Okay, putting aside for a moment the question of ‘relicing’ (but personally I think it’s great if done well, like how Fender do it, not cheaply like some guitars I’ve played, looking at you, Vintage), this new guitar from the Fender Custom Shop is so very, very close to being one of my dream axes. Literally the only thing I would change about it if I had unchallenged dominion over land, air and sea would be to do away with the ‘black over sunburst’ finish and just go for black to begin with. I’d keep everything else the same: Seymour Duncan TB-11 Custom Custom humbucker, Floyd Rose, relicing, big headstock… here’s more info from Fender about it: Continue reading
The fine folks at Drum City-Guitar Land are currently offering an exclusive run of Schecter Avengers that you really have to check out: all the specs of Schecter’s popular SLS with addition of a a Floyd Rose and Sustainiac System, in TransPurple Burst. Only 24 are being made, and when they’re gone they’re gone. Specs include Mahogany body, Maple set neck, Ebony fretboard, 24 Jumbo frets, Grover tuners, Seymour Duncan SH-10 Full Shred bridge humbucker, Sustainiac neck pickup, and a Floyd Rose 1000 Series bridge. Hardware is Black Chrome, and the 1C molded case is an extra $119. You can pick one up from Drum City-Guitar Land here, but you’d better be quick. I’d rather like one myself. Continue reading
For years now I’ve been daydreaming about Gibson bringing back the M-III. This 24-fret, 25.5″ scale Floyd Rose-loaded superaxe was a big departure for Gibson when it was released in 1991 (see some original ads here), and its timing was probably not the best, since it was only a very short time later that grunge pretty much wiped the shred axe off the face of the planet for a short while. Now the M-III is back, and it brings with it much of what made the original cool: 24-fret maple fingerboard, Floyd Rose, 25.” scale length, versatile switching (although in a different way to the original model). It doesn’t feature the cool pick guard shape though, which kinda bums me out a bit, but hey, if people take to these then who knows – perhaps we’ll see further M-III models added to the line some day. I’d like to think so. I’d love to see a seven-string version too. The new M-III will be available on November 5, 2013. Here’s some more info from Gibson.com: Continue reading
The story of Dean Guitars has had plenty of ups and downs over the years, starting as a small operation in Chicago in 1976. Currently owned by Armadillo Enterprises in Tampa, Florida, Dean is going pretty strong at the moment with artist signature models for the likes of Leslie West, Dimebag Darrell (see my review of the Dean From Hell here), Megadeth’s Dave Mustaine (and man oh man I want me a Dean Zero or VMNT), Michael Schenker, Michael Angelo Batio and Michael Amott – not to mention iconic shapes like the ML and Cadillac. Continue reading
Ok Kids, this one is a cinch, but because I’m a detail freak I’m going to explain why it is so easy. For those with ADHD scroll straight to The Solution.
You are a tech/muso/bandmate etc and are dealing with setting the intonation on floyd rose for the first time. Here’s the deal: the mighty Rose is a great tool that isn’t as hard to set up as rumoured. There are some things that actually make it easier to be consistent than other types of tremolo systems. Continue reading
Check out this bad boy from the Jackson Custom Shop: the SL2H Dakota Red. I don’t know if it’s purposely designed to recall that cool Soloist Steve Vai used in the film Crossroads – there are a few differences here, particularly the bridge colour and the electronics layout – but they’re similar enough to make me want to pick one up and wail on Eugene’s Trick Bag. As of this writing there’s one on Amazon.com here, and there’s a list of dealers here. I’m not sure where the rest are hiding or if they’re already snapped up yet. I hope whoever buys them plays the hell out of them. Continue reading
Avenged Sevenfold’s Synyster Gates has done a lot to promote the gloriously fun art of lead guitar. He’s also helped to further the cause of post-Metallica heavy metal riffage, amply demonstrated on A7X’s most recent album, Nightmare. Syn requires a guitar that allows him to flawlessly execute complex lead work as well as ballsy rhythm chunk, and for years now he’s been working with Schecter to achieve this. The Synyster Gates Custom is one of five models for the guitarist, and this particular variant is perhaps the best summary of the line. Continue reading
Although Schecter was initially known for slightly more traditional guitars, they’ve really hit their stride in the past decade-plus as purveyors of fine high-performance axes aimed at the metal market. They still cater to the traditionalists – especially with the new USA Production Series unveiled at NAMM in January), but the SLS Blackjack C-1 FR-S is a great example of how Schecter unifies a whole stack of shred-friendly features that are unashamedly pitched at those who dwell on the dark side.
The SLS has a mahogany body with your choice of Crimson Red Burst or Satin Black finish. The latter is the model on review here: the finish seems particularly well applie, and nicely offset by multi-ply binding. The neck is made of three-piece maple for enhanced stability, and there are 24 Jumbo frets on the ebony fretboard. The headstock is a bound three-tuner-per-side variant featuring Grover Rotomatic tuners with an 18:1 gear ratio for smoother tuning and a higher degree of backlash elimination. The only inlay on the fretboard face of the Satin Black version is a ‘Hell’s Gate Skull’ which looks pretty bitchen’, and definitely positions this as a metal guitar. Personally I think it’d do fine without it, as on the Crimson Red Burst model which has offset dots instead, but it’s not a deal breaker. The set neck is carved into Schecter’s Ultra Access shape, which mimics a neck-thru instrument, and the profile is the Ultra Thin spec, which is 19mm at the first fret and 20mm at the 12th.
The Kramer Nightswan is one of those ‘holy grail’ guitars for many players. It was very innovative for its time, and it lives on as the Buddy Blaze Shredder. (Buddy is, of course, one of the finest guitar builders in the world and the man responsible for my killer seven-string). Now Buddy, Floyd Rose and Seymour Duncan have teamed up to give away one of only 25 Vivian Campbell 25th Anniversary Shredder VC-II / LS guitars.
Here’s the press release:
Win A Buddy Blaze Vivian Campbell ’Lightning Storm’ Shredder
Buddy Blaze Guitars has joined forces with Seymour Duncan and Floyd Rose to give away a very special guitar: The Buddy Blaze – Vivian Campbell 25th Anniversary Shredder VC-II / LS modeled after the historic guitar used by Campbell in his Whitesnake days.
In 1987, Buddy Blaze and Vivian Campbell designed the Buddy Blaze Shredder, the guitar that would ultimately become known as the Kramer Nightswan. With a scale length of 24 5/8″, floating Floyd Rose tremolo and a ‘bridge/middle’ pickup configuration (a Seymour Duncan Full Shred and a JB, respectively), the Shredder was a unique take on the ‘superstrat’ concept. When Blaze was drafted by Kramer, Campbell soon followed him. The ‘Lightning Storm’ Nightswan prototype was born, featuring the first appearance of the Full Shred as well as a similar finish to Dimebag Darrell’s Dean From Hell, another famous guitar Buddy is intrinsically linked to.
“I was quite drawn to the idea of working one-on-one with a guy who simply wanted to build guitars, as opposed to a bigger company that was more concerned with marketing,” Campbell says. “I liked the idea of a short scale guitar. I had been playing Charvel/Jackson for a year or two before that, and whilst I certainly appreciated those instruments, there were certain features that were unnatural to me – one of which was the wide, flat and unfinished fretboard. Another was their 25 1/2 inch scale; although I have big hands, I liked the idea of a smaller instrument with a smaller neck as I tend to use my left hand thumb over the top of the neck when playing bar chords and that was difficult to do with larger, wider necks.”
To celebrate 25 years since the ‘Lightning Storm’ prototype was created, Buddy and Vivian have teamed up to offer the Buddy Blaze Vivian Campbell 25th Anniversary Shredder VC-II / LS. Only 25 will be made, each with a unique lightning storm graphic hand-painted by Buddy. They’ll have an Original Floyd Rose tremolo with R1 nut (Titanium Floyd optional), the same Full Shred/JB pickup combination (with each Full Shred signed by Seymour W. Duncan), a Honduras Mahogany body, figured maple neck with 16″ radius ebony fretboard, 24 5/8″ scale length, Buddy Blaze-designed CTS pot, and a certificate of authenticity signed by Buddy and Vivian.
And you could win one. Simply enter on Facebook, and you could own one of these 25 historic guitars! Entries close on March 27th and giveaway is open worldwide.
Click here to enter: http://on.fb.me/Yy93Uq
Here it is: the official launch of the EVH Striped Series and 5150 III Combo. These puppies drummedup some serious interest at NAMM, and they’re bound to be an even bigger hit when they start appearing at your local music store in northern Spring 2013.
EVH is proud to release the EVH Striped Series guitars, which feature basswood Stratocaster®-style bodies decked out in Eddie Van Halen’s famed striped graphics. The three versions are red/white/black, black with yellow stripes and white with black stripes. This series also has a quartersawn maple neck with a hand-rubbed oil finish and thumbwheel truss rod adjustment, compound-radius maple fingerboard (12”-16”) with 22 jumbo frets and black dot inlays, plus a single ferocious direct-mount Wolfgang® humbucking pickup. Other premium features include a single volume control knob (labeled “tone”), single-ply black pickguard (on the white and black striped model only), bar string retainer and Floyd Rose® locking nut, EVH-branded Floyd Rose® locking tremolo with EVH D-Tuna®, EVH die-cast tuners, chrome hardware, vintage-style strap buttons and EVH neck plate. Available Spring 2013 Continue reading
Now how did I miss this! Just saw on the GJ2 Guitars Facebook page, then dug through my files from NAMM and found a pic of it (below). Whoops! This is a 7-string Arete with Floyd Rose tremolo, active EMG humbuckers and all-mahogany construction. Nice! If you want it, it’s at Drum City Guitarland right now for $2599.
The guitar has an alder body, a maple neck with ebony fretboard and reverse headstock, double custom DMT Blazebuckers with unique layout, Floyd Rose tremolo, matte black finish with custom red S design, and a 3-way pickup selector switch. Suzanne says it plays like hot loud butter.
By the way, Glyscian’s song ‘Awakening’ will be featured in the upcoming movie Patriot Act.