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Messages - uwe

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Other Bass Brands / Re: Ibanez Ice Man Bass Q's
« on: December 14, 2017, 02:53:41 PM »
Legend has it that the name was an Ibanez-internal pun on Paul Stanley's real name ("Stanley Bert Eisen", his Jewish mom had fled from Berlin via Amsterdam to the US, his likewise Jewish dad came from Poland) when they developed the Iceman shape for him though it would indicate poor German language skills there: While "Eis" means indeed "ice" in German, "Eisen" means "iron", so it should have been the "Ironman". So an "Eisbär" is a polar bear, but an "Eisenbahn" is a steel railroad. "Eis" is pronounced in German like the English ice, "Eisen" like "I-sen" ("sen" as in "sent") or as in Eisenhower

itself an anglicized version of the German "Eisenhauer", an old German term for a blacksmith.

Other Bass Brands / Re: Ibanez Ice Man Bass Q's
« on: December 13, 2017, 04:54:57 PM »
I have one of those exactly - I'm an Iceman fan (have several other types too). The sound is what you would expect from an Ibanez: Nothing inherently wrong with it, but nothing that cries out "Oh, that is an Iceman sound!" either. Let's face it, these basses (and guitars) are bought for their iconic looks (or because you like Paul Stanley's chest hair),

nothing wrong with that (or both!).

The pups were viewed in hindsight as a little narrow on these, but you can set them up to bring out E and G string as well though the G string won't jump at your throat. A later version had wider pups, but the result was less than pleasing to the eye and the magnetics interfered with the strings if you came too close.

Just don't expect an especially characteristic sound like a Ric, T-Bird or the two types that other Californian brand insists on making. But no one will tell you "That bass looks better than it sounds!" either. The sound is not hugely assertive, but melts in nicely. Pete Way of UFO did not shy away from playing these, so why the heck should you?

Plus: If you were born largely chest-hairless like me, it is as close as you can get to being The Starchild, sigh!

Other Bass Brands / Re: Hamer 8 string in action
« on: December 13, 2017, 03:53:06 PM »
Ironically, I found his bass playing always perfunctory, technically perfect, but perfunctory! I hear nothing daring, happy-go-lucky and inspired like in Chris Squire's sonic Ric attacks in it. To me, Lake put all emotion in his voice (and his acoustic guitar playing), but not in his bass playing which was more of an afterthought to him. He was not "naturally over-busy, yet groovy" like Geddy Lee either, I always thought that his bass parts sounded like Keith Emerson wrote them out for him. A bit dead really.

I listen to a lot of ELP lately, but nothing Lake ever did on bass puts a grin on my face. He does what the overtly complex music requires and fills the space Emerson (50%) and Palmer (35%) left for him competently. That's not knocking him, I think that was kind of their mutual musical agreement right from the start, Lake (a guitarist at heart) did not join them to play bass, he played bass because the other two thought they needed a bass player for their trio concept.

I also hear none of the playfulness in Lake's playing that is so evident in what Jack Bruce does here (in a piece of music not entirely dissimilar to what ELP did):

But I'm not saying that he is not an excellent technical player!

Gibson Basses / Re: 2018 Gibson basses. New basses, new topic :)
« on: December 13, 2017, 03:34:43 PM »

The Outpost Cafe / Re: A new itch for Uwe to scratch...
« on: December 13, 2017, 03:15:02 PM »
I found that ES-335 sound compressed and - how shall I put this? - "unmajestic", "Blackmore Sound" to me is this:

Try doing what he does at 3:48 with an ES-335!

Maybe it's my imagination, but I can actually hear the higher string tension, extra rebound and twang of the Strat and I like that better.

Or here

and here the solo at 2:19 to 3:09, that is classic Blackmore sound to me:

Of course I'm totally partial because I was reared on that Strat sound in the 70ies ... Blackmore, Gallagher, Gilmour, Clapton, Hendrix ... there was a time when I believed that playing a Strat made you automatically a lead guitarist.  :mrgreen: In fact I thought Alvin Lee outlandish because he obviously fitted the bracket "lead guitarist", yet did not play a Strat.

Strictly a matter of taste. I'm not saying that an ES-335 is not a decent guitar, but there must have been something revelatory to  Blackmore when playing his first (hand-me-down from Clapton in fact) Strat with even a warped neck to give up on his beloved ES-335. Maybe he thought it was the more perfect "weapon of choice" against Jon Lord's avalanche of a Hammond sound which he has honing around the same time, doing away with Leslies and keyboard amps and playing his C-3 through 200 watt Marshall guitar amps in an effort to turn it into something between an organ and a second guitar, "the gorgan" as he nick-named it.

Other Bass Brands / Re: Hamer 8 string in action
« on: December 11, 2017, 05:08:04 PM »
Oh, and I like Rockpile too, but Nick Lowe even better!

Other Bass Brands / Re: Hamer 8 string in action
« on: December 11, 2017, 05:01:55 PM »
Not everything they did, but they got it right on this track which even found grace with its original composer Aaron Copland in the version they did. And playing at below zero temperatures in an empty stadium of course sums up ELP's testosterone-charged megalomania (which was both awesome and laughable at the same time) nicely.   8)

When I first saw that vid sometime in the seventies I thought it was the essence of rockstardom. :mrgreen: The desolate vastness of the stadium, their visible exhaled breath, the leather jackets and fur collars plus the controlled racket only three men made - all very impressive!  :)

Gibson Basses / Re: 2018 Gibson basses. New basses, new topic :)
« on: December 11, 2017, 04:24:48 PM »
Yeah, the guys from Ghost dig the shape.

But they are in league with Satan!

As must be Dir En Grey ...

... with their pleasant variation of largely acoustic Japanese folk music ...

Other Bass Brands / Re: Hamer 8 string in action
« on: December 11, 2017, 03:10:22 PM »
Nick Lowe looks like a young John Kerry in that vid! And it goes to show that you don't really "hear" the double-octave characteristic of an 8 string bass (just like you don't "hear" it in almost all Cheap Trick songs) unless you dial in an extreme sound or play it with a lot of distortion/effects. To my ears, the best 8 string bass sound captured on a popular recording is still this one here:

In fairness: Probably aided to a large part by the fact that with ELP there was no guitar to get in the way of that 8-string sound! You can hear that Lake essentially "strums" that Alembic like an acoustic guitar for percussive effect (which sounds nice).

Other Bass Brands / Re: Warwick Wife?
« on: December 11, 2017, 02:59:15 PM »
That shape is très unfortunate (even for Warwick standards), but the Yamaha Attitude isn't exactly a prom queen either.

Gibson Basses / Re: 2018 Gibson basses. New basses, new topic :)
« on: December 11, 2017, 02:49:59 PM »
It seems obvious that most of those negative comments on its appearance come from people who have never seen the original RD. No problem, there were plenty of detractors back in the day. The design isn't for everyone.

Yup, the look of the RD (and the weight!) was divisive even when they were introduced in the latish 70ies, Fender people hated them even where they had to admit that they didn't sound bad (or from a Fender player's viewpoint: better than anything Gibson had offered before). To me it's more of an "axe" in feel than the thin-bodied and sleek-necked TBird which feels elegant in one's hands, the RD is much more robust in handling and feel, more "take no prisoners". There are days when I like that.

But OTOH it is a design that has hardly been copied by others - they were introduced too late for Japanese pre-lawsuit copycats to flood the market, and until the Nirvana guy picked one up again, they were largely forgotten (or often mistaken as Thunderbirds, kind of like the Corsair/Hellcat conundrum).

The Outpost Cafe / Re: A new itch for Uwe to scratch...
« on: December 11, 2017, 01:51:32 PM »
That's his beloved ES-335 alright, he played nothing else in the 60ies, it's what you hear here (the solo fills throughout and the solo at 1:30)

or here

or here

Unlike the Strats he punished, he loved that guitar dearly and took good care of it (in a Blackmore way: i.e. he didn't smash it on purpose  :mrgreen: ) until he converted - reluctantly at first - to Fender. It's a piece of history and to a Blackmore devotee (which I'm not!) possibly worth the money (though Blackmore himself would laugh about that type of price tag, to him guitars are tools though the ES 335 is the one he was emotionally attached to the most and for the longest time, it was his first name instrument). But even if I had 2 million Dollars to waste, to my ears Blackmore did not come into his own as a guitarist until - enter Jimi Hendrix - he had changed over to that classic Strat sound.

And he sure did wring that little guitar's neck ... If he hadn't retired it around 70/71, I doubt it would have put up with his rigours much longer.

It was largely image, true. And what you saw on the record covers and at live concerts.

I have a Höfner 500/1 (and a Framus and a Hoyer) myself, it's a construction all of its own with a sound all of its own. It's a joy to play, but as a 16 year old in 1977 you would have broken my heart forcing me to play one where people could see me with it!  :mrgreen:

Gibson Basses / Re: Ripper Family Photo
« on: November 27, 2017, 07:25:16 AM »
Also known as the "FLying Dutchman Signature Model"!

Holländer sind alle Betrüger.

Gibson Basses / Re: GC Numbskullery
« on: November 27, 2017, 07:22:59 AM »
Darn. And I thought I had the only Gibson Korina TBird on earth. And now this. Crushing.  :-\

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