The Red Hot Chili Peppers' Flea inducted Metallica with a heartfelt tribute to late bassist Cliff Burton. "God bless Cliff Burton. He rules."
He also talked about their influence on his own thrash-punk past, about turning something miserable into something beautiful. He also made reference to throwing up devil horns.
The band itself seemed incredibly grateful for the honor. James Hetfield (with family in tow) had a smile on his face during Flea's entire speech. "Metallica are fucking rad," said Flea.
And Metallica proved it by taking the stage with former bassist Jason Newsted and kicking ass with its "beautiful ugly music" (as Newsted called it). But first, each member (and even Burton's dad) took time for super-sized speeches about how dreams can come true — especially the rock 'n' roll ones! (Best was Hetfield's shout out to a list of bands he digs, like Deep Purple and Thin Lizzy, and Lars Ulrich's dedication to the people in the balcony.)
The ceremony ended the went-into-overtime show with the expanded band onstage tearing through "Master of Puppets" and "Enter Sandman." —Michael Gallucci