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Sunday, November 18, 2012

Reverend Guitars Reeves Gabrels II Signature, ... (Review)

Reviewed By: Jac Harrison
Purchased from: Manufacturer
Street Price: $999.00 USD with case + shipping

Reverend Guitars is a manufacturer of boutique guitars based in Livonia, MI. 

This Reeves Gabrels II Signature model features a solid korina body with a flamed maple top leading into a bolt-on medium oval maple 25-1/2” scale neck dressed in a 12” radius rosewood fingerboard with 22 medium jumbo frets with dot markers and a dual-action truss rod in a satin orange finish topped with a graphite nut.   

Reverend Pin-Lock Tuners and Wilkinson WVS 50IIK fulcrum tremolo.

Railhammer Chisel bridge and neck pickups with custom volume, tone (w/ push-pull phase switch), bass contour and 3-way toggle switch. 


Amp Used:
Was used through the amp provided at the Reverend booth at the Bee 3 vintage guitar show in Philly. 

Selector position Just Neck:
Tight and Clear without the mush - great  for an overdrive player.

Selector position Neck & Bridge:
A bridge heavy middle -- great for finger picking or warmer leads.  

Selector position Just Bridge:
Endless harmonics and very touch sensitive with amazing sustain.  

Selector position out of phase Neck and Bridge:
It is simply out of phase, there is no other way to describe the sound but it is done correctly and plays nice in the middle position. Very Gary Moore LP sounding. 

Special pickup features/Bass roll off:
This allows the player to remove the bass frequency giving the guitar more of a twang than a cry. This is a good option for country players.  

Action, Fit & Finish:
The action was low without buzz, and the intonation was dead on. The finish was a nice satin orange, almost faded. The guitar felt like it was built with care and attention to detail.

Reliability & Durability: 
The guitar is well built. There was no pick-up hum or crackles from the electronics--all knobs and hardware installed snug and proper.

While I was wandering the show floor at the Bee 3 vintage guitar show, I had stopped by the Reverend Guitars booth to find out what they had to offer. After talking with Ken for a few, I was excited to find out that his company was offering their artist signature models to the public at an amazing price. Now there are a ton of guitar manufacturers that put out an artist series guitar, but they are not the same (as the artist uses) unless you are willing to spend thousands upon thousands of dollars. The guitar I played was the Reeves Gabrels II with a street price of $999.00 and according to Ken, this is the exact same guitar with the same hardware, pickups, machine heads, woods, etc., that Reeves Gabrels uses on his Reverend Guitar. 

So with that said, the guitar is beautiful, it has a nice lush satin orange finish. I am a fan of satin finishes for 2 reasons. Fingerprints and I am one of those freaks that thinks I can hear a differences in a guitar's tone based on the thickness of the finish. I also believe that a satin finish ages better (I also believe in the tooth fairy).  It felt like I was playing a smushed Tele, very comfortable and light weight -- the guitar just felt right. I only played her sitting down but I'm sure she would be a delight to play on stage.   
What I would change:
I would replace the nut with Tusq by Graph Tech

My advice:
If you are looking for your first boutique guitar or want a work horse that looks like a wall hanger, I would play a Reverend Guitar before your next purchase.

Reverend Musical Instruments
37709 Schoolcraft Rd.
Livonia, MI 48150

(P) 734 953-6984

Posted 11/2012