Monday, June 30, 2008
The highlight here is the strings' ability to eliminate the trigger of natural harmonics (no worries, you can still pinch them at will) at very high gain/ drive settings. This would be beneficial if you like your tone smooth & round especially in the top end; some of us would like our tone not to end off in a squeal.
Durability- the Curt Mangan brand name, in my books, is still the standard to beat when it comes to treatment-free (no fancy cryogenics or Cutex-like coating) endurance.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Due to the theatrics, religious digressions & that sheer repulsive vocals, BM musicians are written off even before their music gets evaluated. It is understood that the nature of the music remains repulsive to the average lay person but the human psyche, despite some education, still judge people by their looks & anomalous practices- the reason why conflicts occur.
Monday, June 23, 2008
D'Addario isn't an estranged name in the guitar string domain; many of us would have tried them on grounds of affordability more than anything else. If you bought an Ibanez guitar lately, be informed that it's equipped with D'Addario strings back at the factory; those colour coded ball ends are unmistakeable.
I'm not a big fan of this brand name chiefly because the strings could have lasted longer. However, I make it a point to buy D'Addario, as observed in this pic, the manufacturer uses less paper for the packaging. The one & only plastic bag included is properly sealed to prevent pre-purchase deterioration- superb! On the fipside of the paper package is this claim: ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY SET, USES 75% LESS PACKAGING. Thank you D'Addario, for doing so.
Sunday, June 22, 2008
Gibson plates the Les Paul Standard hardware with nickel. This metal would age gracefully over time, giving the instrument a much desired relic look which many LP fans would want to achieve with theirs, the reaosn they don't react well with polish fluid/ cream (so stop doing so, you can be more dilligent with other parts). I've replaced mine with a Gotoh unit because the tarnish on the original ware was an eyesore but the chief reason here was that I wanted to experiment with a lighter tune-o-matic unit (this bridge is made from zinc) in an attempt to enhance tone. This philosophy isn't new, it's adopted by Paul Reed Smith in many of his instruments in the belief that lighter hardware would enhance resonance as the instrument's vibrations are transferred to the body/ neck more readiy & not hindered by massive parts. Doing so would also mean that the overall mass of the guitar would be affected & the tone expected would be one with accentuated midrange.
I'm definitely not one to fall for such technicality too easily but I do own a PRS McCarty & the hardware on board are indeed light-weight units; this guitar sings better than many others in my collection which are of comparable specs. In this light, the tone coming from my LP Std with the lighter bridge has added clarity with the signature Les Paul bottom end thunder still in tact. Good for me.
Saturday, June 21, 2008
The songs here are guitar devoid, well, there are bits in some songs but generally, they are synth laden. If you think you are that great with your guitar (because it strokes your ego), attempt to fill in some guitar phrases in any of the songs. So you are not that great after all, yes?
There are too many of us who think we are good but given something non-staple to play along, we are probably fumbling fools in disguise.
Anyway, for those of us who play alone most of the time, it's rather interesting what a loop pedal could do to trigger fresh ideas. Simply record a phrase, loop it & challenge yourself to play something interesting to overcome that bland background. Pictured above is my BOSS RC2 (Loop Station), a very fundamental looping unit, nothing fantastic.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
I urge you to do likewise. Many town councils in our neighbourhood as well as the commercial organizations today are making the effort to promote environmental awareness. They provide collection bins for recyclable materials within our reach. It's only fitting that we make an effort to show that guitar enthusiasts like us do care about the environment.
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Alice & Clayton picks are available @ Davis Guitar.
Monday, June 16, 2008
However, be informed that Assassins is the band's incorporation of the doom genre but done very tastefully & would well see more fans in the camp.
Sunday, June 15, 2008
- The Japanese Fenders, if you've any experiences with them, are superb instruments in terms of craftsmanship & tone; it is very little wonder why these are not made available in the US (among other reasons)... Many of the Jap models are assigned alpha-numerics for their model designation, the above guitar is an example. People are then too quick to deem a certain model a 're-issue' by virtue of this understanding, so the ST57 is a '57 reissue, yes? Absolutely not.
- If we take a closer look at the specs of the ST57, we note its basswood body, among other things- were Strats made in '57 sporting basswood bodies? Similarly, those pickups- a little sleuthing would reveal those aren't the single coils used way back in 1957. This scrutiny is important in light of our understanding of the term 're-issue' which, in its fundamentals would be, an item made to the exact specification of a certain historic guitar. More importantly, you'd get into legal complications selling off an ST57 as a '57 re-issue. I've nothing against the Jap Fenders, I own one (& a bass) & it's one heck of a guitar.
Saturday, June 14, 2008
angL isn't quite the departure from his debut release, The Adversary but the album in whole displays added intensity & intricacy. Ihsahn's guitar playing capacity is unquestionably potent both riff & solo-wise. The level of complexity here is made palatable by catchy phrases; you can be uber prog in your music but it means nothing if it's forgetable.
It is also good to know that Ihsahn is backed by the lethal rhythm duo of Asgeir Mickelson & Lars Norberg (Spiral Architect); the drum works here are first class in terms of intensity & precision, the bass isn't about mere accompaniment either, Norberg managed to showcase his fretless prowess on more than one track.
Nevertheless, there would be critics saying Ihsahn had sold out in terms of his black metal commitment but both his releases thusfar were not black metal in their entirety, yes they do contain the BM fundamentals but these are peppered in context.
Despite having a 10" driver in there, the amp also sounds very balanced/ full. There's much delight even when plugging in entry-level guitars. These are other highlights to note:
- Boost feature: For all you distortion/ drive warlords, if you don't do pedals in your set-up, the boost function ensures more thrust in your driven setting
- 3 drive modes: There are 3 voicing options for you to mess with; you scooped mids metal geeks- you aren't forgotten...
- Low/ High input: Amp features 2 input types to further mould your tone voicing. If you are pedal obsessed, choose the lower input option so the final product is a manifestation of your effects capacity
- I'm not a delay fan but this BBE Tw0-Timer is too tempting to ignore...
- The pedal allows the user to operate 2 delay types simultaneously; this should conjure some psychedelic moments for all you atmospherics geek with all the analog goodness to boot.
- The idea here isn't fresh though, even the manufacturer admitted getting major inspiration from the discont'd BOSS DM-2...
Thursday, June 12, 2008
As you can observe, in addition to the generous compartment inclusion, the bag in question is very well-padded at the rear, especially the straps. This means the carrier wouldn't be poked by the instrument's hard edges while on the move. I especially like the netted surface because this design dries sweat faster- so you thought it was mere design, eh?
That small, outer-most compartment is actually detachable & features a rear loop for your separate use; you can belt it up for additional personal storage. You'd thought that it's mere novelty but small compartments are more ideal for fragile accessories like tuners & such so that these items stay put & not move about while in transit only to end up with cracked display surfaces (because they knock against your cable tips/ pedals/ etc.).
But the utmost importance here to me, is the bag's inner features:
- Velcro-type strap for the guitar's neck security
- Waterproof inner lining
- Layered protection on the bag's cover sleeve to withstand string scratches.
- That minimal but important inner pocket for the instrument's body insertion to further secure your prized possession. A good bag ensures minimal/ no instrument movements; it virtually hugs your guitar all the time
It's futile exercise to give excessive praise to any brand name because chances are, it reflects personal preferences but the CNB bag gets my absolute thumbs-up in terms of design considerations, durability & value for money.
CNB bags are available at Davis Guitars.
PS: Guitar featured above- Edwards E-LP92-SD/P
It's rather normal for fans to wear their band's t-shirt as a gesture of affiliation; it's absolutely harmless but be prepared to be scrutinized if your favourite band has a certain inclination for the perverse... Was the band Carcass affiliated to morbid death as its name implies?
Anyway, I got stopped at the customs yesterday upon arrival here because they were conducting a 'random' check but reading between the lines, I knew I was stopped because of my t-shirt; scores of caucasions with tattoos on their arms & gentlemen in suits who were very mafia-like, were not subject of this check. They made me open both my knapsack & sling bags asking me the nature of certain contents, I complied & told them what they were: soiled underwear, underarm powder, spare diapers, packets of crackers, etc. The one that got to me most was when I was quizzed the contents of a plastic container which was chocolate milk powder for my baby.
"It's chocolate milk powder for my baby there, behind the glass panel," I duly answered, pointing to the agitated spouse & daughter but the officer didn't even turn around to confirm. This was disrespectful because I was asked to account for an item but you didn't even look when I was explaining...
I understand the fine safety procedures currently in place after the escape of a certain terrorist here but is it one totally devoid of apathy? Singapore Customs: I understand your protocols but I have no obligaitons to like them.
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
The good people of Gibson would have their reasons for including non-locking units in their instruments but having paid so much for a Gibson in general, one would expect some considerations for the above-mentioned issue.
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
Monday, June 9, 2008
As the Eclipse isn't a Les Paul clone per se, the guitar in whole, has more likeable attributes (to me) so the 'restrictive' body outline was disregarded. The tone in general is a typical EMG voicing; overpowering in drive mode, quasi-uninspiring when played clean but I didn't buy this guitar to emulate Fender's sparkling cleans.
If you look forward to acquire this guitar because you want a non-Gibson Les Paul alternative, then you're wasting money. It feels quite removed from the typical Les Paul chunk, notably due to its much thinner body & a different neck profile; more Fender-like dare I say. Same goes for the tone.
The Eclipse II is equipped with Sperzel locking tuners & I find this very important in checking tuning stability; throughout my years of playing, I noted that guitars with a non-straight nut-to-machine head travel are less reliable when it comes to tuning retention, even with a well-cut/ lubricated nut. Locking tuners definitely help in this department & having the Sperzels here is a wise move by ESP.
I also applaud the rib-cage chamfering which promotes a better (human) body to (guitar) body fit. The edges of the Les Paul & Telecaster bodies (typically) would dig into the player over prolonged play; some of us can adapt to this discomfort, but for the rest of us who can't, this inclusion is a godsend.
This guitar is proof enought that, if considerations are given to a well-made guitar, despite its outline, it would be a sheer attraction.
Sunday, June 8, 2008
Saturday, June 7, 2008
**LTD M103FM (List: $420)
- maple fretboard is the highlight here; grab-friendly yet very shredable
- very impressive default pickups, especially the single coils
- superb QC for the money
**LTD V-200 (List: $550)
- the most full-sounding V-type guitar i've come across (in this price bracket)
- humbuckers are great drive performers
- QC: as per M103's
Friday, June 6, 2008
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
The cavity of the bridge humbucker actually includes a metal plate mounting for the pickup simply because the BFG had been chambered in its off-centre region; there isn't any wood to screw the pickup into...
There is a new Seymour Duncan in place of the BB- stay tuned to know which model I've chosen. Of course, it's an all black unit, I've no obligations to preserve the original zebra finish theme chosen by the manufacturer.