This news has been coming. Anyone who caught The Cure live this summer might have seen these in action, but Schecter has made the news official that it has teamed up with Simon Gallup on a pair of new signature bass guitars, the Corsair semi-hollow, and the solid-bodied Ultra Spitfire.
Both of them have been spotted onstage in recent months, the Ultra Spitfire refinished in red, with a black lion graphic. Could this be an omen (from the guitar company who brought us the Omen) that the long-awaited new Cure album is closer to a release? Let’s not get ahead of ourselves.
But what is for sure is that the shade of deep red used on the finish for these new Gallup artist models are sure to be just like heaven for the hopelessly romantic Cure fan – and the specs should make them weak at the knees, too. For the serious amateur, the serious Cure fan, these look like a lot of bass for the money.
With the Simon Gallup Ultra Spitfire a familiar platform, a sort of Non Reverse Thunderbird-inspired four-string with a neck-through build, let’s take a look at the Corsair first.
Calling to mind the Gibson EB-2 that has long been in Gallup’s collection, this double-cutaway archtop has a maple body, finished with multi-ply cream binding, a three-piece maple neck and ebony fingerboard with 20 narrow jumbo frets and pearloid block inlays.
Gallup's Corsair has a 34” scale, a 16” fingerboard radius, a tune-o-matic style bridge and stopbar tailpiece. The neck is a very approachable “Thin C” profile, and measures 38mm across at the nut.
Besides that graphic finish and the name on the headstock, the pickups are one of the big talking points here, with Gallup reverting to a pair of active EMG TBHZ pickups at the bridge and middle positions.
With their preamp powered by a 9V battery, its compartment located on the rear of the instrument, these EMGs are controlled by a master volume, blend control, and a two-band active EQ.
The Simon Gallup Corsair is priced $1,499.
The Simon Gallup Spitfire Ultra is by now familiar but here it is updated in red and offered in two versions – one, slightly cheaper at $999, with a lion and rose graphic, the other at $1,249, with the same lion graphic as the Corsair.
Both have solid mahogany bodies, with a mahogany/walnut through-necks fashioned into Gallup’s preferred Thin C profile and offering full access to the upper frets courtesy of a neck heel that is pleasingly contoured to oblivion. This looks fun to play.
The back of the bass reads, “Age and treachery will overcome youth and skill”, which could be an oblique reference to the dark arts of bass guitar. We have the same pickup combination as the Corsair – albeit with two volume and one tone controls – and the same tune-o-matic style bridge and tailpiece.
For more details, head over to Schecter.