ZZ Top legend Billy Gibbons is the star of the show this month with two in-depth interviews with Stuart Bull and Michael Casswell, and a special ‘Billy Gibbons Masterclass’ lesson from Danny Gill. Other interviews include Steve Lukather who talks to Gi about his eagerly awaited new solo album ‘Transistion’ and Jerry Donahue sits down with Lee Hodgson to discuss his string-bending technique and his extensive career.
THE BASSMENT_GUITAR REVIEW
We make no secret here at GI that we’re huge fans of France’s Patrice Vigier. We think he
and his team produce some of the world’s finest instruments. Fortunately, we’re not alone
in that opinion with players like Guthrie Govan, Ron Thal, Geezer Butler and Roger Glover
agreeing with us! And speaking of Roger Glover - he’s into Excess - Vigier’s classic bass.
We gave one to Dungeonmeister Dan Veall to see if it would rock his world.
The Vigier Excess Original basses from
Patrice Vigier’s workshops are a more classic
design for those who prefer something a little
more traditional. Don’t be fooled though -
we aren’t talking Fender Precisions here! This
bass design takes classic styles and melds
them with modern ideas, materials and
manufacturing techniques, then adds with
custom electronics to deliver a truly great
sounding, thoroughly modern bass.
Vigier makes it clear that the company’s
instruments are all about the small details.
You only have to look at the individual
descriptions online to see that they mean
business, using very accurate tolerances
for the instrument measurements and
specifications. The may look very sleek and
sexy, but they are made with really precise
engineering at the heart and serious - nay
fanatical - attention to materials quality. The
maple neck wood on this instrument, for
example, has been naturally dried for three
years. Whilst on the subject of the neck,
Vigier has employed Patrice’s ‘10/90’ system
on bass necks for the past 18 years or so.
STAR RATING CHECK THE SPEC
182 Guitar Interactive Magazine Issue 15
This method completely negates the need
for a truss rod by adding ten per cent carbon
fibre to the wood component and provides
the stability needed under the tension of the
strings and in changing climate conditions
day to day. The success of that system is one
of the reasons so many top line professionals
are using Vigier’s instruments. Not only
do they tick the appearance, sound and
playablity boxes, but you can fly from
Singapore to Helsinki and the neck won’t
Fretboard options come in the form of
rosewood, maple and Delta Metal. Yes
indeed, a fretless metal fretboard is available
too! I’ve played a couple of Vigier fretless
basses with the metal fretboard and they
sound really good. Still, our review sample
comes complete with a rosewood board,
which I understand is shaped to within 100 th
of a millimetre – pretty impressive stuff!
The 24 stainless steel, medium sized frets
were perfectly fitted to the modern 300mm