INTERVIEW: Scott Ian of Anthrax

L-R: Charlie Benante, Frank Bello, Scott Ian, Joey Belladonna, Jon Donais

L-R: Charlie Benante, Frank Bello, Scott Ian, Joey Belladonna, Jon Donais

Anthrax has done what few bands get to do: put out one of the best, most memorable, most crushing albums of their career a good three and a half decades in. For All Kings is everything you loved about Anthrax, amplified and brutalized. Scott Ian’s rhythm guitar is as aggressive and tight as ever and his tone is massive. I caught up with him to talk about the record and how he gets that sound. Read More …

REVIEW: Randall Diavlo RD100H

Randall RD100H

Plenty of great players have used Randall amps over the years: Dimebag Darrell, George Lynch, Nuno Bettencourt, Phil Collen, Scott Ian, Kirk Hammett… and one thing that has been consistent between them all is the up-front quality of the distortion, whether it’s being achieved by tube or solid state means. Randall’s Diavlo series looks very metal-oriented – and it is, with its horned-skull-adorned graphics and none-more-black exterior – but Randall seems to have worked hard to create a versatile clean channel too. Let’s investigate… Read More …

Randall Fredrik Thordendal Signature Series

thordendalPRESS RELEASE: Randall Amplifiers is pleased to announce the commencement of an exciting new signature series and design collaboration with one of the most innovative and progressive artists of our time, Fredrik Thordendal of Meshuggah. Fredrik’s, and in turn, Meshuggah’s impact on heavy music in general is massive. Ever since Meshuggah started, they have been at the leading edge, continuously evolving and becoming one of the most influential and widely respected bands in modern metal. Randall Amplifiers and Fredrik have now joined forces on a mission to take the next steps in high gain amplification for modern metal and beyond…

Some words from the team involved: Read More …

Randall hires amp wizard Mike Fortin, discontinues MTS series

Wow, the end of an era and the start of a new one. Randall is discontinuing the MTS modular line (which includes preamp modules for signature artists Kirk Hammett, Scott Ian and George Lynch). The company recently announced the hiring of Mike Fortin, founder of Fortin Amplification,to craft a new series of high-end, high gain all-tube amps including the new 150 watt Kirk Hammett signature model head. The photo above appears to be one of Fortin’s six-channel Meathead amps but with a Randall logo, which is serving as the jumping-off point for the Hammett amp.

Here’s the press release:

Randall Amplification Announces Mike Fortin as Exclusive Design Engineer

Chicago, April, 2012 – Randall Amplification would like to formally introduce Mr. Mike Fortin as an exclusive design engineer for Randall Amplification. Mike, as the founder of Fortin Amplification has forged a worldwide reputation for creating cutting edge high gain amplifier designs. We are excited to have Mike be a part of our team!

Mike’s first priorities will be a new multi-channel, 150 watt Kirk Hammett Signature Model Head and a whole range of high end, high gain all tube amplifiers to be manufactured in North America. The new Fortin designed series of Randall amplifiers will replace the discontinued MTS Series.

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INTERVIEW: Arch Enemy’s Michael Amott


Arch Enemy are about to embark on the last round of touring for last year’s excellent Khaos Legions.  More melodic and with maybe a touch less death than you might expect from a melodic death metal band, Khaos Legions is also the last Arch Enemy album to feature guitarist Chris Amott, whose departure from the band was announced earlier this month. But mere line-up changes can’t keep Arch Enemy down: new guitarist Nick Cordle of Arsis has taken up the co-guitarist throne alongside Michael Amott, and the band has a lot to say and do before they put the full stop at the end of Khaos Legions.

You’re about to come to Australia for a very short tour. Only two shows. You know what that means for a lot of fans: heavy metal road trip!

Yeah! We’re happy that we got the opportunity to play Australia at all this year, but it’s just these two shows. We wanted to play it safe. And it’s at the end of an Asia run. We start in Japan and do four shows there, then we go round Singapore, the Philippines, Korea, various places around Asia. Then we got the opportunity with a new promoter to tack on these two Australian shows, Melbourne and Sydney. We’re just really excited about doing it. I guess it’s been a couple of years since we were there now.

The last time I saw you were was probably Gigantour.

Yeah. I think the last time we were there was ’09. We did Gigantour, we’ve done a few different things down there. This will be our fourth or fifth visit to Australia, and this will be the last one in a while. We’re obviously not going to come back this year after these shows, then next year, 2013 is going to be a year off for Arch Enemy mostly. We’ll probably put out a new album in 2014. So I don’t know, maybe 2015 we’ll be back, if metal is still around at that point! So it’s going to be a while, so if anybody wants to see us and get their dose of Arch Enemy this is the last one for a while.

Obviously the hot topic at the moment is Chris’s departure from the band. What’s the story?

Well, Chris informed us in October last year that he wanted to leave the band. Again. [Laughs]. He’s been out of the band, in 2005, 2006, 2007.

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NAMM 2012: Randall Headhunter

Check out the Randall Headhunter amp by George Lynch. George has been doing his Mr Scary customisation to guitars for a while now and he has just branched out into amps. These aren’t going to be cheap, but each one will be unique and each one will be super-cool. Nice huh? Couldn’t seem to find spec info but I’ll look around on Sunday!

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REVIEW: Randall NB King 100 Nuno Bettencourt signature amp

Nuno Bettencourt has always had an ear for punchy, listenable distortion tones. Check out his sound on the Dramagods album Love, or Extreme’s latest, Saudades De Rock, for great examples. Nuno’s standard combination of bare-wood guitars and high output pickups means his amps need to be able to handle the kind of ultra-fine tonal detail that such features demand. and after years of collaboration, Nuno and Randall have introduced the NB King 100.

The NB King 100’s styling is unmistakable: it simply looks unlike any other amp in the world. For starters, all of the controls are over on the right hand side (the left features a badge of the logo for Nuno’s post-Extreme band Mourning Widows – and dude, you really have to check out their two albums), and the control panel is dominated by a seriously oversized volume knob and a VU meter. The design scheme is mirrored on the matching speaker cabinet. The matching NB412 speaker cabinet includes four 12″ Celestion Greenback 30s and is made from 3/4″ void-free birch plywood. It’s also freaking heavy.

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