On the newest episode of The Metallica Report podcast, James Hetfield answered fan questions and named one new band he’s heard that has him really excited — Category 7.

It’s a new band with a lot of familiar faces, including one member who was once asked to join Metallica decades ago. And even though Category 7 is full of some of Papa Het’s pals, he wasn’t aware of them until he caught them on the radio, so his initial reaction was an unbiased one.

Regarding how he keeps up with new music, the Metallica frontman explains, “I flip through Sirius a bunch. It’s just so easy to go on to your playlists and listen to the same stuff over and over. If I’m not listening to the radio of some sort or someone else is in control, I’m not learning new stuff so much.”

It appears that Hetfield tries to maintain some sort of organic method of music discovery, adding, “I don’t like getting caught in that rabbit hole of, ‘If you like this, you might like this.’ Sometimes that works, sometimes it doesn’t. That’s a computer telling me what I might like.”

He goes on, “Listening to the radio, I guess the newest thing that I was surprised by and really made me smile was Category 7, a band that is kind of a collaboration of a few people. I was listening to it going, “That voice is awesome and it sounds very familiar.'”

That singer is a metal veteran who Metallica made a failed attempt to secure as their lead singer. He’d later go on to front a different ‘Big 4’ thrash band — Anthrax.

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“It was freakin’ [Armored Saint singer] John Bush, our singer we never got,” Hetfield laughs.

“Brian Slagel [Metal Blade] has signed them. I heard one song on the radio and that’s it and it was great. It was really good,” he beams.

New Band, Old Friends — About Category 7

Category 7 are a new band comprised of metal vets.

Their self-titled debut comes out July 26 and pre-orders can be placed at the Metal Blade webstore.

See who is in the band and watch the music video for the first single “In Stitches” below.

Rock/metal band Category 7

Rob Shotwell


John Bush (Armored Saint, ex-Anthrax) – vocals
Phil Demmel (Kerry King, ex-Machine Head) – guitar
Mike Orlando (Adrenaline Mob) – guitar
Jack Gibson (Exodus) – bass
Jason Bittner (Overkill, Shadows Fall) – drums

Category 7, “In Stitches”

Category 7, Category 7 Album Art + Track Listing

Category 7, ‘Category 7’ album cover

Metal Blade


01. “In Stitches “
02. “Land I Used To Love “
03. “Apple Of Discord “
04. “Exhausted “
05. “Runaway Truck “
06. “White Flags & Bayonets “
07. “Mousetrap “
08. “Waver At The Breaking Point “
09. “Through Pink Eyes “
10. “Etter Stormen “

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