How Kirk Hammett Left Exodus

Louder Sound recently posted an interview with Kirk Hammett from Metallica, where he tells a story of him becoming a part of the legendary band. So the beginning of the story is so – Kirk was having his business on a toilet when he received a phone call and was asked to come to the studio.

In May 1983 the band was set to hit the studio and make their debut album but due to contradiction with then guitarist Dave Mustaine, who eventually got fired from Metallica, they needed someone to replace Dave. And they chose Kirk.

“I remember it was April first, Fool’s day, and I was on the toilet, you know. So I got that call from Mark, Metallica’s then sound engineer, he asked me to come over and play for the album. When the conversation was over and I hung up I couldn’t believe what just happened,” Hammett says in an interview. “Was that a joke? After all, it’s damn April Fool’s day. Anyways, two days later I received their tape, that I was supposed to listen to and learn my parts. The thing was that I already knew more than half of the material on this tape for I already had the tape and really loved it.”

At the time Hammett was a guitarist at Exodus but that fact didn’t hold him back and he immediately left Exodus for Metallica.

“I remember Exodus was changing its members around that time,” Kirk adds. “Bassist just left the band and we found another one and everyone could feel that change – dynamic was completely different.”

It’s mind-boggling to think of how lucky Hammett was and what how right and important that change is for him till this very day. Today he is one of the most respected guitarists in the world, having recorded ten albums with Metallica.

Fun facts about Kirk: for many years (claims to be from the age of six) he has been fond of science fiction and the horror genre and collects everything related to them: posters, posters, comics, cassettes, and disks with films. Even Kirk himself does not know how many horror films he has watched during this time, but surely a lot. It would seem that with such preparation, there is nothing to scare him, at least in this genre. His audience perception is so trained that he, in theory, can predict in advance where what will happen and be ready for anything, because the very concept of suspense for Kirk should have lost all meaning long ago. However, there are things that scare even a seasoned horror fan like Kirk Hammett.

“Sometimes I find it difficult to watch a horror movie, especially at night when I’m alone in a hotel room. I have a very active imagination and I can really get scared. ” – he says.

Therefore, Kirk prefers to watch horror films during the day, and his favorite time and place to watch horror films is the plane. Indeed, nightmares on the screen distract from bad thoughts and drive away from the fear of flying.

It’s okay to be afraid of scary scenes in horror films, according to Kirk, because that’s the way it was intended. At the moment of fright, a strong adrenaline rush occurs, and this is exactly what the director was striving for. And then, no one forces. It is much worse when something terrible happens in reality.

Anastasia Fetter

Anastasia Fetter