Lars Ulrich Talks About Holograms of Dead Musicians the Way Actresses Talk About Doing Nudity
Y’know, The Hard Times cracked wise about Metallica’sLars Ulrich becoming a hologram over a year ago. The Hard Times‘ brand of satire is sometimes prescient.
Case in point: during a recent discussion at New York City’s 92nd Street Y, Ulrich made it clear that he would not be opposed to getting the Ronnie James Dio treatment when the time comes.
Ulrich began the discussion in full on Basquiat analysis mode:
“As loopy as that sounds, and as kind of silly as I’m exaggerating for effect, what is a concert? What is music? What’s a concert? To me, it’s about connecting people, and it’s about sharing an experience together. And what we try to do, when we play gigs, is to erase the wall between the audience and the band. It’s basically about doing away with that division between an audience and artist. And so I’m sitting there going, ‘Maybe one day.’
“If the primary objective of a concert is to bring people together and share an experience, why do you need Lars Ulrich or James Hetfield there? Or Kirk Hammett or Robert Trujillo? If you’ve got the music, you’ve got the equipment, you’ve got the lights, you’ve got the video, there’s gotta be some version of that in there by the time all the Elon Musks and all the Marc Benioffs and the rest of ’em have figured out where artificial intelligence plays into all this.”
“Listen, I don’t know about anybody else in here, but when it’s done, it’s done.If there was a way for it to work out… if it can be done in some way where it’s cool and it’s not just some fucking weird cash-in or whatever, but if it there was a way to do it in a meaningful way… Because at the end of the day — and I am actually really serious about this — to me, the further I get into this endeavor, music and Metallica… People go, ‘What’s it like to be in Metallica?’ It’s, like, we’re all in Metallica. Metallica is something that exists in the ether. Lars Urich doesn’t own Metallica, James Hetfield doesn’t own Metallica, Metallica doesn’t own Metallica — it’s something that we all share. And it’s something that we all used to connect.”
Actually, rumor has it that Lars Ulrich does own Metallica, but I understand the point Ulrich is trying to make. And much to his credit, his assertion about a concert being, first and foremost, an event intended to bring people together is the first convincing argument I’ve heard in favor of the holograms of dead people thing. I would assert that more than half the fun of going to a show is seeing great musicians perform and that if all I wanted was to feel united with people over music I’d just invite a bunch of friends over and crank Ride the Lightning, but that’s just my personal preference. If you get off on the idea of being in an arena with twenty thousand strangers listening to recorded music and watching a cartoon, by all means, go nuts.
(Complete digression: when dead musicians are holograms, will they still do the thing where they make the audience wait for the encore? I mean, it’s not like they need a breather or can hear the audience cheering for more.)
I do think it’s pretty funny that Ulrich believes in a world where people are paying to see a Metallica hologram, they’re paying to see a Robert Trujillo hologram and not a Cliff Burton hologram. Yeah I know Burton only played on 30% of the band’s catalog, but while we’re playing make believe with our fancy light show, why not go all the way with it? For that matter, why not add Darth Vader on rhythm guitar?
In unrelated news, Miles Ulrich has announced his retirement at age nineteen.