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David Gilmour – On An Island

...uted by Graham Nash and David Crosby. Overall, the track does have that one-too-many-downers feel that a lot of Floyd songs had, but the sheer loveliness of the song and the power of the guitar solo negates that effect. “This Heaven” is a bluesy acoustic tune with a great hook and a biting solo. The piano ballad “A Pocketful of Stones” overcomes a silly lyric with its Gilmour solo, full of the long, liquid notes against strings and piano. Whether...

Wayne Lap Steel

...Sperzel locking and the strings (medium weight with a wound third) are rear-loaded. The 24-fret plexiglas fingerboard uses art deco markers carved from the back. A graceful single-layer pickguard adorns the face. Electronics on the Wayne are simple and straightforward – a single Seymour Duncan Vintage P-90 pickup with a volume control. Scale length is 231/2″ and the nut is 21/16″ wide. A peek in the rear electronics compartment revealed wiring tha...

Crafters of Tennessee Prodigal 5

...snatched up by a mandolin connoisseur (many of whom also own original Loar-signed F-5s). With its five-digit price tag, the Prodigal 5 is one of the most expensive A-styles available. Mark Taylor recently arranged for me to look at #7, owned by Mitch Simpson, who graciously allowed me to examine it. Close Up The Prodigal 5 makes a stunning first impression. The quality of its finish ranks with the finest from any builder; the color and tone perfe...

Floyd Rose Model One

...alanced in all five pickup positions and from string to string. The two out-of-phase positions were also nice, with a spacious sound that maintained good note separation – even with some overdrive. The pickups had plenty of gain through the overdrive channel of the Crate, very crunchy without being harsh, although a tone control would have been nice to mellow out the pickups for a more jazzy kind of tone. The single volume control tapered nicely,...

Lollar Pickups

...P-90 Soap Bar Style pickups Type of Pickup Direct-replacement for P-90 (non-dog-ear) equipped guitars. Features Alnico 5 magnets, adjustable polepieces, braided-shield lead wire, black and cream covers included. Price $160. Lollar Imperial PAF humbucker pickups Type of Pickup Direct-replacement for hum-bucker-equipped guitars. Features Adjustable polepieces, chrome and gold covers included, braided-shield lead wire. Price $300. Contact Lollar Guit...

Reeves Custom 100

...n from its tolex cover and piping accents to its meticulous tag strip point-to-point wiring. Those who know the history of British guitar amps will recognize at first glance the Dave Reeves touch in the lineage of Jansen’s amps. Aside from its nameplate, the Reeves Custom 100 looks much like a vintage 1970s Hiwatt – inside and out. The Custom 100’s power is supplied by a quartet of EL34s producing 100 watts. The preamp has four 12AX7 tubes, and th...

Rob Allen Mouse 30

...to notes with a slight twist or roll of the fingers. The neck has a between-C-and-U shape that feels good and is quite comfortable to play. A little more contour on the top of the body would eliminate our only nit; after putting in a few hours, the top edge of body started to tenderize our forearm. But any luthier will tell you how hard it is to bind a body contour, so this is forgiveable. During our test, we had the opportunity to use the Mouse i...

HomeBrew Electronics Power Screamer/Compressor Retro

...ty parts and components like Cliff true-bypass footswitches, Alfa pots, mil-spec Teflon-coated wire, and metal-film resistors. And one of the cool things about HomeBrew stuff is that you can customize the appearance of your pedal. Custom finishes include tweed and checkerboard, and other options include remote boost and diode footswitch jacks. Weaver recently invited us to test drive his Power Screamer overdrive and Compressor Retro pedals. The Po...

Tony Nobles 006 Acoustic and Exhibition Resonator

...tuned the Excaliber to open G and grabbed a slide. The guitar, with its oh-so-warm-sounding wood body, quickly revealed a unique tone we heard as a cross between a Dobro and a National. It’s not quite as loud as a metal-body, but it’s got sustain to rival one. And this is a very musical-sounding resonator with a pleasant tone, not tinny or trashy. The Nobles 006 and Exhibition are crafted with obvious care – Tony is a stickler for tone, and both...

VVT Lindy Fralin Model amplifier

...alin amp looks boutique in a way we’ve come to expect; i.e. it sports point-to-point wiring with carbon-comp resistors, an all-tube circuit, and a 12AX7-driven spring reverb and preamp. But, go deeper and you’ll quickly discover some seldom-seen features, like a trick self-biasing-cathode design that allows the player to switch between a pair of 6L6s (for 30 watt of output) and a pair of 6V6s (for 15-watts) without having to re-bias the amp. Part...
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