Gibson Bill Kelliher Golden Axe Explorer

In time for the Musikmesse 2013 rush, Gibson introduces the Bill Kelliher Golden Axe Explorer, featuring Lace Nitro Hemi humbucking pickups and gold burst finish.

Bill Kelliher Golden Axe Explorer

Introduced in 1958, the Explorer shape has grown to be most associated with rock and metal, now Gibson and Mastodon’s axeman add a modern twist to this familiar rocker.

Bill Kelliher, known for his work with Mastodon, is the newest signature guitar endorser for Gibson. The “Golden Axe” follows his exact specifications, and comes in an eye catching gold theme to match its label.

The body of the guitar is made of solid unchambered mahogany cropped into Bill’s favorite rock guitar shape. The body features an elegant looking gold burst finish that seems to work really well with the shape.

The neck is also made of solid mahogany, carved into a slim profile that measures 0.8″ at the first fret and 0.85″ at the 12th. It has a solid rosewood fingerboard with 22 medium-jumbo frets and the Gibson standard Plek-cut Corian nut. Both the top of the body and neck is wrapped in a cream binding that adds to its elegant look.

Since Bill requires power and versatility from his pickups, Gibson equipped this guitar with two powerful Lace Nitro Hemi humbuckers. These high output pickups are its main distinguishing factor, designed to deliver high gain tones with clarity and aggressive mids. The pickups are also wired for coil-splitting which broadens the guitar’s tonal spectrum, adding useful single-coil tones for the occasional soft breaks that some metal songs have. The master volume control has a push-pull switch for splitting the bridge pickup, while the master tone knob splits the neck pickup.

For tuning stability, the Golden Axe is equipped with a standard Tune-o-matic bridge and stopbar tailpiece combination while Grover Mini tuners are used on the Explorer shape’s unique headstock. All the hardware, including the pickup covers and strap buttons are plated in gold to match the overall theme.

The Bill Kelliher Golden Axe Explorer has a manufacturer suggested retail price of $2,665. For further details, you can visit Gibson.

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