French guitar makers LAG have been building instruments for many a year. However, only recently have they been hitting Aussie shores. With a range of electrics and acoustics, LAG have some cool dark styling features and attractive qualities that make them more interesting than just any old European guitar builder.
Tramontane has references to the strong, dry French northern wind and reflects nicely to their breezy and flowing logo. Coming from the 500 Stage Series the T500DCE is a semi acoustic dreadnaught guitar with a solid Sitka top, rosewood back and sides and a mahogany neck with ebony fingerboard. As I’ve seen on some previous models LAG definitely seem partial to darker stylings and features on their instruments. In this instance we see an Indian rosewood and maple sound hole rosette and Occitan cross (coming from the ‘Occitan’ romance language spoken in southern France),ebony bridge and black satin machine heads with satin black tulip buttons and a neck without inlays or markers on the fingerboard – very understated and cool. The T500DCE comes ina high gloss finish (with a satin finish neck) and overall looks a treat. Natural and rootsy with some almost gothic touches which may in turn catch the eye of a few more punters.
Don't Dread The Naught
Bright and clear the T500DCEhas a nice balance of tops and bottom end that lends itself to big open chord strumming and modern sounds. Ditch the pick for some finger style action and you’ll be pleasantly surprised as the guitar responds to your touch with decent volume acoustically. Of course you also have the option of plugging in with the Shadow nanoflex pickup and Studio LagPlus preamp which has plenty of tonal control and a built in tuner. Whilst not as harmonically rich as some pricier instruments that use super level tone woods, the T500DCE sounds pleasant and full, be it strumming out with a singer,picking some bluesy lines, or channelling your inner rootsy guitar god with exotic voicing sand open string zing.
As mentioned earlier, I really like LAG’s stylings and themes.It makes them that little bit different and identifiable, which is great in an ever increasing market. Don’t think this is to make up for a lack of substance though. They’re still building solid instruments at decent prices and their list of users worldwide is ever increasing. Fora glossy dreadnaught that feels comfortable, plays well, and suits a range of the styles add the LAG T500DCE to your list.
Hits and Misses
Dark features and stylings
Pickup and preamp system
Some strummers may get lost without fret markers
Top: Solid Sitka spruce top
Back and Sides: Rosewood
Preamp: Studio LAG Plus preamp
Preset: 5 preset analog EQ switch