Never mind the sign atu re , feel the q u ality! M ike B ro o ks size s
up the la te st b ud get-b u stin g P re cisio n from the Sq uier label
The Gallery (Camden)
w w w .th e b a ssg a lle ry .co m
or the uninitiated, Matt Freeman has been the bassist for US
punk bands Rancid, Operation Ivy and Devils Brigade. For any
self-conscious punk, the bass of choice is an instrument in the
Precision mould, and Matt has followed in the footsteps of many
a punk bassist before him. This release via the Squier brand is no
doubt aimed at the younger punk market who need something
affordable in order to get themselves aboard the musical rollercoaster.
So does it have the prerequisite sneer factor?
u a l it y
Let's cut to the chase: there are few frills here, but it's a classic design
with a classic look. The quality of overall finishing is surprisingly
high, and in terms of comfort, there are no issues when worn on a
strap. Squier has included many of the features and characteristics
you would expect to see on a Precision, such as rear contouring and
top bout chamfering to the black basswood body, along with the
usual smooth, rounded bodylines and cutaways, the famous split-coil
pickup (of the custom variety no less), a functional 'Hi-Mass' bridge
with brass saddles, open gear elephant-ear machine heads and tone
and volume controls.
However, this bass has been designed and assembled in such a way
that could quite easily put more expensive Precisions to shame. It feels
shiny and glossy and exudes an air of quality that belies its price. The
neck shows no sharp frets at all and the fingerboard edges have been
rolled to improve comfort. The four-bolt neck attachment is extremely
tight, the vintage style machine heads turn smoothly and the tinted
gloss polyester finish applied to the one-piece maple neck gives it a
warm colouring, making it look like a vintage model. Despite its fairly
thick gloss coat, the neck doesn't feel particularly 'sticky', and with its
modern 'C' shape profile, the vintage 20-fretted neck is immensely
playable. The nut width, at 41mm, would suggest a slightly chunky
neck, but it doesn't feel like it - which can only be a good thing for
younger players starting out on bass.
t h e r e
a r e
f e w
f r il l s
h e r e
b u t
c l a s s ic
d e s ig n
w it h
BASS guitar magazine
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