ESP Signature Prime Cuts Part 1
ESP Guitars has a selection of new guitars coming out this year and being that we’re a guitar web site and all it seems only natural to assess this as well so away we go. For this article I’ll follow a similar pattern and address the new signature Models ESP has unveiled specifically, so let’s not waste any more time.
Jeff Hanneman Signatures
ESP Jeff Hanneman EC
ESP Jeff Hanneman EC
The first of Slayer guitarist Jeff Hanneman’s signature guitars is the ESP Jeff Hanneman EC. It’s designed with an alder body and a maple neck with neck-through construction and it features a thin candy shell of ebony for the fretboard which has red star inlays spanning the surface area. The Gotoh tuners work wonders as companions to the Kahler 2315 tremolo. On the electronic side there are two EMG humbuckers, with the fan favorite selection of an 85 at the neck and an 81 at the bridge, both of which are complimented by the EMG SPC (Strat Presence Control) that offers more thickness to the signal.
The LTD JH-600EC isn’t terribly different from Hanneman’s ESP EC. It too is built with an alder body and a maple neck with neck-through construction and an ebony fretboard. Likewise it shares the Gotoh tuners, Kahler 2315 tremolo, and EMG 85 and 81 humbuckers, also in the same positions. The only real difference is the absense of the SPC control.
The real meat and potatoes of the Hanneman signature guitars would be the LTD Slayer-2012. Returning for one last hurrah is the alder body, maple neck, and ebony fretboard, but this time around it features a bolt-on neck. The 2012 includes ESP tuners and a TOM bridge this time around, but retains the EMG 85 (neck) and 81 (bridge) humbuckers. The paint finish ceremoniously reflects the cover art of Slayer’s South of Heaven album and the inlays start as pentagrams, and around the 12th fret write out Slayer, then switch to stylish dot inlays.
Kirk Hammett Signatures
Kirk Hammett joins the bandwagon with a new selection of ravishing guitars. The ESP KH-DC comes with a mahogany body with a flamed maple top, a set mahogany neck, and it’s laced with a rosewood fretboard that is scalloped from frets 17 up to 22. Also included is a set of Sperzel locking tuners and a TonePros locking TOM bridge and tailpiece, both of which including the rest of the hardware are gold, and it’s finished off with a set of EMG humbuckers. In the neck position is a 60 and in the bridge position is an 81. Finishing it off is a nice hue of see through black cherry for the finish.
The LTD KH-DC more or less shares the same specs as the ESP KH-DC though there are some small differences. Set mahogany neck into a mahogany body with a flamed maple top, and a rosewood fretboard. All hardware is still gold, though instead of Sperzel tuners there are ESP locking tuners. The Tonepros locking TOM bridge and tailpiece return as do the EMG 81 and 60 humbuckers. Apart from the tuners the only additional difference is the higher frets are not scalloped.
Rounding Kirk Hammett’s signatures off we have the LTD KH-25. This guitar is built out of alder with a maple bolt on neck and a rosewood fretboard. It compliments itself with the ESP tuners and the Floyd Rose Special tremolo as well as the pair of ESP ALH-200 active humbuckers. The fretboard is stylized with the skull and crossbones inlays and the body features the relic styling and a number of stickers.