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Metallica-The Four Horsemen

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Published on Jun 24, 2008

"The Four Horsemen" is the second track on Metallica's 1983 album Kill 'Em All. The original song, called "The Mechanix", had different lyrics, and was written during the time when Dave Mustaine was Metallica's guitarist. After Dave Mustaine was ejected from the band, he included it on Megadeth's first album, Killing Is My Business... And Business Is Good!, with the title slightly shortened to just "Mechanix", with the original lyrics, and a much faster tempo. After he left, James Hetfield rewrote the lyrics and Kirk Hammett added a new, melodic guitar solo in the middle of the song. This section is not played when Metallica performs this song live.

"The Four Horsemen" is a definite fan-favorite song of Metallica, and is commonly played live by the band. The title also served as a source for one of the band's nicknames.

The lyrics, as the title suggests, are about the end of the world and the apocalypse. Referring to the biblical text about the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. However, many believe the song is about Metallica themselves as the "horsemen."



Lyrical Mistake

The lyrics (below) refer to the horsemen as Time, Famine, Pestilence and Death, however Time is not a horseman - however, [War] is.

Lyrics:
Time, has taken its toll on you
The lines that crack your face
Famine, your body it has torn through
Withered in every place
Pestilence, for what you had to endure
And what you have put others through
Death, deliverance for you for sure
Now there's nothing you can do




THE FOUR HORSEMEN

By the last breath the fourth winds blow
Better raise your ears
The sound of hooves knock at your door
Lock up your wife and children now
It's time to wield the blade
For now you've got some company

The Horsemen are drawing nearer
On leather steeds they ride
They've come to take your life
On through the dead of night
With the Four Horsemen ride
Or choose your fate and die

You have been dying since the day you were born
You know it's all been planned
The quartet of deliverance rides
A sinner once, a sinner twice
No need for confessions now
'Cause now you've got the fight of your life

The Horsemen are drawing nearer
On leather steeds they ride
They've come to take your life
On through the dead of night
With the Four Horsemen ride
Or choose your fate and die

Time has taken its toll on you
The lines that crack your face
Famine, your body it has torn through
Withered in every place
Pestilence, for what you had to endure
And what you have put others through
Death, deliverance for you for sure
Now there's nothing you can do

So gather 'round young warriors now
And saddle up your steeds
Killing scores with demon swords
Now is the death of doers of wrong
Swing the judgement hammer down
Safely inside armor blood guts and sweat

The Horsemen are drawing nearer
On leather steeds they ride
They've come to take your life
On through the dead of night
With the Four Horsemen ride
Or choose your fate and die

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