The North American leg of METALLICA's "WorldWired" 2017 tour kicks off on May 10 in Baltimore, Maryland and will hit stadiums in 25 cities before winding down in mid-August. Support on the quartet's first North American trek since 2009 will come mainly from AVENGED SEVENFOLD and VOLBEAT, with GOJIRA taking over for the latter group for the last six shows.
METALLICA drummer Lars Ulrich told The Ringer about the tour: "We did two [U.S.] stadium shows last year — one in Minneapolis and one in San Francisco — and both of those went so well. Playing stadiums again in America, everything just sort of cycles. You play some arenas, you play some festivals, you do this, you do that. And you never take [it] for granted. So when we played those two stadium shows last year and both of them sold out in 12 seconds or something like that, it gave us enough confidence that we could do it. We haven't done a stadium tour in America in 14 years, so it just gave us enough confidence to say, 'Let's give it one more shot.' So we dedicated the summer of 2017 to stadiums."
He added: "We're really psyched about getting back out there and not only hitting a lot of spots in the States and Canada that we haven't done before, but also getting a chance to do it in the stadiums is really fucking cool."
Asked if the idea of getting back out on the road is a little bit daunting, Ulrich said: "If you look at the dates, you'll see that we don't do more than two weeks at a time. We'll do two weeks, then we'll go home for a couple weeks. Then we'll do two weeks, and we'll go home for a couple weeks. That way, it never feels like it's so long that you're going to fall off the deep end or that you're afraid of losing what's left of your sanity or whatever. We basically just do two-week increments. It's a way to keep it feeling fresh, so we don't burn ourselves out."
Ulrich also talked about how METALLICA gets around for those touring stretches. "Generally, you're sort of encased in a small metal tube with a pair of jet engines on it, and you just fly from one place to the other," he explained. "What we do a lot is called 'basing' — not that kind of basing, but basing in cities. We'll play the West Coast usually from home. Or if we're out on the East Coast, we'll stay in New York for a couple weeks. That way you can kind of keep a hotel room, keep your family out there. Then you fly to the show and fly back. It's a way to stay as calm and as sane as possible in the middle of all the madness. A lot of times in Europe, we'll stay in London or Paris or Copenhagen. We pick cities that we enjoy being in. That makes it all somewhat tolerable."
Each ticket purchased for the tour will come with a copy of METALLICA's new album, "Hardwired… To Self-Destruct", available as a physical CD or a digital download. Various VIP packages are up for sale as well.
METALLICA has also announced the formation of its All Within My Hands Foundation, which will raise funds through ticket sales to support national, local and Bay Area charities selected by the band members, while continuing to donate to music education programs and local food banks.