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James Hetfield on Metallica's '72 Seasons': 'There's been a lot of darkness in my life and in our career'

The front man says he got the album title 'out of a book I was reading about childhood'

Last week, Metallica announced their 11th studio album, 72 Seasons, as well as premiered a thrashing new song, "Lux Æterna."

And while Metallica front man James Hetfield outlined the meaning behind the somewhat inscrutable album title in a statement at that time, for those still in the dark, he expounded further on the phrase in a new interview with Alt 101.5.

"72 Seasons came out of a book I was reading about childhood, basically, and sorting out childhood as an adult," Hetfield said, as transcribed by Blabbermouth. "And 72 seasons is basically the first 18 years of your life. How do you evolve and grow and mature and develop your own ideas and identity of self after those first 72 seasons?

He continued, "Some things are more difficult than others — you know, some things you can't unsee and they're with you for the rest of your life, and other things you're able to rewind the tape and make a new tape in your life. So that's the real interesting part for me, is how you're able to address those situations as an adult and mature.

"There's been a lot of darkness in my life and in our career and things that have happened with us," he continued. "But always having a sense of hope, always having the light that is in that darkness … Without darkness, there is no light, and being able to focus a little more on the light in life instead of all of the… how it used to be and how horrible it is...

Hetfield summed up, "There's a lot of good things going on in life — focusing on that instead, and it helps to balance out my life. And there's no one meaning to it — everyone has some sense of hope or light in their life, and, obviously, music is mine. And the song specifically talks about gathering of people at a concert and [being] able to see the joy and the life and the love that comes out of music and the family and the kinship in that, and just a sense of uplifting."

You can listen to the full interview below, and pre-order 72 Seasons on CD and 2LP in our shop.