Power chord guitar tone you like the most?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Alvaro Martín Gómez A., Oct 6, 2005.

  1. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    Hi everybody.

    I just came up with this question because somebody said in another thread that Alex Lifeson's guitar tone in "Working man" may be the best all-time guitar tone. I'm just curious about your opinion on this guitar tone topic, but I don't want to focus this on the typical idea of a great guitar soloist with trademark licks and tone. I'm just thinking of pure, plain power chords as an accompaniment part for a hard rock tune (or maybe in a melody like "Smoke On The Water"), because there are lots of aspects that can define a great guitarist when soloing, but IMO, the main thing that differentiates a great guitarist from another when just playing power chords is his/her choice of distortion/overdrive tone. Of course there are lots of great examples, but when this statement about Lifeson came up, one name came instantly to my mind: Tom Scholz. His guitar tone on all of the Boston albums when playing this role is simply perfect to me. This is one of the reasons why "More Than A Feeling" is the power rock ballad I undoubtfully like the most (aside from its chord progression, Brad Delp's voice, etc, etc...). So that's the question: Who plays the power chords you enjoy the most tonewise? Thank you in advance for your input! :)
  2. BassJunkie730


    Feb 3, 2005
    Hmmm... I learned to play guitar because of all the power chords Billie Joe Armstrong would play - so I definitely put up green Day as one of the best power chord rock bands.

    AC/DC - C'mon guy's who hasn't rocked out to dirty Deeds?

    But to me the best power chord tone comes from a tube head with a stiff power section and a cleanish front end with the whole rig pushed. Let's condiser the formula (oh and don't forget the high inductance guitar pickups :D )
    Hiwatt + townsend = massive wall of sound - power chord chunk
    Marshall Plexi + Angus or Malcom young = power chords
    Marshall JCM 800 MK2 + Zakk Wylde = grinding power chords

    finally a topic on TB that was my entire philosophy when playing guitar.

    Now to get that god like power chord presence on bass. :bag:

  3. Lyle Caldwell

    Lyle Caldwell

    Sep 7, 2004
    I've always hated Scholtz's tiny nasal boxy sound.
  4. DemoEtc


    Aug 18, 2004
    Feel Like Making Love - Bad Company

    Shape of Things - Gary Moore version

    It's All Too Much - George Harrison

    Summertime Blues - The Who, Live at Leeds
  5. My old guitarist(who I'm now several thousand miles away from) had a great power chord tone. Crisp and cutting with just the right amount of chunk. The guy I jam with on occasion now is a decent player but he always wants more bass in his tone and this can quickly lead to sonic mud. I have a feeling that he is a bassist at heart somewhere but I'm not gonna wait for him to come out of that closet.
  6. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    Oh yes, you were the one! ;)

    But speaking of Lifeson's power chords, I think his best tone is in the "Moving Pictures" album. "Tom Sawyer" and "Limelight" are simply sublime.
  7. mwm70


    Oct 27, 2004
    An overdriven JCM 800.
  8. SoComSurfing

    SoComSurfing Mercedes Benz Superdome. S 127. R 22. S 12-13.

    Feb 15, 2002
    Mobile, Al
    A pair of Fender Super Reverbs, one with 4x10"s, the other with 1x15", both fed by a Gibson SG with aLindy Fralin "Duane Allman" neck pickup, and an early Gibson patent # in the bridge.

    edit: whoops, I got lost a few posts down, and thought we were talking about favorite personal rigs.

    On-topic favorite:
    Mike Ness pushing Fender Bassmans and Bandmasters through Marshall cabs with a Les Paul with P-90s. Teppei and Riley from Thrice both use Mesa Dual Recs, which I'm usually not that fond of, but I love the tones they get.
  9. bill h

    bill h

    Aug 31, 2002
    small town MN
    Marshall and a les paul
  10. Since the first time I heard it, I've always been in love with the guitar tone on Thin Lizzy's 'Jailbreak'. Of course all my guitarist friends hate that tone, so it's pretty personal I guess. 'Working Man' would definitely be high on my list as well.

    AC/DC obviously deserves a mention... as does my early '60s Plexi which is pretty much Angus Young in a box.
  11. Mike N

    Mike N Missing the old TB

    Jan 28, 2001
    New York
    I dig the tone Criss Oliva got on Savatage's "Power of the Night" record.
  12. Adam Jones.

    Marshall + Deizel + Les Paul = Great Tone.
  13. Pete Townshend, Live at Leeds era. SG w/p90s.

    and Weezer, Blue Album. Mainly Les Paul Jrs... also with p90s.
  14. Angus + Malcolm Young with AC/DC.

    Billy Duffy with The Cult, esp. the Electric album.
  15. I-Love-Ratm


    Feb 24, 2003
    Josh Homme of QOTSA
    Hetfields tone on the Black album.Esp + Mesa?
    Wes Borland's tone on Significant other is gorgeous too.
    Dave Davies on "You really got me" I think is quite ahead of it's time.
  16. Pete Townshend for sure, those power chords are like a punch in the balls.

    Then maybe Mick Jones (clash), yeah a little thin but they got alot of kick
  17. I love the guitarist of Dredg's guitar tone on their latest CD, Catch Without Arms. Although I know that he doesn't often play straight power chords his tone is fantastic. That's my unusual pick of the day.

    I'd actually say I don't really like Lifeson's tone on Working Man. It's not bad, but in general it's nothing special. He sounds great on the guitar solo, though, that's for sure.