Messengers: The Guitars of James Hetfield

Permuted. Oct. 2023. 400p. ISBN 9798888450642. $80. MUSIC
How many guitars can one rock star own? For Metallica front man Hetfield, it turns out the answer is quite a few. The author’s instruments are more than collectible curiosities; they are indispensable gear that helps this famous thrasher rock arenas all over the world. Detailed photographs reveal every nick, scuff, and personalized customization of this fascinating stockpile, while Hetfield provides an entertaining, precise explanation of the merits and pitfalls of each guitar. Along the way, he regales readers with anecdotes amassed over the last 42 years, including the horrific night in 1992 when he caught fire in front of 55,000 fans in a pyrotechnic mishap. Metallica is still going strong with no end in sight, and Hetfield will probably keep adding axes to his array. So, metalheads could reasonably expect a second volume someday.
VERDICT Every Flying V, Explorer, and Les Paul in Hetfield’s collection is a messenger of metal and tells the beguiling stories behind the riffage too.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing