Bassists Victor Brodén and Heiko Hoepfinger drop some low end tips on tone, timing, MIDI, and more!
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In our cover story this issue, we talk to Tal Wilkenfeld, the young bassist who gained worldwide attention backing Jeff Beck, about her stunning stylistic development as singer-songwriter, guitarist, and bandleader. Other artist features include chats with recent Rock Roll Hall of Fame inductees Rick Nielsen, Tom Petersson, and Robin Zander of Cheap Trick, as well as jazz virtuoso Julian Lage, Asking Alexandria’s Ben Bruce and Cameron Liddell, world-music-bass-goddess-turned-vocalist/songwriter Esperanza Spalding, and former Hüsker Dü frontman Bob Mould. The latest in our Forgotten Heroes series looks at the ongoing, astonishingly prodigious career of studio ace Reggie Young—whose credits include stints with Elvis, Johnny Cash, Merle Haggard, Jerry Lee Lewis, and countless other legends. Meanwhile, DrowningInGuitars.com’s Frank Meyers—one of the world’s foremost experts on quirky vintage gear—takes us back in time to the 1960s amp-in-guitar craze. Our gear reviews include a roundup of six new dirt boxes—Mojo Hand Fx’s Sacred Cow, J Coloccia’s Id, Oddfellow’s the Bishop, the Zen Zero Red Crown, and Pettyjohn’s PettyDrive—in addition to reviews of Fender’s new Bassbreaker 45 and American Elite Precision bass, the Electro-Harmonix Super Pulsar, IK Multimedia’s iRig Acoustic, Cusack Music’s Reverb SME, Strymon’s Dig, the Dean Zelinsky LaVoce Z-Glide Custom, Blackstar’s Artist 15 combo, the Darkglass Microtubes B7K Ultra, the Pigtronix Echolution2 Ultra Pro, and 3Leaf Audio’s WonderLove envelope filter.
Our annual pedalboards of the stars issue gives you an up-close-and-personal look at the coolest stomp stations from Billy Gibbons, Eagles of Death Metal, Slipknot, John Fogerty, Heart, Between the Buried and Me, My Morning Jacket, and Best Coast. We’ve also got a MIDI-guitar primer by Avi Bortnick—who incorporates a laptop into his rig onstage with jazz legend John Scofield—that shows you how to get started with minimal cost and surprising ease. In our interviews section this month we talk to Ben Monder and Tim Lefebvre about the sessions for David Bowie’s farewell masterpiece, as well as speak with Anthrax’s Scott Ian and Jonathan Donais (formerly of Shadows Fall), Gemma Thompson from London-based post-punk outfit Savages, Brad Shultz and Daniel Tichenor from Cage the Elephant, Sun Club’s Mikey Powers and Shane McCord, and Ride’s Andy Bell and Mark Gardener. Gear reviews this month include the Music Man St. Vincent, the PRS SE A15AL Alex Lifeson thinline acoustic, Dr. Z’s Z-Lux, Mesa/Boogie’s Subway D-800 bass head, the Dusky D20 head, ThorpyFx’s Muffroom Cloud, F-Pedal’s Eddie Kramer-designed PhazeVibe Lite, Dr. No’s RoadRunner Octave Fuzz Wah, and more.
Start the year off with a bang! Our cover story puts four shredding axes from EVH, PRS, B.C. Rich, and Blakhart through the PG review wringer to see which offers most bang for the buck—and with surprisingly great results across the board. Other gear reviews this month include the TC Electronic PolyTune 2 Mini, the D’Angelico EX-59, Fender’s Classic Player Rascal bass, Risen’s Legacy amp head, the Blackstar FLY 3 micro amp, Chase Bliss Audio’s Wombtone, Brubaker’s JXB Standard bass, the Tone Ranger Bustier, Livid Instruments’ Guitar Wing MIDI controller, the Piod What You Want 2, and Amptweaker’s TightDrive Pro. But that’s not all—our killer live-looping lesson also includes reviews of the new DigiTech JamMan Express XT, Boss, RC-1 Loop Station, and Hotone Wally. Meanwhile, our artist features this month include chats with blues master Rory Block, the eclectic and chronically underrated Sean Lennon, roots guru Steve Gunn, pedal-steel songstress Maggie Björklund, and hair-metal revivalists Black Veil Brides.
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