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Capitol RecordsDoes anyone still care about Metallica? Apparently, yeah—this show is sold-out, so says our latest TicketBastard check. By now, though, the people who buy tickets to a Metallica gig are going strictly so they can hear tunes from the band's '80s canon and maybe a few off the "black" album of '91. Those were them good-ol' garage days, before the haircuts and the movies and the tinny drums and the whoring to KROQ (trust us—the sentence "God, I hope they play a ton off Re-Load tonight!" will be uttered only in pained irony at the Pond Saturday). Like REM, the 2004 model Metallica are locked in a strange limbo of still being a successful touring unit, even though they haven't put out a meaningful album in eons (inevitable next stop: package tours with Great White and Dokken!). It's sad, but age sometimes does that to once-great bands, even ones that have their genesis right here in OC—James Hetfield went to Brea-Olinda High, while Lars Ulrich went to Back Bay High. So find a scalper and go for the museum-pieceness of it all—even if the set's mediocre, it'll still be a story to impress the grandkids with someday. (Rich Kane)

Metallica at the Arrowhead Pond, 2695 E. Katella Ave., Anaheim, (714) 704-2400. Sat., 7:30 p.m. $55-$75. All ages.


Everything to Everyone

Art Alexakis is a complete douchebag asshole—so says a friend of ours who interviewed him once. Maybe that's true, but as long as we don't have to hang out with him, we'll still like the guy. Or at least admit to liking—nay, loving, with no shame—the gorgeously fuzzed-up, anthemic, lush guitar pop he's made over the past 10 years as the leader of Everclear, who were nothing less than the Cheap Trick of the Clinton Era, only with smarter, deeper lyrics about heroin girls and Volvo-driving soccer moms. Oh, and "Santa Monica," their big smash from '95, the one everyone thinks is called "Watch the World Die." And a bunch of other radio hits and near-misses, most of which are collected on their new best-of disc. As with any compilation a still-active band puts out, the hits package feels like the end of something, and it is—drummer Greg Eklund and bassist Craig Montoya, who rounded out the trio, left earlier this year (did they jump or were they pushed?), so Alexakis has pulled a Chrissie Hynde, keeping the name but touring with other people. Is the newfangled Everclear still worthy of our affection? Dunno, but we're sure as hell curious. (RK)

Everclear perform at the House of Blues, 1530 S. Disneyland Dr., Anaheim, (714) 778-2583. Thurs., Dec. 2, 8 p.m. $26. All ages (16 and under must be accompanied by guardian).


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