The four-song instrumental outing is set for release this spring
Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett will be releasing his debut solo EP this spring. The four-song instrumental outing titled Portals will be released on Record Store Day exclusively at local record shops and independent retailers. It will be released physically on CD and as an Ocean Blue Vinyl EP (including a download card). A digital version will also be available.
“Initially, before I even had the idea for a solo EP, I was inspired by the need to create some sort of soundtrack music to accompany The Kirk Hammett Collection for the first ‘It’s Alive’ Exhibition at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts, 2017,” Hammett says of how the album came to fruition.
I wanted to conceive music to play on a loop in the background as people walked through the exhibit. I sat down one night with a progression, and before I knew it, all the parts were there for ‘Maiden and the Monster.’ The initial concept for Portals started with that one song. Following that, I realized I could create different soundtrack moments. These songs are what I call ‘Audio Cinematic’ – I’m creating sounds and pieces of music for the movies playing in my head. Hopefully they’ll create movies in other people’s heads in a similar fashion.”
True to its title, Portals is a collection of gateways to musical and psychic destinations. Recorded around the world, from Los Angeles to Paris to Oahu, Portals is the result of Kirk’s life’s journeys and an invitation to tap into your own inner world. Heavily influenced by classical music, soundtracks, horror movies, and maybe a little Ennio Morricone, Kirk wanted the EP to span the decades and touch upon all the horror he loves.
The idea behind the EP was to have all the songs flow into each other, so he relied on a whole cast of his friends to record the four songs.
Produced by Kirk, Portals is comprised of the songs “Maiden and the Monster” and “The Jinn” on side A, followed by “High Plains Drifter” and “The Incantation” on side B. The latter two were co-written with Edwin Outwater, who worked with Metallica on S&M2. Outwater also contributed keyboards and led the orchestral players from the LA Philharmonic on Portals.
Other familiar names Metallica fans will recognize on Portals include drummers Jon Theodore (Kirk’s fellow Wedding Band member) and Abraham Laboriel, Greg Fidelman on bass, Emmy-winning arranger Blake Neely, and Bob Rock.
Kirk Hammett: Portals 
- Maiden and the Monster
- The Jinn
- High Plains Drifter
- The Incantation