Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Updates!!! GearTrap NAMM Party announced!!!

Hello all-

I hope you're all enjoying life in the blogosphere. Sorry for the minimal postage tonight, but Aljon and I had a gig. It's late, but I wanted to clue you all in to a big announcement- GearTrap is throwing our first NAMM party on June 18th in Nashville! If you happen be in town for NAMM, make sure to drop by and say hello. We're still working to finalize the details of the party, but what i can tell you is this- today i faxed in our application to the Guinness Book of World Records for THE WORLD'S LARGEST PEDALBOARD!!! thats right- we're going for the record! We are currently in talks with various sponsors for the event, but rest assured it will be huge!!! More details will follow hopefully this week. Ok- I'm off to bed. tell your friends about GearTrap and don't miss the 1st Annual GearTrap NAMM party!

take care guys!

Jaux

Here's the press release for the World's Largest Pedalboard!!!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Nashville Blog “GearTrap.com” announces World’s Largest Pedalboard

Local Musicians invited to enter the Record Books

Nashville, TN. – Local guitar gear blog “GearTrap.com” announced today that they are commissioning the world’s largest pedalboard to be unveiled at their June 18th Pre-NAMM party. Jaux King, purveyor of the blog, which covers musical instruments and musical accessories gave few details, but made it clear that the ball is rolling on the event. “We currently have people looking into the idea with Guinness. We have officially applied with them and research is being done to ascertain exactly what resources will be needed to make it happen,” King said. The idea came to him and fellow blogger and local radio personality Aljon Go while the two were brainstorming for ways to promote the blog. “We were laughing and joking around about it and then began to realize how cool it would be, so we decided to go for it.”
According to King, the general premise will involve local musicians donating the use of their pedalboards for the event. “We’re going to need lots of help on this from Nashville musicians of every genre. Our goal is to make this record stick for years to come,” said King, adding that it would be a great chance for Local musicians and Nashville in general to garner some much deserved attention. “The Music scene around here is so healthy and vibrant. It would be really gratifying to accomplish something like this with the help of our friends and peers.”
While the details are still being ironed out at this point, one thing is for sure- This will be an event to remember. In addition to enlisting help from its musicians, some of Nashville’s very own gear companies are also being tapped to help out. “There are some minor hurtles that we have to overcome, but with the generous help of some of the people and brands that we have in mind, we are supremely confident that we can make this a success.” GearTrap is currently taking submission and sponsorship inquiries through their email: geartrap@gmail.com . Additionally, those interested in the event or in participating can keep up with the latest by going to GearTrap.com, which is updated daily and will have news on the “World’s Largest Pedalboard” event as well as articles, reviews and information about all things “gear”.

For more information, please visit GearTrap.com

Contact: Jaux King: geartrap@gmail.com


end transmission_

Artist Spotlight: Brad Delson of Linkin Park

This month, I think Guitar World got us a good one with there “*the setlist” feature. Every time I see Brad Delson’s (Linkin Park)
rig I can’t help but marvel. There’s something about having a huge rack of gear that just pumps me up. Midi switchers, pedal drawers, rackmounted blah blah blah… It’s all deadly. Anyway- I digress- although I haven’t been a big fan of LP since I drove a Honda CRX (high school), I can definitely appreciate a killer guitar rig, case in point, Steve Vai (and a collective groan comes over the crowd…) Regardless of the music, or how you feel about midi switchers, check out this month’s Guitar World for a couple of really cool pics of a bad ass pedalboard and rig…



Jaux

Gibson Songwriter

Check out this cool write up on the Gibson Songwriter

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The Down-Low, with Sean O'Bryan Smith

Hello all- the following post was written by a close friend of mine, Sean O'Bryan Smith. Sean is a smoking bass player who is a regular on the Nashville Session scene. Sean does quite a bit of writing for various publications and is great. He and our friends at Eden Electronics were kind enough to let us re-publish his music business survival column that was originally posted on Eden's website. You can check out Sean's great brand of modern Jazz by clicking on his name in our "Links" section. So, without further delay, I give you- "The Down-Low" with Sean O'Bryan Smith:


Hey Gang,

Sean here. So for my first article I pondered multiple subjects that could relate to the world of us low-enders and even though it is not a new concept, I wanted to remark on my experiences of the value of playing simple. Before moving to Nashville in 1999, I had spent a six year stint performing throughout the Southeast with my own fusion band. Needless to say, I had about ten times the notes I needed for the gigs that were available in Nashville. Naturally, I would go on the gig and try to astound folks with my technical prowess but, reality set in when I wasn’t getting called back for some of the gigs. This went on for sometime before I realized that the problem was not these poor saps who couldn’t appreciate the new spark of groove they were experiencing. Nay, it was yours truly shooting himself in the foot and not following the “when in Rome” philosophy of adapting to my new surroundings. So after a short period of swallowing my pride and generally sitting in the corner pouting, I embraced the fact that I was going to have to adjust to this whole simplistic thing. Little did I know at the time, that this was going to be one of the greatest musical Renaissance moments in my career.

One of the necessities of Nashville is to perform artist showcases. While logistically, this can be a royal pain in ye olde back side, these were great opportunities to hone my new approach on bass. Keep in mind that these are typically singer/songwriter gigs and can be grueling but, also a source for some really cool and diverse material. With that, I soon realized that there was a true art form to playing simply and it could even be………… wait for it………extremely hip. The joy of hearing stripped down music in its purist form got to be extremely intoxicating to me. I even got to the point of when I had the opportunity to “overplay” I opted to lay back even more. Especially, if there was a large band and definitely on artist dates. Trust me, a tour bus is crowded enough and it makes for a LONG ride home if you stepped all over the guitar player’s “big moment” on some tune. Anyhoo, the real Renaissance moment came from this when I truly discovered the tunes I was playing. I actually grasped the concept for the first time in over two decades of playing “for the song”. This believe it or not, was even though I thought I already had it figured out. By the way, make a mental note that we NEVER have it all figured out in this obsession of ours called music.

All in all, everything I have mentioned changed my opinion of different playing styles and opened me up to a host of wonderful players. Until then it was all Marcus Miller, Mark King, and Jaco Pastorius for me. Now, the new masters to me are Hutch Hutchison, David Hungate, and Chris Campbell ( ala Silver Bullet Band ). More than any, I really dug in to the work and approach of Tony Levin ( insert bald comparison here ). He has the profound ability to marry amazing technique in to the right situation and still keep it fresh even if it is a simple part. Whether doing big old football style whole notes or playing the bass with drum sticks ( check out Peter Gabriel’s “Big Time” baby !! ), I realized that the same cat can do it all and it can all be hip.
Now for the best part my fellow pounders of the “one”. Once the concept that it is OK and even cool to just lay back and groove the REAL fun begins. Nothing is hipper than just laying back and knocking a groove in to the ground. Especially, when the whole band is “pigeon necking” and giving you the affirming grins we all desire. Then the moment you have been waiting on all these years comes.The time to step up and unleash those mind numbing licks for YOUR moment. You can finally rub your groove stank on them and you think “What Should I DO ?!” Let them fly like there is no tomorrow my babies. All that restraint you have been practicing will allow you to actually make a statement instead of being that guy or gal who wanked all over the tunes all night. Then, you are “the Man”( or Wo-Man ) and you are turning down the work instead of wondering “Why won’t they call me ?”. Then you can truly enjoy the music and have a good time which is why we all ultimately got into this in the first place.

Seriously though folks, all of my musical awakenings have kept me extremely busy over the years in the industry and have led me from master sessions and the clubs to the theaters and stadiums. It has been and will continue to be a great ride. I hope that with a little bit of shared knowledge the same holds true for you. Until next time my fellow low-enders. Keep groovin’.

Later,

S


About the Author:

Sean O’Bryan Smith is a professional bassist, producer, and freelance writer. As an author, Sean has been published in Bass Player magazine, Vintage Guitar magazine, and Premier Guitar magazine as well as writing his monthly column on Music Business Survival for www.eden-electronics.com .

Sean is recognized internationally as a solo jazz artist and professional bassist. He has recorded or performed with such artists as Billy Ray Cyrus, Sara Evans, Rebecca St. James, Garth Brooks, Trisha Yearwood, Anna Wilson, and Rodney Atkins. Sean is currently promoting his solo CD on Groove Therapy Records entitled “Tapestry”. Bass Player magazine calls the Cd “....soulful, melodic, and unpretentious….” Sean is currently booking shows for upcoming radio appearances, clinics, and concerts. “Tapestry” can be purchased at CDbaby ( http://cdbaby.com/cd/seanobryansmith ), iTunes, MyMusicStream, and other fine retailers.

For more information on Sean’s music and writing check him out at .


www.myspace.com/seanobryansmith

Seymour Duncan's SFX-07 Shape Shifter

Congrats to the gang at Seymour Duncan for receiving a great review on the SFX-07 Shape Shifter from Vintage Guitar Magazine (May, 2008). The review is very complimentary and mentions the name of one Duane Eddy in terms of tone. When you’re talking trem, you can go wrong with a comparison like that! Check it out MSRP: $225


www.seymourduncan.com

RoboKey- The Snake

Here’s a new one on me, but still very cool. It would appear that new kids on the block- RoboKey have made it even easier to change your strings with the RoboKey Snake. The Snake is a palm-sized, motorized stringing tool that uses planetary gearing to increase the turning speed allowing for quicker, easier string changes. NO BATTERIES REQUIRED?!



Check it out- robokey.com

Monday, April 28, 2008

Korg Pandora PX-5D

Korg continues their reign on pocket sized multi-effects with the release of the Pandora PX-5d Multi-effect processor. The PX5d
seamlessly packs 180 guitar AND bass effects into its small, sleek, compact, sexy frame, which is about the size of the modern chick magnet (or a cassette tape… remember?) Get this- USB interface! For those of us chained to the Mac, that’s a big deal- easy editing and recording. Best of all- owning the PX5d means that next time someone asks you “is that a phaser in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?” you can say, “Phaser”. MSRP- $330


Korg.com

Tone Freq’s LINK OF THE WEEK

Get that tone! GuitarGeek.com – The Guitar Rig Database!

After years of careful listening to records, reading interviews and watching videos of your favorite guitarists www.GuitarGeek.com has made it simple to research your favorite guitarists’ guitar rig. Simply type the artist or band name to get the complete list of gear and effect chain. Many guitarists including Dave Grohl, Zakk Wylde, Joe Satriani and Tom Morello have their entire set-up from amps, wirelesses, stomp boxes, guitars, strings and cable preferences listed. There is even an area for product reviews, artist interviews and a message board where you can post your own rig! This is a link you’ll want to BOOKMARK!


Peep the link!

www.GuitarGeek.com

Aljon "Tone Freq" Go
Freq’n out? Found a cool link? E-mail Aljon: tonefreq(at)gmail.com

Ibanez GRGM21 “Mikro”

“People with small hands and missing fingers suck at guitar…” How many times have you heard this one?
Well, Tony Iommi proved the naysayers wrong when he helped create heavy metal with only nine fully funded digits and now Ibanez is helping you petite ax-slingers have your day in the sun too. The Ibanez GRGM21 “Mikro” is a short scale (22.2 inches) guitar that makes up for in tone what it lacks in size. The price point is very affordable at $187.70 (MSRP).

Now all we need is a midget that impersonates Joe Satriani! No, I’m serious- that would rule.



Ibanez.com

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Blackheart BH100H

The Blackheart line of amps has me curious. This guys are being designed, at least in part by Mr. Petor Belov (hope i got close on the spelling) of Epiphone and Soldano (i think) fame. The guy can design an amp...

Talk about corruptive power. The New Blackheart Eng Hothead takes the basic plug and play attitude of a world-class 100-watt workhorse head and puts just enough thoughtful features on it to be the most flexible amp in its class, not to mention several classes up. Two Power Modes (Class AB and Class A) divisible by Pentode (full power) and Triode (half power) operation put four unique, classic and powerful voices right at your fingertips and you won't need a Ph.D to get amazing tone; whether it's searing rock your face off at full volume riff work or plucky, responsive Class A blues when you're felling all deep and stuff.

Awesome Power, Awesome Flexibility — Two simple switches open up an endless world of tonal possibilities.

Class AB/Pentode: 100W of flesh searing power
Class AB/Triode: 50W, tighter headroom, crisper gain, still hurts
Class A/Pentode: 60W, lots of headroom before overdrive, nice and plucky
Class A/Triode: 30W, less headroom, more responsive to your attack

All this before you dial in a brilliantly tuned EQ section and reign it all in through the Master Volume and Master Presence controls.

Two-Channels, Separate EQs: The Hothead has two channels (Loud and F'N Loud), each selectable by a mini toggle on the faceplate or remotely via the included footswitch and each voiced through its own, dedicated EQ section. No more switching from one sound to the same sound in the middle of your jam. Dial in two distinct voices and rock on.
The LOUD Channel (aka "One") is voiced to range from Crisp Cleans to Classic Rock and Heavy Blues tones.
Controls: Drive, Level, Treble, Middle, Bass The F'N LOUD Channel (aka "Two") is voiced to capture Classic Crunch to Sweet Overdriven Lead tones. Controls: Gain, Level, Treble, Middle, Bass Tube Effects Loop/Boost Function with Level Control

Both channels share a Tube Driven Effects Loop that can be run in series or parallel modes (selectable by mini toggle on the amp's rear panel) and then hard bypassed, doubling as a footswitch-activated boost. Send and Return controls act as expected when in Effects loop Mode but allow you to tweak your Boost Volume when your effects are hard bypassed. Admit it...that's cool.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Have you told ALL your friends about GearTrap???

GearTrap is now on Myspace. Please drop by and become a friend!
You can add GearTrap directly to your Myspace friend list by clicking the "Add to friends" icon below:


Click below to visit GearTrap on Myspace!
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Thursday, April 24, 2008

The Rodi

This is super cool- For those of us who quickly get tired of making multiple trips in and out of a club to bring out our guitars- this is interesting- “The Rodi”. This is one of those ideas that you come across in a guitar magazine and think “why didn’t I think of that?!” The Rodi is basically a handle with two hooks on it that you can use to carry two guitar cases at a time. Very cool… check it out-



www.therodi.com

BBE Sound Two Timer

Adding to their ever expanding pedal line-up, BBE Sound, makers of the popular Sonic Maximizers introduced the Two Timer, a delay pedal that allows the user to switch between or combine two separate delay times. Features include: Time1/Time2 mode switch, true hardwire bypass, metal film resistors (1%) and 0-30ms of delay.

For more info, check out:

bbesound.com

Ask Tone Freq... “How do I avoid tone-suckage when using pedals?”

Tone Freq,
I have a bunch of stock pedals I use in my rig and want to get a more pure sound without sacrificing the effects. I don’t want to deal with a bunch of loopers in order to get “true-bypass.” Do you have any suggestions?

Thanks,
Jim, Nashville TN




Jim,
In stead of explaining away what “tone sucking” is here’s a link if you really want to know the details: . Through the years I’ve found that you can help reduce the “tone sucking” effects of some non-true bypass pedals.

CABLES: One of the most cost effective ways you can improve your tone is getting good cables. I use George L’s cables for everything! They are a favorite among players and techs alike for their solderless plugs and have won practically every cable shoot-out for their low impedance, high capacitance and most importantly BANG for the BUCK!

CREATION AUDIO LABS: MK.4.23 Boost and Redeemer. The Redeemer circuit really brings out the clarity and tone of the guitar (I should have a review of the Redeemer soon). The Boost also has special circuitry that virtually removes impedance issues at the end of your pedalboard. For more details on the MK 4.23 Boost check out my review: http://geartrap.blogspot.com/2008/04/tone-freq-creation-audio-labs-mk423.html.

VISUAL SOUND: Use the Visual Volume (or any Visual Sound effect) in front of your pedals. The PURE TONE circuit brings everything to life and makes your guitar sound like it was plugged straight into the amp! Read more about Visual Sound’s PURE TONE: http://www.visualsound.net/faq.htm#12.

GOING BOUTIQUE - Getting Kelley Electronics or Analog Man to mod your stock pedals to make them true bypass might be an option for you as well. They also sell pre-modified pedals and offer original designed pedals to add to your collection.

Good luck!
Aljon “Tone Freq” Go



ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Aljon Go is considered to be a “pedal junkie” by his peers often asked for advice when building pedal boards. He toured the world with his award winning band Mink and was the artist relations/marketing pro for a musical accessory company. He currently spends his time bringing new and exciting tones to regional acts Jaux King, JonesWorld and Mister Happy. He is also host of the long running “Local Buzz” radio show in Nashville and product specialist for a leading guitar company. Freq’n out? E-mail Aljon: tonefreq(at)gmail(dot)com.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

4MS Noise Swash

Holy Shit... I'm in love...


Manufacturer Spotlight: AnalogMan!

If you've been living under a rock since the mid-nineties, then you may not have heard of AnalogMan, manufacturer,
distributor and creator of hundreds of different effects. Most well know for their boutique pedals and mods (namely the classic TS-9/808 mod), AnalogMan keeps thousands of guitarists around the world sounding great. Not only do they sound great, they get tons of chicks and are the envy of their friends... seriously- look it up. Mike and everyone at AnalogMan
are great people and we are proud to feature them in our Manufacturer Spotlight. Make sure to check them out!

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Tech 21 SanAmp Character series

So, here’s the latest from our pals at Tech 21- The SansAmp Character series. Contained herein are five different pedals that borrow specific sounds from amps that their names evocatively represent- Liverpool, British, Blonde, California and VT Bass... tasty… As perfectly descriptive as these names are, don’t let them fool you- these are not one trick ponies we’re talking about here. The Blonde is said to range from Blackface to CBS-era Silverface. The British covers the swinging 60’s all the way up to modern era tones that even our Screamo friends can appreciate. Looking for the tone that defined the British Invasion and the May-Day tones of the seventies? Well, then you’re going to want to check out the Liverpool, a VOX inspired tone-poseur’s nightmare. For our four and five string friends, the VT Bass is going to serve up a piping hot array of tones ranging from 50s-60s studio amps to high-gain excess. Since All SansAmp pedals come with speaker emulation, you can use any of these bad boys direct- live or in the studio. They are all-analog and feature three-band EQ w/ Drive and Level controls. MSRP is $195.00.


For more details, visit

www.tech21nyc.com

Villex Mid-Range Booster

Before all us Les Paul guys get too excited, the Villex Mid-range Booster is for Fender Strat style guitars only. I know, totally lame…but hey- hopefully sometime soon these guys will broaden scope a little bit and we can all rock the instant 7db boost in lower-mid range frequencies. At any rate, there are some serious cool things to be said about this piece- the most exciting- it’s passive! That’s right- unlike other inboard boosters, the Villex is a passive device that requires no batteries AND no maintenance; which means it’s already easier to deal with than some of your girlfriends and your girlfriend’s “other” boyfriend… but I digress… Rumor has it that this piece can be installed in about two minutes if you’re decent with a soldering gun. The Villex is controlled by an extremely low profile toggle switch, so you have your choice of boost or the original non-boost tone. There are lots of tips and tricks to be learned with this one. It’s a definite must try. MSRP- $112.


For more info:


www.villex.com

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

SL-20 Video

Here is a little video from Music Messe in March. It addresses the Boss SL-20 that we covered last week. Very cool stuff here-

Marshall @ Winter NAMM 08

Here's a little Marshall preview... Also, More Randy Rhodes... does not suck.

Line 6 M13 Stompbox Modeler

so back in December a friend of mine said "hey, you should come down to SoundCheck next week. Line 6 is unveiling some new stuff and you'll definetely be into it." I figured this guy knows me and knows what he's talking about when it comes to what's
cool, so i'll defintely go check it out. So I did. In addition to being able to play the new Spider Valve series amps (which kick ass),
i was privy to an "under the table announcement" of what the Line 6 guy referred to as "The Foot", an amalgamation of all Line 6's floor based modelers (when i say 'ALL' i of course mean "the big four"). The Foot later became "M13", one of the next big things from Line 6. I have to say, I'm a big L6 fan and it's because of stuff like this. M13 not only houses delay, distortion, filter, and modulation models, but ALSO reverb and a 28 second dedicated looper. Think that's a deal??? BUT WAIT! THERE'S MORE!!!
Act now and you'll also receive fully controllable MIDI I/O and an included power supply! Wow... i need to sit down...

check it: Line6's M13

A quick overview:

CRATE 16X12!!! HALF STACK!!!

Whoa... this is nuts. This makes me glad NAMM is back in Nashville this year-


The poor man's Robot?

I saw the new N-Tune on-board tuner referred to as "the poor man's robot" today on message board. I thought it was just funny enough to warrant a post on a genuinely cool idea for a piece of gear (if it works). So, i'm looking for some comments on this one people- have you tried it? No? If so, how was it?

Here's a little info for the curious:

N-Tune is a convenient solution for fast, accurate guitar tuning. Whether you're in the studio, on stage, or just practicing, simply pull your guitar's volume knob and use N-Tune's super-bright display to silently tune up in seconds. Then push it back down to play - with perfect tone, thanks to N-Tune's true bypass design. N-Tune can be easily installed in most electric guitars using standard soldering tools. For guitars with single coil pickups, the 250k ohm (Fender*-style) kit is recommended. For guitars with humbucking pickups, the 500k ohm (Gibson*-style) kit is recommended. Each kit comes with multiple colored tuning rings specifically designed to give you a perfect color match to your guitar s existing volume knob and trim. Best of all, no permanent modification of your guitar is required!

N-Tune Onboard Chromatic Electric Guitar Tuner Features:

· True bypass design preserves your instrument's original tone
· Fast, accurate tuning, built right into your guitar
· Pull your volume knob to tune up silently; push knob back down to play
· Installs in your guitar using standard soldering tools - no drilling or permanent modification required
· Fender*-style package (for use in guitars with single coil pickups) includes white, black, cream and parchment-colored tuning rings and a 250k ohm pot
· Gibson*-style package (for use in guitars with humbucking pickups) includes black and cream-colored tuning rings and a 500k ohm pot

* Fender is a trademark of Fender Musical Instruments Corporation. Gibson is a trademark of Gibson Musical Instruments. Neither company is in any way affiliated with the N-Tune product or Zero Crossing Inc.

Monday, April 21, 2008

BBE Brings Maximizer to Consumer Audio

BBE Sound revolutionized professional audio with its Sonic Maximizer technology, which restores the harmonic richness that is typically lost in the recording process. The company aims to do the same for consumer audio with its new VG360 Sonic Maximizer. Utilising the same technology employed by Sonic Maximizers used in studios, the VG360 is designed to improve the audio quality from video game consoles, DVDs, CDs, MP3s and cable TV and satellite services. BBE claims the unit can improve sound effects, soundtracks, speech intelligibility and the sound of compressed audio without causing hearing fatigue or distorting the character of the source material. Controls for the BBE VG360 include Lo Contour, Process and Function switches. The unit has a five-year warranty and has a street price of $99.99.

On the Board

In this week’s On the Board we’re going to take a look at the coolest software out there right now for getting great guitar tones- the Line 6 GearBox plug-in…

If you’re like me, then you’re a big Line 6 fan, but always felt like there was something missing from POD and PODxt. Enter GearBox. GearBox is basically a plug-in for your computer that, when coupled with the included DI box/interface, produces digital tones of unsurpassed quality with levels of unsurpassed convenience. It’s important to note that there are two ways to use GearBox. The first is to install it on the same computer you record with. The advantage to this is that you can switch tones on the fly and make last second changes to you sound. The other way is to use it as a pedal (which is what I personally do) by having GB installed on a separate computer from the one that does the recording. The features listed below correspond to the “Gold” bundle, which has a much longer list of models than the “Silver” bundle:

Line 6 GearBox Plug-In Gold Bundle Features:

· 72 guitar amp models
· 24 guitar cabinet models
· 28 bass amp models
· 22 bass cabinet models
· 80+ stompbox models and studio effects
· 6 mic preamp models

The beauty of GearBox is its versatility and convenience. The Line 6 cats really thought about this because they not only make this a valid purchase for the guitarist, but also the bassist (no big surprise) AND the vocalist as well- that’s right- GearBox can be used to produce killer guitar sounds, bass sounds, and even vocal sounds with its 6 mic preamp models. On the convenience scale, this thing is off the charts as far as I’m concerned. I’ve saved myself a lot of time and trouble being able to haul only my laptop and Line 6 box to recording sessions. That kind of convenience just can’t be beat!

There are a lot of things Line 6 is not. Some tone purists will argue that because Line 6 models sounds it’s not worth a second glance. If you ask me, this is a bone-headed view point. For the few things that Line 6 is not, there are infinitely more reasons
to check out this particular piece of gear- versatility and convenience, which we’ve covered. Additionally, the fact the these emulations are quality reproductions of amps and effects that most of us, if we’re being honest, will never have the chance to play let alone own is probably the greatest reason of all. For the guy that wants be able to say he used 72 vintage amps on his record… good luck with that- keep saving! On the other hand, if you’re a real guitar player who has a real budget but still needs killer tone, check out the GearBox, buckle your seat belt and keep your arms INSIDE the ride!

More GearBox info:

GearBox Gold Bundle with TonePort D.I. is a powerful and portable USB recording interface that includes Gearbox Plug-In, the ideal guitar processing plug-in for Windows and Mac (Windows RTAS/VST, Mac RTAS/AU compatible). The USB recording interface provides amazing low-latency monitoring, and with 12 dB more dynamic range than its competitors, it provides incredibly clear sound and very low noise for recording guitar. The Gearbox Gold plug-in provides the industry-standard POD and Amp Farm tones: an instant collection of brilliant sounds inspired by vintage and modern guitar amps, bass amps, stompboxes, effects and mic preamps essential for every guitarist, bassist and vocalist. Line 6 has added support for the POD X3 Live in the newest revision of, GearBox. GearBox is a powerful modeling package that is compatible with its own hardware. However, until now the new POD X3 family was not among the supported devices. GearBox 3.6 is a free download from the Line 6 website.

Line6.com

Tone Freq’s LINK OF THE WEEK

Muff Shootout!

Our YouTube buddy “gearmandude” has helped us pedal fanboys out once again by performing a shootout of the Big Muff Pi , Little Big Muff , and the Muff Overdrive from Electro-Harmonix. Even though you are listening to the pedals over the internet he does a great job showing you his settings and test gear. Another great way to drool over the pedals and narrow the field when you are ready to make a purchase! The Big Muff-Pi is definitely my favorite of the bunch due to it’s rich “harmonic” content! Thanks “gearmandude!”


Check it out!



Aljon "Tone Freq" Go
Freq’n out? Found a cool link? E-mail Aljon: tonefreq(at)gmail.com

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Dave Mustaine's rig...

I love this shit!


Friday, April 18, 2008

Bogner unleashes the "Alchemist"

Last months' Musicmesse saw Rienhold Bogner and Co. Releasing a new amp, "The Alchemist". You can check out a kick ass hat and the amp in the video below...


MXR reissues TS-1 Tremolo

MXR is about to reissue the Dunlop TS-1, the classic tremolo pedal in form of the new M-159. Those of you familiar w/ TS-1 will remember that it was quite big and chunky. It was, and still is no space saver, that’s for sure. The reissue model is now smaller in size, but supposedly still massive in terms of sonic scope. I’m sure I can see this one on the pedalboards of every analog purist out there; I mean, come on- who doesn’t love MXR? This is another pedal I plan on trying out very soon. Its 18V operation means it’s going to cost you two outputs on you power supply, but I’m sure we can all make it work.

Here’s some more info:

With its warm analog circuitry and lush tremolo sound, the Dunlop TS-1 set the standard for tremolo pedals for over a decade. The MXR M159 Tremolo keeps all the effects and controls of the original but in a smaller, pedalboard-friendly size. Its 18-volt operation provides rich and vibrant sound with low noise due to its high headroom. With the versatile input/output options the M-159 can produce hypnotic, pulsing mono tremolo through a single amp or ping-ponged from one amp to another in stereo mode for a huge, spacious tone.
Tone Freq's TONE TIP: HUM X
By Aljon Go - April 17, 2008 – for www.geartrap.com

Does your rig suffer from HUM? The folks at Morley/Ebtech have a possible solution for that pesky ground loop that won't break the bank - enter the HUM X. You can safely and permanently remove the ground loop hum at the source! The HUM X filters out unwanted voltage and current in the ground line that cause ground loop hum, while maintaining a solid and safe ground connection. Just place the HUM X on the end of a 3-prong power cord of the equipment that has a ground loop. The ground loop is gone - and the audio signal remains intact – BRILLIANT!
LIST PRICE: $90.00

STREET PRICE: $59.00

Check out www.ebtechaudio.com for more info


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Freq’n out? E-mail Aljon: tonefreq(at)gmail(dot)com.

MXR M-108 EQ

Ok, this is one of my favorite pedals and maybe THE most useful that I own, the MXR M-108. The 108 is a ten band EQ
that covers various frequencies that are crucial to guitar and bass. I’ve had this guy for several months and to be honest, I bought it with little to no previous EQ experience. Believe it or not, having this pedal in you chain is like taking a blanket off of your rig. Even if the EQ sliders (which happen to light up when unit is engaged) are completely flat, the pedal still gives new life to your sound [does anyone know if this pedal happens to have a buffer circuit in it?]. Here are some

other opinions…


This is a great EQ pedal. It comes with a power supply, and 4 settings for you to try. I still have it set to the metal setting, even after 5 months of toying with it. When you activate the pedal, your current tone will come to life. Its like pulling a blanket off of your amp. It creates no extra noise, and has a gain slider to, so you can use it as a boost pedal. Overall, the pedal boosts your tone to make it more lively. I highly suggest it to every guitar and bass player. Your guaranteed to find the perfect sound.

Posted by Anonymous musician. from A city in the midwest. on Jul 30, 2007

One in front of your pedals/preamp the other in the loop, a power attenuator so your ears don't bleed then crank your amp way up there! Do that and any and all of your fav guitarists sounds will be available to you. A must for serious guitar tone freaks... excellent little box.

Posted by Rage from Northern UK

This eq pedal is amazing. I didn't think that the pedal would have the impact that it did but i was definitely surprised. It made my amp sound like a completely new amp. If you have a solid-state amp then this pedal is an absolute necessity.

Posted by The Dude from Covington, La on Dec 23, 2007

GearTrap now on Myspace!!!

GearTrap is now on Myspace. Please drop by and become a friend!
You can add GearTrap directly to your Myspace friend list by clicking the "Add to friends" icon below:


Click below to visit GearTrap on Myspace!
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Thursday, April 17, 2008

VHT SIG: X

VHT makes bad ass amps- there, I said it. I’m sure I won’t get many, if any complaints on that statement. If you would like to complain, well I just don’t understand that. How can you argue with a company who’s gear sees action In some of today’s coolest rigs? Page Hamilton (Helmet), Billy Howerdel (A Perfect Circle) and Alexi Laiho (Children of Bodom) all know what’s up when it comes to VHT. Recently, VHT has released a new head, the 100 watt SIG: X. the SIG: X boasts a three-channel tone orgy guaranteed to please. I’ve posted a description below. As always, if you play it before I do, let me know how it is!


GT

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The SIG:X tube amp head produces an astonishing array of tones and textures never before attainable from any single amplifier. Incorporating proprietary VHT design technology, top notch components, precision engineered transformers and legendary VHT build quality, the SIG:X is absolutely without peer in the guitar amplifier industry.

The SIG:X produces an incredible palette of clean sounds on all 3 channels, then gradually morphs from bluesy grit to fat chunky rhythms sounds and finally into a fire-breathing gain machine all on only one of its three channels.

THE LEAD CHANNEL
The SIG:X lead channel can do everything from pristine clean to fully saturated, highly detailed super-gain at pretty much any desired volume setting. With its unique touch sensitivity, just touching the strings lightly and then smacking an open E chord will cause the tone to hold together and then open up on the decay. This effect is present regardless of gain or volume setting and will help bring out overtones and harmonics you have probably never experienced on a channel switching amplifier before.

THE RHYTHM CHANNEL
This is probably the most versatile channel on the amplifier and produces what many consider to be the signature VHT sound. Don t be too surprised to find that this is much more than your average medium gain channel. It is also capable of producing some pretty devastating solo settings. The RHYTHM channel differs from the LEAD channel only in VOICING switch nomenclature and internal tone shaping.

THE CLEAN CHANNEL
In the SIG:X amp head, the user-friendly and expressive qualities of this channel should help illustrate why many players swear by the VHT clean sound. The most important thing to remember about this channel is to USE YOUR GUITAR VOLUME. This is an extremely dynamic channel. By setting the volume a little louder than needed and controlling the volume from your guitar you will be rewarded with a huge array of tonal textures and in-between tones that most players struggle to get with multiple amps and boost pedals. CLEAN differs from the LEAD channel in amount of available gain, VOICING switch nomenclature and internal tone shaping.

VOICING AND GAIN
Like all amplifiers, the VHT SIG:X has tone and gain controls, but unlike any other amplifier the SIG:X gives you total control over VOICING and GAIN. This GAIN I / GAIN II / MASTER VOLUME configuration is the key to dialing in the SIG:X sound and volume to your specific requirements.

If the SIG:X is all about transition. Most multi-channel amps give you a one trick pony on each channel at best, and multiple channels of one average sound at worst. Guitar music is a string of spontaneous and often unorthodox impulses. Guitar players attack, coax and finesse music out of a guitar in ways that seem to defy logic and the laws of physics. It s all of the things we do in-between" that gives guitar music excitement and emotional impact. These in-between or transitional stages that usually happen in spite of your existing amp settings are where players live and where the SIG:X shines most brightly.

To fully realize the range and flexibility of this amplifier, one need only remember to keep the guitar volume and tone controls in mind. Playing off of the guitar controls is practically a lost art. This is probably because amps of the recent past have been lacking in the things that amps of an earlier era excelled at - a great basic tone and an unmistakable feel. Many players will sacrifice flexibility and modern conveniences for great tone and feel. The SIG:X was designed to give you both and it truly delivers!

Tips For Better Guitar Tone

Check out this link from the Berkley School of music blog with some Tips For Better Tone

Ask Tone Freq

From Jay in Minnesota:

Tone Freq,

How are you doing this fine spring day? I have an important question for you. I am thinking about getting a semi hollow body guitar and I think I have narrowed it down to the Epiphone Wildkat and the Epiphone Sheraton II. I was hoping you would share your expert opinion on these two guitars and tell me what you think of them.

Tone Freq’s response:

Jay,

I like them both in their own way. I think about it like this… Do you want the classic styling of the Sheraton II with humbuckers? OR do you like the compact, Bigsby, flame-maple P-90 styling of the Wildcat. If you are a fan of the ES-335 then I think the Sheraton II is more your speed. If you like the sound and feel of a smaller bodied guitar (Les Paul) then maybe the Wildcat is more up your ally. They are both well made. Since I already have a Gibson ES-335 I would lean to the Wildcat since I don’t have a guitar like that – especially one with a REAL Bigsby! If this were my first semi-hollow and had to choose between the two I would go with a Sheraton II. I love the looks, the feel and the humbuckers.


I hope this helps you out. Either way they both rock!!!

Aljon “Tone Freq” Go


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Aljon Go is considered to be a “pedal junkie” by his peers often asked for advice when building pedal boards. He toured the world with his award winning band Mink and was the artist relations/marketing pro for a musical accessory company. He currently spends his time bringing new and exciting tones to regional acts Jaux King, JonesWorld and Mister Happy. He is also host of the long running “Local Buzz” radio show in Nashville and product specialist for a leading guitar company. Freq’n out? E-mail Aljon: tonefreq(at)gmail(dot)com.

Gibson Robot guitar...

This guy looks familiar...

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

On the Board_ Pedaltrain PRO

This is the first installment in our "On the Board_" feature. Make sure to leave some comments on these things and let us know if they're working for you or not!

On the Board_
Pedaltrain’s Pedaltrain Pro Pedalboard- Jaux King - April, 08


So, here’s the thing- Guitars, effects and amps can be complicated. There’s a lot to consider when you plug a certain guitar into a certain amp and/or effect(s). Sometimes, all the variables can really get to be too much. It makes you long for something simple, something you don’t have think about. As musicians, we are constantly searching for ways to make moving and maintaining our gear easier on our backs and our brains.

Now, I have the answer for you…

For years now, our good friends at Pedaltrain have helped musicians get where they need to go with their wits and sanity intact. Throughout their history, Pedaltrain has made it their goal to deliver quality pedalboards that are simple, yet brilliantly thought out and versatile. If you’re like me, you’re type of guy who likes to destroy his whole pedalboard set-up only to add one pedal. Nothing’s more fun than wiping the slate clean and starting over by mapping out where each effect will go. It’s here that the brilliance of the Pedaltrain Pro is so evident. With it’s ample surface area (32”X16”) the possibilities for great floor set-ups are literally endless. You’re only constraints are the size of your pedals and the length of your patch cords (Pedaltrain seems to prefer George L’s… one more thing that GearTrap agrees with them on).

So, you’ve put you’re unique mark on your Pedaltrain and now you’re ready to head out the door to the gig. Just going down the street? In that case, you probably picked up the Pedaltrain Pro that comes with a light-weight gig bag; It’s easy to carry and stylish as well! Maybe you’re the consummate pro and you’re headed out on the road to circle the globe for months on end... in that case, Pedaltrain has you covered too; offering the Pedaltrain Pro in an ATA approved flightcase (I personally own this model and it rules). It’s heavy duty and tough enough to withstand the wrath of the airport luggage worker who’s jealous because he wishes he had one.

Simply put, if you want to save a couple bucks and don’t really care to protect your effects, then by all means, head down to Home Depot and hope for the best. However, if you’re a serious musician who has invested some serious money and emotion into your floor rig, then wise up and protect your investment with a Pedaltrain Pro. It’s the best way to show your pedals you love and appreciate them. After all, if you were Velcro-ed to the floor and got walked on all the time, you’d need some love and appreciation every now and then too!



Pedaltrain.com


You can contact Jaux @: (geartrap(at)gmail(dot)com)

VOX Guitars are back!

So, yesterday I mentioned that Dunlop is bringing back Way huge electronics. Well, it would seem that UK amp geniuses VOX are back in the guitar game with a new line of axes dubbed “Virage”. The VOX Virage line will feature models- the DC (double cutaway) and the SC (single cutaway). These guys are said to be slightly smaller in size than your typical hollow body and are contoured along their length and across their width to promote “ergo-harmony”. In addition to this, the Virage series will also feature a proprietary “Three-90” pick-up system which has two triple coil pick-ups… Sounds interesting… Based on the pics I’ve seen, the VOX guys did a great job of keeping the look of a classic VOX hollowbody and melding it with some modern appointments.

For more info on the Virage series, hit up VOX at: voxamps.co.uk

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Dunlop to relaunch Way Huge Pedals!

From GearWire.com:

Dunlop Manufacturing makes way huge news by relaunching Way Huge Electronics. The big name pedal manufacturer announced a partnership with the famed boutique effect pedal makers of Way Huge Electronics.

For more, click HERE

TONE FREQ- Creation Audio Labs' MK.4.23

TONE FREQ
Creation Audio Labs’ MK.4.23 BOOST PEDAL
By Aljon Go - April 14, 2008 – for www.geartrap.com

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Guitarists the world over have searched for the perfect boost pedal. More often than not guitarists have had to settle for what was available. Since discovering the warmth of tube amps I’ve always wanted to use a boost but have never found one that I like. Most boosts pedals end up coloring the tone of my guitar and come off sounding too harsh. Then I heard about Creation Audio Lab’s MK.4.23 Boost.

The pedal claims to offer zero to +24 dB of transparent boost, no tone coloration, no signal distortion, no phase reversal and true bypass with quiet switching. It comes with an ultra quite power supply and is hand-built in Hermitage Tennessee, U.S.A.! Using George L’s cables I plugged a Gibson Les Paul Custom into the unit and then ran it into a Gibson Les Paul Jr. Amp. It delivered nice and smooth gain when increasing from the zero position. It was able to give me what I wanted – more of my guitar tone and none of the unwanted aftereffects of most boost pedals – noise. Later I was able to try placing the Boost in line with some of my other effects. As suggested on the Creation Audio Labs website I tried it as a gain tool in front of my amp and then afterwards as a volume boost after my pedals. For the longest time I actually placed it before my delay. After reconfiguring my board I found that I prefer using it as the last pedal in my chain. I have even used it as the last pedal and have kept it on in the zero position keeping my tone in tact! After speaking with Gary "Sarge" Gistinger president of Creation Audio Labs he told me that by using the MK 4.23 as the last pedal that it would help the impedance matching issues that are common to all guitar, effect and amp set-ups. In a nutshell Sarge tells me that the MK 4.23 removes those issues and delivers the best signal possible. It also has a flat e.q. response so there is no change in the tone of your guitar and settings from pedals placed before it – what a great concept! I also appreciate the small package of the pedal. I’ve been known to pack as many pedals on my board as possible and with the placement of the input and output jacks on the rear makes it an easy addition to the board not taking up precious real-estate. More pedals on my board – yea! It also has a place to mount the pedal to your board with screws on the bottom. If you choose not to do that the bottom of the pedal is smooth for Velcro, no gummy rubber to remove for that Velcro to slip off!

This pedal looks like it could have been made by the Terminator himself. Built like a tank the chassis is made from sleek stainless steel enclosed in epoxy. It is also hand-wired with pro-audio components with a very nice white LED when activated. The laser cut logo on top even lights up when given power – way cool! You can’t get much simpler than the operation of this pedal with no-nonsense operation with one level knob – what’s not to like? Out of habit with most pedals with that type of switch I usually make sure to punch it on and off a couple of times to get rid of the initial pops when first powered up. Sarge mentioned that there shouldn’t be any pops at all due to the circuitry in the pedal. I have never encountered any noise or problems with the switch or the unit in general.

The MK 4.23 Boost makes good on all its promises. Creation Audio Labs has taken the time to craft one killer pedal – one to slay all other boosts out there. So maybe instead of the Terminator reference it should probably be more like the Highlander of Boost pedals! I have had this pedal now for over a year and have taken it with me on every gig and session. It has never let me down! The staff at Creation Audio Labs are also great people and very helpful to their customers. If you happen to be at a guitar show they invite you to stop by for some tone tips! The facts are that it’s durable, easy to use and it sounds excellent. Kudos to Creation Audio Labs for making good on those promises and making a difference you can REALLY hear!

*TONE FREQ RECOMMENDED* I use it for every gig! It’s for TRUE TONE aficionados!

COST: $225.00 USD (as listed on CAL's website)


MANUFACTURER LINK: www.creationaudiolabs.com




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Aljon Go is considered to be a “pedal junkie” by his peers often asked for advice when building pedal boards. He toured the world with his award winning band Mink and was the artist relations/marketing pro for a musical accessory company. He currently spends his time bringing new and exciting tones to regional acts Jaux King, JonesWorld and Mister Happy. He is also host of the long running “Local Buzz” radio show in Nashville and product specialist for a leading guitar company. Freq’n out? E-mail Aljon: tonefreq(at)gmail(dot)com.

Tone Freq’s LINK OF THE WEEK:

Guitar Player TV!


If you’re like me and like to search and “window” shop on-line for your next piece of must-have gear Guitar Player TV should be added to your “Favorites” folder. There are great gear demos, shoot-outs and artist interviews!

-AlJon "Tone Freq" Go


Freq’n out? Found a cool link? E-mail Aljon:tonefreq(at)gmail.com

iGuitar?

Ambrosonic announces a new series of MP3 recording, DSP loaded, USB capable guitars. These high-end axes are made of swamp ash and will feature a quilted maple cap. SRP is in the $3,000 neighborhood according to MMR (Musical Merchandise Review).



Ambrosonics.com

Marshall Randy Rhodes model

Here it is kids- The Marshall 1959 RR- 100 watts of Randy Rhodes fury (well, sort of…) At any rate, only good things can happen when you combine the Marshall name with the Randy Rhodes name into a white tolex covered high gainer. For you techies out there, the answer to your burning question is “yes”- the two halves of the first ECC83 valve in the pre-amp section were cascaded to allow this monster to scream at it’s full, 100W, Satan pleasing potential. Thanks again Jim… you’re the best!


Marshallamps.com

Elixir String Co. announces line of Instrument Cables

Elixir strings have announced that they will be releasing a new line on guitar cables dubbed, oddly enough, “Elixir Cables”.

Elixir Cables will represent the company’s first fretted instrument accessory outside of strings. According to Elixir, the cables will deliver tonally transparent signal providing clearer high frequency response and smoother, more balanced mids. The cables are available in 10’, 15’, 20’ and 30’ lengths, sporting both angled and straight end plugs.


ElixirStrings.com

Monday, April 14, 2008

Coming Soon on GT-

Coming soon from contributing writer Aljon Go:


Keeping Your Tone Consistent
Review: Creation Audio Labs MK.4.23 Boost
Cleaning Up Your Tone and Your Rig with George L's Cables
Review: Visual Volume and 1 Spot from Visual Sound
Review: Keeley Boss DS-1 Mod and Ibanez Tube Screamer Mod

R&R meets R&R...

Do you ever have the problem of being indecisive? I know I do. Sometimes us lazy, deadbeat musicians have trouble deciding if we’d rather sit at home and watch TV all day or sit at home and play guitar all day (neither of which sounds bad at theoment)! Now our problems are solved and our prayers have been answered- Ladies and Gentlemen, the “Retrorocker Guitar Chair” by LazyRock Entertainment! The RetroRocker is the first ever, “patent pending”, powered guitar chair- it has a built-in amp! The RR is 10 watts, solid state, and features not only overdrive, but also CD interaction. The good news is, no matter what the color scheme is like in that one room apartment that the five of you share w/ your roadie, custom color combinations are available. The bad news is, that starting at $679.00 SRP, it’s unlikely the laziest of the lazy will be willing to pass up pizza and beer for two months in order to buy one… maybe I shouldn’t have mentioned it…



LazyRock.com

MXR Carbon Copy delay_

Ok- this is another one I’m excited about. The Carbon Copy is MXR’s latest foray into pedaldom and maybe one of their
coolest. Compact, analog delay with true hardwire bypass, optional Mod feature and pretty blue lights… what more do you need?
I hope this thing sounds half as cool as it looks. If so, you may see one on my board in the near future. Here’s a run-down of the basic features:

600 Ms of delay
Controls: Regen, Mix, Delay, Mod button
True Hardwire bypass
9v operation
And of course, the all important blue LEDs

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Effects Loop Questions Answered...

If you’ve ever wondered what exactly your effects loops is, what it does and/or how you should use it, check out this
link.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Promote GearTrap!

Here is a GearTrap banner. Post this on your Website, Myspace site, or blog and support GearTrap!


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COPY THIS CODE!

Guitar Pedal Buying Guide

This is kind of cool... something i happened on- Guitar Pedal Buying Guide



GT

BOSS SL-20 SLICER

We'll start off GT with the coolest thing I've seen in a while. Our good friends at BOSS have expanded their twin pedal series to include the all new SL-20 "Slicer". For those of you that are unfamiliar with this effect, you can read more about it HERE. This thing sounds incredible and even looks killer (let's not kid ourselves- looks DO matter)!
One of the coolest features of the SL-20 is the fact that it has a built-in Tap Tempo feature. You can also sync it up with your MIDI capable drum machine or sequencer. The BOSS website has a video that gives you a demonstration and explanation of what this thing can do.


This effect has been available for years in various BOSS and Roland multi-effects products, but somehow managed to escape my notice. Last week, a good friend of mine sent me an email. The subject line said "drool" and contained in the body was a link to the Slicer page (above). I was blown away to say the least. Check it out and see for yourself...

GT

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GearTrap Features

If you know of an awesome website that revolves around guitar, bass, etc. gear then let us know so we can feature it! We will have the first feature up soon, so watch out!

GT

Welcome to GearTrap!

Gear Trap is the NEWEST online resource for all you guitar geeks and gear whores out there!
It's purpose is to keep you up to date on the latest happenings in the MI (musical instrument)
and gear industries. We are just like you- musicians who are always looking for the next cool piece of gear that we MUST have! Make sure to keep your eye on GearTrap.com for all the latest and coolest gear!

GT