Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Monday, September 29, 2008
A quick peek into the Russian's innard reveals a very simple circuit at work. It is then the component difference (from its American counterpart) which account for the tonal difference. And, em... maybe much of the void in there accounts for that as well...
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Ascension, the band's latest offering, is in my active playlist not that the offerings are exceptional but these lads are obviously from the blast-beats-not-obligatory camp. It is rather challenging to slow down one's tempo when it comes to BM, without people tagging you as a doom act.
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Monday, September 22, 2008
There are 2 new J-Custom models in the market right now; the RG8420 (pic) & the RG8470.
It is interesting to note the RG8420 featuring a pair of Seymour Duncan pickups (Jazz/ Custom 5) while the RG8470 has DiMarzios. I'm not one to applaud the Duncan inclusion excessively but hats off to Ibanez for giving us an alternative. Now, if the J-Customs could be made readily avialable here...
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Kodex V is a good release, no doubt, but fans of Shemhamforash (prior release) would be somewhat let down by the pace of the aforementioned album. There are down-tempo stuff which are very much Khold-esque but the band does well to not make this the primary offering here. Also, there are lots of solos in the mix.
Saturday, September 20, 2008
- Visual Sound: Son of Hyde
- BOSS: DS-1
- ARTEC: Soloist Distortion
- MXR: Distortion +
- Toadworks: Mr. Ed
- Seymour Duncan: Power Grid
Thursday, September 18, 2008
- simply sounds fantastic; neither too muffled nor excessively trebly
- potless operation, lesser chances of breaking breakdown
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
- Vintage-type tuners
- 6-point sync vibrato bridge
- 21 frets
The modern take:
- Graph Tech string saddles (KWS has a set of the black String Savers in his original guitar but the manufacturer decides to keep the hue flushed with the bridge on this one)
- 12" radius
Sunday, September 14, 2008
I have nothing against the previous humbucker in there, Duncan's Alternative 8 is a fantastic pickup especially for high gain/ intense drive purposes but the BFG is inherently bright sounding due to its chambered body. The reason the War Pig is now the resident pickup there is because it doesn't let down in the distortion aspect while maintaining a commanding low-end response. Please do not go away believing the War Pig is a bass-inclined pickup, it's just a better performer when one is reliant on the lower frequencies.
Bare Knuckle pickups hail from England & they aren't cheap- the War Pig you see hear costs me $300+/- (yup, it's obscene). In general, a pair of Bare Knuckles pickups could easily get you a new guitar. It's not about higher pricing being equivalent to better tone either, the War Pig isn't the end-all search for the ultimate, drive-inclined humbucker, in fact, it only sounds nice in my BFG, as compared to other guitars I own.
PS: Thanks, Master Beez, for another fine installation!
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Monday, September 8, 2008
Slash favoured LP copies made by luthier, Kris Derrig, who copied the '59 LP to immaculate accuracy. However, he also played copies made by Max Baranet at the same time so it's still unclear who was responsible for this celebrated fake.
So do we pay due respect to copycats who manifest their sage-like expertise in replicating popular models as mentioned above, or should we despise them for defiling intelectual properties?
Even here in Singapore, people feel better having Fender decals on their Frankenstein, project Strat-type guitars. We must be careful when displaying established brand names on our tinker products; we could be paying tribute to a great label through a bona fide association when there are legal implications to our actions.
Sunday, September 7, 2008
Saturday, September 6, 2008
- Remove: default DiMarzio/ IBZ pickups, Instal: DiMarzio Breed (n) & X2N (b)
- Remove: 5-way pickup selector switch, Instal: 3-way selector + coil split push-pull switch
- Remove: default control knobs, Instal: locking chrome knobs
- Remove: default capacitor, Instal: Orange Drop capacitor
The guitar's neck is quite the attraction for me; note how the body's lacquer coating ends at the guitar's set neck area. The neck's rear is totally lacquer free, a super smooth satin feel to be precise.
To a certain extent, spending too much on a Korean guitar is not a prudent practice. Despite the 'Prestige' tag, this guitar would not command a high re-sale value but I'm not one to purchase an instrument with a re-sale consideration as priority. I bought this SA2020 because it sounds good, displays praise-worthy craftsmanship & it supplements my playing very well.
I'm not a keen fan of DiMarzio pickups but I've decided to have them in this guitar anyway; it's a psychological challenge on a personal note- if one likes the tone then the brand name should not matter.
- The X2N bridge pickup is one the manufacturer's very high output pickup. This is perfect for all things angry, distortion inclined & black metal; that's my playing staple & the X2N fits the bill.
- The Breed neck humbucker is from another world with regards to its bridge counterpart but it gives me what I need; something PAF-like without sounding lacking when it comes to high gain/ drive situation. It's something that won't let me down when there is a need for clean tones. No, I didn't buy it because of Steve Vai...
- Both pickups sound splendid in split mode
Upon further sleuthing, it seems that this isn't Sheehan's first foray with the BB bass as evident in the Rotosound ad above, which was like in the '80s...
Matthew Sweet is one of the best vocalist in my books; someone who doesn't try too hard to impress & working within his own vocal range. I first saw a music video of a song (can't remember which one) from Altered Beast during a late night MTV show & got hooked. The melody is simple yet unforgettable; this is definitely the trait of a good song & Matthew Sweet can definitely write good songs, he's not a one-hit wonder.
However, what impressed me the most were the guitar works of Mr. Sweet's recording guitar player, Richard Lloyd (the other recording guitarist in Altered Beast was Robert Quine) who was from the seminal 70s band Television (the other guitar lad in Television is Tom Verlaine). Lloyd isn't a shredder by any means but his solos contain enough impact for guitar dweebs to sit up & listen. If you are a fan of Dinosaur Jr's J. Mascis, you'd enjoy what Richard Lloyd dished out during his Television days.
Friday, September 5, 2008
- Prestige RG2620
- PrstigeRG1520G (featuring Roland GK pickup)
- GRG121 (one of the best, no-nonsense Gio models I've come across)
- Prestige S4170 (neck-through construction)
- Prestige SA2160
SZ: Entire range
- ADC/ ADX/ ADD
- All ARC models
- AT300 (Andy Timmons will continue to play his Ibanez models but he's not tied down by any endorser agreements)
- MMM1 Baritone (Mike Mushok is with PRS WEF 2008)
Thursday, September 4, 2008
2 more LTD Signature guitars are now available at Davis GMC:
- Travis Miguel model (Artreyu)
- Page Hamilton model (Helmet)
Both were conceived to give imposing responses to high octane drive/ distortion. If you wish for an all out distortion assault, the EMG equipped Travis Miguel model would be your cup of tea. the Page Hamilto model on the other hand would reward those who do not like their drive too abrasive in the top end; the reason those DiMarzios are in there. Both guitars are brilliant in their own turf but the latter guitar possess a more curvacious body design which makes playing quite tranquilizing. These Korean guitars are superbly crafted at World Music Factory, the same production hands responsible for the respectable PRS SE models, as well as selected Ibanez Prestige units.
- Product availability: Davis GMC
List: $1,600 (both guitars)
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Skeptics, cynics & the disillusioned alike, often dismiss this pickup as an Eastern knock-off, something made under the DiMarzio label elsewhere, most probably produced by forced labour in the dark, inaccessible caves in the jungle of Borneo but a quick check reveals a 100% American DiMarzio product (as this is a bridge model, you'd note the 'F' marking at the top of the base-plate indicating the pole-pieces spacing for this model). As to which specific model was used, it's actually a specialized unit made for Ibanez by the pickup manufacturer.
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
...or a new amp, should you have a sizeable amount of cash & would like to 'upgrade'?
- I've talked to some people lately who are facing this dilemma; they could acquire either item but not both. In this case, I'd urge you to consider your situation & assess your needs. You need to look at what you have; how pathetic are your amp & guitar, which is the greater culprit?
- If you think you need a revision in tone, you should invest in a new amp. Simply put, a $50K guitar sounds pathetic through a fundamental practice unit, but a $500 guitar would have you smiling if you plug it into the right amp (my right, isn't your right, do keep this in mind). I believe, before one buys a guitar, if it's within your financial means, get the one that you really like, the one you'd keep on playing regardless of the countless pedal addition or the number of amps you plug it into. This way, future upgrading plans would mean your guitar is the least likely factor of your unhappiness.
- From a personal stance, this is perhaps why the number of amps I own are limited as oppossed to the number of guitars; I'm very happy with what I hear from my Marshall & Sound Drive amps. The different guitars I plug into these amps provide a differentiated enjoyment of the same, likeable, tone. That's how it is thusfar.
Monday, September 1, 2008
Are they detractors from the genre's essence in a desperate attempt to appease the mainstream? If you take time to listen to their maiden release, Grey (above), you'd know it's anything but a sell out. Fans who are put off by the latest DHG avant garde black metal need not worry of a duplicate. The partners here are more than adept in plying the genre's fundamentals, we'd wonder why only the French would dare tread such grounds. Which other French band is currently enjoying notoriety while osmosizing black metal of artistic degree, you ask? Deathspell Omega.