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ESP LTD Metallica Master of Puppets Guitar Arrives
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ESP LTD Metallica Master of Puppets Guitar Arrives

by Stephen Charlton2016/06/21

Back in 1986, Metallica released the timeless metal album that is Master of Puppets. Now 30 years later ESP are commemorating that classic release with a limited edition LTD Master of Puppets graphic guitar. The iconic gravestone cover art that has been worn by metalheads proudly for three decades will now be featured on an axe.

ESP builds only 400 LTD Master of Puppets guitars

ESP LTD Master of Puppets guitar

The ESP LTD Master of Puppets guitar.

ESP are building only 400 of the guitars. The company is debuting the LTD at the Summer NAMM Show. Your local ESP dealer is your best bet if you want to snap one up though. The LTD Master of Puppets guitar has an alder body with a bolt-on 25.5″ scale maple neck and an ebony fingerboard with 24 XJ frets. It has a TOM bridge, a string through body design and comes with an ESP form-fit case.

ESP have fitted the guitar with a pair of EMG 81s, so it’s definitely suited to Kirk Hammett fans rather those looking to get some James Hetfield vibes going. Of course that brings up the question, why no Floyd Rose bridge? With the extra wood needed to be cut from the guitar to install a Floyd Rose, you’d get significantly less view of the artwork. So if you want the cover art on your guitar, it seems you’ll have to forgo the whammy bar tricks unfortunately.

ESP LTD Master of Puppets guitar Ride

The LTD Ride the Lightning guitar.

The release follows up from the ESP’s 2014 30th anniversary Ride the Lightning graphic guitar. The year before ESP also offered a Kill ‘Em All model. There’s no word on the pricing of the Master of Puppets guitar yet. However based on pricing of the two previous axes, you can expect somewhere between $1000 and $1250.

10th Metallica studio album on the way

James Hetfield has recently been kept busy lending his pipes to a rocking duet with Ann Wilson for Heart’s new track Beautiful Broken. He takes a supporting role in that track but he’ll be back to playing the main event at the long-awaited forthcoming Metallica album. Lars Ulrich recently confirmed the metal legends’ 10th album is due out this year. He had the following to say about it:

“Hopefully it’ll be out in the fall, and it definitely sounds like Metallica. It’s probably a little less frenetic than the last record. The last one Rick Rubin really encouraged us to for the first time be inspired by our past. It was the first time we sort of looked in the rearview mirror. This time around it’s a little bit of a different thing. We’re not working with Rick, we’re working with the engineer from the last record, who’s producing, Greg Fidelman. So there’s some of the same production elements at play, but we’re expanding a little bit on the sonics. It’s probably a bit more of a diverse record than the last one. It’s exciting, but I don’t have quite the perspective yet.”

It’s a fair bet that most people whose ears were assaulted by the atrociously distorted and unnecessarily loud mix on Death Magnetic will be thankful that Rubin hasn’t been invited back. The fact that Fidelman has returned means our ears could be in for another bashing however. Fidelman (together with Rubin) did Black Sabbath’s 13 and the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Californication, which are two notoriously loud CDs.

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About The Author
Stephen Charlton
Stephen Charlton is a musician and journalist based in Melbourne, Australia.

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