Metallica’s Lars Ulrich is 59 today. Yes, these guys sometimes seem to be jerks, and occasionally produce atrocities like the militaristic classic “Don’t Tread on Me.” But for noisy precision they are hard to beat. At one point in my life I had to drive about 120 miles to work at the beginning of each week, through insane northern Virginia traffic. There was no question about the kind of music I would listen to during these teeth-grinding sojourns; I called them “Metallica Mondays.”

So here they are performing “And Justice For All” earlier this year.

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Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.