gary holt

The Slayer guitar partnership of Gary Holt (left) and Kerry King is working well. “Kerry picks the spots he thinks are well suited for me to solo,” Holt explains, “and after three years of playing together on the road, he knows my style well and those spots are usually exactly where I already have a cool part in mind. We’re really in sync.”
Photo by Ken Settle

Slayer bequeaths Repentless, which delivers an assault of machine-gun riffs with an underlying message.

“Slayer is Slayer.”

The historic thrash-metal band’s current lineup of fret burners repeat this statement like a mantra in conversations about, well, Slayer. But the truth is, Slayer isn’t Slayer—at least not the same Slayer that played their first brutalized notes together in 1981 and dripped aural blood drawn by the horn of Satan all over their debut album Show No Mercy.

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Bogner's beastliest amp is made miniature—and still slays.

Excellent sounds in a portable and very affordably priced package.

A footswitchable clean channel and onboard reverb would make it perfect.

$329

Bogner Ecstasy Mini
bogneramplification.com

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4.5

The original Bogner Ecstasy, released in 1992, is iconic in heavy rock circles. Though it was popularized and preferred by rock and metal artists (Steve Vai and Brad Whitford were among famous users), its ability to move from heavy Brit distortion to Fender-like near-clean tones made it appealing beyond hard-edged circles. Even notorious tone scientist Eric Johnson was enamored with its capabilities.

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Rig Rundown: IDLES

See how chaotic co-pilots Mark Bowen and Lee Kiernan bring five pedalboards to mutilate, mangle, and mask their guitars into bass, synth, hip-hop beats, raging elephant sounds, and whatever “genk” is.

Do you hear that thunder? That’s the sound of strength in numbers. Specifically, it's the sound of four 100-watt stacks. (Actually, one is a 200-watt bass tube head.) IDLES’ guitarists Mark Bowen and Lee Kiernan finally have the firepower to match their fury. (Original members singer/lyricist Joe Talbot, drummer Jon Beavis, and bassist Adam Devonshire fill out the band. Kiernan took over for guitarist Andy Stewart after 2015 EP Meat was released.)

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