METALLICA's "St. Anger" will ship "well over" a million units ahead of its June 10 street date, according to Elektra Entertainment Group Exec. VP/GM Greg Thompson. "This release is a true event, and shows a tremendous amount of evolution and drama," he said in an official statement. "Those lucky enough to have heard it are blown away. It adds up to an exciting time for the quintessential rock band in the world to return to the marketplace with an epic record…I mean an Elektra record."
Elektra Chairman/CEO Sylvia Rhone added: "The members of METALLICA, individually and collectively, rank with the best musicians in the business. After 11 albums and 20 years, the anticipation for their new studio album has exceeded all our expectations. Whether you're talking catalog sales, radio, video or simply word of mouth, the demand has been unprecedented. It's been a textbook marketing plan, and even better, with all of the exposure, we've been able to secure the songs from online piracy...knock on wood. The fan who buys the new METALLICA record will own one of the best albums they've made in their 20-year history."
"St. Anger" marks the group's first studio album since 1997's "Reload". The band's 1999 disc, "S&M", recorded live with a symphony orchestra, has sold 2.5 million in the U.S.
Elektra VP Marketing Dana Brandwein said the band's fan base was targeted first, but the label intends to expand the promotional/marketing campaign from there: "While METALLICA fans are the most important thing to the band, they're just as committed to making new ones."
Added Thompson: "Every testosterone-charged male and a lot of women will be in record stores celebrating St. Anger's Day with 74 minutes of new songs and a [bonus] live DVD that will rock their balls off. Did I really say that?"