BOSS eBand allows you to jam along with an array of backing tracks using COSM-modeled amps and effects.
|Download Example 1|
Full backing track using the Texas Riff guitar setting
|Download Example 2|
The same groove with just bass and drums, using the JB lead guitar sound
|Download Example 3|
The Jazz Blues backing track with customized sound based on the Clean Reverb setting
|All clips recorded using eBand as a USB audio interface with Ableton Live 8|
You can load a song of your own choosing, either from a memory stick or directly from your computer using the USB port. The eBand accepts a variety of WAV files or MP3 files. Playing along is as easy as plugging your guitar into the input and adjusting the Guitar and Master levels. Silent monitoring is also possible with the mini-plug headphone jack next to the input. The eBand’s Speed button instantly drops the speed of any track to 75 percent of the original. If that’s not enough to help you figure out that shred lick, you can further reduce the tempo by turning the large function knob, shifting to as little as half the initial bpm. If you’re feeling frisky, you can also go 50 percent faster than the original. Boss provides onboard COSM-modeled amps and a range of effects from fuzz to flanger. You can add two more effects—any one of 34 COSM guitar and bass amps, and any one of the 44 effects (12 types) in the FX Group—to the always-available delay, chorus, reverb, EQ, noise gate, and EZ Character, which is essentially a mid cut and boost, for a total of six at once. The effect order is set, but the eBand does allow a fair amount of parameter tweaking.
Rather than take you through every feature and option, let me relate my eBand experience, to give you an idea of its strengths and weaknesses. (spoiler alert: there aren’t many of the latter.) I popped the Boss unit out of its packaging and was up and running in seconds. All I had to do was plug in the included adaptor (it doesn’t run on batteries) and jack in my 1965 Stratocaster and I was ready to rock… or jazz, pop, Latin, ballad, blues, metal, etc. Scrolling across the top of the LCD screen, I saw the style of music, name of the groove, instrumentation, and key: in the first case, “Country: Country Rock (Bs&Dr, Key: D).” Occasionally the labeling was not entirely accurate. In this case there was acoustic guitar present as well as bass and drums, and sometimes the key of C may turn out to be Am, but for the most part it was correct. Beginners might need help figuring out the chords in some progressions.
Underneath the scrolling info is the patch number and the type of guitar sound (e.g. “Bluesy Crunch”). The next row contains Play mode. Modes can be selected to play the track once then stop, continuously loop it, or various other operations. I decided to leave the mode on “loop” and dive in. Being the self-proclaimed King of the Power Ballad Solo, I chose “Ballad: Rock Ballad (Bs&Dr, Key: Am)” from the song menu (bass and drums also included strings this time, though not the arpeggiated guitar of the full version). The track turned out to be the same chords as Gary Moore’s “Still Got the Blues,” one of my favorite progressions. The eBand set me up with a “Stack Lead” sound that melded nicely with the track. As you change backing tracks, this Boss device will automatically change to whatever the programmers deemed to be an appropriate amp and effects combination. For the most part I found myself agreeing, but if you have one particular sound that you wish to use with all the tracks, you can shut off this “patch sync” effect and that sound will remain when you switch songs.
Back at my power ballad, I tuned up using the built-in tuner, hit play, adjusted my guitar level to sit properly in the track, and began jamming along. It was then that I encountered eBand’s major flaw: forty minutes later I hadn’t stopped playing! My recommendation to Boss: please put a 20-minute time limit on this thing, after which it shuts off for five minutes, thus avoiding carpal tunnel syndrome. This thing is too much fun. I have been a fan of COSM amp modeling since I got my Roland Micro Cube. You can argue about the accuracy of the modeling (I find it pretty darn good), but these amps and effects definitely “feel” good to play. The eBand’s speakers will never be extolled by audiophiles, but they are good enough to avoid ear fatigue and provide inspiring sound. Plugging in headphones improved the sound further, revealing the quality of both my guitar sound and the backing tracks.
I wanted to try jamming along with Robben Ford’s version of “Revelation,” so I loaded it onto a USB stick and plugged the stick into eBand, where it instantly showed up in the song playlist. Using the Center Cancel function to remove Robben’s guitar part, I found that it worked about as well as most center cancel effects, which is to say that it lowered the lead guitar a bit but didn’t remove it entirely. According to the manufacturer, the Center Cancel is adjustable, ulike many others; it can be finely tuned in degrees of left, right and center, with high, mid and low frequency ranges to help find and extract parts. The Speed control was more useful. I combined it with the A-B control, which allowed me to punch in at the beginning of one of Ford’s bebop-inflected licks, punch out at the end, then cycle just that lick while slowing it down 50 percent. It sounded a bit “underwater” but was clear enough to master the lick—at 50 percent of Robben’s speed, anyway. The eBand also allows you to shift the pitch with or without changing the tempo, either in half steps, to practice in other keys, or fine-tuned to match records that have been slightly sped up or slowed down.
Plugging it into my Mac with a USB cable, I easily loaded the proper driver from the unit’s SD card so that I could use the Boss device as an interface with Ableton Live. The eBand allows you to record either the whole track with your playing, just the track, or just your guitar with or without effects, directly into any DAW except Pro Tools. You can also reamp clean guitar tracks through eBand’s effect and amp models.
The Final Mojo
Full disclosure: I am not big on practicing; the sound of a metronome drives me crazy in about five minutes. With the Boss eBand, I could improve my playing by jamming with a tireless rhythm section possessed of perfect time. It is hard to think of a groove you might need that you won’t find here. Progression-wise, I missed the inclusion of classic “I Got Rhythm” changes in the jazz section, but not to worry. In describing everything else that it offers, I forgot to mention that you can always record your own changes, licks, and solos right into eBand with a touch of the record button. Just remember to take a break before your fingers fall off.
you want a cool device that will inspire you to jam and practice until you drop.
you swear by your metronome.
MSRP $388 - BOSS - bossus.com
Kick off the holiday season by shopping for the guitar player in your life at Guitar Center! Now through December 24th 2022, save on exclusive instruments, accessories, apparel, and more with hundreds of items at their lowest prices of the year.
We’ve compiled this year’s best deals in the 2022 Holiday Gift Guide presented by Guitar Center.
Mystery Stocking is coming soon! Sign up for PG Perks below so you don't miss it.
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About Mystery Stocking
Each year, Premier Guitar likes to put out these mystery boxes as a part of bringing some fun to the holiday season. Remember, this is supposed to be a fun holiday treat! If the contents of this box will ruin your holiday, deplete the last of your bank account, or end your ability to see the good in humanity, it may not be for you.
- This year's Mystery Stocking will cost $44.95. ($39.95 + $5 Flat shipping)
- Each box will be guaranteed to contain $40 or more in value.
- US only. (Sorry World.)
- Make sure your shipping address is correct.
- Have your credit card ready to go before you refresh the page. Paypal is not available. Autofill may not fill in your information.
- There will be NO REFUNDS given.
- There has been a huge demand for these in the past. We really did sell out in less than 4 minutes last year. When they are gone, they are gone.
- One per household, one per person.
Q: What's in the Mystery Stocking?
A: It wouldn't be much of a surprise if we told you, now would it?
Q: Will I definitely get my money worth?
Q: Can I return it if I don't like it?
A: Nope. All sales final.
Q: What if I live outside the US?
A: Sorry, US only.
Q. How much is it?
A. $39.95 Plus $5 shipping
Q. When will it ship?
A. On or before December 10, 2022.
Q. What form of payment do you accept?
A. Credit cards only. Sorry, no Paypal for this.
Q. Can I ship to a different location than my billing address?
Q. I tried last year and didn't get one. Will I get one this year?
A. There is an overwhelming demand for Mystery Stocking. Be sure you have a fast internet connection and be ready when they go on sale. Last year we sold out in 3 min 33 seconds.
Q. I want to buy 5. How can I buy 5?
A. You can't. This year, we're limiting to one per household, so more people can get in on the fun!
Featuring the Adaptive Circuitry recently introduced on their Halcyon Green Overdrive, Origin Effects have brought us a pedal with a character all of its own and a new flavor of drive.
Origin Effects introduce the new M-EQ DRIVER mid booster & drive pedal. Based on a vintage Pultec studio EQ, this unique pedal offers a range of mid-focused tones, from a subtle mid boost to thick, resonant overdrive. Featuring the Adaptive Circuitry recently introduced on their Halcyon Green Overdrive, Origin Effects have brought us a pedal with a character all of its own and a new flavor of drive.
A choice of three mid-range frequencies ensures that you can boost just the right part of your guitar signal and, when pushed harder, can elicit a range of saturation from a classic “mid-hump” overdrive to fierce “cocked wah” distortion. Thanks to the Adaptive Circuitry, the high-end roll-off of the Cut control is reduced as the pedal cleans up. This allows for a smooth transition from warm overdrive to bright clean tones in response to playing dynamics or guitar volume knob changes.
Introducing... M-EQ DRIVER || Mid Booster & Drive
Built-in the UK to the highest standards, the M-EQ DRIVER continues the Origin Effects tradition of vintage, studio-inspired tones in modern guitar pedals. The Origin Effects M-EQ DRIVER is available now from Origin Effects dealers worldwide.
RRP: 259 GBP (Inc VAT) / 319 USD (Ex TAX)
For more information, please visit origineffects.com.
The new finish, according to Lava Music, is “inspired by the beauty of the golden hour,” a shining time just before sunset and after sunrise when photographers covet to capture stunning pictures.
With bright and warm golden hues, the new finish adds a brilliant metallic glow to the surface of Lava ME 3, complementing its AirSonic 2 carbon fiber unibody which features L3 Preamp with FreeBoost 2.0, delivers industry-leading sounds by breakthrough acoustic technologies, and houses a multi-touch display powered by Lava-developed HILAVA system.
Speaking of the HILAVA system, Lava Music also added four new effects: Nebula, Desert Rose, Cassette, and Edge of Breakup. As unique as their names sound, they are very much different from what we normally know about effects. Programmed into the HILAVA system, each of the four is powered by the company’s latest ArctanDrive algorithm and incorporates effects like Pitch Shift, Delay, and Reverb. And every one of those incorporated sub-effects comes with various parameters that players can adjust to design unique, overdriven sounds by just tapping on the multi-touch display. That said, those effects enable users to play with overdriven tone on an acoustic-electric guitar without even plugging in any external gear.
LAVA ME 3 | Now in Golden Hour | LAVA MUSIC
Lava Me 3 in Golden Hour is now available starting from $999 on LAVA MUSIC, Amazon, and local guitar dealerships near you.
For more information, please visit store.lavamusic.com.