Billabong LAB has announced the latest product delivery in the Billabong x Metallica 2019-2020 collection of menswear. Titled "Metallica x AI Forever", the new assortment of surf trunks, t-shirts, tank tops, fleece hoodies and corduroy jackets celebrates the relationship between the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame inductees and Billabong athlete and multiple world champion surfer Andy Irons.
This premium design collaboration with METALLICA comes through Billabong LAB, a platform that supports artists, musicians, designers and photographers. The five-part collection, released between October 2019 and March 2020, features a unique blend of boardsports-engineered apparel from Billabong and iconic album artwork from the rock band METALLICA.
Hitting retailers and online channels globally, the second product drop takes inspiration from METALLICA's powerful heavy metal anthem "Seek And Destroy". Initially released on the band's 1982 career-making demo tape "No Life 'Til Leather", the song was later remastered on the critically acclaimed "Kill 'Em All" album. "Seek And Destroy" remains a cornerstone in METALLICA's legacy and served as the closing song on world tour concerts for years.
Equally meaningful, the Metallica x AI Forever collection commemorates the special relationship between METALLICA and three-time surfing world champion Andy Irons. In 2007, Billabong enlisted METALLICA bandmembers James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, Kirk Hammett and Robert Trujillo to create a collection featuring Irons as the hero Billabong athlete.
With Kirk Hammett and Robert Trujillo being avid surfers, the collaboration with Irons created a lasting bond. A bond that also endured the athlete's untimely passing in 2010, mourned by the international boardsports community, at the height of his career. For this reason, a portion of the proceeds from the new Metallica x AI Forever collection will help support the Andy Irons Foundation in its efforts to create positive outcomes for youth in need.
"There could not be a more positive cause to support with this special collection," said Evan Slater, VP of global marketing at Billabong. "Andy and the spirit of METALLICA are an integral part of Billabong's DNA. And we're grateful that this collection can help extend Andy's legacy through his foundation."
In marketing materials and promotional media, the Metallica x AI Forever collection is endorsed by Hawaiian athlete and 2019 World Surf League Rookie of the Year Seth Moniz. Looking at apparel pieces in the Metallica x AI Forever collection, the short-sleeved t-shirt made from ring-spun cotton features twin skull artwork by iconic skateboard artist Pushead — known for 1980s skateboard deck graphics and Thrasher magazine designs — next to the insignia "AI Forever". A surf trunk crafted from 90% recycled polyester and 10% elastane contrasts classic camouflage with METALLICA's iconic logo.
Camo also figures prominently on the Metallica x AI Forever sleeveless tank top, while the collection's white long-sleeve tee is a throwback to the 2008 album "Death Magnetic" that inspired the initial collaboration with Irons. Finally, the hooded fleece top and cotton corduroy jacket both render the METALLICA logo in the electrified style of the band's genre-defining album"Ride The Lightning".
See the first and second drop of the collection on the Billabong LAB x Metallica Collection landing page.
"Andy was a rebel in a rebellious sport," said METALLICA lead singer James Hetfield. "And that's a great thing to have."
A video featuring members of METALLICA and the Billabong surfing team sharing their take on the new collection can be viewed below.
The next three product deliveries in the Billabong x Metallica 2019-2020 collection will hit e-commerce and international retail between January and March 2020.
Each product release in the Billabong x Metallica 2019-2020 collection will be accompanied by digital content and events. Billabong LAB will send media alerts in preparation of each product drop.
For more information on Billabong, Billabong LAB, METALLICA and the upcoming collection, please visit www.billabong.com or Instagram at @Billabong.