Kirk Hammett – Portals (EP)

You are currently viewing Kirk Hammett – Portals (EP)

Year: 2022
Duration: 27.00
Label: Blackened Recordings

Many years ago James Hetfield said in an interview that “if a member of the band begins a solo project, it will be as if he reduces the power of METALLICA” explaining (and cutting off any discussion) why there had not been any solo projects from any member of the band. We had to reach 2022 in order to see a solo project from their guitarist Kirk Hammett, a very good EP called “Portals”. It is easy to realize that the opinion of Hetfield about this matter is completely changed since “Portals” was released by METALLICA’s Blackened Recordings (with their blessing apparently).

“Portals” consists of 4 instrumental songs and in about 27 minutes. Kirk Hammett lay in front of us his amazing talent that made him one of the best. His inspiration was an art exhibition he organized in 2017 in Salem. The first song of the album, “Maiden and The Monster” was the soundtrack of this exhibition and in my opinion it is the best of the 4 since it begins with a menacing atmosphere and it escalates to an amazing dynamic solo.  The second song called “The Jinn” is the most METALLICA song and in many parts it reminded me of some of their old songs. Also, it is the heaviest of all. The other 2 songs (“High Plains Drifter” and “The Incantation”) bare the signature of  Edwin Outwater who is the maestro of Symphonic Opera of San Francisco and participated in METALLICA’s S&M^2. So it is easy to figure out that their character is symphonic. Moreover they are dedicated to Ennio Morricone, the great Italian musician. Surely they do not lose their dynamic character that is highlighted by the amazing Hammett’s solos and by the almost cinematic soul (Hammett himself has stated that those songs are supposed to be soundtracks of movies that are being played in our minds).

What Hammett achieved (maybe only excluding “The Jinn”) is not to remind us his 40 – year old legacy in METALLICA. In my opinion he managed to fulfill the purpose of a solo album… give the chance to an artist to explore different music paths, remove him from his safety zone and lay before the audience his talent. Many people (myself included) do not choose instrumental albums easily. Nevertheless, this is an album that deserves to take its rightful place next to our collection of METALLICA albums as proof that a band can become huge only when its members are huge musicians! 

Rating: 7,5 /10
Editor: Kostas Boudoukos
Related Link: Kirk Hammett – Facebook Page

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