Archives

Best Pickups For Ibanez Guitars

Although I consider it my duty as a guitarist to own a Strat, Tele and Les Paul (and some day an ES-335 please, Santa), I have plenty of experience with all sorts of Ibanez guitars and all sorts of Seymour Duncan pickups. So I thought it might be fun to share some of what I’ve found. Continue Reading

Seymour Duncan at NAMM 2016

Last week we packed up and headed down to Anaheim, California for the 2016 Winter NAMM Show. We had a great time meeting with artists, dealers and media, and letting folks try out brand-new gear like the Catalina Dynamic Chorus and Palladium Gain Stage pedals at our pedal testing stations. Continue Reading

Flying High On The Majestic Pegasus

When it comes to low-tuned, high gain metal many people think a high-output humbucker is the best type pickup to go with. It’s certainly great for some styles, but what if your style involves a lot of complex chords? Sometimes a high-output pickup and high-output amp can turn your well-chosen combination of notes into complete mush. And sometimes the best way to get that perfect heavy, face-smashing tone […] Continue Reading

The 1970s: The Lost Decade in Guitars

While I wasn’t playing guitar in the 1970’s, I certainly was around. I mean, I started playing in 1979 on a cheap nylon string (I still have it) and progressed to my older brother’s late ’60s Japanese electric that never quite played in tune. In the 1980’s, a friend of my parents got me a stash of old Gibson and Fender catalogs and old Guitar Player […] Continue Reading

Best Acoustic Guitar Strings

After the recent great bass string comparison from Jon Moody, I thought it would be a good time to compare some of the string choices for acoustics. Let's start with some basics. Continue Reading

Talking Tone With Novembers Doom's Larry Roberts

Chicago death/doom pioneers Novembers Doom have been at it for over two decades now, and they've seen many imitators come and go. And yet in all that time they've never been content to merely sit back and enjoy their status as co-authors of the genre; as new album Bled White will demonstrate, they continue to push forward into new territory while retaining their essential brutality and atmosphere. We caught up with guitarist Larry Roberts on the eve of the band's European tour and the release of the album to talk doom. Continue Reading

Hot Rod Guitars Of A Bygone Age

The 1980s are a difficult era. On one hand this era was awful: tight lycra pants, big hair, the rise of the synthesizer… One the other hand, the 1980s were amazing! Iron Maiden's Seventh Son of a Seventh Son, Winger's debut album, Metallica's first string of albums, Megadeth's first few albums, Dire Straits' Brothers in Arms… Timeless bands and albums, written and recorded in the 1980s. I am sure I missed a 'few' amazing 1980s acts and albums! The impact the 1980s had on us, guitar players and guitar lovers, is unmistakable and undeniable. Not in the least due to the amazing guitars the 1980s spawned unto the world! In this article I wish to take a look at some common traits of the best 1980s 'shredstick' guitars, as well as some neat wiring tricks those guitars had! Continue Reading

The Versatility Of The Black Winter Neck Model

Originally released only in Scandinavia in January of 2013, the Black Winter pickups were designed for extreme metal players, providing a sound that was suited to the sorts of metal coming out of this region of Europe. The public interest was so high that the Black Winters received a world-wide general release soon afterwards. Let’s take a look specifically at the neck model for now – […] Continue Reading

Unleashing The Flexibility Of The Sentient

I’ve been fascinated by 7-string guitars since I first heard about them in 1990. I was 12 years old at the time and I saw Steve Vai on TV describing his new axe, and that it was good for all sorts of genres, not just rock. That always stuck with me, although it would be a long, long time before I finally got my first 7-string. […] Continue Reading