Coming Soon: Illustrator Richey Beckett’s ‘Ktulu’



On September 10th, UK based illustrator Richey Beckett will release his second poster for metal legends Metallica. His ‘Ktulu‘ print celebrates the 30th anniversary of Metallica’s second album ‘Ride The Lightning,’ An illustration that returns to the heaving mass of rage and fantasy that the album worked in.

Beckett’s take on the instrumental ‘The Call of Ktulu‘ is as towering and in depth as the eight plus minute track it honors. This is the artist’s second illustration for Metallica and finds his work fitting alongside the classic illustrations of Pushead, who created some of the most iconic designs Metallica used from the ’90s on.

Beckett recently posted the photograph below of himself and James Hetfield meeting at the Reading Festival. As a fan of Beckett and Metallica, the image is a strangely proud moment — happiness that a piece of art can bridge so many gaps — be so many different things to so many different people. As someone who has met Beckett, his words on Hetfield can be said of himself — charming, thoughtful, and thoroughly inspiring.

This poster, or rather this piece of art, is of course about the anniversary of ‘Ride the Lightning‘ but it is also about us fans, those free-floating people who were so enamored with the music thirty years ago that it became a part of us. Who we are. We have grown with it and Metallica kept that spirit alive, and now Beckett captured it.



Richey Beckett (L) and James Hetfield (R) of Metallica with Beckett's 'Ktulu' poster.

Richey Beckett (L) and James Hetfield (R) of Metallica with Beckett’s ‘Ktulu’ poster.


From Richey Beckett’s Facebook — 

“This time last week I had the immense pleasure of being invited down to Reading Festival to meet up with the legendary @papa_het_

Having first discussed the idea of a ‘Cthulhu/Ktulu’ inspired illustration around two years ago, it was amazing to be able to present the finished screen print and spend some time with the great man, discussing illustration, artwork and silk screen methods.

It’s really reaffirming to see someone operating at this unprecedented level of success, over 30 years on, still paying such close attention to every small detail of how their band is represented, and continuing to support their passion for hand drawn artwork and inspired illustration in the world of metal.

It goes without saying that meeting James was a huge honour, and I’ll join the countless others who would declare him to be the charming, thoughtful and thoroughly inspiring individual that anyone would hope him to be. Topping off the day with their incredible mainstage performance, I feel truly blessed to be able to work with so many tremendous people. (Photo by @aperfectmonster, thanks!).”

'Ktulu' by Richey Beckett to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Metallica's album 'Ride the Lightning'

‘Ktulu’ by Richey Beckett to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Metallica’s album ‘Ride the Lightning’


‘Ktulu’ by Richey Beckett

 24” x 36” Six Color Screenprint on 100lb ‘Construction Blacktop’ French Paper

Printed by Burlesque Of North America

Limited Edition of 200. Signed, Numbered, and Embossed


'Ktulu' (detail) by Richey Beckett

‘Ktulu’ (detail) by Richey Beckett



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Previously on Evil Tender — Of The Dirt, Of The Wood: Interview with Artist Richey Beckett



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