Metallica buys vinyl record factory in Alexandria

Eric Astor, president and founder of Furnace Record Pressing, says 1,700 units is considered an average run for his presses. (WTOP/Tiffany Arnold)

The iconic heavy metal band Metallica has purchased the Furnace Record Pressing factory in Alexandria, Virginia, according to a statement from shop founder and CEO Eric Astor.

With purchases of vinyl well surpassing CDs over the past few years, Metallica had already drafted the pressing company to provide thousands of vinyls. Since 2014, Furnace has produced more than 5 million vinyl LPs for the Grammy Award-winning band.

The announcement came as the Metallica shared plans to release their new album, “72 Seasons,” this April.

According to Billboard magazine, Metallica sold over 900,000 vinyl records in 2022 alone. Roughly half of those sales were in the United States.

Astor, who has run the shop for over 26 years, said the new ownership wouldn’t change too much about the business.

“While the ownership structure is changing, under the hood, everything stays the same: the same people, same spirit, same culture and the same never-ending quest to perfect our craft,” Astor said in a statement.

James Hetfield of Metallica said the band was excited to take their work “to the next level” alongside the Alexandria business.

“Furnace has been great to Metallica and more importantly to our fans,” Hetfield said. “This deepened relationship between Metallica and Furnace ensures that fans of vinyl everywhere, particularly our Fifth Members, will have continued access to high quality records in the future.”

In a joint statement, Furnace executives and owners agreed that their long term work with Metallica represented a continued, strong and necessary relationship.

“This partnership between Metallica and Furnace represents yet another example of the band’s unflagging commitment to artistic control of all aspects of its career, as well as its devotion to its fans,” the statement read in part.

Ivy Lyons

Ivy Lyons is a digital journalist for Since 2018, they have worked on Capitol Hill, at NBC News in Washington, and with WJLA in Washington.

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