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Kill em All (album).jpg

"Whiplash" is a song by American heavy metal band Metallica.


It is credited to James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich and was the sixth track and first single from their 1983 debut album Kill ‘Em All. The song has been covered several times, most notably by Motörhead whose version won a Grammy Award for Best Metal Performance. After bassist Jason Newsted joined the band in 1986, Jason sang the second and third verse. In 1999 and 2000 he did the entire song twice when James Hetfield had a back injury.

The song is about the feeling one experiences when headbanging. ("...thrashing all around, acting like a maniac, whiplash!..") The song is on the game Guitar Hero: Metallica.

The song is also notable for having three F-bombs.


  • Motörhead (who have been cited by Metallica as a major influence) covered this song for the Metallica tribute album Metallic Attack: Metallica - The Ultimate Tribute and won their first Grammy in the awards of 2005 in the Best Metal Performance.
  • Whiplash is also on Tony Hawk's Underground 2.
  • It was covered by Billy Milano, Scott Ian, Philip Soussan, and Vinny Appice for Metallic Assault: A Tribute to Metallica.
  • Pantera, using the joke name "Pantallica", performed the song live with Jason Newsted on bass, and members Dimebag Darrell (guitar) and Philip Anselmo (vocals) switching roles.
  • Destruction covered this song for a Metallica tribute album, and released it on some editions of their album All Hell Breaks Loose as a hidden bonus track.
  • Stone Gods covered this track on their Knight Of The Living Dead tour.


  • ”Whiplash” was first performed live on October 23, 1982, in Fullerton CA.
  • ”Whiplash” has been played live 856 times, making it one of Metallica's most played songs.
  • Normally Live James will change the lyrics from "Because we're Metallica" to "Because you're Metallica" as a tribute to the fans and thank them for making Metallica one of the biggest bands in the world.



    Late at night, all systems go
    You have come to see the show
    We do our best, you're the rest
    You make it real you know
    There is a feeling deep inside
    That drives you fuckin' mad
    A feeling of a hammerhead
    You need it oh so bad
         Adrenaline starts to flow
         You're thrashing all around
         Acting like a maniac
    Bang your head against the stage
    Like you never did before
    Make it ring, make it bleed
    Make it really sore
    In a frenzied madness
    With your leather and your spikes
    Heads are bobbing all around
    It's hot as hell tonight
         Adrenaline starts to flow
         You're thrashing all around
         Acting like a maniac
    Here on stage the Marshall noise
    Is piercing through your ears
    It kicks your ass, kicks your face
    Exploding feeling nears
    Now is the time to let it rip
    To let it fucking loose
    We are gathered here to maim and kill
    'Cause this is what we choose
         Adrenaline starts to flow
         You're thrashing all around
         Acting like a maniac
    Here we go
    The show is through, the metal is gone
    It's time to hit the road
    Another town, another gig
    Again we will explode
    Hotel rooms and motorways
    Life out here is raw
    But we'll never stop
    We'll never quit
    'Cause we're Metallica
         Adrenaline starts to flow
         You're thrashing all around
         Acting like a maniac


Kill em All (album).jpg
Kill 'Em All
Songs Hit the LightsThe Four HorsemenMotorbreathJump in the Fire(Anesthesia) Pulling TeethWhiplashPhantom LordNo RemorseSeek & DestroyMetal Militia
Bonus Tracks Am I Evil?Blitzkrieg
Members James HetfieldLars UlrichKirk HammettCliff Burton
Guitar hero M.png
Guitar Hero Metallica
Songs For Whom the Bell TollsThe UnforgivenNothing Else MattersEnter SandmanKing NothingSad But TrueNo Leaf CloverOrionFade to BlackThe Memory RemainsWherever I May RoamWelcome Home (Sanitarium)FuelFranticOneAll Nightmare LongHit the LightsMercyful FateSeek & DestroyCreeping DeathMaster of PuppetsBatteryThe Shortest StrawWhiplashDyers EveDisposable HeroesFight Fire with FireThe Thing That Should Not BeBroken, Beat & ScarredCyanideMy Apocalypse
Featured Band Songs Turn the PageTuesday's GoneAm I Evil?Stone Cold Crazy