INTERVIEW: Devin Townsend

Devin Townsend Project

Transcendence is the latest album from the Devin Townsend Project and in many ways it feels like a culmination of musical explorations that Devin begun in 2009 with Addicted! and that flowed through Epicloud and Sky Blue. It’s alternatingly melodic and crushing, ethereal and imposing, and in true Devin fashion it’s an album that reveals more about itself on each subsequent listen.

I love the new record. Y’know how every now and then an album comes along that’s just what you needed to hear at that point in time? 

That’s awesome. Thank you, Peter. It’s a special one for me in a lot of ways, and especially the latter half. The processes that went into it and the challenges that came into it, the control issues, letting go of things and trying to participate with other people and be analytical and aware enough of myself that I could call myself on my own shit is one thing. But it also coincided with what feels like a real tangible shift in my own psyche. Now, whether or not that was because of the fact that I took myself on vacation for the first time in my life, or something to do with age, or something to do with circumstances I’m not sure. But something shifted at the same time as the latter half of this record and now I find myself in a place that is new and foreign in a lot of ways and it will be interesting to see where it goes from here. Read More …

Hutchinson Guitar Concepts Viking LP

HGC Viking LPHutchinson Guitar Concepts has just released its third Viking concept, based on a Gibson Les Paul Custom. With detailed knotwork carved into the top and arching shiplap style panelling, it looks ready to invade the shoreline. The Zakk Wylde EMG 81/85 pickups feature engraved knotwork and a worn metal finish matching the Evertune bridge. As with all HGC designs, the weight and tone of the original guitar is left unaffected. More designs are available through the Hutchinson Guitar Concepts website, which feature a portfolio of finished instruments inspired by wide ranging themes and executed through hundreds of hours of intricate wood carving, masterful finishing and state of the art electronics. Read More …

ESP Previews New Models, New USA Factory!

espthumbIt’s no secret that ESP has been planning to hugely revamp their line in 2014, with the roll-out of the new E-II brand, new signature models and other fun stuff. They’ve just dropped a whole bunch of new models onto their website for us to drool over ahead of NAMM, and many of them sport some pretty damn tasty Seymour Duncan pickups, like the Mystique FR with a Custom 5 in the bridge position and ’59 at the neck. But some of the biggest news is that ESP is opening its own USA factory this year! It’s in North Hollywood, and here’s what ESP President Matt Masciandaro has to say about it: “This is a significant milestone for ESP. For years there has been a demand for a domestic factory, allowing us to create guitars that are 100% made in the USA. Weʼre very excited about the new opportunities for ESP dealers, and new choices for our customers.” Read More …

Ola Englund Gets Washburn Signature Model

WashburnWashburn has announced that monster guitarist, gear expert and all-round nice guy Ola Englund (Feared, Six Feet Under and now The Haunted) is being honoured with his own Washburn signature line called the Parallaxe Solar Series. Ola posted a pic to Facebook the other day of one of these in-development axes, with a Seymour Duncan TB-6 Duncan Distortion trembucker in the bridge position, an SH-2 Jazz at the neck and a Stephen’s Extended Cutaway. This is bound to be a high-performance guitar of the greatest quality and I can’t wait to check them out in person when they’re launched next year. Here’s the press release: Read More …

NAMM 2012: EverTune. Wow.

Hands down my favourite thing at NAMM so far … okay my favourite thing is the Buddy Blaze 7-string – but my other favourite thing is the EverTune bridge. Have you heard of this? It’s still pretty new, and a lot of people don’t know exactly what it does yet. It’s not a self-tuning bridge or a ‘store alternate tunings’ bridge or anything like that. What it is is a fixed bridge which keeps your guitar in tune and well-intonated. With magic.


Wait, no, it’s not magic, it’s just physics. It’s a passive, mechanical technology which works like this, according to EverTune:


“The frequency of a resonating string has only three variables: length, mass, and tension. Again, the note a string plays only depends on three data: the length of the string, the weight of the string, and the tension of the string. Strings drift out of tune primarily because the tension changes, their mass and length are more and less constant. EverTune, holding one end of the string, will pull with constant tension, and therefore the string will stay in tune until it wants to be changed.”


Read More …

COOL GEAR ALERT: 7-string EverTune bridge

Have you seen the EverTune bridge? It’s a very clever fixed bridge which maintains tuning stability no matter what, for the life of the string. Sounds like magic, right? According to EverTune, “The benefits of this old school, all mechanical solution are that it is very rugged and reliable with only one moving part, and with all critical parts being made from high quality steel. It is also relatively reasonable in price, as opposed to servo-based (robotic) systems, and extremely effective.”

Now they’re releasing a 7-string version of the EverTune bridge. Great news for seven-stringer-slingers who don’t need a whammy bar. It’s also available in 6-string versions for Strat-style, Telecaster-style and Gibson-style axes.