Can a Telecaster Play Metal?

Discussion in 'Guitar Reviews' started by littlebadboy, Mar 17, 2019.

  1. littlebadboy

    littlebadboy SS.org Regular

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    Guitar: Squier Classic Vibe 50's Telecaster Butterscotch Blonde

    I had to do some mods. The original pickups were fine but I was not convinced with how they drive as they were not meant to play the metal I wanted.
    Modifications:
    Artec Giovanni custom single coil sized rail humbuckers with full 64mm rails, Alnico 5
    GFS Overwound Repro Vintage Alnico Tele Neck Pickup
    Fender 500k vol pot,
    Fender 250k tone pot but has no-load option - goes straight to output
    OG 4-way for:
    1st - neck
    2nd - neck+bridge south
    3rd - bridge south
    4th - full bridge humbucker

    Effects and Interface: Boss GT-100

    Thanks!
     

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  2. littlebadboy

    littlebadboy SS.org Regular

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    I would appreciate the likes and subscribes! I'm aspiring to be a YouTuber!
     
  3. guitaardvark

    guitaardvark SS.org Regular

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    As someone who has a tele to play rock and metal, I love the idea but when most people think "tele," they're thinking a twangy single coil. I would argue that it stops being a tele once a bridge humbucker is introduced since it loses its defining sonic characteristic. I say this as someone with a DiMarzio Tone Zone T in my partscaster.



    Kmac had a similar idea, which to me just proved almost any guitar with dual humbuckers can play metal with some degree of success.
     
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  4. USMarine75

    USMarine75 The man who is tired of the anus is tired of life Contributor

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    Exactly.

    It's not a Tele without Tele pickups.

    Can a Mayones 8 string play SRV? Um yeah... put split coil vintage humbuckers in the guitar (aligned with the top 6 strings) using the bridge single, through a Fender blackface with a TS in front.
     
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  5. Thaeon

    Thaeon Cosmic Question Asker

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    Split coils would work just fine at any output. Just turn the gain down on the amp or the volume down at the guitar. Unmodified Teles work just fine in metal. I used to use one in a Death Metal band. I actually use a single coil for overdubs with recording for the definition.
     
  6. 777timesgod

    777timesgod Officially the unofficial Forum Censor

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    Interesting mods and yes you can play metal on anything given that you dial the correct settings and use the right pedals/effects and gear. However, unless there are humbuckers build for high gain situations you will always lack compared to the other guitarists who have the right gear for the job.
     
  7. watson503

    watson503 Los Cochinos

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    "You can't play metal with a Fender!"

     
  8. Se7enHeaven

    Se7enHeaven SS.org Regular

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    John 5 does just fine with Rob Zombie
     
  9. 777timesgod

    777timesgod Officially the unofficial Forum Censor

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    Mortician are brutal but their LPs sound is so shitty that I cannot believe that they once released a live album...

    I think the point of the OP was to keep the single coil pickups and not go humbucker like Jim Root (Slipknot), Meegs (Coal Chamber) and John 5 (Rob Z) did. Basically, they have metal guitars with just the telecaster shape. The experiment is to stick with Alnico / vintage choices while reaching molten metal style.
    J5-EXCELLENT-live-Photo-by-Ronan-THENADEY.jpg
     
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  10. USMarine75

    USMarine75 The man who is tired of the anus is tired of life Contributor

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    Exactly! I LOVE John5's guitars, but that is NOT a "Tele".
     
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  11. Davsco872

    Davsco872 Contributor

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    Jim Root’s Tele can...
    D31F327B-AC5B-49AC-9130-5FA9159B6B60.jpeg
     
  12. Nicki

    Nicki SS.org Regular

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    If you're defining a telecaster being a telecaster by it having a telecaster body and only single coil pickups, then you're missing the point of a telecaster. The telecaster is the most versatile guitar platform on the planet because it's so bare bones and basic. It can be transformed and customized to do any style of music and do it very, very well. There's so much wood to work with on a telecaster that it can be customized in almost any way you can conceive. THAT is the point of a telecaster and what makes a telecaster a telecaster.

    If you think only the telecaster "twangs", you're wrong. Strats do it too - on the bridge pickup. You almost never hear it from strat players like David Gilmour, Clapton, Eric Johnson & Hendrix because they almost never use the bridge pickup. In Pride and Joy, you clearly hear the twang on passages where SRV uses the bridge pickup.
     
  13. KnightBrolaire

    KnightBrolaire 90% GAS 10% skill

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    No, you're missing the point. A trv tele has single coils and it has a very specific spank/twang to it that isn't easily approximated. Strats typically don't have the same spank/twang for whatever reason imo.

    All the other variants are just other guitars masquerading in a telecaster shape. Not that I have a problem with mixing and matching specs, I love cabronitas and more modern super teles with HH or HSH configurations, it's just that they deviate wildly from what makes a tele special, which is that very specific spank/twang. Teles have been used by Danny Gatton, all of nashville (see nashville tele configuration), Brad Paisley, Jerry Reed, Jerry Donahue, Keith Richards, Clapton (yes he had teles), etc.
    I would argue that Brad Paisley is the best example of what a tele can do. He plays blazing higher gain riffs, Van Halen/other hard rock staples and modern country all on single coils during his concerts.

    As far as the clickbaity bullshit of CAN ____ DO METAL?
    At the end of the day many tools can get the job done. Can single coils work for metal? yes (see Iron Maiden/Yngwie/Polyphia).
    Can P90s? yes (see Black Sabbath/John Browne).
    There's an apt line from the Book of 5 Rings where Musashi quips that "all weapons have a place and purpose, do not fixate on one way or one weapon".
     
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  14. USMarine75

    USMarine75 The man who is tired of the anus is tired of life Contributor

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    Derp.

    :lol:
     
  15. Nicki

    Nicki SS.org Regular

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    You and I can argue our points all we want. All it does is prove how subjective it is.
     
  16. USMarine75

    USMarine75 The man who is tired of the anus is tired of life Contributor

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    No.

    You're point is what makes a Tele great is it can be whatever you want. That's an objectively dumb point. A Strat can also be whatever you want. See Iron Maiden, Jim Root, Van Halen, etc.

    And a Tele bridge is not the same as a Strat. A Tele bridge has way more punch and is fuller than a Strat bridge which is more ice pick sounding (when stock vintage). Many players think Tele bridge sounds closer to a Gibson LP than a Strat.

    Tl;dr you're listening to music with your eyes not your ears which is objectively dumb.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2021
  17. Nicki

    Nicki SS.org Regular

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    K there bud. You do you.
     
  18. USMarine75

    USMarine75 The man who is tired of the anus is tired of life Contributor

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    Cool.
     
  19. USMarine75

    USMarine75 The man who is tired of the anus is tired of life Contributor

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    Almost never...

    Black-Strat-David-Gilmour-Fender-guitarra-guitarriego-portada-1.jpg 06e940eeabdb8966bbb7460bc23255ec.jpg Qk33vWfUXNpFmdq9vXpyyM-1200-80.jpg jimi-hendrix-stalker.jpg
     
  20. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    This evidently has a lot to do with the metal plate under the bridge pickup, which for whatever reason it was originally added, makes the pickup a fair amount more punchy.

    It's also a pretty huge part of what makes a tele a tele, the singlecoil with a metal plate in the bridge, and while I can go back and forth on a neck humbucker or P90 in a Tele, once you've swapped out the bridge pickup and ashtray bridge for a humbucker, you're really talking about a "tele-shaped singlecut" more than a Telecaster.

    Now, all that said... I don't own a Telecaster myself (thinking about changing that, it's a pretty notable gap in my arsenal, especially for the stuff I play), but I've LONG been a fan of singlecoils for "metal" sound, simply because their dynamic response is SO much more open than a humbucker. A humbucker is thicker and chunkier, and a singlecoil will never do that... but the impact of a singlecoil is just huge. I've long been a fan of layering either singlecoils or split humbucker sounds over humbuckers to add some presence and impact to a rhythm part, doubly so with lower-tuned stuff where otherwise things can get pretty muddy.

    I don't know if it would be my go-to for chuggy stuff, but if you were doing a riff or playing in a band/genre with a lot of fairly percussive playing, then yeah, singlecoils would probably kill for that, and a Tele bridge humbucker might be awesome.
     

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