Metallica haven’t exactly been keen on their members branching out into new music projects, as evidenced by former bassist Jason Newsted’s desire to focus on his band Echobrain, which ultimately played a large part in his departure from the legendary metal group. However, in a new interview, guitarist Kirk Hammett says he’s sitting on a ton of solo material that he’d like release some day.
“I have so much material sitting around that’s obviously not Metallica stuff, and that pile gets bigger and bigger,” Hammett told Metal Hammer. “One of these days when it feels right… I still feel I have so much to give Metallica. When that feels more complete, maybe I’ll think about doing that other stuff.”
If and when that solo album appears, what should fans expect from the effort? Hammett says the type of music he would put on a solo album might surprise some fans.
“It would not look like a metal album at all,” he said. “It’ll be something so weird and far-ranging in styles, but cohesive at the same time. I wouldn’t be surprised if all of us did some solo, independent, autonomous sort of thing. I think it’s healthy, and if anything, when you come back to the band you’d come back with more enthusiasm. It’d feel like going on a little camping trip, and it’s always good to come back home to a nice warm bed!”
Switching gears to what the guitar means to him, Hammett says he can’t imagine his life without it.
“I live for playing guitar, loud and aggressive,” he said. “There’s such a therapeutic effect that happens to me, and it fills a huge gaping hole in my soul. It’s been the case since day one, and it’s still improving. I still don’t feel I’ve hit the summit; I have a long musical road to discover and experience.”
He added, “Musically I’m in the best place I’ve ever been, and I feel very fortunate. Some people peak right off the bat, then can’t pull off things they did when they were younger. I want to keep on going, never rest on my laurels, and always look forward.”