Metallica, a blockbuster metal group, returns to headline at Hellfest, a festival in Clisson (June 27 to 30), a town in Loire-Atlantique that has become a flagship event for extreme music in Europe.
“You made us good,” greeted the leader of the Californian quartet James Hetfield in June 2022, addressing the public in the middle of the vineyards, not far from Nantes, during the group’s first appearance at the festival. The singer and guitarist promised that Metallica would return. The lives of the founding members, Hetfield and Lars Ulrich - the first is 60 years old, the second soon - changed in 1991 with the release of the Black Album, the group's fifth, which allowed them to reach the general public, with hits like Enter Sandman and Nothing else matters.
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The group is now part of pop culture. Master of Puppets (1986) was even included in the soundtrack of the series Stranger Things. Always productive, Metallica released the album 72 seasons this year.
For its 17th edition, Hellfest will line up nearly 180 groups in 2024. Among the most anticipated, the Foo Fighters - group of Dave Grohl, former Nirvana drummer who became singer and guitarist here -, The Offspring, Queens of the Stone Age, Body Count (led by Ice-T) and Tom Morello, escaped guitarist from Rage Against the Machine.
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Director of the festival, Ben Barbaud, was sentenced last spring to eight months in prison and a fine of 20,000 euros for breach of trust, accompanied by a "ban on presiding over an association for five years" during a court procedure. appearance on prior admission of guilt (CRPC), held behind closed doors on April 19 before the La Roche-sur-Yon court.
According to Ouest France, the former president of the festival “would have bought wine (...) but also works of art” for an amount of around 300,000 euros. “The cash advances subject to the procedure have been reimbursed in full,” according to a press release sent to AFP by the Hellfest organizing association.