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Dean Zelinsky’s hand was on the bandsaw when Dime created the Razorback, and the luthier’s talent for getting hellraising metallers to knuckle down and deliver the goods continues with Mustaine’s beast.
If you’ve got Dave’s face tattooed on your kneecaps, you’ll want the USA Vehement at £3439 - or at least the Korean version for £799. Those who just ‘quite like Megadeth’ will be satisfied with this Chinese equivalent, which slashes the price to £269, but doesn’t suck the blood from the spec.
Mustaine proudly informed us that he designed the Vehement shape himself, but it’s not so far removed from other V-style electrics, albeit with cool ‘notches’ that give the basswood body the look of a barbed arrow. We expected something more from the most outrageous man in metal.
Things get better fast when you pick up the Vehement though. As the only Dean model to feature the thin-as-a-broomstick neck profile specified by Mustaine, this is an absolute belter for technical play and equally satisfying for thrash rhythms at the bottom end.
It’s inevitable that the Seymour Duncan LiveWires of the US model are AWOL, but these own-brand humbuckers were enough to seal the deal, supplying a thick and complex tone that’ll hit you like a right hook from the big man himself. You’d have to be (ahem) megadeaf not to appreciate this.
Pros: Thrash sounds, superb neck.
Cons: Not the most radical design.