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Fender Modern Player Telecaster Plus review

A workhorse that pines for something different

  • £442
  • $559.99
A humbucker, plus a Strat and Tele singlecoil mean this pine slab can handle most styles

Our Verdict

It's not the prettiest example, but if your tastes run to country and metal, this is one Tele that comes up with the goods.

Pros

  • Great playability. It's a tonal smorgasbord.

Cons

  • It's a bit of a Frankenstein's monster.

Aside from its Swiss Army knife line-up of pickups, the new Tele Plus features an unusual pine body. Most Teles are hewn from alder or ash, but Leo Fender built some early Esquire models using pine.

As a result, there are many pine-Tele obsessed toneheads around the world. Those old-schoolers would be less comfortable with the new Tele's humbucker (bridge), Strat single-coil (middle) and Tele single-coil (neck) set-up.

"This is a Tele for modern players looking to pull as many tones as possible from that classic chassis"

Still, this is a Tele for modern players looking to pull as many tones as possible from that classic chassis. Plus, like the other models here in this round-up, the Tele Plus has a modern feel, with its jumbo frets, slim-profile bolt-on maple neck and flatter-than- vintage fingerboard radius.

Sounds

Running this Tele's 'bucker on full will satisfy any gain junkie, with enough power to pull off old-school rock and modern metal tones.

Coil split the 'bucker and combine it with the middle single-coil for Stevie Ray Vaughan, Hendrix and Curtis Mayfield vibes, clean and with overdrive. In classic Tele style, the neck pickup is the right address for overdriven blues and jazzy chords.

However, the lack of a traditional Tele bridge set-up makes it tough to judge what contribution this Tele's pine body makes to its tone when compared to a more traditional alder or ash-body model.