“Less versatile than the Greeny tributes… but it’s the perfect weapon to seek and destroy”: ESP LTD KH-V Kirk Hammett review

The latest signature model for the Metallica guitarist is a lot pointier than his previous offering – and the tones match the looks

ESP LTD KH-V Kirk Hammett
(Image: © Olly Curtis/Future)

Guitar World Verdict


  • +

    Remarkable sustain.

  • +

    Great looks.

  • +

    EMG Bone Breakers are excellent for crushing metal tones.


  • -

    Lacklustre clean tones.

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A quick glance at recent signature releases might lead you to believe it’s Kirk Hammett’s world and we’re just living in it. There was the purple sparkle edition of his KH95X Cry Baby back in 2022, and then a lot of excitement over replicas of his prized ‘Greeny’ 1959 Les Paul Standard – previously owned by Peter Green and Gary Moore – through the Gibson and Epiphone brands. 

But those who prefer an all-out metal machine may find such tools a little too vintage-leaning in both appearance and design, with one of the PAF-style humbuckers wired upside down and a Greeny Burst finish to replicate the original’s fade from Cherry Sunburst to Lemon after all those decades of heavy usage.

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Amit Sharma

Amit has been writing for titles like Total GuitarMusicRadar and Guitar World for over a decade and counts Richie Kotzen, Guthrie Govan and Jeff Beck among his primary influences as a guitar player. He's worked for magazines like Kerrang!Metal HammerClassic RockProgRecord CollectorPlanet RockRhythm and Bass Player, as well as newspapers like Metro and The Independent, interviewing everyone from Ozzy Osbourne and Lemmy to Slash and Jimmy Page, and once even traded solos with a member of Slayer on a track released internationally. As a session guitarist, he's played alongside members of Judas Priest and Uriah Heep in London ensemble Metalworks, as well as handled lead guitars for legends like Glen Matlock (Sex Pistols, The Faces) and Stu Hamm (Steve Vai, Joe Satriani, G3).