Deathcore dealer Stephen Rutishauser dishes bludgeoning riffs on Petrucci-approved sparkly 7- and 8-string stallions.
Death metal is a genre built on precision and power. Chelsea Grin’s articulate picking and gut-rattling riffs are its foundation. But thanks to a rotating cast of ripping guitarists (including Rig Rundown alumnus Jason Richardson), their five albums have shown subtle brick-and-mortar flair by incorporating elements of djent, metalcore, doom, black metal, and even post-hardcore. The current lead guitar chair has been filled by Stephen Rutishauser since 2015. His input has given their chaotic sound a more meticulous gnarl and complex rhythmic density that binds discord and darkened melodies.
Hours before Chelsea Grin’s rare club gig at Nashville’s the End, the gruesomely heavy guitarist invited PG’s Chris Kies onstage to talk gear. In this RR, the band’s face-melter details the sparkle-covered Petrucci signatures that he carries on tour and breaks down the dialed-in digital patches that color their brutal barrage.
[Brought to you by D’Addario dBud Earplugs.
Man Meets Machine
“I love these guitars [Music Man JP13s] for a lot of reasons,” admits Rutishauser. “They have a bite no other guitar can achieve. I think that’s just the conglomerate of everything they put into it. It’s piercing, with a crisp, throaty midrange. It’s just a total machine.” All of his JP13s are loaded with DiMarzio-designed, Petrucci-endorsed Illuminator humbuckers. The JP13s handle all songs in drop-A and drop-G tunings. He landed on this particular iteration of the John Petrucci signature because of its tonewood pairings: basswood body, mahogany tone block, maple top, mahogany neck, and rosewood fretboard. His drop-A guitars take Ernie Ball Ernie Ball 2621 7-String Regular Slinky Cobalts (.010–.056) and his drop-G guitars (like the one above) take Ernie Ball 2615 7-String Skinny Top Heavy Bottom Slinky Cobalts (.010–.062).
This delicious Music Man JP13 is finished in root beer sparkle. This one is an anomaly as it has a JP13 body matched with a JP15 neck. The difference is more than a number, as the 15 model shifted to a roasted-bird’s-eye-maple neck and fretboard. He notes the varied ingredients provide less spark in his pinch harmonics, but Rutishauser does enjoy how it brightens up his palm-muted chugs.
The Boom Stick
Rutishauser’s choice for his main 8-string, which handles drop-B jams, is this Aristides 080. The unique thing about this beast is that it contains no wood and is made completely of resin-based Arium. It features a 27" scale length, MEC Electronics, and Lundgren M8 humbuckers. Plus, its C-shaped multi-scale neck (26.5"-28") starts at 2.17" wide and spreads to 2.75" at the 12th fret. The Richlite fretboard has a compound (14"-19") radius and is fitted with 24 Jescar medium-jumbo, stainless steel frets. It’s laced with Ernie Ball 8-String Slinkys (.010–.074).
A Black Hole
The 080s magnificent galaxy-sparkle finish gives way to a clear back piece that shows off the blackened Arium construction at its nucleus.
This champagne-sparkle JP13 handles any required 7-string backup duties.
Light and Mighty
Both Rutishauser and bassist David Flinn rely on Fractal Audio juggernauts. Stephen plugs into the Axe-Fx II XL+, while Flinn runs into the original Axe-Fx Ultra. Rutishauser’s principal tone is based on the FAS Brutals. He intensifies that setting with putting a drive into the Brutals and parametric EQ after it. He’ll occasionally patch in a reverb, delay, and modulation at the end of his chain, but ahead of the EQ. The laptop runs Cubase for the guitar track, click track, 808 bass drops, and left-right stereo tracks.
Racked and Ready
Focusrite’s Clarett+ 8Pre interface controls their inputs. A Radial SW8 Auto-Switcher wrangles all backing tracks out of Cubase. Sennheiser EM 300 G3 wireless units cover both the stringed instruments and the band’s in-ear monitors. At the bottom rests a Behringer X32 Rack, which routes and regulates the band’s in-ear monitors.
Read MoreShow less
Pedalboard space be damned! Andy Timmons’ signature time machine delivers dual-delay potential in a single compact stomp.
Tons of delay tones and rangeful, powerful tools for shaping them.
A lot of functionality in a little box means close quarters for switches and dual-function controls that are tricky to change on the fly
There’s a zillion reasons to be excited about the Keeley Halo—a collaboration between Keeley and guitar ace Andy Timmons. For starters, it’s an express-train ticket to Timmons’ carefully honed delay sound: a spacious playground of echoes that dwells partly in the realm of reverb and lets Timmons’ fretwork breathe and gather momentum and size. It’s also a great pedal for players hooked on the possibilities of a dual-delay setup who have space constraints to consider. And it’s a perfect delay for players that want to dabble in multiple delay textures without the headache of programming and managing a million controls and presets.
While it’s fairly easy to dive headlong into the Halo and get great sounds, the interface is more complex than a simple analog or digital delay. And because so many of the factory presets and delay types are characterized by delay subdivisions, it’s best to get your sea legs by setting the pedal for quarter-note delays. Even in quarter-note mode, though, it fast becomes apparent how much delay-shaping power you have at your disposal.
None of the five primary controls here will surprise experienced delay users. There’s delay time, feedback, effect level, and modulation depth and rate. But pressing and holding the feedback knob gives you access to a high pass filter, a tone control for the delayed signal, a tape saturation control, and the 5-position selector that moves between tape-style, BBD-style, quarter note, and dotted eighth modes as well as Timmons’ own Halo mode that is the pedal’s namesake. The Halo also has stereo ins and outs, a remote connection jack, and an expression pedal jack via which you can control any of the five primary parameters. You can also set up the pedal for tap-tempo functionality and an infinite hold or “freeze” function. Needless to say, Keeley left few stones unturned putting the Halo together.
Once I got familiar with the Halo’s controls, it was pretty easy to get carried away with its capacity for tone sculpting. The Halo is powerful and spurs creativity. But it’s also easy to get lost in the early going, and if you’re aiming to get the most out of the Halo it’s vital that you embrace presets and, in some cases, a balletic sense of toe dexterity. These are not knocks on the Halo. Setting up and clearing presets is relatively easy, and so is scrolling through them. But practice at working through these footswitch commands is highly advised.
Once you do have the preset dance down, you may find yourself filling them up pretty quickly. Halo gives you the potential for crafting many and varied tones, and you may get hooked on the power of having so many at your disposal.
Timmons’ own Halo settings are lovely. The repeats tend to bloom ever so slightly and are tastefully backgrounded, even at extra-dry effects mixes, and this characteristic makes it a great fit for high-gain pedals. Most voices, in fact, tend to sit nicely with overdrive or fuzz. Both the bucket brigade and the tape delay voices in particular became favorites, largely because they sounded so fat with the addition of virtual tape saturation and darkening from the high-pass filter and tone control. Even in this dusky tone state, the Halo had plenty of room for fuzz and distortion without becoming a mess. This mix of headroom and personality isn’t an easy balance to maintain. Keeley executed that tightrope walk with aplomb here.
Nine times out of 10, a collaboration between a veteran pedal builder and a seasoned session and touring guitarist will yield a very practical piece of kit. The Halo is indeed that. The feature-rich design, dual-function controls, and the fact that it’s packed in a compact enclosure means that there’s a learning curve. And that might dent the aura of practicality for some. Players that like to keep it simple might find the Halo to be a handful, too. But it’s hard to imagine a do-it-all delay more capable than this cooperative effort from two crafty vets.
Read MoreShow less
Week #4 is here! You could WIN pedals from one of SIX great brands... including a whole new pedal lineup from Pigtronix!
<p>Gloamer is an all-analog, polyphonic amplitude synthesizer that alters the attack and decay time of any sound source without sacrificing the fidelity of the original tone. Its attack function provides a pick-triggered volume swell: a cinematic “slow gear” effect that is smooth and controllable with variable timing from extremely fast to very slow. The volume swell cycle can be reset at any moment by muting, allowing players to craft bowed string-like lines and chords with ease. Gloamer also features a powerful optical compressor that can add subtle punch or extreme sustain, helping to maintain a smooth volume swell effect even with very long attack times. A Volume knob controls loudness at the peak of the attack cycle, while a master Blend control allows players to layer an uncompressed clean sound in with the volume swell effect. Additionally, when activated, the Decay function causes notes to fade out once the attack cycle is complete. When the decay cycle is completed, an auto-reset function causes the attack to begin again immediately, as long as there is audio input. This allows you to create a wide range of undulating, asymmetrical tremolos at slower settings as well as pulsating stutter effects when using faster attack and decay times.</p>
The Dept. 10 pedals combine modern versatility with real tube-driven tones, using an ECC83 triode preamp tube running at 250V at the heart of each pedal. The Dual Drive and Dual Distortion are powerful tube effects, preamps, and audio interfaces, and the Dept 10 Boost is a flexible tube boost, eq, and overdrive.
A JAM pedals favorite for a lot of guitar, bass and keyboard players, the WaterFall is serving as a mainstay on boards of such greats as John Scofield, Nels Cline, Steve Lukather, Anthony Jackson and John Mesdeski for many years now, and has established itself as one of the best analog chorus/vibrato pedals in the market.
It features BBD chips faithful reproductions of the Panasonic MN3207, 2 toggle-switches, the first to select between chorus and vibrato modes, and the other to switch to a “wetter” effect resulting in a deeper, more contemporary sounding chorus, or a more intense, deranged vibrato sound! Max out the Depth and Speed controls to get Leslie-speaker type effects!
Pedaltrain Classic 2 Pedalboard w/ Tour Case installed with BTPA interface panel for input, output, send, return, and power. Power cable included + BTPA High Definition Straight to right angle instrument cable.
Best-Tronics Pro Audio (BTPA)
One Control Honeybee Overdrive 4K Mini and Mini Custom Versions.
For the 20th anniversary of the original BJFe Honeybee Overdrive, Björn Juhl has now brought the sound of his classic low-gain overdrive to the One Control Mini pedal platform, featuring both the classic Honeybee warm syrupy texture with Modern/Vintage Switch and a special new Custom version, with enhanced gain and a hot crimson finish. Gold finish is classic, Crimson finish is the high gain variant.
One of the most popular customer requests from the original Honeybee OD was for enhanced treble response. While many guitarists love the original “Nature” knob, Björn has equipped the new HBOD4k Mini with both Bass and Treble controls. This new design will enable players to dial the pedal in more easily with a wider range of amplifiers.
After the original run of 200 BJFe Honeybees, Björn started to change the original circuit in response to requests from guitarists worldwide. You can have both flavors of the Honeybee OD with the 4K Mini – simply flip the switch on the side between Vintage/Modern and experience the original sound of both Honeybee circuits in our Mini size enclosure to allow the HBOD4K Mini to fit on any pedalboard setup.
Vidami Blue is a revolutionary multi-modal tool that gives you hands-free control of today’s most popular music production, performance and education technology.
● The World’s First Hands-Free Video Looper with Page Turning, Tab/Lyric
Scrolling and Digital Audio Workstation Control.
● The Vidami Blue’s 3 Modes Features
1. Video Mode: Handsfree looping, slowing, and navigating of videos with the
tap of your foot.
2. DAW Mode: Control of many of today’s most popular Digital Audio
3. Page Turning & Tab/Lyric Scrolling Mode: Easily Turn Pages, Scroll Tabs,
Lyrics, and other functions on your favorite Digital Sheet Music apps and
● Vidami maximizes the time you spend with your hands on the instrument by
putting the controls at your feet
● Cuts your practice time in half: no more tedious reaching for the mouse and
keyboard to control the video
● Experience Freedom, Focus and Flow while you loop and slow down and learn
at your own rate
● Vidami’s easy to use Patented technology makes learning on YouTube and 50+online platforms easier, faster and more fun because your not distracted by technology
● Vidami Blue makes handsfree recording a breeze
● Scroll tabs and turn pages with ease
Read MoreShow less