Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Missing Link

In the world of music gear we come across many many strange gadgets, gizmos, and gimmicks. I don't know how many times I've seen an advertisement for a piece of gear that claims it can give you that "holy grail" tone. The only way I've been able to get great guitar sounds is by hard work and lots of trial and error, hit and miss, and mucho experimentation. There are a few key items one will need to achieve a great sounding root tone. #1. A decent guitar, #2. solid pickups, #3. a good sounding amp, #4. a high quality set of guitar cables and #5. you need the chops to go along with all this but that is obvious. If there's one discovery I've made in the last couple years that has really helped me in reaching my golden tone goals it's a proper set of cables. Like many of you I'm sure still think I also thought at one point in my playing career "What's the big difference? A cable is a cable." Boy was I wrong and wrong for so long. Here Colossal Cables steps into the scene and blows all of us away with their killer quality, killer priced, amazing collection of guitar and speaker cables. I've been working on a recording session the last couple weeks and have had a chance to use and only use Colossal Cables for the entire session. I'll just say this.... the difference is more than noticeable. Pay attention kids.


Colossal Cable

* Hand soldered w/ultra pure multi-eutectic silver solder
* Bare annealed copper & braided shield
* Amphenol T-Series (pro-range) connectors
* Heavy duty metal back shell
* Stylized shell design w/ergonomic grip
* Cut & abrasion resistant outer shield
* "Jaws" cable clamp
* Mult point structure strain relief
* Handmade in the USA


Brooklyn Cables

One thing I noticed right away about these cables is that they had their own unique feel, response, and delivery. We had a chance to plug in and play the Brooklyn's, Sweet Fats, and Colossal's (the last being a speaker cable). I wanted to really put these cables to the test so I went ahead and tried a few different things. First I gigged with them for a month or so, then recorded with them , and last I paired them up with some standard cheap cables as well as some high quality leads. For the live situation the Brooklyn cables were perfect. I was able to run them through some high gain amps, unpredictable rooms, and up against my other guitar player which is loud loud loud! In the band I'm playing in right now I do switch over to a few classic rock style heavy dirt tones. The one thing that stood out from the get-go was the drop in white noise and hiss. The Colossal Brooklyn cables didn't change or steal the feel of my tone, no no. Somehow they were able to take that ugly blanket of unwanted noise and let my guitar's tone come shining through as pure as a sun ray on a clear day. Once your root tone is able to come through this way you start to notice things that weren't there before. You start to hear all of your highs, lows, mids, and everything in between much clearer. This means you can sit back and dial in the exact tone you want without any interruptions. I play two different amps when gig, or at least I try to most of the time. I set up a Fender for my clean tones and only use clean boosters and some compression with it. For my dirty tone I set up a AC15 style amp which I drive semi-hot and push further with some overdrivers, distortions, fuzz boxes, and god knows what else. Delay is used all around in and out. With the Brooklyn cables in the mix I was able to pull from my dirt pedals more defined, precise, and spot-on rock tones. Now, the type of pickup you use does make a difference with this cable so keep that in mind. With lower output pickups the enhancement is more in the tone's eq. Through a sparkling clean tone you can really feel (the magic word here is "feel") every little nuance, overtone, and undertone. With a hint of comp I was able to get an absolute dream of a clean tone. That rumble that makes chord play so much fun is amplified 10 fold when plugging into a guitar cable this good. One thing I must point out before I forget is the hipness and killer looks of these cables. Just swaying to and fro on the bandstand with these puppies looks awesome! I wasn't the only person who noticed a difference in my tone those few weeks I had the Colossal cables on the road. My guitar player said he was able to hear my sound much clearer, which helped him dial in his sound and inspire him to rock harder. Also a couple sound guys in different clubs commented on my sound and came over to check out my rig. One of the first things they pointed out was the cables, one cat said "Those have to be top of the line cables. I have never seen a tuffer looking guitar lead." Running around town with my set of Colossal cable really proved an absolute success. For anyone having trouble pushing their tone to the next level I highly suggest you invest in a set of Colossal's, which aren't all that expensive to begin with if I may say so myself. There's is no way to go wrong here.


Sweet Fats

Now we look at the Sweet Fat's. A warm, punchy, and god damn beautiful sounding guitar cable. I must say these were by far my favorite out of the two. I wouldn't say one was better than the other, these just fit my style of playing and my tone a lot better. I did get to use and have been using the Sweet Fats for live shows ever since they landed on my doorstep. But where these babies have been an freaking dream come true is in the studio. Taking those low to mid watt amps and cranking them up to holy rock tone mountain while plugged into a bad to the bone Colossal Sweet Fats is like no other. There's something that goes on inside one's head when he is hit with a jolt of inspiration. He hears a specific guitar tone which he in turn battles to turn out of his amp. The player sits patiently turning amp knobs this way and that, strumming lightly then harder listening for that special hit of dirt that will fly him into ecstasy. Trying to make these types of dreams come true can sometimes be a total nightmare. I'm sure if you've been playing for as long as I've have you've suffered more than once the awful sting of not achieving your dream amp tone. In the studio for me is where it always counts most. Microphones show no mercy and let every little accent come through loud and clear. If you're playing blues and have too heavy of a dirt tone dialed in you might come across sounding a bit corny, and vice versa. The Sweet Fats almost did all the work for me, it was almost too easy to get the sound I wanted! An old trick I've always dug pulling off in the studio is the doubling up of my rhythm guitar parts through two different amps and cabs, then panning them in stereo. Talk about a huge rock sound! I set up a Fender 57 Champ played though the Sweet Fats and a Les Paul. I shoved the little Fender into the smallest space I could and let her rip. The other side of the coin was an AC30 taken to the limit, again trough the Sweet Fats cable only this time I chose a Jazzmaster for the guitar. The beauty in both guitars' pickups came through so powerful, rich, and smooth. With these cables I was able to pull from the amp, pickups, speakers, and tubes a quality of saturation, dynamics, and feel that can only be defined by calling it epic. Yes I know having these great amps and some sweet guitars'n'pickups helps and helps a lot. But I took these cables to the limit by testing them up against cheap cables and I will tell you getting more from my gear was more than possible. This is what makes these cables so great. You don't loose any of the magic your gear has to offer. These cables open more doors, avenues, and highways into much more defined and complex guitar tones. Like looking at your guitar tones through a magnifying glass. The Sweet Fats proved to work not only with my amps and pickups, but also did some job on my vintage and new stompboxes, different cabinet setups, and other instruments. Of all the gear I've had a chance to check out this year this is by far one of the top picks for me. This is a well rounded piece of gear that works and sounds great with everything you stack it up against. Dig in kids while the getting is good!


For more info on Colossal Cables go to or click the link on our sidebar. Also make sure to check in with us in the near future for our article on the Colossal Cables Colossal speaker cable and Modern Classic guitar cable. We will try and bring you more and more from this awesome company as more stuff comes in. Stay tuned ya'll!!!

No comments:

Post a Comment