Roland BT-1 Review

Roland BT1
Roland BT-1
Function: Drum pad
Price: $99
What’s New: The BT-1 bar trigger pad is a low-profile drum pad designed to work with V-drum or other electronic drum machines.  Lightweight and easy to mount, the BT-1 is designed to work together with any drum kit, acoustic or electric.  Internal design eliminates false triggering by hitting drums close to the BT-1, and the small, curved design makes it perfect for mounting just outside the rim of a snare or tom.  In addition to being a standard drum trigger, the BT-1 can be used to start/stop click track, trigger backing tracks, tap tempo, and more.  The BT-1 is the perfect drum trigger to add to acoustic drums, or as an accessory to an electronic drum kit.

Origin Effects Cali76

Compressor Stompbox
Price: $375
What’s New: If you’re looking for an ultra-smooth, fat, punchy compressor, the Origin Effects Cali76 is one of the best out there.  Based on possibly the most famous studio compressor of all time, the UREI 1176, the Cali76 is a condensed version of the 1176 in a standard guitar pedal chassis.  Built in a rugged metal box, the Cali76 is ultra smooth on both bass and guitar, with fat vintage-style FET compression and an all-analog circuit.  While the steep price tag may turn many away, for the guitar player who always wanted an 1176 on stage, the Cali76 is your magic bullet.

-Andy Toy

DW Airlift Stands

dwFunction: Heavy duty drum hardware stands
Price: $189-$209
What’s New: While 200 bucks might be a little steep to throw out for a snare stand, the DW airlift is worth every penny.  Identical to the world-renowned DW 9000 Series drum hardware, the Airlift snare and tom stands feature a revolutionary new pneumatic shock system that allows effortless, exact adjustments to the snare and toms.  The drums sit on a cushion of air that allows the drummer to adjust the drum to the exact height with incredible ease.  Additional memory locks ensure that the drum will be in the exact same place at each setup, saving time (and your back) for drummers everywhere. 

-Andy Toy

Sahe Audio Rekawl App

rekawl picFunction: Gear setting recall App for iPhone
Price: $4.99
What’s New: Ever have a tone dialed in that was perfect…only to have your pedal settings bumped the next day and now you can’t remember how you got that perfect tone?  ReKawl is here to help!  ReKawl is an App for iPhone (and soon Android) that allows you to take pictures of your gear and label each one, sort by sound or song, and recall them to remember exactly what settings you used for each sound.  Studio engineers can even generate custom track sheets to quickly recall their favorite settings for each piece of gear! 

-Andy Toy

Fender Blacktop Tele Baritone

Function: Baritone Electric Guitar
Price: $499
What’s New: How low can you go?  With the new Fender Blacktop Tele Baritone, quite low indeed.  27” scale B-to-B tuning allows you to play a full 4th below standard tuning and thicken the low end of your sound.  A maple neck with Rosewood fingerboard bolts onto an Alder Telecaster body.  The two tele-style single coil pickups paired with the single humbucker at the bridge makes the Tele Baritone an unconventional, yet vastly versatile baritone electric.  The pickup configuration differs from most classic baritone guitars (usually equipped with 2-3 single coil pickups) but offers a more modern sound.  The Blacktop Tele Baritone covers everything from low country twang to rich, full-sounding chords.  For the price, the Blacktop Tele Baritone offers a wide spectrum of tonal possibilities and is a nice addition to a stage with multiple guitarists.