Cynosure RAM guitar
As well as providing the stomping ground for metal titans - including Trivium, Within Temptation and Rob Zombie - this year's Bloodstock Festival plays host to a new creation from up-and-coming luthier Cynosure: the RAM guitar.
Last year's cross-styled Infernus guitar was one thing, but the RAM guitar - inspired by human skull and ram horn - takes Cynosure's talents to a whole new level.
Click through our gallery to hear from the man himself on the inspiration behind the RAM and his other creations.
“Initially, the artwork of Paul Raymond Gregory (Bloodstock founder and director) was the key inspiration. The Rock and Metal (RAM) guitar was designed meticulously in relation to Paul’s iconic imagery to represent his on-site Bloodstock Festival art housing, the Rock and Metal (RAM) Gallery. His gallery emblem, a human skull/ram horn hybrid, become the heart of this design.
After much deliberation with Paul, I set out to graphically design four or so possible entries that would idealistically represent the gallery and still be analogous to his original composition. With this in mind, we decided on the architecture of the human skull/ram horn creation as the body of the guitar itself.”
“Construction was half of the signification of the guitar; it was fundamental to its design that it be a one-of-a-kind individual with its own set of idiosyncrasies, yet still be a fully functional instrument.
“Always considering the optimum playability of this ‘sculpture’, I had modified Paul’s original design so that the horns would be brought closer to the body, aiding in increased comfort, accessibility, strength and sustain… all equally important facets to consider when building a guitar!”
“Chiefly, the material of choice is cherry wood for the body. Being a dense, hard and super-resonant wood, it was ideal to allow for the stress of carving and chiseling, yet still exhibit a highly visual distinctive wood grain.
“The neck is constructed from maple wood - again, another hard and durable wood with superior strength and resonant qualities that features a veneer of cherry upon its headstock, for decorative purposes.
“Emblazoned with aluminium fretboard binding, this guitar articulates the parallels of dark and light themes throughout, in contrast to a deeply-coloured stained neck and body. Also, the 24.75”-scale rosewood fretboard integrates a 12th-fret RAM inlay made from real bone along with the Cynosure brand name and CG labyrinth logo cut and carved from the same material.
"The backplates are made from thick steel finished with my ‘trademark’ textured effect and sealed to prevent rusting, all of which are engraved.”
“When designing an instrument, I will be greatly inspired by a lexicon of ideas, factors and thematics. Unlike most guitar-builders, I consider the process to be an alchemical one, an experimental voyage working with a multitude of materials to fulfil my creative vision.
“For me, it’s important to pay equal attention to the sound execution of the guitar as well as its stylistics and aesthetics. In fact, the very reason I started creating guitars was due to my dissatisfaction with ‘generic’ shapes and designs, so, I made it my very mission, my mantra if you will, to reimagine, redesign and redefine the guitar.”
“I often take ideas and concepts from film, music, nature, literature, mythology and surrealism. There is always something to be inspired by, and I try to introduce these concepts to my guitars, to give them credibility and validity as an individual. I think it’s fundamentally important to reimagine, redesign and redefine instruments, to make improvements for the sake of aesthetics, ergonomics and, primarily, sound execution.
“My philosophy is to design a guitar with a client in mind. As with Paul Raymond Gregory, I intercept highly visual key elements of fantasy, mythology and surrealism, as these are platforms in which he works with himself as an artist.”