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Five Fiendishly Frightful Halloween Shred Machines

By Martina Fasano Halloween. The candy-lover’s Christmas. The sinfully sinister holiday that gives us chills, tricks, and treats. What better way to pay tribute to one of the coolest, most fun days on the calendar, than to play some guitars that are spooky, hellish, or downright mean? Here are five guitars featuring Seymour Duncan pickups that will make your Halloween squeals complete – whether they be delightful […] Continue Reading

The Four Stages of Gain: Seymour Duncan Gain Pedals

Overdrive and distortion pedals tend to multiply if left alone for too long. At some point, every guitar player looks at the pile of pedals scattered around the room, and can positively assure an unsuspecting wanderer that every single one of those pedals are completely different, and just because they might be the same size, or have similar words on them, that they are certainly not […] Continue Reading

Talking Guitar With Lita Ford

By Martina Fasano Lita Ford began her career in the seminal all-female punk band The Runaways, together with Joan Jett, Sandy West, Cherie Currie, and Jackie Fox. That would have been enough trailblazing for most people, but not Lita. Continue Reading

Let’s Talk About Sustain

It’s fairy common to read about sustain in guitar reviews. Some guitars have lots of it, some have less. We sometimes perceive that a guitar is better if it has lots of sustain compared to if it doesn’t. Let’s pull on a thread to unravel the tapestry of what ‘sustain’ means in a technical and musical sense. Continue Reading

Feed Your Frankenstein: Ten Halloween Sounds You Can Make With Your Guitar

Have you ever wondered how they make all of those cool sound effects in your favorite thrillers? On those backlot tours I learned that there are entire crews of people dedicated to that very purpose for every horror film that is made. The cool part? You can use your guitar to make some of the very same sounds you’re used to hearing during your favorite horror movies. Continue Reading

Review: Alternative 8/Screaming Demon Set

For a while I've been looking for the perfect allround set to go in either a Les Paul or Super strat and I believe I stumbled on the set that ticks all the boxes for me. I wanted a bridge pickup that was hot but not overly so. Great harmonics, singing leads with enough edge to cut through the mix without sounding too thin or thick. I want my rhythm parts to be chunky and crunchy but when I roll back the volume I want clarity. Continue Reading

Using Amps And Pedals Together

When I was younger, I absolutely refused to play with pedals: stompboxes, distortions, overdrives, boosters: anything that would make your amp go to '11.' I simply didn't want to understand why you should or would use them. "I always chose my amps based on their ability to crunch and the voice of the overdrive, so why bother," I thought. "Wanna have more distortion? Crank up the gain pot of your amp. Not enough gain? Wrong amp!" It was that simple for me. My turn-around point came somewhere last year. I saw more players use the backline of a venue or the house PA with a bunch of pedals in front of them, and sometimes with a tiny 15 watt tube amp with a nice clean sound. I couldn't see why that approach had benefits until I borrowed a few pedals to see how that worked. So, let's take a look at how stompboxes worked for me. Continue Reading