ESP Announces Limited-Edition Metallica 'Ride the Lightning' Guitar at Summer NAMM

by Guitar World Staff
Posted Jul 18, 2014 at 2:21pm

A very cool — and very limited — LTD Metallica Ride the Lightning guitar was one of the first pieces of new gear to greet us at this week's Summer NAMM Show in Nashville.

Here's some info about the guitar, direct from the ESP Guitars staff:

We're in Nashville—aka "Music City USA"—at the Summer NAMM Show which opens Thursday July 17, and we have a couple of new guitar models to unveil. The first is the LTD “Ride the Lightning” limited-edition guitar. It was created to commemorate the 30-year anniversary of Metallica’s second album, which was released July 27, 1984. It features a graphic finish that mimics the cover art of that iconic album.

“ESP and Metallica’s guitarists James Hetfield and Kirk Hammett have a relationship that goes back more than two decades,” says Matt Masciandaro, president and CEO of ESP. “Last year, we successfully released a limited-edition guitar for the 30-year anniversary of their first album, Kill ‘Em All. We are happy to offer another new Metallica-focused guitar for serious players, collectors, and fans.”

ESP plans to produce only 300 of the LTD Ride the Lightning models worldwide, making each one a highly sought-after collectible due to its relative rarity.

Its features include an alder body with maple neck (bolt-on construction) at 25.5” scale, and an ebony fingerboard with 24 XJ frets. EMG 60 (neck) and EMG 81 (bridge) active pickups are included, along with TOM bridge and string-thru-body design. The guitar also features a Metallica logo fingerboard inlay, and each guitar includes an ESP form-fit case with the Metallica logo, and a certificate of authenticity.

Ride the Lightning helped establish Metallica as serious contenders in the metal arena and led to their major label signing later in 1984. Some of the now-classic songs on that album include "For Whom the Bell Tolls," "Fade to Black” and "Creeping Death.”

More info on the LTD Ride the Lightning model will be forthcoming!


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