PG scoured the floor at the annual Summer NAMM gear expo in Nashville, and our cover story this issue shares the deets on the most enticing new guitars, basses, amps, effects, and doodads to watch for at your local shop. In other gear coverage, our reviews section includes a practice-amp roundup that gives you the straight dirt on five new combos—the Marshall CODE 25, Vox AV30, Ibanez TSA5TVR, Orange Crush 35RT, and Roland Blues Cube—as well as reviews of Fender’s new American Elite Telecaster, Peavey’s revamped Classic 30, Schecter’s Michael Anthony signature 4-string, the Alvarez Delta00TSB, Source Audio’s Nemesis, the Alexander La Calavera, EarthQuaker Devices’ Spatial Delivery, the Ashdown RM-500-EVO, Ibanez’s Mini Chorus, Jim Dunlop’s Mini Volume, Electro-Harmonix Bass Preacher, and more. Meanwhile, our interviews this month include chats with Les Claypool and Sean Lennon, Bjarte Lund Rolland and Maciek Ofstad from Norwegian metal outfit Kvelertak, former Black Crowe Rich Robinson, Thrice’s Dustin Kensrue and Teppei Teranishi, Eric Krasno, and Scandinavian experimental guitarist Stian Westerhus.
This incredibly diverse issue includes features on famed U2 producer and pedal-steel guru Daniel Lanois, drone-metal duo Sunn O))), alt-surf outfit the Mattson 2, British metal newcomers In Search of Sun, studio legend John Siket, and a look at the first-annual Holy Grail Guitar Show in Germany. We also talk to acoustic badasses Daniel Bachman, Cian Nugent, Chuck Johnson, Tashi Dorji, and Adam Miller. To top it off, we spotlight intriguing new recording gear, and serve up four lessons from Brendon Small, Mike Stern, Greg Koch, and Shane Theriot. Our gear reviews this month include Schecter’s PT Fastback II B, the Park P45 head, Dunlop’s Clyde McCoy wah, the PRS SE Kingfisher bass, Electro-Harmonix’s 360 Nano Looper, the Yamaha LL16D ARE acoustic, Tech 21’s Fly Rig 5, Mission’s V-Boost pedal, ValveTrain’s Brandywine bass head, Kleissonic’s Tremulant, Flex Waves’ Flex EQ 7, Killer Guitar Components’ Killer Compensated Claw, and Shredneck’s Z-Series travel bass.
The vaunted annual Pedal Issue returns! This year it sports an amazing cover by noted French illustrator/guitarist/stompbox-junkie McBess, as well as 33 guitar- and bass-pedal reviews by our astute team of pedal addicts. But that’s not all—we also take you inside the wacky labs where the folks at Union Tube & Transistor, Chase Bliss Audio, Hungry Robot, Fuzzrocious, Mantic Conceptual, Cusack Music, 3Leaf Audio, and Darkglass zap unicorns with shrink rays to put clangorous tones in little metal boxes. Meanwhile, our artist interviews this month include chats with Rage Against the Machine and Prophets of Rage bassist Tim Commerford, Screaming Females’ Marissa Paternoster and “King” Mike Abbate, jazz maestro Charlie Hunter, possessed Australian bluesman C.W. Stoneking, and Deerhoof’s John Dieterich and Ed Rodríguez. We also visit with the brain trust behind Recovery Unplugged, Jail Guitar Doors, and other rehab centers that have found success using guitar and musical activities to help patients overcome substance addiction. And finally, our latest Forgotten Heroes piece recounts the rich life and legacy of the father of free-jazz guitar, Sonny Sharrock.