ESP LTD Alex Skolnick AS-1FM LB
The upcoming LTD AS-1FM LB is an affordable version of Alex Skolnick's ESP signature, featuring a flame maple top with lemon burst finish.
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Typically associated with modern style guitars, ESP has been breaking this stereotype by satisfying vintage guitar enthusiasts like Alex Skolnick, as proven by this great looking traditional style guitar that earned the artists seal of approval.
Like some of us who aren't into the super-strat "pointy" guitars, Alex himself was skeptical when ESP first offered to build his signature instrument. To his surprise, ESP proved that they are capable, resulting in a collaboration that produced a serious signature guitar that bears Skolnick's name.
Unfortunately for us mere mortals, the ESP Alex Skolnick Signature's premium features and looks are matched by its premium price tag. Thankfully, Alex also approved an affordable alternative version with the LTD label, bearing the same vintage style design principle but at a more affordable price range. Particularly eye catching is the AS-1FM LB with its lemon burst finish.
The body of the guitar is made of mahogany with a flamed maple top, carved into a familiar single cutaway shape. The neck is also made of mahogany, topped by a 22-fret rosewood fingerboard. Quite unusual for ESP is the use of a vintage neck "U" profile, satisfying Skolnick's preference. The scale length is 24.75", fingerboard radius is 305mm and the nut width is 43mm.
Seymour Duncan is currently working with Alex Skolnick to create his signature humbucker pickup, the prototype of which is currently used on the premium ESP version of his signature. Although it will not have this upcoming humbuckers, the LTD AS-1 version does come equipped with Seymour Duncan SH-1 on the neck and SH-4 on the bridge, equally good pickups in their own right.
Shifting away from traditional wiring, Alex and ESP had the pickups wired to a 3-way pickup selector with only three knobs. Two of the knobs control the volume of each pickup while the third knob controls the overall tone. It is spaced in such a way that is easier for Alex to execute his volume knob swells.
Other features of the guitar include Tonepros locking TOM bridge and tailpiece and Dunlop Straplok. The Alex Skolnick signature guitars also come with a distinct headstock shape.
The new ESP LTD Alex Skolnick AS-1FM LB is currently available for pre-order, with a tag price of $949. A Silverburst finish model is also available, and both are expected to start shipping on March. Visit ESP Guitars for further details.
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When you consider how much time and effort you put into getting your rig to sound just the way you want, it makes sense to ensure your guitar cables are also up to the job - after all they're an important part of the tone chain. Also remember that occasionally things will go wrong, so always carry at least one spare cable to gigs and rehearsals.