Epitomizing the rock concert as spectacle in the 1970s, KISS merged infectious metal riffs and glam-rock imagery more fully than any band to strut the stage. The glitz, make-up and pure musical fury c... Read More
Epitomizing the rock concert as spectacle in the 1970s, KISS merged infectious metal riffs and glam-rock imagery more fully than any band to strut the stage. The glitz, make-up and pure musical fury climaxed in 1977 when KISS, having just been named the “most popular band in America” in a Gallup poll, flew to Japan to perform five sold-out shows at the legendary Budokan arena, breaking the record of four capacity concerts that was held by The Beatles. In his white-and-silver “Space Ace” makeup, lead guitarist Ace Frehley strutted the Budokan stage like he owned the world, laying down signature riffs from hits like “Rock and Roll All Nite” and “Detroit Rock City” on a three-pickup 1974 Gibson Les Paul Custom that would instantly be the object of desire of every aspiring teenage rocker the world over. Bringing this iconic Custom back to life for the mere mortal guitarists among us, Gibson USA announces the release of the Ace Frehley “Budokan” Les Paul Custom. With its luscious Cherry Sunburst nitrocellulose finish, traditional Les Paul Custom inlays and appointments, and three super-charged DiMarzio humbucking pickups, this guitar is the spitting image of Frehley’s original in looks, feel and tone, and it’s ready to rock you all night long.
The Ace Frehley “Budokan” Les Paul Custom is crafted with the traditional ingredients of the Les Paul Custom circa the early to mid-1970s. Its carved Grade-A maple top is joined to a Grade-A mahogany body that is weight relieved to reduce the load and enhance resonance. This classic tonewood pairing gives you the blend of maple’s snap and articulation with mahogany’s depth and warmth, cornerstones of the legendary Les Paul sound. Seven-ply white-and-black body binding enhances the Custom, as do the neck’s acrylic pearloid block markers and the headstock’s multi-ply binding and split-diamond inlays. The quarter-sawn mahogany neck is carved to a traditional slim, yet rounded, profile that measures .818” at the 1st fret and .963” at the 12th, and is topped with a fingerboard made from renewable Richlite®. A fabricated material composed of cellulose fiber and phenolic resin, Richlite® offers the constructional and resonant properties of fine hardwood, but with improved durability, for a superb playing feel.
In the image of Ace’s original guitar, the Ace Frehley “Budokan” Les Paul Custom from Gibson USA is loaded with three period-correct, double-cream DiMarzio Super Distortion pickups for maximum rhythm crunch and lead tones of unparalleled fire and fury. To maximize the sonic versatility of the traditional three-way toggle switch and four-knob control section, the guitar is wired to select the neck pickup alone in the switch’s upper position, both middle and bridge pickups in the middle position (sharing the lower volume and tone controls), and bridge pickup alone in the lower position. Hardware includes the classic pairing of chrome Tune-o-matic bridge and stopbar tailpiece for optimum sustain and precise intonation, with Ace’s modification of Grover™ tuners with pearloid “banjo” buttons. Strap it on, and it’s your own slab or raging glam-rock excess, as well as the perfect Les Paul for any breed of heavy rock and traditional metal riffing.
Reviewed by 2 customers
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I love this guitar. Gibson USA did everything right. I did not buy this guitar because of the 'budokan' commemoration. I'm in no way fan of kiss, but I know a good guitar when I see one. This is not so much an artist signature model but it definitely is a Gibson Les Paul Custom. The companies online specs say this guitar is weight relieved. I don't feel that. This guitar is heavy. The DiMarzio pickups are incredible, no problems going straight into a marshall, but be prepared to stand back several feet from your amp. Sustain for days. Within a few days I hotrodded the axe with a 'no-mod' Vibramate Bigsby for those shimmering vibrato chords, and dressed up the headstock with a LPC truss rod. Ace who? This guitar also has a very comfortable neck, and is so sweet. The decision for the manufactures use of Richlite for the fingerboard is a good one. This material while it doesn't sound appetizing, I would not know it wasn't ebony until someone said so. And if a person is concerned with the fretboard material they're not much concerned with their talent. I have no problems with this new fretboard material. an excellent guitar, and the sales staff over the phone were very agreeable and worked with me to make sure I was happy before I purchased the guitar. while for a working musician, this instrument IS expensive, it was more reasonably priced than the current model of a Les Paul Standard. And considering Gibson's longevity, and quality, this guitar was worth it. This guitar will be in my family from here on out.
Guitar plays great, sounds great, and the non flamed maple top looks way better in person than it does in pictures. This is my second Ace guitar, the first being a 97 Gibson. I like the feel of this one even better. I bought this as a player, not a collector. Gibsons website description says weight releived body in the description, but this guitar is just as if not heavier than my non releived standard. I like them ehavy though, so its a plus in my book. Now for the "almost" part. I had this guitar overnighted to my local store and I was the one to open it for inspection. First there was a nickel sized scuff/scratch on the tip of the cutaway. When I got home and started playing it found that two of the frets had burrs on them and visible glue on the fretboard. I had to sand and buff the scratch to get it out, and dress the frets myself and now it IS perfect. As an owner of several Gibson in the past this is not what I expected.
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