Guitarist July 2020

Guitarist is the longest established UK guitar magazine. You'll find authoritative gear reviews, artist interviews, technique lessons and advice. Plus, Guitarist's digital edition now includes all of the same audio and video content as the print edition; available to download from a special area of the Guitarist website!

United Kingdom
Future Publishing Ltd
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13 期号


alone together

Hello again, everyone. It’s great to be back after a short spell working on a book project (guitar-related, more of which another time). Big thanks to David Mead for very ably stepping into the editor’s chair while I was away. At time of writing, global efforts to halt the COVID-19 virus mean restrictions on socialising are still in place for most people, denying working guitarists much of their livelihood. Tragically, we’ve also lost some wonderful musicians to this horrible disease, including American troubadour John Prine, jazz guitar master John ‘Bucky’ Pizzarelli, and Matthew Seligman, who was bassist with new wave pioneers The Soft Boys and played on albums by numerous luminaries including Tori Amos, Morrissey and The Waterboys. Our deepest sympathies go out to the families, friends and fans they…

making the cut

We have to ’fess up here. If we hadn’t eyeballed the headstock of the new for 2020 Sabre, we’d never have guessed it was built by Music Man. It’s easy to pick a Music Man StingRay or Axis out of a line-up. The body shapes are a dead giveaway, not to mention the StingRay’s conspicuous control plate. The St Vincent model is too outlandish to go incognito, and the Albert Lee and Steve Lukather signatures couldn’t mask their origins if they hid behind big sunglasses and a Magnum PI moustache. The same could be said of the new Sabre’s illustrious if short-lived ancestors. The original Music Man Sabre made its debut in 1978 and was in production for a couple of years. Aside from a better known bass variant, the guitar…

music man sabre

PRICE: £3,399 (inc case) ORIGIN: USA TYPE: Offset double-cutaway solidbody electric BODY: Okoume with bookmatched flame maple top NECK: Roasted figured maple, bolt-on SCALE LENGTH: 648mm (25.5”) NUT/WIDTH: Graphite/43mm FINGERBOARD: Roasted maple with dot inlays and hand-rubbed oil and wax finish, 254mm (10”) radius FRETS: 22, high-profile medium, stainless steel HARDWARE: Chrome ‘Modern Tremolo’ 6-saddle bridge with push-in arm, Schaller M6-IND locking tuners STRING SPACING, BRIDGE: 54mm ELECTRICS: 2x Music Man Custom Wound humbuckers, master volume, master tone, 5-way pickup selector blade switch WEIGHT (kg/lb): 3.5/7.9 OPTIONS: None. The Ball Family Reserve edition costs £3,999 RANGE OPTIONS: Dual-humbucker w/ vibrato options: StingRay RS, Valentine Tremolo and Steve Lukather (from £2,399, £2,649 & £2,349) LEFT HANDERS: No FINISHES: Honey Suckle (as reviewed), Cobra (roasted maple ’board, black hardware), Boujee Burst and Blue Moonstone (ebony ’boards, chrome hardware). High gloss polyester (body), hand-rubbed oil and wax finish (neck) Strings…

nutube revolution

Innovation has always been part of the Vox ethos. The brand’s early groundbreaking AC models powered The Beatles and other music legends to fame and continue to provide the tonal foundation for many contemporary artists. Beyond the electron valve, Vox has also set new standards for affordable digital modelling and recently announced another innovation, the 6P1 NuTube – a vacuum fluorescent display (VFD) that potentially replaces the industry-standard ECC83 twin triode preamp valve. VFDs have been around for almost as long as the AC30; most people will have seen their characteristic green digits in microwave ovens and washing machines. They use the same components as an electron valve (anode, cathode and grid) to switch display segments on and off, so it’s no surprise many homebrew amp experimenters have tinkered with them.…

vox cambridge50 1x12 combo

PRICE: £275 ORIGIN: Vietnam TYPE: NuTube/digital preamp, solid-state power amp OUTPUT: 50W into 4ohms VALVES: 1x NuTube 6P1 twin triode DIMENSIONS: 410 (h) x 452 (w) x 240mm (d) WEIGHT (kg/lb): 9/20 CABINET: Particle board LOUDSPEAKER: 1x Celestion VX 12” CHANNELS: 11 amp voices with 2 user patches, expandable to 8 CONTROLS: Amp select, gain, volume, bass, treble, power level, effects select x2, tap tempo/ tuner button FOOTSWITCH: Not supplied ADDITIONAL FEATURES: Aux in, headphones/line out with cabinet simulator, USB for direct recording/ reamping and connection to desktop, JamVOX III download card OPTIONS: The VFS2 2-button footswitch (£25) toggles 2 user patches, while the VFS5 (£60) can store and recall up to 8 patches RANGE OPTIONS: None Vox Amplification Ltd 01908 304600 www.voxamps.com PROS Top-quality tones that wouldn’t be out of place on amps costing over double the price; compact and very portable; Tone Room editor/librarian…

natty dread

There’s no disguising the influence of Gibson’s ubiquitous J-45 on The Forty Three from Atkin. As any connoisseur of acoustic guitars will know, from the model’s outset Gibson never stopped tinkering with its appointments, until recently mostly to its detriment. But with The Forty Three, Alister has settled on what many believe is its finest incarnation. This particular set of features arrived a year after the model’s 1942 debut. So we see the perfectly proportioned round-shouldered dreadnought outline, sultry dark brown sunburst finish, dot-inlaid fingerboard, straight bridge, torty teardrop pickguard, ‘banner’-style headstock with three-on-a-plate Kluson plastic-button tuners, seven-ply black-and-white soundhole rosette, and simple cream body binding. All this is built around a solid mahogany back, sides and neck, plus Santos rosewood fingerboard (pau ferro) and baked Sitka spruce top construction. Designed to…