Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Muppets getting their groove on

Well of course they use a Roland Space Echo.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Distortion that Rocks

This is not just an excuse to throw up another picture of a Telecaster ... really.

I just tripped across a great guitar blog. I'm instantly smitten upon seeing the most recent entry of a 70s era Custom. Of course he's a little harsh on it - calling it a Les Paul ripoff - which, with the high mounted pup toggle, a humbucker and two tone and volume knobs, yeah, it sorta is. But he says nothing of its favour with Keef. Or just that its just a great all around axe.

The Arcade Fire and American Analog Set in the "What we're listening to" are nice touches, too.

"Hello, uh, Springfield!"

Fender has a prototype of an internet enabled Telecaster with a tablet PC built in the back. So I guess you can surf for tablature between songs, or maybe have it play an mp3 for you to jam along with.

Still, have these guys never seen buckle rash?

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Science Fiction Music

Ottawa being as small as it is, its hardly surprising that I've been doubly informed of this event. Hi Lo Trons are a neo New Wave band - lots of poppy synth and a jangly Jazzmaster. Science Fiction Music was on CBC Radio 3 ages ago and I was pretty excited to find out they were local.

I'm a rocker. I rock out.

iPod tuner/metronome/chord chart/scale chart/jam mate: iRocker

Sadly, not for 1st generation iPods. Really who thought my iPod would last 4 years?

Monday, November 21, 2005

Moment of weakness

How could I not pick up this mag? Guitars? Yes! Titties? Hell yes! Despite being reminded of some minor backlash at Ampitube for its incredibly sexist marketing campaign, sadly effective to the typical metalhead music shop denizen.

The magazine was baggied to keep me from flipping through it, (which would've quickly saved me the purchase) but the mysteries it held inside had me entranced. Unfortunately it turned out to be less of a review and more of a wholesale endorsement of consumerism. Everything is "awesomely great". Buy everything and you too can sound like Eddie Van Halen. Cuz thats how he got good.

Worse still is that they're obviously pandering to certain companies, or just a certain low end price point or mass market - where everything sounds like the same: crappy hi-gain hi-compression nu-metal shit.

BOSS and Digitech slog it out in this arena - and of the one peice of kit I might like from either of them - a looper pedal such as the RC20-XL or Jamman - they extol the virtues of the much inferior but equally priced BOSS pedal.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Standing in the rain

This post may initially seem divergent with the musical theme of this blog, but bare with me. Shown here is the corner store where I buy my milk. Its also where I get accosted by hookers when I buy my milk. I really don't live in a bad neighborhood, but it just happens to be where the sketchy drug addled needle trailed tranny street walkers shop their wares. Head to Dalhousie for some slightly higher class tail.

Right. So what does this have to do with anything? Watch this. About halfway through you may recognize the shop. How's that for some cinema verite?

Everybody in Ottawa knows the Rolling Stones filmed their new vid at the small inde bar Zaphods the day after their concert in August. The clubs walls probably heard a Stones song for the first time that night. But they also shot some other footage around the city to fill out a narrative besides wrinkly Mick and mummified Keef strutting on what they likely mockingly refer to as a stage. I've read its supposed to be about a heartbroken guy and his hooker girlfriend. I'm just glad they didn't use one of the "girls" from my corner shop.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Off the rails ...

Why, oh why wasn't this available at Capsule when I was there two weeks back? (And why does it have white pups? Really, its all about the look - you got a pickup selector trigger and a top mounted volume knob for authenticity, but you couldn't find black humbuckers?)

Analog Industries is mocking a similarly ridiculous item.

But seriously, one of those bad boys might help with my Randy Rhodes rhythm lines. I actually developed a blister yesterday goin off the rails on a crazy train. That's some tough shit.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Blackface Deluxe/Mazerati Junior Killer?

Retolexed by Lee Patman and kitted out with an Eminence Redcoat, this old Traynor could be the shit. Especially at a quarter the price of a Fender or Dr. Z.

Update (Nov. 28): Played it last week, and dang she was sweet. But someone else musta thought so too, 'cuz she's gone now.

Friday, November 04, 2005

DIY part II

I finally found a decent description for neck radius and back contours, with some lovely, if misleading diagrams (typically you'd read that as the distance between the two endpoints along that curved path, but a radius is the distance from the centre of an arc to its outer edge - it defines the curve not the width of the fretboard).

Warmoth, much like Allparts sell ready to finish/assemble parts for DIY electric guitar builders. I hesitate to say lutiers. Sort of hold that skill in higher regard. Someone who designs, shapes and actually builds a guitar - not just bolting a neck onto a body. Still, more than I've bothered to attempt.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Canadian Radio Podcasting

A while back CBC Radio3 shut down its magazine format (although the archive thankfully still exists). It was a sad day when I thought I'd be shut off from its constant stream of new and innovative music and art. Especially in this northern radio wasteland of our nations capitol. But happily they've always been airing their show on Radio2 and even have some pretty good podcasts now.

I shouldn't slag Ottawa's radio too much, as in recent visits to Toronto, I've found they're not much better. CFNY, once the staple of my audio diet when I lived there has lost much of its Edge. How many times can I listen to the same Foo Fighters track stuck in traffic on the QEW? I suppose if it were Ottawa it'd be Creed and I'd be ripping my ears off, but there's hardly any traffic to speak of on the Queensway so its a sacrifice I happily make.

But CFNY's saving grace is Alan Cross's Ongoing History of New Music, once syndicated in Ottawa and soon to be podcast in its entirety.

DIY effects

I've only just started exploring this site, but it seems to be a treasure trove of wierd DIY guitar effects and synth circuit bending projects.

Not sure I'm ready for a photo-theremin. I had enough problems controlling the Fuzz Probe - or maybe its just not supposed to sound musical.

But it might be nice to start an intro electronics project to try to remember how to solder - without the worry of killing myself with high voltage, like these guys.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Teenage Kicks!

John Peel's secret stash of 142 7" singles revealed in London's Sunday Times. And there's a crapload of White Stripes. Nice.

Intro-Amp Builders of the World!

In an odd coincidence, two of the musician blogs I follow are both reporting first time guitar amp building. Chris Randall has got an old metal heater he's turning into what will no doubt be a rattling resonating tiny monster, and Rob Hampton is building a copy of the short lived tone classic Marshall 18Watt.

Also they're both from the Pacific Northwest, but there the similarities in amps and artists stop.