METALLICA drummer Lars Ulrich spoke to KTRK prior to the band’s concert last night (Sunday, June 11) at NRG in Houston, Texas in front of about fifty thousand fans. You can watch the chat below.

Speaking about METALLICA‘s staying power on the hard rock and heavy metal scene, Ulrich said: “It’s pretty amazing. We’re about thirty-five, thirty-six years into this journey. It’s amazing, the fact that we can keep making records that people care about and keep playing shows and people still show up. There’s a generational kind of feel to it.

“We’re back playing in America, playing in the heartland, and there’s a lot of young kids who’ve never seen METALLICA before,” he continued. “I just did my meet-and-greet earlier, and I think about a third of the people in the meet-and-greet have never seen METALLICA before, so there’s still this kind of revolving door happening.

“I’m not gonna sit here and try to intellectualize why it’s still working, but the fact that people still keep showing up is amazing,” he added.

“I’d say the main difference now from twenty years ago or whatever is just that we’re more appreciative of it and we’re more aware of how blessed we are and how fortunate we are to have this insane life and that people keep showing up and that music still has the ability to unite people.

“Obviously, there’s some strange energies around all of us and divisions and so on, so the fact that music can still, no matter where we are in the world, find a way to bring people together and unite people is an amazing thing.”

Ulrich also talked about METALLICA‘s ability to unite so many people from different backgrounds through the band’s music.

“If I said that it was not something that we were aware of, I’d be lying to you,” he said. “But I think we’re all the same, and that’s kind of the paradox in it in that when I was growing up, and still to this day, I feel a need to be a part of that family myself. I’ve always felt a bit alienated, a bit of a loner, a bit disenfranchised, and so music, when I thirteen, fourteen, fifteen, sixteen years old was a way for me to feel like I was part of something that was bigger than myself and that gave me a sense of belonging. And so when I started METALLICA with James [Hetfield, METALLICA frontman], we were two lost souls who united around music, and we’ve been bringing that way of thinking, I guess, to the world for the last thirty-five years through music and playing concerts and trying to connect with people in as many different ways as we can. So it’s obviously not just therapeutic for all the fans that show up at the shows but also for the members of the band, and we all kind of consider ourselves to be no different from each other. It’s kind of part of that rock thing where it’s not about the band and the fans — it’s all of us together [as] one entity. And, obviously, whether there’s fifty thousand people here or twenty thousand people at the Toyota Center or if we’re in your backyard having a barbecue, it’s still about just trying to create intimacy and bring people into the same vibe, the same headspace, and that’s what we try to do every night.”

The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame band is touring in support of its tenth studio album, “Hardwired… To Self-Destruct”, which features the current single “Now That We’re Dead”.

The North American leg of METALLICA‘s “WorldWired” trek will hit stadiums in eighteen more cities before ending in mid-August.

Support on the quartet’s first North American trek since 2009 is coming mainly from AVENGED SEVENFOLD and VOLBEAT, with GOJIRA taking over for the latter group for the last six shows.