And in typical Ulrich fashion, he's talking about boldly going where no band has ever gone before (speaking of 'treks').
"We're booked up through August of next year, and right now we're sort of laying out fall of '09 and the spring of '10," Ulrich tells Rolling Stone. "We're waiting for a few other countries to be actually formalized as nations so we can be the first band in. We're also waiting for the polar caps to stabilize so we can go play there. There's talk about some other planets too."
Until those massive shifts in global politics and meteorological conditions take place, Metallica will have to contend themselves with playing standard-issue arenas. Doing so in the round, as they have on past tours, keeps the shows interesting.
"We're right in the thick of it in the middle of the arena," says Ulrich. "It completely exposes every nuance and that adds a real tone of vitality and excitement."
Keeping it old school
While the band is playing new songs from Death Magnetic, Ulrich says Metallica are keeping most of the set old school with classics such as Master Of Puppets and One. They even have what they refer to as the 'reach for the car key' cue:
"We've probably ended our last 200 shows with Seek And Destroy," he says. "Having a bit of predictability at the end gives people the chance to start thinking about putting their coats on and remembering what fucking parking lot they were in."
And to think, Metallica aren't just an ear-crushing band, they're a courteous one too.