Metallica - The Unforgiven



"The Unforgiven" is a power ballad by American heavy metal band Metallica. It was released as the second single from their eponymous fifth album Metallica (also known as The Black Album).


Though one of the slower tracks on the album, its chord progression is distinctly one of the heaviest ballads featured on the album. The song deals with the theme of the struggle of the individual against the efforts of those who would subjugate him.




The song has since spawned two sequels, in the form of "The Unforgiven II", from the album Reload, and "The Unforgiven III", from the album Death Magnetic.


Lars Ulrich explained that the band wanted to try something new with the idea of a ballad. Instead of the standard melodic verse and heavy chorus – as evidenced on their previous ballads "Fade to Black", "Welcome Home (Sanitarium)" and "One" – the band opted to reverse the dynamic, with heavy, distorted verses and a softer, melodic chorus, played with undistorted electric and acoustic guitars.


The opening section contains percussive instruments performed by Ulrich, and also a small amount of keyboards.



Lyrics


New blood joins this earth,

And quickly he's subdued.

Through constant pained disgrace

The young boy learns their rules.


With time the child draws in.

This whipping boy done wrong.

Deprived of all his thoughts

The young man struggles on and on he's known

A vow unto his own,

That never from this day

His will they'll take away.


What I've felt,

What I've known

Never shined through in what I've shown.

Never be.

Never see.

Won't see what might have been.


What I've felt,

What I've known

Never shined through in what I've shown.

Never free.

Never me.

So I dub thee unforgiven.


They dedicate their lives

To running all of his.

He tries to please them all –

This bitter man he is.


Throughout his life the same –

He's battled constantly.

This fight he cannot win –

A tired man they see no longer cares.


The old man then prepares

To die regretfully –

That old man here is me.


What I've felt,

What I've known

Never shined through in what I've shown.

Never be.

Never see.

Won't see what might have been.


What I've felt,

What I've known

Never shined through in what I've shown.

Never free.

Never me.

So I dub thee unforgiven.


[Solo]


What I've felt,

What I've known

Never shined through in what I've shown.

Never be.

Never see.

Won't see what might have been.


What I've felt,

What I've known

Never shined through in what I've shown.

Never free.

Never me.

So I dub thee unforgiven.


Never free.

Never me.

So I dub thee unforgiven.


You labelled me,

I'll label you.

So I dub thee unforgiven.


Never free.

Never me.

So I dub thee unforgiven.


You labelled me,

I'll label you.

So I dub thee unforgiven.


Never free.

Never me.

So I dub thee unforgiven.