The Telecaster is 60 years old. When you’re that age ‘the yoof’ will just think you’re an old fool while the Tele is still cutting it with the kids thanks to cutting-edge signature models from the likes of Jim Root of Slipknot and John 5. Speaking of which…
The J5 Triple Tele Deluxe is based on a ‘70s Telecaster Deluxe, a Tele/Strat hybrid that some cruel folk nicknamed the ‘Uglycaster’. But Johnny 5’s axe looks pretty tasty thanks to a load of pimped-out chrome and sexy black paint.
This guitar is almost brilliant. We love the comfortable ‘60s-style C-shape neck profile, the three powerful Enforcer humbuckers, the 22 fat frets and the rock-solid tuning stability provided by the locking machineheads. And a padded gigbag is included in the price.
All gravy but there are a couple of potential deal breakers. For a start, the J5 is a real heavyweight. Everyone in the office that picked the guitar up exclaimed, ‘Jeez, that’s bloody heavy!’ We wouldn’t fancy strapping this guitar on for a whole gig. We also kept whacking our pick off that middle humbucker, a common problem with triple ’bucker guitars. It’s not a serious downer, just annoying.
If these niggles haven’t put you off the J5 Tele make sure you shop around: we’ve seen this guitar online for as little as £569. Great guitar but not quite a five out of five, er, Mr 5…
Pros: Killer looks, superb neck.
Cons: Heavy! Obtrusive ’bucker.
BUY: Fender J5 Triple Tele currently available from Thomann and PMT Online