Ember After

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New guitar in Ember Studios: the Koll “Gothcaster VI”

Ember Studios is equipped with a number of custom Koll Guitars. Saul Koll is an amazing builder, and I love working with him to create unique instruments, such as my beloved Koll “Sun Glide.” So as a fan of the gothy, atmospheric sounds from like The Cure, and the detuned metal sound of modern heavy bands, I was looking for a mash-up of the old Fender Bass VI , with modern, heavy rock appointments—and most importantly, left handed, and we came up with a hybrid beast we dubbed the “Gothcaster VI”

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For the musicians out there, here are some specs for you:

  • 28″ scale
  • Korina body, Maple neck, ebony fingerboard
  • Aluminum inlay and purfing
  • Hipshot locking tuners
  • Bare Knuckle Black Dog humbucker pickups
  • Mastery Bridge
  • Distressed nickel hardware
  • Fender Bass VI strings (.24 – .84 gauge)

The guitar has a black satin finish, and a great silver/black “doghair” texture thanks to the silver grain filler that you can see more clearly in this body close up:

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I really love the hardware controls on this instrument:

  • Master volume and tone knobs
  • Three-way mini-toggles for coil-split/off/humbucker per pickup
  • Three-way toggle for “strangle” switch/out of circut/kill switch

The “strangle” switch is a high pass filter that cuts the bass and hollows out the tone like a notch filter. Back in the day it was used to get that “tick tac” bass sound, but under heavy crunch it sounds great, lending a far more “guitar” sound to the lower register.

Despite being longer than a standard guitar the instrument is surprisingly light and really balanced. The satin finish feels absolutely fantastic, especially on the back of the neck.

I couldn’t be more thrilled with the “Gothcaster VI,” and I look forward to recording it and integrating it into future Ember After tracks. Saul Koll is a wonderful and creative builder, and I’m thrilled he’s so willing to build these crazy, non-standard instruments!

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