Metallica & CBS Radio put on the show that was Too Heavy For Halftime with “The Night Before” Concert


CBS Radio did what NFL’s Super Bowl 50 couldn’t do; they gave music fans great live music. With Metallica being a staple of the Bay Area and its music culture, they were the obvious choice to represent our area and play the Super Bowl Halftime Show. Unfortunately they were considered too heavy for the halftime show and the NFL went with lip syncing pop acts that crashed and burned with sound glitches and campy performances.

On a positive side, Metallica teamed up with CBS Radio to perform a full concert entitled “The Night Before” with a sold out show of over 40,000 attendees and a live internet feed going out to millions. This concert took place on February 6th at AT&T Park (the night before the Super Bowl hence the name) and far exceeded anything they could have done in the halftime slot. If Metallica wasn’t enough of a treat in itself, they also had Cage the Elephant as their support act doing a 45 minute set to open the show.


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The theme of “Too Heavy for Halftime” became a running theme all around the park as fans were wearing shirts with that slogan as well as it showing on the huge screens that were part of Metallica’s stage show. These screens (five in total) were several stories high and so massively wide to the point that there wasn’t a bad seat in the park.

Today’s show is so different from the early days when I would see the band performing at clubs like The Old Waldorf and The Stone in San Francisco to a couple hundred people. They might have perfected a spectacular stage show set for the masses but one thing that is the same as the early days, their commitment to playing their music their way with no apologies. The band plays loud, rhythmically tight, and weaving between their thrash metal and melodic side.


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The great thing about Metallica is they truly have become seasoned professionals. Vocalist/guitarist James Hetfield not only sounds great but he knows how to work a crowd. Guitarist Kirk Hammett was flawless in technique and definitely securing his place as a “Guitar God”. Lars Ulrich kept his double bass drumming tight and on point while having a great time behind the kit. Bassist Robert Trujillo is the newest member to the group. That is if you can still call almost thirteen years new. Robert plays the thundering bass with the fingering of a jazz musician with a metal edge. These four musicians know how to play off each other to make such a tight fitting group.

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Metallica stuck mainly to their earlier catalog of songs which wasn’t an issue since the fans knew all the songs. It would have been a treat to hear a song debuted but this really wasn’t an issue. Metallica tore through songs like “Seek & Destroy”, “For Whom the Bell Tolls”, “Creeping Death”, “Master of Puppets”, and so many more during their two and a half hour show.

Some people might believe that Super Bowl 50 which took place in Santa Clara at Levi’s Stadium was the main event, but music lovers in the Bay Area and around the world will say it was Metallica’s performance at AT&T Park “The Night Before”.

Thank you Metallica and CBS Radio.


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Metallica “The Night Before” Setlist


  • Creeping Death
  • For Whom the Bell Tolls
  • Fuel
  • King Nothing
  • Ride The Lightning
  • The Unforgiven
  • The Memory Remains
  • Welcome Home (Sanitarium)
  • Sad But True
  • Wherever I May Roam
  • One
  • Master of Puppets
  • Battery
  • Fade To Black
  • Seek and Destroy


  • Whiskey in the Jar
  • Nothing Else Matters
  • Enter Sandman


Metallica Photo Gallery

(click photo to enlarge)


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Mayhem Music Magazine