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Danelectro’s latest 6-string, the 59 M-NOS, was inspired by a rediscovered cache of 15-year-old pickups. NOS stands for “new-old-stock,” meaning vintage parts in unused condition. The term can have sonic significance when applied to certain tubes and transistors, though I’m skeptical whether it means much here. Yet I’m a big believer in the 59 M-NOS and its pickups. (And while purists may object, I like the modern intonatable bridges Danos uses in lieu of the original wooden design.)
Compared to a Strat or Tele, the 59 M-NOS sounds thin in the bridge position. But it’s sparkly-clean for wiry funk, snappy for country twang with dialed-back treble, and razor-sharp with fuzz. The mid position is clear and lush for clean chords, nasty for overdriven slide, and sinewy for Indian-flavored runs. The neck unit is lavishly round yet chimey. “NOS” may be a stretch, but this guitar is no B.S.
Test gear: Jaguar HC50, Goodsell Valpreaux 21, EarthQuaker Devices Tone Reaper, Pigtronix Fat Drive, Keeley Compressor