According to Exclaim!, Metallica have received a cease and desist letter from Brutal Records‘ Michael Howard due to apparent similarities between “Moth Into Flame” and Opprobrium‘s (who were known as Incubus at the time) 1988 song “Hunger For Power.” You can read the letter below. On another note, it is worth noting that a separate email to Exclaim! also accused Metallica of stealing from Opprobrium on “Spit Out The Bone” as well, but that was not mentioned in the cease and desist letter.
Here’s the letter:
It has been brought to my attention, that you have made unauthorized use of my copyrighted work which is titled ‘Hunger for Power.’ Your work titled ‘Moth into Flame’ is fundamentally a close duplication of my work filed under the copyright of SR-130-298.
As you have not sought or requested permission/authorization to use, nor to make and/or distribute, sell, lend or lease my copyrighted work entitled ‘Hunger for Power,’ you are hereby notified to CEASE AND DESIST any and all further unlawful acts of copyright infringement with regards to your actions and/or statements relating to this matter.
Failure to comply with this notice will confirm your complicity and leave me no other alternative but to proceed to file a civil action suit seeking monetary damages and compensation for court and attorney’s fees incurred as a direct result of your unlawful actions of copyright infringement. It is not my wish to seek legal recourse; however, I will vehemently do all that is necessary to protect my work, ‘Hunger for Power,’ and interests. Please note that this letter will be the only warning I will provide.
THEREFORE, you are hereby requested to immediately CEASE AND DESIST any further acts of copyright infringement and within 10 business days return the signed written assurance below affirming that you will refrain from any further acts of copyright infringement.