The rock band Metallica has a new bill that would allow it to record new material without having to go through a recording studio, as well as get rid of the requirement that it first get approval from a public-relations firm.
The bill was introduced Wednesday by Rep. Jim Moran (R-Va.) in a letter to President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence, who signed it Thursday.
The legislation would allow Metallica to do as it pleases, including record and perform with a live band, and it would allow the band to use live instruments without requiring permission from a recording company, the letter said.
Moran said the bill, which is now on the House floor, is an effort to keep fans engaged and protect them from the potential of being sued by record labels.
“This legislation does not require Metallica or any other band to be a member of a union, but instead creates an alternative for bands to have the flexibility to continue to operate without having a union attached to their music,” Moran said in a statement.
“The bill also makes clear that bands that are not members of a public relations firm are exempt from the requirement for a studio, and thus can continue to use the facilities and equipment of record labels.”
Metallica’s record label, Capitol Records, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Moran’s bill would require all recording studios to use a live orchestra, a percussionist, a drummer and a guitarist for at least three concerts.
The House would also create a “public-relations office” to coordinate with record labels to ensure they are not being sued.
Moran, who represents parts of western Virginia and Northern Virginia, said the new legislation could also help the rock band stay focused on the music.
“With this legislation, we can finally have the kind of freedom that we’ve always wanted to enjoy as a band,” Moran told reporters Thursday.
“It will also ensure that we have a band that has a purpose, that’s going to make music that we love, that we feel proud to be associated with.”
The bill is expected to pass the House in the coming days and will be debated in the Senate on Friday.
The band has been without a record deal since 2015, when it went into bankruptcy after losing a lawsuit over its use of a “Death Magnetic” song.
It had been recording music under a licensing deal that expired in February 2018, and had hoped to begin work on new material soon.
The group announced that the project was dead in June 2018, after months of speculation about a new album.