Australian Guitar - - Contents -





What’s your cur­rent go-to guitar?

My go-to for ev­ery­thing heavy is my Jack­son USA Se­lect Soloist SL2H. It was by hap­pen­stance that my rep had this ly­ing around at the HQ when I first be­gan my re­la­tion­ship with Jack­son. It was des­tined to go to a store un­less I wanted it, and he of­fered me a great deal on it – I took the chance and fell in love with it. It just feels right in my hands, it’s so com­fort­able and sounds amaz­ing. Not only that, but af­ter tak­ing it out on so many tours and record­ing all of our mu­sic with it, it’s gained tremen­dous sen­ti­men­tal value. I truly be­lieve that I’ll be us­ing this guitar for­ever.

How did you ini­tially fall in love with the in­stru­ment?

My in­tro­duc­tion to mu­sic and the con­cept of be­ing in a band started with

Guitar Hero. I got re­ally into the game, and af­ter a year or so I started to re­ally like the idea of play­ing for real and start­ing a band with some friends that were also play­ing a lot. My first guitar was an L&D Luthier’s Les Paul knock­off – not a great guitar, but a solid one for some­one just learn­ing. The story isn’t too out there! Re­ally I just went into the store with my mum and played around on var­i­ous guitars for a few hours un­til we set­tled on that one. I was lucky to have a very sup­port­ive mum! I be­lieve I was 12 or 13 at the time.

What in­spires you as a player?

I’m in­flu­enced by count­less other gui­tarists to vary­ing de­grees. But one gui­tarist that re­ally in­spired me when I was de­vel­op­ing as a player (and still does to­day) is Marc Okubo from Veil Of Maya. In my late teens, I lis­tened to his band re­li­giously and ad­mired his play­ing hugely. I didn’t go on to play mu­sic much like that in my own band, but I’ve al­ways felt that pieces of his in­flu­ence are deeply embedded in my play­ing when I’m just jam­ming, or when I’m writ­ing. It’s sub­tle but I know it’s there.

Are you much of a gear nerd?

Some­what! I feel like I can nerd out to a cer­tain de­gree. I’m re­ally into ped­als. Be­ing in a band that rocks the HM2 style tones, I do have a few HM2 vari­ants, my favourite eas­ily be­ing the very lim­ited Nails ‘Tyrant’ pedal by Dun­wich Amps. It’s the most in­tense when you max out the pa­ram­e­ters, but I feel it’s also the most bal­anced and easy to work with. You can pull it back and get a broader range of sounds than oth­ers that I have tried. I also have a soft spot for mod­u­la­tion ef­fects and my re­cently ac­quired Ibanez FL9 Flanger has quickly be­come a favourite.

Do you have any ‘white whales’?

Aside from want­ing to con­tin­u­ously ex­pand my pedal col­lec­tion, over the last year I started to re­ally like Jack­son War­rior guitars, and now I re­ally want one. Specif­i­cally, I’ve been eye­ing off the USA Se­lect War­rior WR1 in Gloss Black. They look like ab­so­lute riff machines!

What would your sig­na­ture model look like?

I would very much like to have some­thing sim­i­lar to my USA Soloist. I think on some of the specs we’d be look­ing at a re­verse head­stock, black in colour with some kind of cool fin­ish. An ebony fin­ger­board for sure, black hard­ware, 25.5-inch scale length, no fret mark­ers (or one fret marker on the 12th fret) and prob­a­bly the Sey­mour Dun­can Black Win­ter pick­ups. The rest is un­de­cided at this point!

If you could jam with any gui­tarist, dead or alive...

I’d have to bor­row from one of my pre­vi­ous an­swers and have a jam with Marc Okubo. I’d love to just sit and learn Veil Of Maya riffs from the man him­self!

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