Welcome Home (Sanitarium) is a song in Metallica's third studio album, Master of Puppets as well as a single. It was Metallica's second ballad, after “Fade To Black”. Like “Fade To Black” and Metallica's following ballad, “One”, “Welcome Home (Sanitarium)” starts out with a slow guitar, with the drums coming in, then James Hetfield's vocals kicking in. Like the other ballads, the chorus are distorted and heavy, and soon return back to the sad and slow guitar part. However, the ending part, like “Fade to Black” and “One”, is fast-paced and heavy, with Hetfield angrily yelling about his pain and then Kirk Hammett performing a solo. All of the vocals also have an eerie echo effect throughout the song (possibly to emulate being trapped).
The song is presumably about a man who is trapped in a "sanitarium", which in this song is described as a mental asylum. He dreams of breaking free, and later in the song, there seems to be a mutiny of some sort in which the people trapped in the sanitarium rebel against the officials of the sanitarium, and James says he has "got some death to do" and that it "seems the only way of breaking free", probably implying that he is likely to kill the officials and break free.
- ”Welcome Home (Sanitarium)” was inspired by the book One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.
- The time signature was 10/4 at the beginning, then 4/4, 10/8, then finally back to 4/4.
Welcome to where time stands still No one leaves and no one will Moon is full, never seems to change Just labeled mentally deranged Dream the same thing every night I see our freedom in my sight No locked doors, no windows barred No things to make my brain seem scarred Sleep my friend and you will see That dream is my reality They keep me locked up in this cage Can't they see it's why my brain says "rage" Sanitarium, leave me be Sanitarium, just leave me alone Build my fear of what's out there Cannot breathe the open air Whisper things into my brain Assuring me that I'm insane They think our heads are in their hands But violent use brings violent plans Keep him tied, it makes him well He's getting better, can't you tell? No more can they keep us in Listen, damn it, we will win They see it right, they see it well But they think this saves us from our hell Sanitarium, leave me be Sanitarium, just leave me alone Sanitarium, just leave me alone Fear of living on Natives getting restless now Mutiny in the air Got some death to do Mirror stares back hard Kill, it's such a friendly word Seems the only way For reaching out again