REVIEWED: ERNIE BALL CRADLETUNE
Behind every great man is an even greater woman, or so the old adage goes. In touring band circles the saying is more specifically behind every great axe-man/woman is an even greater guitar tech. The black-clad unsung heroes of performance are all too often ignored despite the omnipresent rattle and jangle, battle cry of the densely populated keychain-come-utility belt, especially where product innovation is concerned. Did anyone ever spare a thought for Pete Townsend’s overworked underlings? Where would The Edge be without someone to ensure that the 400 guitar changes that happen every show go as smoothly as possible? Where would Slash be without someone to wipe the Jack Daniels and cigarette ash off his near priceless riff-sticks? So it’s about time that someone paid them some heed and lightened even one small part of their load. In swaggers Ernie Ball with their space-saving, eyestrain relieving CradleTune clip on tuner.
REVIEWED: HARRON CUSTOM GUITARS DELUXE CARE KIT
I’ll be the first person to admit that I absolutely overlook the maintenance aspect of my guitars. Sure, I’ll give them a wipe down after a rehearsal, but I never take the time to use some elbow grease and make sure they’re all polished and maintained. Michael Harron of the Melbourne based Harron Custom Guitars recently expanded his repair/service business to include his own brand of guitar care products.
REVIEWED: ERNIE BALL PARADIGM STRINGS
Breaking strings is the worst. It’s the guitar equivalent of blowing a tyre, dropping your ice-cream on the ground or having your parents walk in on you and your Tinder date. Ernie Ball is justifiably proud of their world-class strings, and they don’t want you to break ‘em. They want you to change them only after the eventual tone loss that affects all strings, not after one overly-ambitious bend in the heat of the moment. So, with that in mind, meet Paradigm Strings.
REVIEWED: THE MATON CASE
One of the most terrifying ordeals faced by modern guitarists is the abject anxiety of flying with gear on a budget. Too many musicians at all levels have fallen foul of a grunting, simian, hi-vis-clad lummox hurling a precious artefact onto a conveyor belt like an angry bouncer only to find their pride and joy pulverised at the other end of their journey. No player should outlive their best friend in that way, and it is with this as their chief concern that Maton introduce The Maton Case.
REVIEWED: THE ERNIE BALL FLEXTUNE CLIP ON TUNER
Clip-on tuners are one of the staples of the gigging guitarist, particularly those with simple stage setups or who prefer playing acoustically. But in an increasingly crowded market and rapid developments in technology, what’s on offer has never been more competitive. Does Ernie Ball’s latest offering stack up to the rest? Thankfully, yes, but more than that, it also makes some impressive strides forward of its own.
There are so many variables that go into your electric guitar tone – amp, guitar, wood, strings, pedals, leads, length of leads, speakers and the list goes on. Pickups are very much part of this equation too, yet they are often overlooked.
Aston Halo Reflection Filter
Last month I marvelled at the wonders of an Aston microphone that landed on my desk. This time around I have the new Aston Halo reflection filter to make use of for a week. Let me tell you, this thing is very purple, but not at all loud. For those of you who haven’t yet heard of Aston Microphones, you need to be on the lookout for their limited range of products. They are now available in Australia and are offering some very clever design elements that many mass-produced microphones and accessories don’t consider. The same goes for the Halo, a purpose built reflection filter for use in just about any room to make the most of your voice and your microphone’s sound.
Ernie Ball Slinky Guitar Strings
Ernie Ball has over 50 years of experience in producing guitar strings that enhance tone and embrace playing style. As the world’s leading manufacturer they have attracted the very best, with their household Regular Slinky strings played by the likes of Eric Clapton, John Mayer and Steve Vai. Optimum comfort, feel and greater specificity are all qualities inherent to the production and remarkable playability of the Slinky range. This overwhelming success, however, hasn’t stopped the Ernie Ball engineers from developing new ways to improve the total tonal and playing experience. Enter the Ernie Ball Slinky Cobalt and the Slinky M-Steel – two technologically distinctive sets of strings that each provides guitarists’ with a fresh way to shape their sound.