Monday, November 30, 2015

Edwards: New E-ST series

We end off November on a good note (no pun intended)- Edwards had just released 2 more variants of its Strat copies. The one above is the E-ST-90.

This one is the E-ST-125. So how different are these from the current E-SE-125 models? The E-ST-90 is everything the E-SE-125 has to offer less 1) Seymour Duncan pickups 2) Custom push-push pickup switch. The E-ST-125 on he other hand, retains the Seymour Duncans but it has no push-push switch like the E-ST-90. Implication- these guitars are even more affordable than the current E-SE-125s due to the differences mentioned so the vlaue-for-money models just got a little more enticing  in terms of price. *smiling*

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Available now: MXR 5150

If you are waiting for this one, if it's on your wish list, if you need your Dad to pay for it because you passed your exam, if your darling had this in mind for your Xmas present- whatever the reason; it's selling fast @ Swee Lee. List: $299

City Music Sale: Recommendations (3)


If you are serious about looking after your instrument, keeping it in tune should be on your 'must do' list. To many of us, keeping in tune simply means getting it to sound right, maybe we have a song reference for this. However, the human ears are rather averse to the broad sound frequencies in general, less those virtuoso pros who are endowed with perfect pitch. All this boils down to having a reliable tuner to keep our tuning in check. There's so much a clip-on tuner could do due to its vibration detection capability, I'd always tell friends to invest in a reputable pedal tuner because a plug-in tuner is more accurate in this aspect (not relying on vibrations).

My pleasant encounter with good pedal tuners started with the Korg Pitch Black series & that was pretty much a bench mark for me when evaluating others of similar functionality. Today, Korg has 3 variants in its PB tuner range as seen above: 1) PB Standard 2) PB Polyphonic 3) PB Custom.


Because I believe in what the PB tuners have to offer in terms of features & durability, I bought myself this Custom version which is essentially a strobe tuner. Strobe type tuners are the best when it comes to intonation (tuning vs intonation- know the difference). If you think your off-the-shelf instruments are spot on with open tunings, wait till you check the intonation at the upper frets. Anyway, the Korg PB series of tuners are my recommendations to you if you wish for a value-for-money pedal unit which aren't costly.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Horror picking


More picking adventure- Friday the 13th theme. You'd be surprised with the number of players who actually buy picks for novelty's sake instead of functionality. My personal reason for buying this- whether the functionality considerations exceed the novelty factors.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Attack of the clone: Tumnus!


Alright- first from a SALE event, Wampler's Tumnus. Nothing great, just a Centaur clone & I am enjoying all the clones I came across because they give me what I wanna hear.

Ceramic picking


This is another adventure in trying out those not-of-this-earth pick material- ceramic. Of course, it's perfectly familiar to the rest of you dealing in pottery, art & stuff. Just received it in the mail, update to come :-)

Thursday, November 26, 2015

November's listening pleasure

Here's my late November listening adventure...
  1. John Scofield: Past Present. I'm a big Sco fan. He's one of a kind. He fuses jazz stuff with the rock stuff without thinking too much, feel is everything. He's not afraid of using digital implements in his set up so everything Sco puts up becomes my listening essential.
  2. Scale the Summit: V. These guys aren't quite as prog-intense as Animals As Leaders but they are accomplished musicians in their own turf. This isn't an opportunity to churn out lame music, though. If you bother  listening to them, they play fine music. If you are into instrumentals without speed obligations, these guys are a must. I always buy their stuff direct (from their website), this one was in the mail not too long ago.
  3. Coroner: Punishment for Decadence. This was a chance acquisition. I thought this release wasn't going to be available anywhere, I thought it was done with but you just don't know what Inokii would haul in every now & then. I used to own this in the cassette tape format, I remember buying it at Queensway Shopping Center after school. If memory served me right, I bought a Morbid Angel release with this one. Worth the trouble because Coroner was one of those bands with impeccable musicianship. All those recess pocket money gone to music; it was worth it.
PS: Chan/ Mr. Ho- if you are reading this, I will still BUY CDs, it's not gonna stop anytime soon.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

PRS: SE 277

I've been waiting for this to happen (honest)- a non-signature PRS SE Baritone. The SE 277 you see here is such a guitar. That's right, the 277 there refers to the instrument's scale length- 27.7" which necessitates thicker-gauged strings to be used & maybe a lower tuning to be employed. That would mean the 277 is predominantly 'metal' in its application but...

... PRS also has the semi-hollow version for you to consider (especially those among us who are averse to lower tunings & do not embrace heavy metal). That P-90s in there should ensure some spanking cleans despite the longer scale length. *Checks wallet*

EDIT: The SE 277 Semi-Hollow is available at Davis GMC at time of entry.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Blue(tooth) Black(star)

I think many of us would love this idea- having your audio device Bluetooth-ed when it's actually not of such capacity to begin with. Well the Blackstar people did it. You can now Bluetooth your device as long as it has a line-in feature for some thoughtful applications. We all want one for Christmas, right?

Monday, November 23, 2015

City Music: SALE (recommendations Part 2)

If you don't mind that pointy outline, Charvel's Desolation (discontinued) DST1ST is definitely a value-for-money consideration. A sub-$400 instrument with a pair of EMGs on board, complementary cable & tuner in the package- awesome (bag not included). You might be distracted by that DST3FR there which is definitely more affordable but be wary of the FR Special bridge. 

Strictly personal- the FRS is on my unworthy list of guitar implements & it's not gonna be removed any time soon. The entire mechanism is a little stiff, implication- tuning stability is highly likely to be unreliable. The major upset are the zinc saddles. The locking mechanism here necessitates loosening & tightening. Many of us would have a tendency to over-tighten & the saddles will crack. If you decide to purchase the DS3TFR above, do keep this in mind.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

The minion thrust

The good Jackson guys, well, they have 'junior'-sized guitars in their catalogue dubbed the 'Minions'. The Dinky you see above is one of them.

What's a Jackson without a pointy affair, yes? Here's the Rhoads version. Poplar body, 22.5" scale length, these little soldiers are ready to rock (& more). As much as we would associate them with kids, shorter scaled guitars (& basses) are definitely OK for adults; it's a matter of liking the reduced appointments. 

These 'little' offerings are of course, nothing new. Remember the LTD KH Jr? Then we have Ibanez's Mikro series. Aria & Bacchus have their own offerings as well. Will these make their way to the shops here? You & I know the answer.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

SALE: City Music (recommendations Part 1)

I'm a fan of not-so-big acoustics namely because I can't handle those standard-sized ones comfortably. That's right, comfort handling affects playing proficiency & this will save you some performance blushes in terms of how much mistake you'd play on stage especially. This Custom MJ pair here is the perfect start for you if you wish to tread this path- solid top & a plug-in option, to me, these are essential. Please bear in mind that these are NOT travel-sized models. They are in-between models perfect for those of us looking for a less overwhelming outline while not wanting to sound too shallow. Look at that complementary instrument cable & guitar bag included in this offer- what have you got to lose?

SALE: City Music

Sale starts today :-) Will recommend stuff along the way.

Friday, November 20, 2015

SV Guitars: Year end promo 2015


That's right, ladies & gentlemen, SV Guitars had started the ball rolling with the store-wide promo as stated above. Plan early :-)

EDIT: Actually, Sound Alchemy was first on the SALE scene...

Thursday, November 19, 2015

JHS: Crayon

That's right, JHS is the other manufacturer with a Crayon pedal. Unlike the EHX make, this one is a derivative of JHS' Colour Box that's worth checking out:


Wednesday, November 18, 2015

EHX: Crayon OD

I am a fan of all EHX drive units thusfar. I believe they are very honest in their offerings, avoiding a re-gurgitation of popular drive voicings out there. It's good to know that the Crayon ODs seen here are great extensions to their drive range. Hear what they have to offer:


Tuesday, November 17, 2015

VOX: VTX amps

Just when we thought everything's taking a back seat moving towards the end of the year, Vox released its VTX range of amplifiers featuring a single 12AX7 pre-amp valve & the manufacturer's modelling technology. I've tried the Valvetronix range & would opine that the voicings are pleasant. We look forward to hear these VTXs in action in the stores here.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Dallas driving

This is one of those pedals you should be checking out if you are interested in a mild-to-hard drive settings. That colour there is a little suggestive- we know which OD pedal has a green finish & is rather renowned for its capability. It's also one of Modtone's current range of drive pedals that does not fancy an elaborate outer appearance.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Selling: Ibanez SA960 (SOLD)


Letting this one go, all original specs, no mods.

  • Selling: SA960QM (case included)
  • Condition: 9/10, no modifications
  • No reservations, no trades
  • Queries: subversion.sg@gmail.com
  • Self-collect @ CCK mrt station
  • Price: $699 (final)
Original price of guitar: CLICK

Guitar SOLD :-) Thanks for reading.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Marshall pedals: SALE @ Davis

Early shopping, perhaps? The above-listed Marshall pedals are clearing out at Davis GMC if you're interested.

I still have my Guvnor & Blues Breaker. The Guvnor has a thick & rather saturated OD tone when cranked up, very Brian May this one. The BB is an attempt to re-create Marshall's very own BB tone, it's nothing too different from a BOSS Blues Driver so to speak.

Lesser is good (perhaps)

I used to own the Plexi Tone not too long ago but I sold it away because I'm not really into a Marshall-esque tone when I already own a Marshall. No disrespect to Carl Martin, the voicing was very convincing but my standard here remains to be Wampler's Plexi Drive. That aside, the Lo-gain version seen here promises something of a push standard instead of going the whole Plexi yard. The manufacturer promises some sweet spots when it comes to single coils & added punch to humbuckers so I'm looking forward to this.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Sleepless jamming @ SG

This is an overdue update, really, but it's also an affirmation of success for my friend, Addy.

You might have recalled reading about a 24-hour jamming studio earlier this year at Jurong East vicinity- I've deleted that entry on grounds of confusion.

That's right, 8 Studio Productions have shifted to a new location but it's still within the same perimeter of the former address. As you can see here, more rooms, spacious mingling area...

... & recording facilities to boot!

There are currently no signages at the studio entrance- work in progress- but look out for the above arrangements to know you are at the right place. Apologies for the previous confusion but here's the new address:

8 Studio Productions
18 Boon Lay Way, #01-116, Tradehub 21, Singapore 609966
Call / Sms : 9357 3175 (Addy) / 8319 9160 (Sara)
Whatsapp : 9648 2675 (Addy) / 83199160 Sara)
Email : musicduo.tmt@gmail.com

Alright, I hope this helps because I know many of you are in need of rehearsal space this time of the year getting ready for year-end performances, especially those who are observing a day job & only available for practices in the wee hours- keep rockin'!!

Gone satin

 
This is some piece of news- PRS has released the S2 Standard in a satin finish.

There are 3 models in this range- Singlecut, Standard 22 & Standard 24.

Implications- we now have an even more affordable selection of PRS S2s to consider. That's right, the satins are a little more affordable than their gloss finished siblings. Looking forward to buy try one.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Knowing

Song writing mode ON (again). On days when I wish to be efficient with very little distractions, I have my single pickup guitars to go to. That's right, single pickup guitars prevent pickups selection so that I can focus on the task at hand. In this case, I always solo in the neck, so the bridge pickup is my riff focus reference. The Gibson MM above helped tremendously.

Also, having the right tools get the job done well. I need an intense distortion source & the pedals brought out & chained up did not fulfill this objective. I'm glad I have more than one amp to see things through & the Blackstar here did it with ease- if you need to get the right tones going, go to the tone source; it's the amp, not effects pedals.

On the subject of pedals, the ones left in the mix was an OD whose function was no more than to saturate the signals & one that kept irrelevant noises out of the way.

So my friends, knowing what to use & when to use it is rather crucial in this aspect.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

BM Schecter

Breaking: Abbath & King have joined the Schecter camp (official). That's good to know. Hopefully, the manufacturer opens doors to other deserving musicians in this genre as well.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Deepavali

Happy Deepavali to all Hindu blog readers & friends. When I was over at East Malaysia some years ago, they reminded me that the two states there do not observe a public holiday for this occasion. It's a little bewildering that under the same authority, there is a dichotomous treatment due to demographic reasons. If you respect your fellow country men, it should go beyond numbers. Happy holiday to the rest of you out there.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Evertune


The latest batch of LTD guitars to arrive at Davis GMC feature the Evertune bridge. This design allows the user to set their tuning over at the bridge & not to worry if they mess things over at the headstock. However much you turn those tuners at that end of the instrument, your tuning will be preserved because things can only be tampered with at the bridge. The guitars per se are LTD's top of the line Deluxe models & prices are in this bracket.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Tosin's proto

This is the current buzz in the Ibanez universe- Tosin Abasi's new proto which is acquired taste in the looks department. Ibanez is actually doing themselves a favour by letting Tosin have what he wants, really. He is often seen with other boutique, non-Ibanez guitars & surely, someone out there doesn't want him to switch camps. That fanned fret feature is currently hype in the Ibanez camp but there's something I'm really happy seeing in this guitar- Seymour Duncans!

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Tools

Song-writing mode ON. It's not easy composing an instrumental, especially with limitations. That's right, I'm working with clean tones which isn't my forte but it opened up some other perspectives which, I must say, is a positive one. It's one of the reasons I bought that MP Royal Blue OD. That would be another account for another day but today it's something else.

For those of us with objectives in mind, we need tools to get some things done. That's right, tools. I am a guitar-amp person, my ideas do not require implements of the pedal kind. However, in this case, some things are necessary (one more time) to get the job done. We need to be objective under such circumstances & perhaps put our EGOs aside. 

Seen above: 
  • Digitech: Jam Man express- Because I work alone, I don't have someone to play chords for me while I work something out so this was necessary. You might say the more capable among us can keep those chords going in our heads but if you do it in real time, you'd be better off in terms of efficiency & accuracy. I'm glad to have a looping unit around in times of need.
  • Mad Professor: Royal Blue OD- I'm not a fan of wimpy drive pedals, I'm drive inclined (rather excessive), I invest in the hard-hitting stuff. The danger here is that the hard-hitting stuff weren't conceived to be immaculate when subtle responses are required. The RB OD is one of those that cuts both ways, intense when you dial things up, very booster like when you keep the Drive control in check. Good stuff, this one.

Friday, November 6, 2015

The power of 35

For those of us who had invested good money in Boogie's Mark Five: 25, we gave that one our thumbs up. The good people at Mesa Boogie took that success & marched ahead in giving us this refined version here- the Mark Five: 35. In addition to a greater wattage performance, the 35 offers the player some refinements instead of including a new palette of features. For those of you intending to offload your 25, I'd suggest you hold your horses & discover the 35 personally instead of making that rash decision. Keep in mind that the 35 is a refinement of the 25 so it's not a complete overhaul.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

String Science

There's still this skepticism when it comes to treated strings, that chemistry affects tone. Whatever the case, it doesn't prevent me from trying. Thusfar, the Acoustic Science brand offers the most unobtrusive presence in terms of feel. It is quite the other end of the coated treatment we often encounter with coloured strings. This re-string was done last weekend so over a 5-day period, it's rather premature to offer any conclusions in terms of performance but I must say that the feel retention is impressive. The Science of it all is this- the manufacturer modified the string surface to be more resistant to whatever present themselves in degrading the string material. So far so good.

By the way, 'acoustic' here does not refer to acoustic guitars exclusively. Some people whom I talked to recently thought these were acoustic strings but that's the consequence of not reading the literature. 

Acoustic Science strings are available at Davis GMC.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Cock fighting

A little cheesy but absolutely usable- the new EHX Cock Fight pedal. I've you've experimented with a half-cocked wah pedal & embraces the benefits of that 'in-between' tone so to speak, this one will save you some trouble in trying to maintain a consistent response. There's also fuzz in there so it's an interesting pedal. 

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Bass breaking (nothing to do with bass at all)

Fender has a new amp for you guitar dweebs. That's right, a guitar amp with a 'bass' label- the Bassbreaker. The design per se is attractive.

However, the confusion here is... why would an American amp want to sound like a British amp? That's right, Fender made no secret it's emulating a Bluesbreaker voicing with an EL84 power section in there. whatever it is, it's good to embrace something new despite its not so refreshing take. This way, others would be kept on their toes when it comes to refinements & individuality.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Down under

Howdy, y'all. Some of you are downright frustrated when it comes to dealing with direct-mount pickups. Yes, the ones that don't attach themselves to pick guards or mounting rings. Default pickups would feature foam/pad (some with springs) under the chassis. If you choose to swap those pickups out, you'd have to deal with padding your new ones & seen here is an economical way to do it.

The padding there are the ones used for chairs/ tables to prevent noisy drag noises, attached to the base of the furniture legs. They are available at the hardware store, some are sold at thrift shops in your neighbourhood. They are equipped with industrial strength adhesive so when it comes to using them, it's simple- just peel off the protective tape. Cut them up to size & stick them where they should be. I would keep stacking the pads just so the thickness would exceed the height of the pickup's pole pieces, this way, you have some play when there is a need to adjust the pickup's height subsequently.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Edwards E-SE-93M/LT

The penultimate month of the year is here. I can't wait for some things to end. Also, at the year's end, there are some good stuff (hopefully) to acquire both at the stores & online.

This Strat-alike Edwards E-SE-100M is not quite a year-end acquisition but it's a worthy grab. It feels very, very... em... Strat-ty for a simple reason; it's a shameless copy of a Strat from a particular era with modern exceptions. That 22-fret feature isn't period correct, add to that a hidden switching option at the lower tone control.


I'm usually put off by vintage string retainers but this button version is alright. Do note that Edwards made it a point to round off the edges of the headstock, unlike the slab-like finish of a Fender.

A flip-side look- surprise! There's nothing special here. The neck profile is a soft V which becomes less pronounced towards the upper frets. This was the reason I bought this guitar; it's not my preference profile but it adds variety to the mix. These days I make it a point to embrace something a little different albeit the personal disagreement. Sometimes we are at our best dealing with a little discomfort.