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Metallica Guitarist Kirk Hammett Releases Debut Solo EP 'Portals'

Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett has released his first solo EP: Portals.

A four-song instrumental project, Portals marks the first time a member of Metallica has released a solo project while remaining in the band. In a Rolling Stone interview, Hammet said he was “shocked” he got the band’s blessing to release the EP, but attributed it to being "older, wiser, and more mature."

On the project, Hammett worked with Edwin Outwater — the conductor of the S&M2 concerts — and longtime Metallica producer Bob Rock. While Hammett offers his signature electric guitar riffs on the EP, the music is certainly not Metallica material. Portals indulges Hammett's classical tastes.

Besides releasing an EP, Hammett has also dropped the music video for the Portals song "High Plains Drifter." With direction and artwork by AWESOME + modest, the visual has the viewer getting sucked through a smoky vortex of different images.

"The music for ‘High Plains Drifter’ initially came from a Flamenco piece I had written," Hammett remarked in the video's description. "It was a two-and-a-half-minute piece, and I really liked it, but it was one of those riffs that would be hard to integrate into Metallica. I knew I wanted to do something with it, even though it came out spontaneously. I had been sitting outside messing around with a Flamenco acoustic guitar I’d just bought, and it flowed out in the moment. I was determined it would have a life. It would have its moment."

You can buy and stream Portals here.

Watch "High Plains Drifter" below.

Check out our selection of free stations streaming Metallica music at

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Article Image: Kirk Hammett playing electric guitar at a concert in 2010 with Metallica. (gregorylee via DepositPhotos.)

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About Kathryn Milewski

  • New Jersey