There doesn’t seem to be a hell of a lot in the way of hopefulness these days when it comes to bridging our divided society. But if Metallica and Napster can put aside nearly two decades of lawsuits and divisive rhetoric, surely there’s no divide the rest of us can’t cross.
Seventeen years after the band (well, Lars Ulrich, really) filed suit against the then legally problematic file-sharing service, Metallica will finally be coming back to Napster with its 10th album, Hardwired…To Self-Destruct, which is due out this Friday.
The new album is arriving alongside the band’s full catalog, joining a very different Napster than the one it unceremoniously exited at the turn of the millennium. Napster has, of course, long since gone legit as a streaming service, eventually getting swallowed and merged into a single service with one-time competitor Rhapsody. And the company’s even managed to start turning a profit, of late.
According to Billboard, the deal was negotiated directly with Napster, thanks in part to the fact that Metallica’s master recordings reverted to the band a few years back. Consider this a sort of group streaming therapy and, perhaps, a sign that no matter how divided things get, maybe there’s hope for the rest of us — so long as there’s some profit to be had.