We're pretty mellow people at ESP, but we were a little taken aback, at first, when the online magazine All Things Loud published an interview this week with Linkin Park's Mike Shinoda. The all-caps headline of the interview, which you can see for yourself here, screams, "LINKIN PARK’S MIKE SHINODA: “IF YOU’RE EXPECTING ESP GUITARS, THEN THIS ALBUM IS NOT FOR YOU”".
We all thought, "Wow, that's a really bizarre thing to say! What does that even mean?" But then we looked at the context of the interview itself, where Shinoda was explaining the differences between Linkin Park's new lighter, poppier sound and the expectations of their fans who enjoyed their previously guitar-driven music. He stated, "Just hearing any song, like Heavy, is just one piece of the whole. That said, though, if the only thing you want to listen to is ESP guitars through a rectifier amp then this is not the album for you. Come to a show, though, because there are songs in the set which are for you! This is not your album, though."
Okay, fair enough. Once we realized what was being said, which was that ESP Guitars is the iconic representation of the powerful sound of heavy music, and that was exactly what people shouldn't expect from the new Linkin Park album, we got it. And then we checked out one of the songs from this album, and... yes. Yes indeed. Mike is correct; that is not the sound of ESP Guitars. Most definitely not.
So, in short, ESP is pleased to announce we won't be on the new Linkin Park album, though of course we wish them the best in their ongoing endeavors.