Me and my guitar: Neck Deep's Matt West

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(Image: © Elliot Ingham)

Matt West, guitarist with Welsh pop-punks Neck Deep, breaks down his new Reverend signature model.

One P-90

“When I sent over the specs for my guitar I said the only thing I wasn’t using on the Jetstream 360 model I had was the neck and middle pickup. I asked them to take them out because I kept dragging my pick on them. Years ago I saw Green Day using P-90s and I ended up picking up a guitar with one. I liked the tonality, how it reflects what you’re picking. 

With the P-90, if I’m picking lightly or playing a clean part you can really hear it

“I found with a lot of humbuckers that they were good but there wasn’t really much dynamic range with them. With the P-90, if I’m picking lightly or playing a clean part you can really hear it; if I’m going full throttle and smacking the living daylights out of the strings you can feel the grit and bite.”

Bass contour

“With the bridge pickup I find that it might be a bit bassy on some parts and needs to be a bit twangier. With the bass contour control you can roll it off to any point that you like and it gives you a lot more control. It feels like you have the added ability of two pickups. I use it within songs. If I need more of a crunchy sound it can take a lot of the big bite out of it by rolling off the bass. I use it on clean parts as well, so it’s not too booming and loud out front and it sounds more sparkly.”

Headstock

“I asked for the headstock to be upside down, so the strings had further travel. I find with a reverse headstock that it stays in tune better. Originally, we thought a reverse headstock would just be cool but when they sent the prototype over I was finding it was perfect tuning wise between songs. I’d never really had that before. It stayed dead centre every time.”

Meaty lightweight

“It’s super-light. It’s made of korina and is solid with no chambers. The guitar I can compare it to weight-wise is an SG. It’s between that and a Strat. For me, because we’re such an active band on stage, I really need a guitar that sounds meaty but at the same time allows me to move around a lot without it crippling my back. Because I’m not getting any younger and the more I’m moving around, the more it’s hurting after the sets! I need to start looking after my back a little more.”

Maple boards

“I’ve always liked maple ’boards. The first nice guitar I ever bought myself was a Fender Thinline ’72 reissue and that had a maple neck. The neck on these guitars is a satin amber finish, kind of unfinished at the back so it’s really smooth and fast to play. That’s the one thing that hit me when I picked the guitars up for the first time. There’s no stickiness. It’s really fast but you feel like you have a lot of control.”

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