More than three decades after Kirk Hammett departed Exodus – the Bay Area thrash-metal group he helped found – to join a bunch of upstarts called Metallica, the guitarist has returned to his roots. For the first time ever, Hammett made a proper studio recording with the band, playing a bluesy, pyrotechnic solo on the charging “Salt the Wound,” which will appear on their forthcoming 10th album, Blood In, Blood Out.
Hammett described the recording as being “really casual, really cool” when he told Rolling Stone about the recording earlier this year. “I play a pretty cool solo, and then Gary [Holt] comes in and plays another solo, and you know what?” Hammett said. “I listened to that and thought, ‘Wow, it’s 1982 all over again and here we are, Gary and I are trying to cut each other’s heads off with our guitar solos.’ Nothing has changed much in the last 30 years. I love it. I love those guys. I’ve only known them for most of my life, so I’m really happy that I finally got to record with them.”
The only other times Hammett recorded with Exodus were on the group’s first two demos. “He was totally gung-ho about it,” Holt said in a statement about Hammett’s contribution to the song. “He came down and ripped out a bunch of takes, and we picked the best one and then had a barbecue and drank beer.”
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Blood In, Blood Out comes out October 14th and, in addition to Hammett, it features guest appearances by Dan the Automator and Testament frontman Chuck Billy. It also marks the return of vocalist Steve “Zetro” Souza, who had departed the band in 2004. A deluxe edition of the record includes a bonus DVD with a making-of feature and footage of the group playing Kirk Hammett’s Fear FestEVIL After Party at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con.
The album will also be available as a double-LP yellow vinyl release. The digital version will contain a cover of Angel Witch’s “Angel of Death.” The record is available for preorder now. Exodus will be hitting the road this fall, touring with Suicidal Tendencies and another band featuring Gary Holt, Slayer.
Additionally, Holt is set to appear on the September 10th episode of Bravo! TV’s Top Chef Duels. The guitarist, along with Rob Zombie and Anthrax guitarist Scott Ian, will judge a vegan competition.