Guitar highlights from the South’s live music capital.

Dutch R&B buzzmaker Nick Van Hofwegen of the L.A.-based group Young and Sick rocks a D'Angelico Excel archtop at Austin City Limits 2014.

Inspired by PBS’s long-running Austin City Limits program, the Austin City Limits Festival has gained a reputation since its 2002 birth as a premier soapbox for budding singer/songwriters. While that remains a crucial part of ACL, in 2012 the fest expanded to two weekends, with musical heat from all genres. This year, for example, saw many hip-hop and EDM headliners, though there was plenty of guitar ingenuity as well. We bring you a glimpse of what went down this year in Austin’s Zilker Park.

A maze of modulation and reverberations leads down many colorful tone vortices.

Deep clanging reverb tones. Unexpected reverb/modulation combinations.

Steep learning curve for a superficially simple pedal.

$209

SolidGoldFX Ether
solidgoldfx.com

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A lot of cruel fates can befall a gig. But unless you’re a complete pedal addict or live in high-gain-only realms, doing a gig with just a reverb- and tremolo-equipped amp is not one of them. Usually a nice splash of reverb makes the lamest tone pretty okay. Add a little tremolo on top and you have to work to not be at least a little funky, surfy, or spacy. You see, reverb and modulation go together like beans and rice. That truth, it seems, extends even to maximalist expressions of that formula—like the SolidGold FX Ether.

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Megadeth founder teams up with Gibson for his first acoustic guitar in the Dave Mustaine Collection.

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The Atlas Compressor offers up an extensive library of compression options and allows for transformation into a bass specific compression machine.


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