This is likely my final new post / thread in this forum (unless we want to create a Club thread). I've been looking for my "forever" (I hope..my wife insists) bass, upgrading from my entry level Bulgarian Kremona carved from 2K1. I was a frequent poster in the "basses for 5K" threads, hybrid vs carved, etc. I had been to several shops (which is hard with COVID) wanted to visit Upton (which is hard with COVID), etc and after trying a bunch of basses, I narrowed it down to two: a Rubner Walther bass (which I posted too many threads about distorted ribs) and a LaScala that I was waiting to be built that was coming to Gage's shop in NYC. I was fortunate to have both in my hands for several days to A/B them and even took them both to a well-regarded local player and instructor in my area (university instructor and badass player) to have him try them both, because he knows what to look for when you're dealing with amplification, various venues, etc. I also got the chance to play two of his basses...a very nice 100 year old Morelli, and an old flatback that he's selling, which was INCREDIBLE but it didn't seem like it would be versatile enough...It was one that Mike Shank had done a lot of work on, and I was a bit torn...it was magical. But here we go...I decided to go with the LaScala. The other bass was super growly but very bright. The shape was a bit not to my liking. The LaScala is so playable. It's definitely dark, needs some time to break in, and I'm sure at some point I'll want to try other strings (even though Spiro Mittels ARE bowable on this bass, they are a challenge). I'm putting in plenty of arco time to open it up as much as possible. Super even and just seemingly a "transparent" bass...one that I can imagine through technique that I'll be able to eventually make sound like I want it to sound. Oh, and again, super playable. This is one bass where I can feel the air filling the bass with each note...Just a percussive puff which is really cool. This one is a hybrid with solid ribs and round back. Wil didn't remember whether the ribs are maple or poplar (I believe poplar). I LOVE the varnish he did. Just beautiful. I did try the Pamplona, too (Gamba shape), and it was also great. LOUD. But this one was more even and the shape more playable to me. Ask me any questions.