is Metallica’s “S&M” the first symphonic metal album?

it brings me no joy to imagine an over serious music critic saying that symphonic metal sucks, like I bet at least one over serious music critic has done

symphonic metal good

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@bonzoesc I recall reading complaints about Metallica doing it because another band had done it first, but I couldn't remember who that was.
When I saw your post, I wanted to mention that band, so did a quick search for who it may have been.

This is the first link answering the question:

The takeaways here being:
1) No, Metallica wasn't the first. By a lot.
2) I still don't know what band that was I was initially looking for. 🤷🏼‍♂️

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