because the four extra hours that we would get out of that would certainly expedite the making of the next record . . . it would get it sooner. But we're still stuck with 24-hour days and something about six-hour minimum sleep requirements and kids that have to go to school and all the rest of it. So we try to use the rest of the time as wisely as we can in connecting these dots. And it does move forward, but maybe not as fast as we would like and certainly not as fast as a lot of our fans would like. It's certainly not 'cause we're avoiding it." The "Metallica By Request" tour is hitting Europe this summer, with a single North American date confirmed in Montreal. Ulrich said that U.S. fans might get to experience "Metallica By Request" either next year or in 2016, depending on when the band's new album is finished. "Lords Of Summer - First Pass Version":
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