METALLICA Cancels Concert Tour Date!

…in Evansville, Indiana 1986!


“Another Hetfield crash n’ Burn”

[Mesker Amphitheatre]

By Kinger

Demolish Metal Fanzine [the print version] has a News section, which is where this should go, but I am going to post all the Worldwide Metal News and the hundreds of press releases that I have received over the years after all the main features, photos, reviews. This is a personal “Metal Story” of mine that I would like to share with the masses. N-Joy!

Before we get too far into my heavy metal history (and to put this CANCELLED TOUR DATE headline into perspective), let’s rewind the tape a bit if-you-will to 1983. This is, of course the year that the mighty début of METALLICA‘s excellent “Kill Em’ All” (Megaforce) album surfaced from the underground and this is still one of my favorite METALLICA albums.

one of Metallica’s BEST albums!

I remember when I first heard the name METALLICA. It had a certain “ring” to it. To me it best represented their crunchy “metallic” guitar sound. Which was something I had never heard before. It was so damn heavy!

Of course, history tells us that other bands such as EXODUS, TROUBLE, RAVEN, MERCYFUL FATE and maybe ANTHRAX had a similar “crunchy” tone. Let’s not get ahead and “Jump In the Fire” yet, but let it be known that out of all Metallica’s albums, this is the one that blew open the doors and when the doors were open, I soon discovered all the above mentioned bands. This album was my “gateway” drug if-you-will (to make a Metal analogy).

I immediately took to the Metallica art and logo as well. I am a sucker for all things minimal.

Great job James for the design of this logo!

So what was going on in the Metal scene in the “lovely” 80’s?

Well, to put things into better perspective, at that time I was listening to the standard Heavy Metal albums by Heavy Metal bands like: Motley Crue‘s “Shout at The Devil”, DEF LEPPARD‘s “Pyromania”, ACCEPT‘s “Balls to the Wall” and DIO‘s “Holy Diver” (probably my favorite) and last but not least,  IRON MAIDEN‘s killer “Piece of Mind”.

dio_holy_diver2Things were looking up for Heavy Metal Music and it seemed as though I was seeking heavier and more aggressive Metal releases to devour I just didn’t know it yet. I mean, when you jump from the oh-so-radio-friendly chorus in “Photograph” and the cheeky “Ten Seconds to Love”, and then on to more energetic songs like “Stand Up and Shout” from Ronnie James DIO and “Die with Your Boots On” from Bruce and the MAIDEN crew, your blood starts pumping and your fists are clenching VS the sing-along “pop Metal-ish” melodies with a somewhat “heavy” (Metal) guitar.

Let me also just toss in the fact that MTV was very much alive and trying to figure out what to do, and so we were starting to see a Heavy Metal Video here and there. The other new metal video show was on USA NETWORK called “Night Flight.”

Looking back, I realize now there were umpteen great Heavy Metal albums out there by bands that I hadn’t even heard of in 83′. There were so many amazing bands releasing great albums, such as:

  • MERCYFUL FATE – “Melissa”
  • RAVEN – “All for One” and
  • SAVATAGE – “Sirens” for an example.

*I should throw a special shout-out to “Screaming for Vengeance” from JUDAS PRIEST, though technically it was released in 82′, I was still jamming to it on a regular basis far into 1983!

While we are on the subject of 1982, let me briefly spotlight  some other rather notable releases that were still on heavy vinyl rotation at the King house. IRON MAIDEN released arguable their BEST LP with “Number of the Beast”, MOTORHEAD contributed “Iron Fist” and the SCORPIONS put out the smokin’ “Blackout” LP [and classic artwork who could forget the crazy dude with forks in his eyes | see below]…good stuff.

Self-portrait: artist Gottfried Helnwein

*I once drew this amazing cover artwork in a High School Art Class. It freaked out the teacher I think but I got a good grade on it and it was better than drawing some boring “still-life” crappola. Will scan one day.

Unbeknownst to me was the new wave of underground molten Metal releases that were steadily bubbling towards the top by the likes of: VENOM (“Black Metal”), another RAVEN (“Wiped Out”), TANK (“Filth Hounds of Hades”) and MANOWAR, who made their “strong-arm” METAL début with “Battle Hymns”.

Wow, looking back – that was some rather choice “new” music just waiting to be had. What a time for Hard Rock and Metal!

OK, let’s get back to the topic at hand…METALLICA‘s “Kill Em’ All”

First Impression:

After plopping the record on the platter, I was instantly blown-away with what I heard come rushing out of my Pioneer, Technics & Teac stereo system. By the time “Hit the Lights”, “The Four Horseman” and “Motorbreath” were over, it felt like a locomotive just blasted through the house and ran over me! When “Jump in the Fire” rolled around, I was in need of a break from the shocked/puzzled, yet excited state I was in.

Back of Kill Em’ All LP

I was thinking to myself, man how are they able to play that fast for so long and there is no way they can continue this madness for the rest of the entire LP. And then the (now classic) “Anesthesia/Pulling Teeth” instrumental came on. What the hell is that? A guitar, no way,  it’s a bass guitar loaded up with some nasty efx with killer solo/instrumental chops by the great Cliff Burton (R.I.P). Lars jumps in later and adds what could only be described as “heavy metal/thrash funk” though a bit “stiffer” with METAL bass and not some funky plucking ala’ your typical Funk music. Anticipating what’s coming next…

Wait, what’s that sound I hear, oh boy, it’s the sound of that freight train coming to run us over again, this time with a speed metal masterpiece they simple call “Whiplash.” That’s it, with my eyes bugged outta’ my head, I got up and put the needle back into the groove for a re-start and proceeded to play “Whiplash” a second time, you know, just to confirm what my ears just heard!


Now what’s a 16-year old pimply faced kid to do?

Without a doubt, put the record back in its sleeve + case and head on over to your buddies house and let them hear firsthand what you just had the aural pleasure to experience.

My friends basically freaked out as well when I played it over at their house. Especially since they were coming from more of a hard rock background. They probably had just finished listening to AC/DC‘s “Flick of the Switch” album before I stormed the gates with my newly found gem.

After a good 2-3 more spins of Side A (I’m not kidding), we finally braved side B. and were greeted with four more thrashin’ Metal tracks — my favorite being “Seek and Destroy”.

METALLICA swiftly managed to slide their way to the very top of my favorite Metal band list, knocking out the number one spot, which was held by none other than KISS for the longest (well, at least until I progressed into all things Heavy Metal that is).

*I made cassette tapes of this album for all of my friends and I would say about 90% were “converted” and ran out and bought their own copy on vinyl within the first few months of its release.

So there you have it, my first METALLICA experience, perfectly encapsulated in Metal history on this blog for your reading pleasure.


Part Two:

For the sake of space let’s fast-forward “the tape” to the following year: 1984.

rad new logo!

METALLICA is back with yet another slice of sonic mayhem, this time with “Ride the Lightning”.  With expectations running high for my favorite band, I fell in love with their latest “metallic” effort pretty much instantly and it was at this time their “crunchy” guitar tone was definitely considered “metallic” by most Metal folks.

The record starts with a somewhat (classically inspired) guitar intro and then blasts right into “Fight Fire With Fire”, holy crap! Just when you thought “Whiplash” would be their all-time fastest and or heaviest, these guys are back faster and on-point with a better production (albeit drenched in more reverb), a much heavier guitar sound and boy am I happy!

Next up is the title track “Ride the Lightning”, which displays a more mature band and their song writing skills have grown. They are not just all about speed or how fast they can play.

This is also clear with the great solo Mr. Kirk Hammett plays on this one. It starts off very melodic and majestic and then moves on to what will later be called “anthem-like” and then out of nowhere, right when you think it’s ending, he comes back and rips your head off! Kudos Kirk. As a matter of fact the entire band kicks it down at this point for the rest of the track, along with noteworthy double-bass beats from Lars. Then, they loop back around to the first part of the song. Love it! I could listen to that main riff on repeat and never tire. For me, this release moves them a step closer to their upcoming worldwide dominance.

I am not going to do a track-by-track rundown of this masterpiece as we all know (or you should by now) that every song is great. As a matter of fact, this album was able to knock out my favorite #1 album (i.e. “Kill Em’ All”) with relative ease.

Hetfield performing guitar-less (pic©)

Moving forward to the beginning of 1986 (March 3rd to be exact) and we have the highly, highly anticipated third release from the boys: “Master of Puppets”.

I slap the record on and we’re off to the races with yet another “trademark” METALLICA acoustic guitar intro. This time it’s a bit more Spanish-influenced. Then without much pause, the more technical riffage and drumbeat of “Battery” is upon us!

Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwe P-E-R-F-E-C-T.

Album number three is well worth the wait and I am delighted to hear what I will call “state-of-the-art thrash metal” from the title track “Master of Puppets”, as the middle break just oozes with class and musicianship. This is by far the most accomplished METALLICA recording and or track from this era. Totally original (well there is a hint of an EXODUS-ish riff running throughout the track), but if you check the credits for this song, Kirk Hammett’s name is listed and all well-studied Heavy Metal Kiddos know that Kirk was in fact an early member of that GREAT band as well.

This time around Jame’s vocals have also improved and are sounding more authoritative than ever!

My fav METALLICA release by far!

Up next is the slow-grinder “The Thing That Should Not Be” complete with its low-slung grinding as it just chugs along like a METALLICA “death-train.” I think this is one their best simple arrangements and for such a “catchy” metal song this is just simply HEAVY as hades! Cool drum parts by Lars too and this is one of my favorite METALLICA songs to bang out on thy drums. Oh yeah, Kirk incorporates a unique “whammy-bar” solo that fits like a glove.

“frontman” pic©

“Welcome Home (Sanitarium)” [with its obvious “Fade to Black” nod] is pure epic METALLICA class. It’s songs like this that made all the Metal bands at the time crap their pants. Yes, folks it’s that good.

It was also at this time they were influencing an entire generation of kids to play guitars, bass and drums just like their new-found Metal idols! And they did this with sheer talent, drive and best of all no commercial radio airplay, flashy MTV video (or even promo merchandise like KISS resorted too). This album also single-handedly raised the bar several notches higher in terms of over-all quality and playing in the genre of all things Metal.

With such a killer album and a near perfect Metal track-record for their three releases thus far, what was next on the horizon for METALLICA?


Thanks to the one and only OZZY OSBOURNE, it was time to take this beast of a band out on the road and straight to the Metal masses. METALLICA did embark on some tour dates before on their own but nothing like the exposure and number of dates that a major concert of this size could bring.

James, Lars, Ozzy, Kirk & Cliff 86′ pic©

In 1986 on “The Ultimate Sin” album/tour Sharon, Ozzy and Metallica headed out to rock [and Thrash] their many fans in the U.S.

Included in Ozzy’s camp was guitarist Jake E. Lee, drummer Randy Castillo (R.I.P.), bassist Phil Soussan and ex-Uriah Heep keyboardist John Sinclair.

Pretty damn rare these days (art ©)

1986 turned out to be a pain-in-the-butt year for Osbourne, as he was the target in the first of a series of U.S. lawsuits brought against him about lyrics in the song “Suicide Solution.”

You can probably guess that I was stoked that I was finally going to get to see my favorite band in the world and when I learned they were coming to my hometown (at the time) Evansville, Indiana—I was ecstatic! So I got my ticket, started to count down the days and began my plot as to how I was going to get to maybe meet the guys before or after the show.

The place where they were booked to play was called Mesker, which is an outdoor amphitheater that holds around 8,500 screaming fans.

You can get pretty close to the stage compared to most venues. Better yet, the bands have to load in their equipment to the left of the stage and to get there they have to drive in at the front gates and then they have to proceed down a huge hill to get to stage right. So the “plan” was to do some partying with my fellow Metalhead com padre’s and then head on over to the venue earlier in the day and catch them during their load-in and or sound check.

METALLICA was pretty young so I figured they would get bored rather quickly while having to stomach Ozzy’s road crew and or having to wait for them to set up in the hot sun and very humid July weather in the middle of the day. And there is basically nothing to do around that venue, so the way I looked at it was that we had them “trapped” if-you-will. Haha.

official ticket stub (thanks Pat)

If you have a look at the ticket above you will see that show time was 8PM, so we thought they would start their set up between like 10am – 4pm probably. By the way, did you see how much the show cost us? Yes, that’s right only $14.50 in-advance for OZZY and METALLICA.  Amazing how thing’s change!

Saturday morning rolls around and my buddy and I (Lenny was that you?) head on over to Mesker Park to try to “stumble-upon (har’ har’)” our metal idols and when we get there the usual concert set up was in-progress. Semi trucks were pulling in and out. Several tour buses were parked stage right and of course, it was July so it was hotter than hell outside. All sorts of banging, hammering and stage building was going on but what was odd was the fact that all we could see was Ozzy’s band equipment. No METALLICA amps, no METALLICA road crew running around and what puzzled us the most was no drum-riser for Lars and no drum rig in site?… hmmm. Perhaps we were too early?

early band shot (pic ©)

We hung out for a while, left and then got some breakfast (i.e. “brunch” for metal heads, as we stay up all night and sleep most of the day ya’ know) and then came back to a fully set up Ultimate Sin stage. This time the METALLICA M.O.P. crosses were onstage (thanks Brad -ed) as well as Lar’s “chrome” kit and the usual back line of amps were sitting around waiting to be pounded into Metal oblivion later. What we did hear was Randy Castillo (or someone on his kit) banging the bass drum beat to the intro from “The Ultimate Sin”, you know the boom, boom, boom…boom/boom/boom beat!

Knowing that it was starting to get late in the day, we decided to head on back home to get ready for the show and besides, we had to meet up with some other fellow Metalheads that were going with us for what (in our minds) was going to be the BEST damn show we’d ever have the pleasure of seeing!

Thx Mike J.

Thx Mike J.

It’s finally time to head on out to the show…

With expectations running high and butterflies in our stomach (well at least mine)  the countdown to METALLICA‘s set was starting to “tick.” When we arrived the place was the usual madhouse with people hanging out in the parking lots, kid’s running across the main street and lines starting to form around the ticket booth/front entrance, however I detected a weird aura that was in the air. I could not explain it, but something was up and not quite “right.”

Ozzy + Phil (pic ©)

*When we finally made our way up to the gate and got our tickets ready, we were hearing “rumors” that James Hetfield was skating down the large hill beside the stage and broke his arm or wrist earlier and that METALLICA was NOT going to play tonight!!

Arrrrrrrrrrgggggggggghhhhhhhhhh! WHAT? Your kidding me? All sorts of emotions danced over me, but the only thing that we could do was to stay in line and keep moving forward. Eventually, we made it inside and I immediately ran down to the front of the stage (like I always do) to stake my claim of prime front-row real estate.

After what seemed like ages, Lars and Cliff [R.I.P.] came out and they announced that METALLICA were in fact not going to be able to play but OZZY was going to play an extra long set to make up for it. Well, guess what…of course no one told OZZY that or he didn’t care and they didn’t play any more than their regular set.

Yikes, I guess my worst nightmare is now playing out right before my very eyes.

Some fans [rednecks?] were starting to get rowdy and there were definitely A LOT of upset fans. I would say probably 70% or more were there to see Hetfield and Co. As a matter-of-fact, most Metallica fans didn’t even stick around for OZZY’s set. Why they wasted their time setting up the METALLICA stage is beyond me, maybe they didn’t want any rioting. Either way, that was my first and only time seeing Cliff onstage.

 Pic Mike J.

Lars before OZZY show 1986: Pic ©Mike J.

Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, OZZY took the stage and they jammed and their performance was great especially Jake E. Lee as that guy can shred on guitar!

I kinda’ felt sorry for OZZY as it was not their fault but I do recall a lot of “M-ETALLICA”, “ME-TALL-ICA” chants earlier and during their set. I guess the “OZ” was finally able to calm (and or “cool” I should say) everyone down by throwing buckets of cold water on the packed crowd on this “almost-perfect” hot summer night in Evansville, Indiana.


Looking back after all of these years, I am still not quite sure why METALLICA [James] just didn’t suck it up and play with Kirk on guitar and let James just sing? I am not exact on the time-frame of the events leading up to this but I am sure he went to a local hospital (which is only about 10 minutes away from the outdoor venue). Of course he was probably experiencing some major pain, but come on, it was not life-threatening by any means (and I am sure they gave him some strong pain-killers). We’re talkin’ a broken wrist folks! Maybe James or Lars were too pig-headed and or wouldn’t allow the show to go on if one of them was not at the top of their game and or perhaps their ego’s would not allow it at this stage in their careers? Maybe it was too close to showtime and confusion ensued. Who knows…maybe someone close to the band will eventually read this blog post (and maybe even a member of METALLICA themselves — I’m dreaming now) and share their comments!




Click on thumbnails above for a larger view

After this date on the OZZY tour, I think they were forced to cancel a few dates and they recruited their guitar tech John Marshall (METAL CHURCH). I heard that he was asked to play on the SIDE of the stage on most of the dates he filled in for JH. I guess after he passed the “Live METALLICA test” then he was allowed to actually roam the main stage a bit (albeit in the background with Jame’s white Gibson guitar). I am sure it did not take that long as John is a really good guitar player and later joined METAL CHURCH a great Power-Metal band in their own right. As a matter of fact, they were even signed to Metallica‘s label at the time [Elektra] for several releases.

James with cast pic ©


I would love to hear any comments from readers on this interesting topic/historic event.

Type your comments below.

METALLICA hanging out one month prior to the (in)famous skateboarding accident in Indiana. Listen to what they say they like to do in their “spare time”. Hilarious!

*And a few months earlier on the “The Ultimate Sin” tour with OZZY.


*interesting excerpt from: (ilike that)

July 26, 1986

official culprit?

official culprit?

James breaks his wrist skateboarding down a hill in Evansville, Indiana, before a gig, but continues the tour singing. The band’s guitar tech, John Marshall, fills in. (Marshall later becomes a member of Metal Church).

James: “We told the management, ‘Hey, look we’re thinking about taking boards out on tour’…I thought he was going to go, ‘Oh shit, no way, you can’t.’ He just said, ‘Well, you break something, you still play.'”

Kirk: “Yeah, he said, ‘You break a leg on your skateboard, you play on stage with a broken leg.'”—Thrasher Magazine, 1986

“John Marshall has been our savior quite a few times. It pays if you’re a roadie to learn the bands songs, you could end up on stage.”—James H, VH1 Behind the Music

“James would run around the stage, just singing, with guitar parts mysteriously coming from nowhere. So after the first two songs, James would announce: ‘Obviously, I’m not playing; we’ve got this guy down here who’s playing guitar.’ I’d walk out and wave, then go back to my little hidden corner. [One night] Cliff would look over at me and go, ‘Get the fuck out here! Come out and play!’ Four gigs into the tour I was basically on the stage.”—John Marshall, Metallica Unbound

“The hard part was trying to match the vibe and intensity of James’s guitar playing. I knew how to play the riffs and song arrangements OK, but getting the feel right was difficult. It was also hard because the rest of the band follows his voice and guitar onstage. I think I was more worried about what the rest of the band thought, than what the audience thought.” ~John Marshall, Justice For All. The Truth About Metallica

Jamees broken


James with a broken wrist (source: Ilikethat).



Metallica 1986 “Damage-Inc.” Tour Dates

Date                  City,           State                    Venue

27/03/86     Wichita, Kansas             Kansas Coliseum
29/03/86     Oklahoma City, Oklahoma         Fairgrounds Arena
01/04/86     Kansas City, Missouri         Kemper Arena
02/04/86     St. Louis, Missouri             Keil Auditorium
04/04/86     Detroit, Michigan             Joe Louis Arena
05/04/86     Chicago, Illinois             Chicago Pavilion
06/04/86     Milwaukee, Wisconsin         Mecca Arena
08/04/86     Indianapolis, Indiana         Market Square Arena
09/04/86     Cleveland, Ohio             Richfield Coliseum
10/04/86     Erie, Pennsylvania             Civic Center
12/04/86     Johnstown, Pennsylvania         War Memorial
13/04/86     Syracuse, New York             War Memorial
14/04/86     Rochester, New York         War Memorial
16/04/86     Landover, Maryland             Capital Theater
17/04/86     Binghamton, New York         Broome County Arena
18/04/86     Bethlehem, Pennsylvania         Stabler Arena
20/04/86     Philadelphia, Pennsylvania         The Spectrum
21/04/86     East Rutherford, New Jersey         Brendan Byrne Arena
23/04/86     Providence, Rhode Island         Civic Center
24/04/86     New Haven, Connecticut         Coliseum
25/04/86     Worcester, Massachusetts         Centrum
27/04/86     Glenns Falls, New York         Civic Center
28/04/86     Uniondale, New York         Nassau Coliseum
02/05/86     Charlotte, North Carolina         Coliseum
03/05/86     Johnson City, Tennessee         Freedom Hall
04/05/86     Memphis, Tennessee         Mid South Coliseum
06/05/86     New Orleans, Louisiana         Lakefront Arena
08/05/86     Austin, Texas             Erwin Events Center
09/05/86     Houston, Texas             The Summit
10/05/86     Fort Worth, Texas             Tarrant County Coliseum
12/05/86     El Paso, Texas             Coliseum
13/05/86     Albuquerque, New Mexico         Tingley Coliseum
15/05/86     Denver, Colorado             McNichols Arena
17/05/86     Salt Lake City, Utah             Salt Palace Arena
19/05/86     Tucson, Arizona             Community Center Arena
20/05/86     Phoenix, Arizona             Coliseum
23/05/86     Tulsa, Oklahoma             Cain’s Ballroom
24/05/86     Cape Girardeau, Missouri         Arena Building
25/05/86     Chicago, Illinois             Aragon Ballroom
26/05/86     Des Moines, Iowa             Iowa State Fair
28/05/86     Minneapolis, Minnesota         Orpheum Theatre
29/05/86     Eau Clair, Wisconsin         Old Mill Expo
30/05/86     Davenport, Iowa             Coliseum Ballroom
31/05/86     Decatur, Illinois             Civic Arena
01/06/86     Omaha, Nebraska             Peony Park
03/06/86     Dallas, Texas             Bronco Bowl
04/06/86     Corpus Christi, Texas         Coliseum
05/06/86     McAllen, Texas             Villa Real
06/06/86     San Antonio, Texas             Majestic Theatre
07/06/86     Odessa, Texas             Ector County Coliseum
10/06/86     San Diego, California         Sports Arena
11/06/86     Las Vegas, Nevada             Thomas & Mack Arena
12/06/86     San Francisco, California         Spastic Children
13/06/86     Long Beach, California         Long Beach Arena
14/06/86     Long Beach, California         Long Beach Arena
15/06/86     Long Beach, California         Long Beach Arena
16/06/86     San Francisco, California         Cow Palace
17/06/86     San Francisco, California         Cow Palace
18/06/86     Sacramento, California         Californian Expo Amphitheatre
21/06/86     San Francisco, California         Ruthie’s (Spastic Children)
22/06/86     Seattle, Washington             Coliseum
05/07/86     Pihtipudas, Finland            Saapasjalkarock festival
06/07/86     Roskilde, Denmark             Roskilde Festival
11/07/86     Green Bay, Wisconsin         Brown County Arena
12/07/86     East Troy, Wisconsin         Alpine Valley
13/07/86     Hoffmann Estates, Illinois         Poplar Creek
15/07/86     Peoria, Illinois             Civic Center
16/07/86     Fort Wayne, Indiana             Fort Wayne Coliseum
17/07/86     Columbus, Ohio             Ohio Center
19/07/86     Battlecreek, Michigan         Wendler Arena
20/07/86     Saginaw, Michigan             Wendler Arena
21/07/86     Clarkston, Michigan             Pineknob Music Theatre
24/07/86     Cincinnati, Ohio             Riverbend
25/07/86     Louisville, Kentucky             Kentucky Fairgrounds Stadium

*26/07/86     Evansville, Indiana             Mesker Theatre
(James breaks arm before the show skateboarding. The show is cancelled!)

27/07/86     Nashville, Tennessee         Municiple Auditorium
29/07/86     Chattanooga, Tennessee         UTC Arena
30/07/86     Knoxville, Tennessee         Civic Coliseum
01/08/86     Charleston, West Virginia         Civic Center
02/08/86     Columbia, Maryland             Merriweather Post Pavilion
03/08/86     Hampton, Virginia             Coliseum
29/08/86     San Francisco, California         The Rock (Spastic Children)


John Marshall Rehearses with METALLICA


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*in order to transport you directly back to 1988 we will continue to keep the language in the posts “present tense” even though this is 2016.



UPDATE 2016:


NEW BOOK: Metallica: Back to the Front, the definitive story of Master of Puppets and the subsequent tour that followed its release, hits bookstores and online sellers on September 13, 2016!

*Hella-cool pictorial coffee table book.

Buy or die!

38 thoughts on “METALLICA Cancels Concert Tour Date!

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention METALLICA Cancels Concert Tour Date! « Demolish Fanzine --

  2. As far as I’ve read I think one of the band members said that John did not want to go on stage, but it was Cliff that told him to or more like made him. It was said he never wanted the spotlight I dont know how true it is, but I find it fair their cancelled a few gigs which they re-scheduled. I mean after all they werent the headliners anyway, so it wouldnt be expected for the demand to be so high. Though I personally agree with you to some extent I would be angry as hell myself, I couldnt catch if they came back to Indiana soon after.

  3. Mirela, thanks for the post.

    Yeah, I am sure filling in for James Hetfield in METALLICA is not an easy thing to do, so I guess I could understand being Mr. Marshall and being pretty damn nervous.

    Well, if the story is true and Cliff made him come onstage and be visible, then good for Cliff- he always seemed to be the most normal and or “down-to-earth” of the group. I always hated when bands “hide” keyboard players on the side of the stage and doing it to a guitar player is just plain silly IMO.

    Of course it was fair they canceled the show but I was 19 and they were my fav. band in the world, and look at all of those date(s), ours was one of the ONLY dates they did not perform. Depressing! 😉

    Did they come back soon after? ha ha,

    yes, years later in: 1989

    Rock on! Check out the rest of the blog if you like this post.

    Curt King
    Demolish Inc.

  4. I was at the show, i guess the only thing good about that night was when lars and cliff came out on stage and announced what happened, we got to see cliff at least, before the terrible accident. RIP Cliff Burton!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. nice to see a local “Eville” Metalhead on here! Yes, well of course things got much worse shortly thereafter for METALLICA when Cliff passed.

    That is another major suck factor on the canceled date as well.

    Thanks for the update, I changed my text a bit to reflect your post. I actually forgot they came out onstage to announce that. I guess I was having a “Metal moment” brain-freeze.

    But hey it WAS 24 years ago…yikes.

    King Curt
    Demolish Mag.
    Midwest HQ

  6. Pingback: Part III Top 25 of 1988: DEMOLISH Staff (Mike Cervantes) « Demolish Fanzine

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  9. This is one hell of an article, Curt! I was lucky enough to see the show at Poplar Creek just before this one, and this article really made me realize just how lucky I was!
    Thanks for sharing this well-written personal tale. I look forward to reading more from you here on Demolish!!
    Scott “Dr. Music” Itter

  10. Dr.

    wow, thanks for the feedback.

    Yes you were lucky my friend. We will never be able to see the original lineup ever again.

    Stay tuned for articles and “Metal Tales” like this!

    Rock on!

    Curt King

  11. Great article. Very in depth. Brings back a lot of good memories. Those were the days…


  12. i was supposed to see the Hampton, VA show but I think I was on restriction. haha. I hated Kill Em All when it first came out. Ride The Lightning was golden to my ears though. Master turned me off and I gave up on them after hearing the terrible AJFA. They were horrible on that tour. To this day I can only listen to Ride the Lightning…and Kill Em All in small doses.

  13. very nice article! I felt like I was really there again.

    I was there too, however I went to see OZZY!


  14. glad you liked it Scott.

    yup, I miss those “Metal Dayz” too…

    and that’s the METALLICA I will ALWAYS miss. They were never the same after Cliff.
    Yes, they put out some decent songs here and there -and yes, the “BLACK” album was great (but was a DIFFERENT beats altogether).
    Can’t beat their first 3 IMO.

    Rock on my friend,


  15. what is “restriction” Sean?

    wow, you hated Kill EM’ All at first?

    what were you listening to…)let me guess your THIN LIZZY albums and early PRIEST?) ha ha! 😉
    yes, “Ride the Lightning” was ear XTC in 1984. I interrupted so many house parties with that cassette!

    In a nutshell why did “Master” turn you off?

    Yes, I wrote them off after “And Justice” too.
    I like some of the “Black” album and listened a bit, but they pretty much fell off my Metal radar after that. Incl. “Death Magnetic”!

    King Curtis

  16. hi Sherri,

    so you were the OZZY fan?

    well I knew there had to be (at least)a couple of you!…just kidding.

    They rocked it and I started to relax after a few beers & when I realized I could not change what happened (and already paid for the ticket and showed up).

    I am awaiting 2010 update from OZZY’s bassist Phil S. at the time.

    Maybe he will something to say about it and or some more pics. I will update the post a supplement with anything newsworthy.

    Thanks for reading.

    Curtis King
    Demolish Lair

  17. wow, I loved the mention of USA’s NIGHT FLIGHT I absolutely loved that show & really wished that they would either repeat it or have DVD’s or something. Night Flight was my first exposure to so many cool things, amongst them crazy animations & the church of subgenius. Thank you so much for reminding me of this; I know this had nothing in particular to do with your overall post, but it gave me a pleasant moment of nostalgia.

  18. cool.
    I used to love that show (Night Flight) too.
    Wow, Rev. Bob Dobbs?!

    I am glad I was able to make you all warm n’ fuzzy inside and was able to make
    your “metal” moment of nostalgia a pleasant experience while in the friendly confines of DEMOLISH.
    Thanks for visiting.

    Curt King
    “Demolish Confines”
    Chicago HQ

  19. I first heard Metallica in 1985 when a local late night metal radio show played Fight fire with fire and I was hooked. Ride the lightning is still my favorite album. And Justice for all killed it for me though. It was a huge waste of time. I saw them in the summer of 1988 on the Monsters of rock tour and they were solid although the Scorpions came on later and blew everyone away.

  20. Cool you tube clip- Metallica still rock!

  21. wow, “Fight Fire With Fire” on the radio?

    it must have been a late night college radio station?!

    yup, “Ride the Lightning” just kills!!

    **regarding: “And Justice for All”, yeah it did me in too.
    I wish I could take back my Top 25 for 1988 though.

    I put Metallica at #1…… yeah I know yikes!

    I think I was just excited to get a pre-release promo from the band -since I had just got the zine’ started and it was quickly
    heading down the path of a “real magazine”, I was somewhat “star-struck” for the 1st time in my life when I received their FULL press kit.
    KING DIAMOND was to be on the cover with the feature story and METALLICA’s “And Justice…” was to be the largest, expanded review. ha ha!
    I just found my original (hand-written) notes for the review. All 8 pages of it – unedited, I don’t think I ever finished it once I listened to it all of the way through a few times.

    There were high-expectations on this release, and since they already put out my fav. METALLICA release = “Master of Puppets” prior, I guess it just took a minute to sink in.

    I mean where do you start, no bass?! ugh, that was a BIGGIE! then songs were super long, and just had way too many riffs per track. And the sound, I won’t even go there. I guess it was Lars and James in a loudness war for their own (self-produced) parts.

    I mean the LP is not terrible by any means, and I am sure there are many bands that would LUV to have that release under their belts, however
    we are talking about M E T A L L I C A.

    Anyway, we all live and learn I guess… thanks for checking out DEMOLISH and come back soon!

    Curt Kinger
    Demolish HQ

  22. yes – thanks!

    *I thought those were some cool old school clips! I MISS THAT Metallica.

    Have a look around at the rest of the blog – you might find some other Metal stuff you like!

    Take care,

    Metal Rules!

    Curtis King
    Demolish HQ
    Midwest, U.S.A

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  24. Touching on “Night Flight” from the USA Network just a bit… that was the first and only television music show where I saw Wendy O. Williams and The Plasmatics videos. Being a young lad then, well, my jaw hit the floor upon gazing at Wendy O. Williams and her, uh, eyes… I remember keeping the volume down on the television too, as to not wake my parents and catch hell.

    Maybe MTV did carry The Plasmatics videos after all? I just don’t recall that. In any regard, that was vintage Metal television… Night Flight.

    In Metal –


  25. Nice!
    I remember watching the show, but nothing in particular, other than the fact that it was on late night and I was really young + hungry for something hard rock or metal to watch.

    I preferred MUCH MUSIC from Canada with their Metal programming. I guess a Metal buddy had one of those old school satellites (you know the one that was gigantic and looked like something from NASA) and so
    we were getting a steady diet of: Rush, Voivod, Razor, Exciter, Sye,
    Anvil, Sacrifice, Triumph, Headpins, Coney Hatch, Helix and the “Metal Queen” herself, Lee Aaron!

    “MUCH MUSIC sure isn’t what it used to be, but again, neither is our current culture”

    P.S. I even got to see PILEDRIVER on that channel a few times! 😉

    Nice “metal” memory…


  26. I made the trek to the show that afternoon as well, and was sadly disappointed.

    When Cliff strode out in head to toe denim with a drink in hand with Lars and announced that James broke his wrist and that they had thought they might be able to play, but just would not be able to do it, a total collapse came over the crowd.

    There were some jeers too, and I recall Cliff taking one guy to task off mic.

    Ozzy didn’t come on for a LONG time, even after ‘tallica’s gear was struck from the stage, and he only played a standard set that many didn’t stick around for.

    Castillo’s drum solo was the most entertaining scrap of the night.

    As a side note, the Iron Maiden “Powerslave” show there on 06/08/1985 was the best concert I have ever seen.

  27. I was also at the infamous gig at Mesker when James broke his arm. I remember it, because I was so excited to finally see Metallica live and incredibly let down when Lars announced they weren’t going to play.

    I got completely hooked on the band after an acquaintance recommended them and I bought a tape of “Ride The Lightning” in 1985. I think “Ride The Lightning” was the only thing that helped me get through my crappy day at Mater Dei High School. All the kids at MD were into Van Hagar, so representing Metallica was iconoclastic, or so I thought at the time.

    Anyway, the night of the show me and a friend got there early, I bought my “Master of Puppets” tee and we found a decent spot about two-thirds of the way up in the metal seats. Then, of course, Lars and somebody I thought was Cliff (that was Cliff, huh?) came out and said James had broken his arm. Lars said, “but Ozzy is gonna play a lot longer …” and that is when the cup hit him in the face.

    The same guy that turned me onto the band later claimed he threw it. I believe him; he was the biggest Metallica fan I knew at the time — he had even scribbled “Metallica” all over his denim jacket.

    I finally did get to see the band at Roberts Stadium in 1989, but by then Cliff was gone and things weren’t quite the same.

  28. J,

    thanks for checking in and posting your story.

    yes, I was very let-down too that night too.

    *I am not a fan of Van Hagar either!

    I don’t think that is cool to throw *anything at artists on stage (i.e. empty/full cups or otherwise). I heard it was a bottle even.

    Either way, NOT cool and if it was your “friend” he is/was a d’bag for doing that.

    I cannot imagine wanting to take credit for throwing something at Cliff Burton (R.I.P.), who was one of the nicest people on earth.

    Take care,


  29. I can’t really say he was my buddy … but I was sorta in awe of him because he was the most metal person I knew at the time. I do owe him for turning me on to Metallica: That was a life-changing experience.

    I miss Mesker. They haven’t had metal shows there for years. Roberts Stadium still gets shows, but they’re usually pretty expensive and it’s usually the flavor-of-the-moment band. Louisville, however, is a great place to see shows.

  30. I liked this article about Metallica canceling their show in Evansville.

    Brought back memories of that night.

    I shouldn’t mention most of them, but the one I remember was after
    the concert, everyone is leaving and my car died right in front
    of the gates at Mesker!

    I couldn’t even put the car in
    neutral.This pissed the cop off along with a few hundred other people that were trying to get out…..That’s about all that I can mention……but I had a hell of a great time…

    even though I didn’t get to see Metallica….and Ozzy (in my opinion) sucked…and I’m a huge Ozzy fan.

    I felt like he played a shorter set than usual…it was as if he just wanted to get the hell outta there. I still had to get me a t-shirt though….

    Thanks for the memory.


  31. Obey your master MASTER !!!

  32. As of 08/18/2011 this special “tell-all” article has been around the world [and back a few times it seems] and has racked up over 30K views!

    Wow – I am glad you liked the personal story and once-in-a-lifetime Metal “event.”

    Let’s keep this story going — please forward to any family + friends who might be interested. Word-of-mouth is still the best form of advertising.

    Rock On…

  33. I was there, the only time I saw Cliff live. Buzz had worn off by the time Ozzy took stage. We did see a good show at “Monsters” when I ripped the fuel pump out on our way out of town. Lots of old a$$holes around us during Metallica (I guess they were there to see Kingdom Come). Scorpion’s Zoo was another great moment. How many One Ways did I violate trying to find a parking spot. Haha!

  34. I was in Evansville that night. I really regret not getting to see Metallica with Cliff. At that point Metallica was still relatively new to the “big time” , but we were all more excited to see them than Ozzy (buc c’mon…it’s Ozzy!!!!!). What an awesome tour…just wish we would have gotten to see the early Metallica.

  35. Hi Brad,

    Thx. for the comment and for reading the METALLICA post.

    Metallica - Evansville Indiana

    I still can’t believe they set up the drum kit and amp back line – knowing full well, they wouldn’t be playing!



  36. Great article! Definitely takes me back. I saw the next night of the tour in Nashville and Metallica was back onstage and sounded great despite James in cast. Man, they played a lot of dates in 1986! That was the only time I saw them with Cliff, later I saw them 3 times in 1988, 2 Monsters of Rock shows in the summer (Akron & Memphis), and 1 headline show in Nashville.

  37. I was at this show as well. Stumbled across this article looking for info on the skateboard injury. I left the next day on a bus bound for Daytona Florida and a guy got on the bus in either Nashville or Chattanooga with an Ozzy tour shirt on. I asked him if Metallica played and he said “yeah, his roadie played rhythm” I was like, …shit ! It’s kinda sad though, because I wanted to see cliff burton play and my only time seeing him on stage, he’s getting booed and coke cups thrown at him.

  38. Great article and man, to be able to go back to the 80s with the music and crazy live concerts. I was 13 at the time and remember walking from my house across Helfrich Hills Golf Course to listen to the soundcheck and remember hearing the bass drum pounding out the Ultimate Sin like you wrote about. The sound of that echoing across the hills and valley of the gold course is one I will never forget. Enjoyed reading it, and I run the Save Mesker Music Theatre site on Facebook. If you every have anything you want to post, please dont hesitate to hit me up.

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