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The G&L Fallout: A new rock voice

December 13th, 2014

fallout sonic blueIn 2013, G&L introduced a new model called the Fallout. The Fallout combines two things that I really like: The SC-2 body shape and G&L’s own P-90 pickup.

The SC-2 body shape means that inherently the Fallout is a guitar that weighs in at around 7.5 pounds or less. If there is one thing I’ve learned in the guitar business is that many players are obsessive about guitar weight; especially the idea of less weight. It’s the question I get asked most often, and while weight is not everything, as a general rule I don’t lecture customers about what they should want.

The second – and to me – more important benefit of the Fallout is G&L’s P-90 neck pickup. This is where I guess I do lecture customers: A good P-90 pickup is an essential music-making tool. There are several good ones out there: The Arcane ’57 Experience is excellent, the garden variety Seymour Duncan SP-1 is a bargain, and the G&L P-90 is up there as one of the best. Wound to a moderate mid-6K resistance, G&L’s P-90 combines richer, fatter single tones while retaining clarity, note definition, pick attack. No, it does not sound like a Strat, but it’s not supposed to. And in a live music situation how often does the Strat guy’s tone sound thin and weak? That’s a lot less likely to happen with a Fallout.

In the bridge, the Fallout uses the Seymour Duncan JB humbucking pickup. This is G&L’s go-to bridge humbucker, and while I’d rather have a Duncan SH-1, you could do a lot worse. Moderately hot with a manageable midrange peak, the JB is a modern classic, and is well suited to kicking out crunchy and harmonically packed rock tones. There is a pull option on the tone control to split the bridge pickup, which is pretty good by itself but blends especially well when combined with the neck pickup.

There’s not much else to say about the Fallout except that it’s attractive, nicely priced, comes with a tolex hardshell case, and is built to the same high standards as every G&L. Which I guess is saying a lot.