If you are a pro musician with all the best equipment ever, this article isn’t for you. This one is for the ones who know what is like to be playing a gig and the drums start suddenly to ‘walk’ and you have to ‘stop’ it; the ones who’s felt sorry for the drummer whose crash cymbal really crashed on the last song; the ones hit by a part of drummer’s drumstick, generally the head, or worst; that night you stepped into your pedal and it refused to be on; that guitar (or bass) impossible to tune up; amps that make that fuzz sound without having any fuzz effect on them; microphones which seem to have a bee into them. I could go on and on, but I guess you got it.
Yeah, my Metal child, playing with lame gear is a living hell.
You spent a long time to go through some really hard guitar lessons, work hard as hell to take a solo or an extremely intricate riff or something. Then, you go home and pick up your guitar, turn on the amp and… Nothing happens, I mean, everything happens but a cool sound. You eventually think you played it wrong, but you didn’t. To your disappointment no matter how hard you try, how hard you boost, it doesn’t sound the same like Yngwie, Eddie, Slash, Iommi, or whoever you might pick as an example. The best you get is a sonic mass of clangs and poofs and fuzzies and whatever. Take this to a band level where everybody has lame gear from the microphone to the drum kit. Unbearable. Disappointing to say the least.
I’ll tell you a secret just in case you don’t know: there are some sounds that you can only produce with the right equipment, the right pedal, or even the right amp. If you don’t have them, forget it. If you play Metal things get even more difficult because you’ve got to play it loud. You, yes, the one who’s used to play with lame gear, please tell us the results of playing really loud. Doesn’t it sounds like a plane crash or elephants having sex – uh, this I really don’t know, but I guess it doesn’t sound right? Awful, huh? The most terrifying experience a wannabe musician can have.
I know, I know, some guys can make kids’ toys sound better than your guitar. You have a friend that play amazing things using glasses or else. But you, the best you get is this:
Yeah, you’re not this guy. You’re a mere mortal. There is always some pounding into your mind and you can’t let it go: is it you or is it the lame gear you’re playing? Maybe both, let’s face it. Anyway, there’s an easy test you can make. Pick that friend who’s really a shreader and ask him to play with your gear. If it sounds good or okay, the matter is you. If it sounds terrible anyway or at least bearable, well, good news, it’s not you. I did once the opposite, I took a pretty decent guitar with a great amp. Man, let me tell you, I felt that Yngwie. Even my friends got impressed. I can’t forget the look in my face and the bright of my eyes – well, they told me – the first time I ran into a Marshall amp. Ah, the magical sound of it.
Let me tell you a thing just in case: the quality of your gear does matter! A lot! Don’t hear that nonsense that some people say that you make your sound – parents usually say that to save their money. Yeah, right. A lame sound. So, take my word, save your bucks, do hell, but buy decent gear. It makes a whole lot difference.