Hollywood, CA (November 14, 2017) -- Fender Musical Instruments Corporation (FMIC) today announced a collaboration with Radiohead guitarist Ed O’Brien for his own artist series guitar: the EOB Sustainer Stratocaster. Fender and O’Brien joined forces to produce a guitar that’s as enigmatic and entrancing as the musician’s storied six-string orchestration is. Equipped with a Fernandes Sustainer unit, O’Brien designed this guitar with the intention of helping players everywhere experiment, create and find their own diverse sound.
“I have played Fender guitars for a long time now, so it was an honor to collaborate and design an instrument with Fender. The initial idea for the EOB Sustainer Strat actually came from a dream I had,” said Ed O’ Brien. “I’ve so enjoyed working closely with the entire Fender family from Alex Perez, Fender Senior Master Builder, and Neil Whitcher, Head of Artist Relations here in the U.K., and the team who built it down in Ensenada. We have put together a really beautiful guitar, that is extremely versatile and capable of making some truly extraordinary sounds.
O’Brien road tested and showcased the EOB Sustainer Stratocaster on the Radiohead ‘Moon Shaped Pool’ world tour throughout 2016 and 2017. It’s versatility seamlessly opened the door to sonic creativity on tracks, such as “Kid A,” “Idioteque,” “Weird Fishes/Arpeggi,” “Ful Stop,” “15 Step,” “Pyramid Song,” “All I Need,” “The Gloaming,” and “Burn the Witch.” More importantly, the guitar’s versatility has enabled him to switch between experimental tones and more ‘traditional’ sounds required on these songs without having to change instruments.
The hardware includes a Seymour Duncan JB Jr. humbucking bridge pickup, a Fender Texas Special single-coil middle pickup, and a Fernandes Sustainer unit in the neck position. The unit sustains a fifth up, in unison and the octave up. O’Brien has used a Fernandes Sustainer unit in a Clapton Strat since 2000, allowing him to make sounds not usually associated with a guitar but a synth.
“Ed is an innovative and influential guitar player,” adds Justin Norvell, Senior Vice President, Fender Products. “We both felt it was important to present the guitar community with a new instrument worthy of his catalog and creativity. It’s very much a 21stcentury electric guitar with multiple dimensions of sound, allowing for creative sonic texturing and atmospheric layering that make for great guitar tones. Ed worked extensively with us on it and was extremely hands-on throughout the two-year process. We collectively aimed to preserve his attention to detail and tone with a product that captured what he was looking for. Ed’s goal was to create a tool of inspiration, for players to discover new sounds and find their own voice on this instrument.”
Fender’s popular artist models are geared toward product progression and storytelling; creating instruments designed to the unique specifications of the world’s most iconic artists.
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