The guitarist was discussing some of the difficult experiences the band members have been through over their 39-year history. Hammett has been a part of the lineup for all but two of those.
“We’ve definitely survived so much and have become brothers,” Hammett told the Daily Star in a new interview. “We love one another, even if we sometimes hate each other as well. But that’s the way it is with brothers. We realize that we are bound to one another for the rest of our lives.”
He pointed out that the he “could say I’m leaving Metallica. And then what? Everyone would look at me and say, ‘Hey, that’s the Metallica guy.’ So, I could physically leave the band, but emotionally, symbolically, mentally, I wouldn’t be let go anyway. What would that do for me?”
“You can’t compare the two things,” he said. “James’s struggle to get dry is a completely personal matter, mentally and emotionally. The fact that we produce, bottle and sell alcohol is totally independent of this. It is completely up to you whether you drink or not. And I think I can sell what I want. If I were a diabetic, that wouldn’t mean that I couldn’t sell sweets. … James is working his way out of his situation. We can really only try to support him.”
Hammett noted that Metallica continue to hold virtual meetings every week and that he has around 600 “musical ideas” to contribute to the band’s next record.