In 2011, Metallica & Lou Reed released the very ill-received Lulu collaboration. Here is our in-depth review. Guitarist Kirk Hammett and drummer Lars Ulrich dug it, David Bowie dug it, and bassist Robert Trujillo says he knows that a lot of fans thought it was "crap." Given his participation in the album, it's not shocking that Lou Reed also liked the album, and was genuinely surprised when fans and critics alike beat the hell out of it in the press.
Ulrich tells Iggy Pop in an interview that Reed was bummed out over the reception of the album, and that he had to comfort Reed during the first month or so after the release.
Lars Ulrich: But it was hard for him because he was so proud of that record. He felt we had some sort of spiritual connection with him, and he kept talking about that, how we were finally the right band to back him up, how he’d been looking for decades for somebody with the power and so on. Then the record came out, and as you may know, some of the critics were not particularly…
Iggy Pop: And I know all about it.
LU: …particularly kind to this record.
IP: [Chuckling] Gotta love ‘em!
LU: Yeah. And he was, I mean, he was really hurt.
IP: Sure. Of course he would be.
LU: We’re pretty thick-skinned. We’ve been through ups and downs for years, and if we like something we’d done and we enjoy the experience, that’s what matters to us. But I think he was really saddened by the response to [Lulu] and I felt…it was weird. The roles changed at the end where I became almost more maternal to him, and had to like sort of comfort him through this very difficult month when the record came out and it just got fucking slammed, you know.
It sucks to see your art, something you believe in, ridiculed in the press, but at the same time Reed had been in the game for quite some time and saw something similar with his Metal Machine Music noise album in 1975 (whether he meant the album as a joke or not).
Plus, it's Metallica & Lou Reed. Not exactly two artists that needed to sway public opinion in their favor at that point in their careers.