I’ve read a lot of statements in my day. Typically, they’re loaded with safe language and hyper-sensitive considerations for the way their message will be interpreted. Ten people have probably reviewed it before it goes out and it’s worded in the safest way possible.
Then there’s ESP, who just dropped one of funniest statements I have ever seen. It reads more like a hilarious op-ed piece written by my friends at MetalSucks than it does coming from one of the biggest guitar companies on the planet.
Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda recently gave an interview to All Things Loud, where he warned fans by saying “If you’re expecting ESP guitars, then this album is not for you”. ESP took exception to Shinoda’s perceived dig and ripped him (and his entire band) a new one.
It’s odd, because Shinoda and vocalist Chester Bennington really seem to be aggravated by fans who hope they would entertain the glory days of nu-metal with heavily electronic influences, a sound they pioneered in many ways.
Shinoda has likened their musical past to “frat rock” and Bennington has insinuated that he wanted to blow his brains out using a gun emoji when fans have asked for the band to write music in their signature style. With Shinoda incorporating ESP guitars into the mix, the company was having none of it.
Releasing one of the funniest statements I have ever read, ESP had this to say in response to Shinoda’s dig:
“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.”
Thanks for the tip, Andrew Baena.