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Lars Ulrich: I’m not angry - I’m Danish

Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich suggests his band’s “contrarian” attitude is fuelled by his Danish upbringing rather than anger

Lars Ulrich thinks Metallica’s desire to do things differently could be fuelled more by his upbringing in Denmark than by anger.

He’s proud of the fact that they’ve never done things by the book, and argues that the attitude is commonplace in the country of his birth.

Speaking on Swedish radio, Ulrich says: “A lot of people ask me about the presence of anger in my creative process.

“A lot of people that play rock grew up in broken homes, with problematic and rebellious relationships with their parents and their surroundings. I never had one of those.

“What fuelled me towards harder rock was the energy, the sense of belonging to something greater. Anger and hostility was never a driving force.”

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He adds that he’s always had “a fairly easy relationship with being contrary” and continues: “I think a lot of Danish people are quite contrarian. If somebody says, ‘Let’s go left,’ then Danish people will go, ‘Let’s go right.’

“I think Metallica has always enjoyed floating around in our own little bubble, being outsiders, living in our own world, being contrary and a little bit opposite of what everybody else embraces.

“We never particularly felt like we fit into anything – Metallica has always enjoyed an element of contrary energy. Metallica has always enjoyed jumping off a cliff, and then, on our way down, trying to figure out where we’re going to land.”

The band’s long-awaited 10th album is expected in the autumn.

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