Kemper Profiler Workstation w/ Remote
Modeling effects is hardly a new idea; companies have been trying to replicate the nuances of tonal triumphs for decades, case in point the swelling market for clones of prized overdrive pedals. For years the use of professional digital imitators carried a stigma of philistinism around with it, largely due to manufacturers’ inability to overcome the indelible effect that digitization has on fidelity. It seems like players are realising the potential inherent in some of the more top of the line examples and utilising them in live touring rigs. Cue the rise of Axe-FX as one of the most divisive names in today’s riff game, and the engineers at Kemper have certainly come nipping at its binary heels.
VHT Special 12/20RT Combo
A lot of the time the pantheon of modern guitar amplification feels like a classroom full of kids on red cordial. There’s a lot of jumping around, vying for attention with flashy colours and loud noises, but very few willing to sit quietly and get to work. I get the distinct impression that the Special 12/20RT is an attempt at the latter, a clean slate designed to let come what may.
Peavey Mini Heads
It’s been a long time since the heady days of the rock and roll in the ‘80s. Bandanas, leather chaps and all that hairspray are now the bastion of novelty cock-rockers who’s bands pay tribute to that glorious era when names like Peavey, Jackson and Kramer we’re the be-all and end-all of sonic revelry. The once proud companies that provided backline for gargantuan stadium fillers like Ratt and Warrant have for all intents and purposes taken a back seat to bigger and newer names in the amp game; popular opinion has shifted toward the boutique and the vintage and left those shred lords to antiquity. Far from wallowing in obsolescence however, it seems the brains behind Peavey Amplification have simply been lying in wait, honing their craft, patiently poised and ready for their time to rise again.
Acus Sound Engineering Acoustic Guitar Amplifiers
There are plenty of guitar amplifiers available on the market, many offering all sorts of features. Some are designed with a specific sound in mind, while others run the gamut of style and genre. They all have their place in the wonderful world of amplification, but that does not mean that they’re all made equal. The fact is there are specially designed amplifiers for acoustic guitars that also don’t do justice to the instruments they are intending to represent. That’s why an Italian family company has strived to deliver a quality of amplification worthy of the fine acoustic instrument it is working with. Let me introduce you to Acus Sound Engineering.
Fractal Audio Systems Axe-Fx II XL+
It’s almost easier to list the players who don’t use a Fractal Audio Axe-Fx than to name those who do. This two-rackspace unit has become utterly ubiquitous in studios and onstage. Periphery base their sound around it while guitarists like Steve Vai and Dream Theater’s John Petrucci like to use it for its effects alone, integrating it within a physical amp rig. Whatever way you wish to use it, the Axe-Fx is able to accommodate it. And that’s where the new Axe-Fx II XL+ comes in – as players find more and more unique ways to use the Axe-Fx, so too has the system evolved.
Jet City Custom 22 Head & 24SVe 2x12 Cab
Say what you will about their foreign policy, health care system, celebrity obsession and love affair with machines that kill; if there’s one thing the Americans know how to do well it’s rock ‘n’ roll. Somewhere between Robert Johnson unintentionally changing the face of music forever and half of Metallica playing ‘The Star Spangled Banner’ in an ice hockey rink there lies an indelible and seemingly innate ability in the vast majority of patriots to not only understand how to make a rock-box sing, but also how to make other people enjoy it as much as the maker. When it comes to American instruments there is a self-propagated heritage and prestige that few nations, other than the British of course, can hold a candle to. Jet City and their ever-growing catalogue of brawny builds are relative newcomers in the pantheon of Yankee engineering, but in that seven or so years they’ve kicked up enough dust to turn some lofty heads. Fireworks go off, tri-coloured streamers sail to the ground and into the ring comes The Custom 22.
Eden Amplification E-Uke Amplifier Combo
Eden Amplification will be most familiar to bassists. The high-end bass amp manufacturer is responsible for the well-regarded boutique World Tour Amplifier and D-Series Cabinets – the choice of many session musicians and bass purists. It’s the attention to detail and a strong history in quality craftsmanship that defines their distinguished product range, which is also what led to the company becoming a member of the Marshall Amplification family. That’s why it is no surprise to see Eden produce the E-UKE – a 20W amplifier specifically designed for the ukulele – with the company always in the market to assist the serious player in search for that tonal sweet spot.
DV Mark DVC Guitar Friend 12
Back in my day (if you didn’t just read that and didn’t roll your eyes then you have no idea what you’re in for) practice amps used to be a very specific animal. Most of them were 10 watts of scooped, squelchy, plywood abomination that you put up with just long enough to convince yourself it was time to upgrade to a more serious rig. Seems to me that kids these days have come to expect a little bit more from their first noisemaker. That’s where DV Mark’s charmingly named DVC Guitar Friend 12 comes in.