Following the divisive debacle of Load, Metallica used Garage Inc. as an affirmation that they remained one with their fans: diehard followers of loud music in all its forms. While Garage Inc reveals several standard issue influences (Black Sabbath, Blue Oyster Cult, Thin Lizzy), the album is a crucial reminder that Metallica were also born of punk rock (Misfits, Discharge) and New Wave of British Heavy Metal (Diamond Head, Mercyful Fate). James Hetfield has a blast playing with the menacing croons of Nick Cave and Danzig on covers of The Misfits (“Die, Die My Darling) and The Bad Seeds (“Loverman”), while the volcanic grooves of “Sabbra Cadabra” proved that Metallica was one of the few bands who could shoulder Black Sabbath’s weight. When the four-piece plays their favorite songs, the results are blistering, and Metallica plays “It’s Electric,” “Mercyful Fate,” and “Whiskey In the Jar” like they wrote the songs in their own blood. Don’t miss the bonus tracks, which compile all of the band’s covers albums: The $5.98 E.P. (1987), Garage Days Revsisted (1984), and the truly awesome all-Motorhead tribute Motorheadache (1995). Herein is a hymnal for the heavy metal faithful.