Metallica: Back To The Front, the long-awaited book on the making of Metallica‘s classic 1986 album Master Of Puppets, will see publication on September 13th. A special “Collector’s Edition” of the tome will be available two weeks earlier on August 30th through and The band said in a statement, “Two years in the making, we’re beyond excited to finally share it with you . . . We hit the storage lockers, attics and basements to fill the book with hundreds of never-before-seen images pulled from our personal archives and have been involved every step of the way to bring you the complete story.”

  • Written by Matt Taylor, the book’s deluxe edition will come in a special case that includes a limited edition copy of the 276-page book and a portfolio containing a piece of an original roadcase used to ship the band’s equipment to Denmark for the recording of the album and on the tour that followed its release.
  • Among the people interviewed for the book were all the members of Metallica, producer Flemming Rasmussen, mixer Michael Wagener, members of the band’s road crew and the bands who toured with them in 1986, Anthrax and Armored Saint.
  • Also sitting for interviews were the band’s booking agent, tour promoters and managers, Faith No More guitarist Jim Martin and drummer Mike Bordin, and late Metallica bassist Cliff Burton‘s father Ray.
  • Metallica is also working on a remastered deluxe reissue of Master Of Puppets, although a release date has yet to be determined. The band stated, “As we keep digging in the vaults, we’re finding more and more music and video so that we can bring you an even bigger, more comprehensive, no stone-unturned version of the album.”
  • The new Metallica album, its first since 2008, is tentatively due out later this year.


  • To commemorate the release of the book, Metallica plans to give away a limited edition “Master Of Puppets” guitar.
  • All 11 shows from the band’s 2006 summer tour of Europe — on which it played Master Of Puppets every night in its entirety — are now available on CD from the band’s online store.
  • Master Of Puppets was released on February 24th, 1986 and was the first album Metallica recorded after signing a major label deal with Elektra Records. The set has sold over six million copies in the U.S. since.
  • It is the last record to feature bassist Cliff Burton, who was killed later that year in a tour bus crash.

CHECK IT OUT: Watch Lars Ulrich look through the new Master Of Puppets book:

INTERNET COMMENTS at Blabbermouth — agree or not?

Mark Irwin wrote: “The book is awesome (you guys will be blown away when you see this thing!). The new album will be awesome. And the re-mastered MoP will be AWESOME. These guys have earned every right to take the time they want and share the material they want- all the haters notwithstanding. One of the bedrocks of metal. Keep on keeping on!”

Daniel Bundisson wrote: “an essential book if i ever saw one.”

Jester Lameson wrote: “Even Lars seems to be tiring from their never-ending nostalgic victory laps they’ve been doing the past several years. Puppets is a classic…but its been played it to death. For an ‘active’ band, producing new music should be the objective.”

Cliff Whitehead wrote: “I’m glad they didn’t use the first cover art idea they had. I don’t think this cover is great or anything but the other art didn’t make any sense to me. I guess someone agreed. Either way I gotta own a copy cause the inside looks awesome!”

Cee Vee Ernay wrote: “Actually looks pretty neat.”