TRIVIUM frontman Matt Heafy — who opened for METALLICA with his band at the heavy metal giants’ “intimate” concert on November 4 at Hard Rock Live at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida — talked on how the Orlando metallers landed the opening slot at the METALLICA gig.
“It was Sunday afternoon [four days before the show]. I think we were just about to watch a movie with the kids,” he said in a new interview with El Cuartel Del Metal. “And I got an e-mail from our manager. He’s, like, ‘METALLICA asked if you can be available for this Thursday.’ We were, like, ‘Yes. Yes, we can. Let’s do everything we can.’ But we had to keep it quiet ’cause it wasn’t fully confirmed yet. It didn’t get confirmed until, I think, 30 minutes before we started driving down to South Florida.
“So we had to get our crew back down to Florida, get our gear back together, rehearse again. Luckily, we all rehearse so much individually, it’s not like we’re ever sloppy; it’s not like we take time off. So we were ready to go. And we made it happen. We got down there. We weren’t able to say ‘hey’ [to the guys METALLICA], but METALLICA left us an amazing handwritten letter and gave us a box of [METALLICA‘s] Blackened [whiskey].”
“To be able to see them at a quote[-unquote] small show; I mean, a small show for them is seven thousand people,” he continued. “That’s more people than we can do on a big show. So, to be able to watch them that close — I was able to be on the floor and watch them — it was incredible. They’re all amazing, but [James] Hetfield‘s [METALLICA frontman] voice sounds better than ever. I don’t know how the hell that happened, but he sounds like a better singer now than he’s ever been. And it’s just so amazing. The vibe was great.”
“They’re truly the greatest band in the world and [have] always been the greatest band in the world,” Heafy added. “And it’s awesome that they thought of us. They were, like, ‘Hey, let’s get TRIVIUM down here.’ For METALLICA to have an opening band, that’s usually just their decision; it’s whatever they wanna do. And the fact that they picked us was really cool.”