METALLICA bassist Robert Trujillo was interviewed on a recent episode of "Talk Is Jericho", the podcast of Chris Jericho, the world champion pro wrestler, actor, New York Times best-selling author and lead vocalist of the metal band FOZZY. You can now listen to the chat at PodcastOne.com.
Speaking about the progress of the recording sessions for METALLICA's long-awaited follow-up to 2008's "Death Magnetic" album, Trujillo said: "We're having a great time. It feels great. You know, we're still working. It's gonna be a little while [before the album is done]. Everybody's gotta be patient, you know. But it's coming, and that's the beautiful thing, you know. So, yeah, it's no secret we're working hard."
Trujillo also talked in more detail about the songwriting process in METALLICA. He said: "Basically, you take it a step at a time, and you jam through it. You jam it, and you get the right feel. It's all centered around the jam, and that's where the magic comes from, and that's how we're doing it."
Regarding his role in the METALLICA songwriting process, Trujillo said: "When I first joined the band, they really had a lot of respect for me. I had, obviously, done this many times in my past, and the pedigree was fairly strong in who I had worked with, so they trust me. And that trust, you know — you trust your brothers as musicians and your band and what they're gonna do, and then you work together. I mean, if something doesn't click, you say it on all fronts — whether it's a drum part or a guitar [part or] whatever. That's how it is. You're a team."
Despite the fan-generated controversy over the audio quality of "Death Magnetic", Trujillo says that he looks back fondly on METALLICA's collaboration with "Death Magnetic" producer Rick Rubin.
"[Rick] was tremendous in helping us do what we're doing now," Trujillo said. "Every little bit helps, or large bit helps, however you wanna look at it, but it's all important to the big picture. And he was really tremendous for us… With 'Death Magnetic', I think that… For me, I mean, that's really my first album with the band, and having a sense of collaboration and being able… for me, at least using that as the launchpad to the future, creatively. I think that that was such an important album, and having him and I, sort of, joining the team at that point in time… It's been a while now — we've done a lot since then; meaning that the band has. And I always look at it like, okay, there's 'Death Magnetic', that's a part of the launchpad. Before that, of course, 'St. Anger', but I didn't play on that, I wasn't creatively involved in that. But after 'Death Magnetic', we did [play] the 'Black' album in its entirety, 'Ride The Lightning' and even 'Kill 'Em All'. And when you embrace some of those obscure, deep tracks that the band had never played live, and you're performing that and you're re-embracing it, that helps you creatively with what you're getting into in the next round. It all connects with it."
The new METALLICA album is being produced by Greg Fidelman, who was the recording engineer for "Death Magnetic".
METALLICA has spent a lot of time outside the studio in the last year, with activities that included a string of European all-request shows, a week-long residency on "The Late Show With Craig Ferguson", and a Rock In Rio USA stint.