In an interview with Metal Hammer after the release of “Hardwired… To Self Destruction” in 2016, James Hetfield talked about an altercation he had with Lars Ulrich while the album was being recorded. He claimed that when he referred to Ulrich as the “riff police” for tampering with the guitar parts, they didn’t speak for a week. According to rumors, Metallica’s vocalist and drummer frequently engaged in similar altercations. In fact, Ulrich admitted that their disputes had even resulted in punches during a 2021 interview with The Howard Stern Show. He claimed that during the band’s “first encore show,” Hetfield hit him in the stomach for refusing to allow the drums to begin a song. On the other hand, in the 2004 film “Some Kind Of Monster,” the drummer alluded to a change in their relationship over a few drinks in the early years, saying: “There was a time when he and I went out and I told him, ‘Dude, I love you!’ after 42 drinks, during the making of the ‘Ride the Lightning’ record. But until it reached that 42 beer mark, it was never going to happen.
We were by ourselves. Ulrich said that although disagreements occasionally arose between him and his bandmate in earlier conversations, particularly during the ‘St. Anger’ phase, which Hetfield referred to as his “freak-out period,” they frequently received each other’s support. However, the Metallica singer made the following remarks about his connection with the drummer in an interview with Rolling Stone in 2016: We’ve been friends with Lars for a very long time; our friendship has endured longer than any of the band members’ unions. God, we hate and love each other, and it evolves and morphs, but in the end, we understand how this works. We work well together, too, guy. Putting your faith in him, he said, “Yeah, here are my 800 riffs. You modify them, you choose the best parts. The two eventually celebrated their 40th anniversary with Metallica two years ago, and this year, the band released a new album with them. They are now engaged in a world tour dubbed “M72” in support of their album “72 Seasons.”