The Danish fusers of metal and rockabilly talk about custom axes, cabs, pedals, and glow-in-the-dark fretmarkers.

We met with Volbeat’s Rob Caggiano and Anders Kjølholm before their show at Marathon Music Works in Nashville on April 28, 2014. Caggiano, who spent much of the last decade playing in Anthrax, talks about his signature ESP guitars, while bassist Kjølholm shows how he gets his thunderous tones with minimal gear.

Rob Caggiano's Gear


Caggiano plays two of his ESP signature guitars (which are based on ESP’s Horizon model), touring with two identical production models. They feature glow-in-the-dark position markers, TonePros Tune-o-matic-style bridge and tailpiece, a DiMarzio Air Norton neck pickup, and a DiMarzio RC Custom bridge pickup. Caggiano strings his ESPs with D’Addario EXL140 .010–.052 sets.


Two 100-watt Fryette Sig:X heads are at the heart of Caggiano’s onstage sound. One is his main amp, the other is a slave. The main amp runs two Fryette Deliverance D412-P50E 4x12s, while the other drives two Fryette FatBottom 4x12s.


Caggiano routes his guitars through a Sennheiser EW500 G3 wireless systems and into a TC Electronic PolyTune, a Dunlop GCB95F Cry Baby Classic wah, an MXR Custom Comp, a TC Electronic Spark Booster, an MXR Smart Gate, a Pigtronix Philosopher’s Rock, an MXR Micro Chorus, a Boss DD-6 digital delay (controlled with a custom tap-tempo pedal), a Tech 21 Boost R.V.B., and a Death by Audio Interstellar Overdriver Deluxe—all of which are accessed in varying combinations via a MusicomLab EFX MKIII+ loop switcher. Caggiano’s rack has a Furman P-1800 PF R power conditioner/surge suppressor, a Whirlwind MultiSelector PRO instrument switcher, a Rocktron Hush Super C that runs through the main Sig:X’s effects loop, and another TC Electronic PolyTune.

Anders Kjølholm's Gear


Volbeat’s founding bassist Anders Kjølholm is a MusicMan man, touring with seven different MusicMan StingRay 4-strings. He tunes six of them down a full step and keeps one in standard tuning. Kjølholm also has a custom bass by New Jersey luthier Bill Baker.


Kjølholm uses a Sennheiser EW500 G3 wireless system routed to a rackmounted Whirlwind MultiSelector PRO that allows fast switching between wireless receivers and two 450-watt TC Electronic RH450 heads driving four TC Electronic RS410 4x10 cabs with custom-painted grilles. He also runs a direct signal via a Radial Engineering J48 active direct box, and he has two TC Electronic PolyTune pedals (one in his rack and one on stage). A Furman PL-Plus DMC provides clean power to the entire offstage rack setup.


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We’re almost finished with the aging process on our project guitar. Let’s work on the fretboard, nut, and truss rod cover, and prepare the headstock for the last hurrah.

Hello and welcome back to Mod Garage. This month we’ll continue with our relic’ing project, taking a closer look at the front side of the neck and treating the fretboard and the headstock. We’ll work on the front side of the headstock in the next part, but first we must prepare it.

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Diatonic sequences are powerful tools. Here’s how to use them wisely.



• Understand how to map out the neck in seven positions.
• Learn to combine legato and picking to create long phrases.
• Develop a smooth attack—even at high speeds.

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Knowing how to function in different keys is crucial to improvising in any context. One path to fretboard mastery is learning how to move through positions across the neck. Even something as simple as a three-note-per-string major scale can offer loads of options when it’s time to step up and rip. I’m going to outline seven technical sequences, each one focusing on a position of a diatonic major scale. This should provide a fun workout for the fingers and hopefully inspire a few licks of your own.
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