Submitted by Dinosaur David B on Wed, 01/14/2015 - 14:41
Country of origin:
The Fargen Mini Plex MKIII -- as shipped with EL34s -- is essentially a boutique, hand-wired version of a Marshall Plexi AND a JCM800 rolled into a 12 watt, 25 lb. amp head.
It provides quality tone on par with a 50 or 100 watt Marshall, and maintains this tone at apartment/bedroom, and club-gig levels without tonal sacrifice.
The Decade switch lets you choose between two completely different classic British preamp circuits: Classic Plexi JMP and hot rodded JCM 800.
Full feature list:
The only things I'd change are the following:
Both of thse things are a little wonky (IMO), but you get used to it soon enough, so they're not enough to deduct a point from on an otherwise stellar amp.
The amp is bult like a tank with high quality components. I don't anticipate trouble.
When you buy a Fargen, you deal with Ben Fargen directly, and he seems dedicated to ensuring quality support.
This amp fits in well with my other 15 watt-ers from other maunfacturers, and provides great Marshall tones at low wattage volume levels. My bandmates are raving about how great it sounds.
I run the MPIII at or near full-out through a Bogner 1x12 cube cab, and in conjuncion with a similarly-powered, low-wattage amp through a second cube cab (in stereo), there is more than enough volume for band rehearsals with a powerful drummer, and any gig where your cabs are mic'd.
As with any low watt amp, if you're using it with a small cab and trying to compete against 50 or 100 watt amps through 4x12s, you will not keep up if volume wars ensue. But you knew that going in, right?
Submitted by Dinosaur David B on Fri, 01/16/2015 - 11:08
So after Walk this Way, and Steven Tyler's book, and Joey Kramer's book, we get a book from Joe Perry.
This book is chronology of Joe's life from childhood to present day. As such, you read about his childhood upbringing and interests, his early musical pursuits, and as the title suggests, his long, storied history in and out of Aerosmith.
The book covers the details of Joe's many, often rocky relationships with managers, girlfriends, wives, and the very complex, love-hate relationship he has with Steven Tyler -- from Joe's perspective, obviously.
Joe doesn't shy away from talking about his notorious drug use, but he doesn't do a deep dive on it either (in the way, say Glenn Hughes' bio did). Joe's approach to this topic was closer to Keith Richards' approach in his bio, Life, in that Joe acknowledges that it took place, but never gives you the sense of how bad it really got. If you want that, if you want all the dirt, read Walk this Way.
Not surprisingly, Joe mostly paints himself in a favorable light. As the reasonable one in his dealings with Tyler and the rest of the band; as the one with the greater work ethic; as the one who was first untrusting of the band's first dubious managers. This could all be true, but like anything, there are usually two sides to such stories, and if you haven't read the other books, know that bandmates and other sources have painted Joe differently. To be fair, Joe also discusses his many mistakes, such as waiting way too long to fire the band's Machiavellian manager in the 90s.
All in all, it's a very good, enjoyable read. You come away with a good sense of who Joe is, his motivations, and what is important to him. Neutral topics are covered in more detail, while touchy subjects feel a bit glossed over.
Submitted by Dinosaur David B on Thu, 01/08/2015 - 10:16
Our own Nick Layton's band Firewolfe has won the DRG Album of the Year for 2014! This is the first time in DRG history where a member's release beat out the likes of Accept, Priest, BLS, among others, so it has to be a pretty good album! For more on Firewolfe, check out these links:
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