Death Magnetic is the ninth studio album by American heavy metal band Metallica, released on September 12, 2008 through Warner Bros. Records. It was the band's first album to be produced by Rick Rubin, making this their first album since 1988's ...And Justice for All where the album was not produced by Bob Rock. The album received mostly positive reviews upon release, with critics describing it as a return to the musical style of their early albums.
Musically, Death Magnetic is a radical departure from Metallica's previous album, St. Anger, which featured no guitar solos and a more modern sound. This album, on the other hand, features very long, technical guitar solos from both Kirk Hammett and James Hetfield, marking a return to the band's thrash metal roots. It was also the band's first album released through Warner Bros. Records, although they still remain with Warner Music Group, which also owns their previous label, Elektra Records. Outside of North America, they are distributed through Universal Music Group as they remain signed to Vertigo Records in the UK. The album is also Metallica's fifth consecutive studio album to debut at #1 on the US Billboard 200, making them the first band ever to do so.