This past weekend, Denmark celebrated Crown Prince Frederik's 50th birthday with a televised gala at the Royal Arena in Copenhagen. At first glance, the program, helmed by pop band Lukas Graham and singer Oh Land, didn't seem too metal (certainly not when coupled with the guest list, which included royals from all over the world). That all changed further into the night, when an 11-year-old choirboy named August took the stage for a haunting, left-of-field interpretation of Metallica's "Black Album" ballad "Nothing Else Matters."
For his performance, August was joined by a full choir, dance troupe, a longhaired guitarist in a Ramones tee, a drum group and even a harpsichordist. He held on to a balloon for most of the cover, before releasing it upon the final chorus: a subtle stage move, but a dramatically effective one nonetheless, even with the Balloon Boy flashbacks.
Lest the inclusion of a tune by the California thrashers seem off-theme, it's worth pointing out that Metallica have ties to the crown by way of Lars Ulrich, their Denmark-born drummer, who was knighted just last June by Crown Prince Frederik himself.
Below, watch Metallica tear through their classic Master of Puppets cut "Disposable Heroes" live at the 2013 Revolver Golden Gods: