Heavy Metal Business Intelligence: A Visual Data Exploration of Metallica's 30 Years on the Road

Little Data Project of mine that has grown considerably since it was launched. Here are all my Tableau visualizations for Metallica Touring and Song Metrics (or whatever you want to call them). It's a big data mash-up built and maintained using Python scripts, Microsoft SQL Server, Excel, some manual research, data warehousing and (of course) Tableau Public - but I'll keep all the tech-y stuff for a different page, this one is all about the data.

UPDATE: I'm "Smart Filtering" by visitor country using dynamic Tableau parameters now. Looks like you're from United States. If that's all you want to see, then please check out the "Shows in Your Country" page below for United States shows!

"Bay Area Thrash since 1981""

In the above dashboard you can see a VERY high level overview of Metallica's live career. If you click on a point on the line graph it will change all the other windows to align with shows from that year.

NOTE: All these reports are constantly changing and being added to, this is my attempt at organizing some of them in a more "visual" way so that the more standout and newest reports will be easy to find.

For other Metallica analytics, reports, setlists and views - see below

Song Trending Over Time

Interactive graph showing song trending over time, sliced by album (with calculated trend lines). Note: Only songs that were actually played will show up.

Member Timeline

Simple interactive timeline (in gantt chart form) of the different Metallica members and their time with the band.

Historical Setlist Analysis

Interactive graph and cross-tab showing the songs that were performed at a particular show, as well as the historical breakdown of each song. Percentile, probability, and literal "rarity" of that song on that night (based on all previous shows before that night - more info about the calculation here; geek alert).

Shows in United States (Your Country)

Map of shows (by city) in your country. If your country was incorrect, or you just want to browse the globe, use the "Country" drop-down to change focus.
("your country" calculated by ip address, so it might not be 100% correct in all instances)

Song Frequency

Interactive chart showing how many times each song has been played over Metallica's history of live shows. Filterable by Album, Tour and / or Year of show.

Visual Setlist Analysis

A work in progress - this data will be in a much more useful and user friendly report soon. A drill down map in order to filter to a specific list of shows at a venue. Percentiles calculated for each song on the setlist, showing the "rarity" of that song at that point in time. (For a better explanation see this post on the calculation that was done)

Setlist Analysis of Last Show

Another work in progress Setlists analysis of the last show Metallica has played. Percentiles calculated for each song on the setlist, showing the "rarity" of that song at that point in time. (For a better explanation see this post on the calculation that was done)

Band Time Spent Playing

Interactive cross-tab showing (hypothetically) how much time Metallica has spent playing each song on stage during their live careers.

Shows in US by State

Shows in the US over the years, by state. Filterable by Year of show and Tour name.

Shows in United States

Showing only the shows that took place in your country, United States (by city). Country code figured out automatically using you ip address.

Looking for Metallica shows in Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Panama, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, The Netherlands, Turkey, UK, USA, Venezuela?

Even More Metallica Reports, Setlist, Analytics:

  • Torleif Småback

    Sweeeet :) Damn Cool!

    • Ryan Robitaille

       Thanks man, you should check out all the new pages – gotta say that “Song Trending” one is my current favorite.
      Cheers! :)

      • Torleif Småback

        Cool :) Thanks

  • Greg

    Awesome ! Pretty good job ! You could count Kirk’s missed notes aswell :D

    • Ryan Robitaille

       Hah, you could def chart that by tour / year too! :)

      • Ryan Robitaille

         Or a chart showing the amount of Jägermeister consumed per year. heh.

  • Andrzej Chrystyniak

    Awesome work!

    • Ryan Robitaille

       Thanks! Glad everyone is digging it!

  • OMG I AM PK!!!

    Wow! That’s the perfect combination of metal and nerdy! I love this!

    • Ryan Robitaille

       Hah, thanks! That’s pretty much what I was going for! :)

  • Gautam

    This is spectacular!

    • Ryan Robitaille

      Thanks Gautam! Should be adding more stuff soon.

  • Generaljames


  • Alvaro Villarroel

    You can gYou can give me this metallica datasource in excel, for my training in tableau desktop?ive me this metallica datasource in excel, for my training in tableau desktop?

  • Jeremiah Malich

    Do you have a way to select what shows you attended and then see a break down of how many times each song was played within those shows?

  • Adrian

    Cool….do you use anything more than Tableau?

  • Gianca

    That’s cool! Any text mining analysis on Metallica lyrics?