Wow! Didn’t expect these to be announced so soon, but Music Radar has the scoop on several killer new Ibanez models for 2013, including the RG550-XH, effectlively a new version of the RG2011SC, the 30-fret beast released a few NAMMs ago (and used in the studio by Dragonforce, according to Herman Li in my April 2012 interview), the new Iron Label series and … a Premium version of the venerable ‘green dot’ Universe 7-string!!! The UV70 features DiMarzio Blaze pickups and the same basic styling as one of the most missed early Universe models. Get the lowdown here.
It’s always tough on fans when a singer leaves a band. Sure, Van Halen did fine with Sammy Hagar, and AC/DC didn’t exactly flounder when Brian Johnson joined, but there’s always that moment of “Oh jeez, will this work?” Post-Lane Warrant, heck, even post-Hagar Van Halen – there’s lots of scope for a misstep. Well the new Dragonforce album, The Power Within, will immediately shut up anyone who expects the band to lose some of its edge following the departure of ZP Theart. About a year after Theart walked, Dragonforce announced they’d enlisted Marc Hudson as their new voice. And what a voice. Dragonforce still sounds like Dragonforce, but even more musical, more powerful and more exciting. For a band who dishes out killer riffs and impossible guitar licks as easily as walking, kicking it up a notch is quite a feat. But The Power Within delivers.
Hi Herman! We haven’t met before but I remember you kicking around on the Jemsite forums back in the day.
Oh yeah! I still go to Jemsite. It’s got good information.
It’s been great to see forum regulars like you and James McIlroy (Cradle of Filth) going on to such big things.
Yeah! Actually James gave me the contact with Ibanez to get my deal!
Well, first question: What did the switch to Marc bring to the creative process?
With the switch of singer we definitely turned the whole recording process, the rehearsing, the whole band thing upside down and changed everything around. I think it was going to happen anyway, because after we finished the last album I wanted to really look back at the ten years we’d been doing the band – y’know, how we did it, how we wanted to change things, how we could make it better. So for this album and the recording process, I suppose I can almost say it’s completely different from the last album, the last two albums.
Ladies and gentlemen, meet new Dragonforce singer Marc Hudson!
This video contains clips of Marc in the studio recording demos of new DragonForce work in progress.
Here’s a great new DiMarzio video featuring Herman Li from Dragonforce. Herman talks about the custom DiMarzio pickups in his signature Ibanez E-Gen guitar. Herman also talks warm-up techniques – very important if you wanna play anywhere near as fast as Herman and Sam!
Here are some more sweet ESP/LTD models unveiled at MusikMesse. While ESP does a great line of vintage-inspired designs, there’s nothing particularly old school about these new models.
First up are LTD Okkultist and LTD Shadow models for the Guitarists of Dimmu Borgir.
ESP says: Taking the darkness of black metal to profound new depths, the guitarists of Dimmu Borgir join the legendary ranks of ESP artists with their new ESP Signature Series models: Silenoz’s Okkultist and Galder’s Shadow. These guitars scream with metal attitude, equally good at shining in the spotlight or dwelling in the deepest of shadows.
Next is the LTD FL-600 Bass from Frédéric LeClercq of DragonForce.
ESP says: As the thunder that holds down the bottom end of DragonForce, Fred LeClercq is a force to be reckoned with on his own. His innovative bass playing spans the realm from ultra smooth to chainsaw harsh, and his new ESP Signature Series LTD FL-600 bass allows him to combine melody, power, and speed into an unmistakable sound.
Then there’s the monstrous LTD Hex-7 from Nergal of Behemoth, which I wrote about here.
ESP says: If you like your blackened death metal extra dark, there’s no better place to turn than Behemoth. Their founder and frontman Nergal has designed his ESP Signature Series LTD Hex-7 to be about as extreme as a guitar can be.
Finally there are three new Graphic Series Models.
Renowned UK-based artist Mister Sam has once again created the ultimate hybrid of man and machine with his custom artwork on the new limited edition Clockwork Zombie Graphic Series guitars for LTD. The EC-CZII, EX-CZII, and Viper-CZII combine skeletal remains with metal cogs, flywheels, and gears on these sinister and unique instruments.
Kudos to Jon from Guitar Noize for bringing this to my attention via this article.