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    • CommentAuthorcc says...
    • (CommentTimeJun 2nd 2008 edited)
     
    I thought I'd make a post looking for insights into what musical gear Wire favors, now but also in the past.

    from what I saw at the Seaport gig, Graham was playing a Fender Jazz through a rented SVT. He had a noisy effect pedal that he used sparingly (maybe only once?).

    Colin played I think the same oddly shaped black guitar for every song but "Boiling Boy." I couldn't identify the guitar, and I'd also want to ask what are Colin's priorities for a guitar? The right pick-ups? I'd guess this guitar has humbuckers. For "Boiling Boy," it was a big lime-greenish Supro or Gretsch kind of thing, which had a vibrato arm for a shimmery effect. At first I thought it was the same guitar he played back when at the Rockpalast gig, and which I've seen in other pictures from that era and possibly beyond--was that a Mosrite? He was plugged into I think a Music Man amp, as again I've seen in late 70s pics, at least from US gigs.

    he also had an Apple laptop sitting on a music stand. I wondered whether this was for lyrics, notes, etc. or was it running some effects, either on his guitar only or for the general mix? The band got some amazing dynamics that I wondered if were possible from the simple lineup, or whether the live sound tech (Wire brought their own; I asked when I got to the gig) was making the magic.

    Margaret primarily played a Jazzmaster into a Vox, with some heavy distortion from maybe an MXR pedal.

    any corrections or additions welcome!
  1.  
    A green guitar? Can only be this one:

    http://www.githead.com/news-2007.php

    An Eastwood Airline:

    http://www.eastwoodguitars.com/

    Seafoam green. :-)
  2.  
    i play a '58 jazzmaster through a vox tonelab LE multi FX thru whatever 2x12" hired amp (either vox Ac30 or fender twin). Serious feedback probs at south street seaport with vox am making me lean now towards twin!! I think it overheated in the (glorious) sunshine.....m
  3.  
    I love geek talk like this :) I believe the laptop was just being used to provide some of the lyrics to the newer songs? Although it would be interesting to know if it was being used for the guitar in place of the POD XT. I found it interesting that Colin has the POD on a stand (I always regret buying the pod XT instead of the floor based model!) with some of the angles in the Scottish Play DVD I thought the POD may have been Bruce's as his guitar sounds very direct, although perhaps this was an afterthought in the mix and the people at the gig heard the amps mic'd?

    The black guitar I've seen in most of the pics of Wire as of late would appear to be a breed of Line 6 Variax guitar. Whats interesting with these guitars is they appear to have no pickups, and use line 6 modelling technology to simulate different guitar types, much in the way their amps simulate (or try to simulate!) other amps. The Rockpalast guitar is an Ovation Breadwinner. I thought this may have been a VOX guitar at first.

    Does anyone know what type of guitar the headless guitar was that was open tuned for "In the art of stopping"? Graham should have reprised the Westone Rail! (as seen in the Drill live performance)

    The amp does look to be like an original music man amp, which is good to see! If you are interested in these amps there is a great (non-official) site dedicated to their heritage http://www.musicmanamps.com/ which has an amusing "Hall of shame" gallery of some erm...aqquired taste modifications!

    Back in the day I believe all effects were MXR pedals, I read a funny quote from Colin once along the lines of the MXR pedals probably having more to do with the innovative Wire sound than the band members themself!!

    Mike Thorne's pieces on his contributions with Wire provide interesting reading in particular to what went on in the studio gear wise for the first three albums http://www.stereosociety.com/wire.html
    • CommentAuthorcc says...
    • (CommentTimeJun 5th 2008)
     
    thanks, Margaret! ... glad I got something right! What a gem of a guitar; don't worry, the toasted amp noise became part of the general buzz.

    and thanks to all for the other links. Yeah, that Mike Thorne page is a good read. I hadn't heard of this Line 6 technology... not usually my kind of thing but certainly worth checking out. I suppose it would be handy for recording. But I think I'd demo the Vox Tonelab first!
  4.  
    >>Does anyone know what type of guitar the headless guitar was that was open tuned for "In the art of stopping"? Graham should have reprised the Westone Rail! (as seen in the Drill live performance)<<

    It's a Hohner, probably a G2. Graham has the B2 bass equivalent too, though the only time I've seen him use it this century was as He Said, supporting Wire @ the RFH in 2000.

    I think someone stole the rail, unfortunately...

    Mark
  5.  
    He used it in the Dublin warm-up for RFH.
  6.  
    On one hand, I can really see how touring (especially the sporadic nationwide touring) is greatly improved by using the floor processors and renting very standard amps at every show. Also, it's pretty obvious that a lot of the sounds on the more recent Wire material were recorded direct.

    As a musician though, and even one who owns a POD and has spent years with multi-effects, there's something about developing a relationship with a guitar and amp and how they interact and allowing that to become part of one's unique voice.

    As a gear nerd, it was really cool to see the setups, to see the DI boxes as well as the mics on the amp, and trying to figure out which signal was being used through the mains during certain songs.

    Oh yeah, good show in San Francisco.

    Cheers,
    Ben Adrian
    • CommentAuthorcc says...
    • (CommentTimeOct 18th 2008)
     
    "As a gear nerd, it was really cool to see the setups, to see the DI boxes as well as the mics on the amp, and trying to figure out which signal was being used through the mains during certain songs."

    yes... figuring some of this out was my idea for the thread!

    what are "floor processors"? thanks.
  7.  
    When I say floor processors, I'm talking about guitar mullti-effect units which have built in foot switches and are placed on the floor.

    In Wire's case, it's the PodXT live for Colin and the Vox Tonelab for Margaret.

    Cheers!
    Ben
  8.  
    I'm not much of a techie, but I noticed that Graham had both a wah-wah pedal and a Moogerfooger among his array of effects during the Atlanta show this month. Colin played the green Eastwood and black Line guitars described above. I wondered about Colin's laptop too.
  9.  
    I don't think anyone has established what was on Colin's laptop.

    At Leuven he joked he was trying to finish a game he'd been playing!

    Some say it was a sort of makeshift autocue. No shame if it was, after all Barney Sumner needs one to remember "Oh you've got green eyes oh you've got blue eyes oh you've grey eyes"

    My theory he had it just in case he got an e-mail from the Vinyl pressing plant about Object 47 ;)
  10.  
    Laptop theories...

    1. He's watching a video of a bigger crowd in a bigger venue
    2. He's bootlegging the gig with the internal mic/webcam
    3. It's Karaoke Wire
    4. Its sitting there as a standby loaded with drum loops as a threat to Robert (drop those sticks one more time...)
    5. Porn
    6. Doing absolutely nothing but sitting there in the hope that it will make us think of theories as to what it is actually doing. Knowing Wire...my money is on this one!
  11.  
    you guys don't get it, he's got the laptop on stage with skype on so I can watch the gig on my computer at home :)
  12.  
    "you guys don't get it, he's got the laptop on stage with skype on so I can watch the gig on my computer at home :)"

    Classic!
  13.  
    Wow.

    That is absolutely outstanding.
  14.  
    Well it's not true, of course, 7jlong.

    He has it when she's there, too!
  15.  
    Perhaps not, but even just the concept is outstanding.

    ah, technology.
  16.  
    [quote]2. He's bootlegging the gig with the internal mic/webcam[/quote]

    I was half way right ;)
  17.  
    Colin told me laptop was to display lyrics.
    It was soon there.
    Some kid in Starsbourg knocked it over doing th only stage dive I've ever seen at a Wire gig.
    Colin looked like an irate school teacher and admonmished,
    "If any of you lot break my laptop you have to buy me a new one!"