PLAYBOY: But he could respect you by letting you release the album?
NEWSTED: We're getting really close to some things we shouldn't be talking about. I would like him to see that this music is truly a part of me, like his child is a part of him.
PLAYBOY: What did James say when you told him that you wanted to release the album?
NEWSTED: I won't go there. We have to change the subject.
HETFIELD: Where would it end? Does he start touring with it? Does he sell t-shirts? Is it his band? Thats the part I don't like. It's like cheating on your wife in a way. Married to each other.
PLAYBOY: So what is Jason supposed to do during the hiatus?
HETFIELD: I don't fucking know. I'm not his travel agent.
HAMMETT: I just hope we can survive this in one piece without tearing each other's fucking throats out.
PLAYBOY: Lars, do you think that Jason should be able to release his album?
ULRICH: I wouldn't be able to look him in the eye and go, "You can't put that record out." That's not who I am as a person. That's pretty much all I have to say. I just can't get caught up in these meltdowns. I've got some issues in my family life, with my wife, that are a little more weighty than, like, whatever James Hetfield and Jason Newsted are bickering over.
PLAYBOY: What if Jason were to put it out anyway?
HETFIELD: I don't know. I would disappoint me a lot.
PLAYBOY: How is the record?
HAMMETT: It's a great album.
ULRICH: It's a nice record, very bluesy, like a poppier version of Stevie Ray Vaughan's stuff.
HETFIELD: It's respectable.
HAMMETT: I've spoken with Jason for hours on end. I'm upset for him. James demands loyalty and unity, and I respect that, but I don't think he realizes the sequence of events he's putting into play. Jason eats, sleeps and breathes music. I think it's morally wrong to keep someone away from what keeps him happy. That album will always be available in some format - whether it's on Napster or in stores, people are going to hear it.
PLAYBOY: Wouldn't it be funny if Jason released his album on Napster?
HAMMETT: It would be fucking ironic as shit.
HETFIELD: I don't mind being looked at as the asshole in the band. Well, within the band. As long as the fans think Lars is the asshole, that's fine [laughs].
NEWSTED: James is on quite a few records: In the South Park movie, when Kenney goes to hell, James is singing, and he's on just about every Corrosion of Conformity album. That's a shot at him, but I'm going to keep it. I can't play my shit, but he can go play with other people.
HETFIELD: My name isn't on those records. And I'm not out trying to sell them.
PLAYBOY: You want loyalty and unity in the band, but if you're too much of a dictator, you can end up losing band members. We've got three words for you: Guns n' Roses.
HETFIELD: Those are three ugly words[laughs].They were a prime example of egos out of hand. We're definitely not in a Guns n' Roses situation. It would never get like that. I'd kill us all before that happened.