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Epiphone Sheraton II Review

ETS2NAGH

Anyone looking for greater diversity and tonal versatility in their rig needs to pick up the Sheraton.

When I first laid eyes on this natural beauty I was absolutely floored by its stunning looks. I had to take a few moments to just sit and absorb its curves, its accents, and search out its very essence. Before I even took it into my hands, I swear it was singing to me.

I couldn’t tell you how long I sat there before reality struck and I realized that this remarkable piece that lay before me exists not just to be admired but to be played; but believe me when I say that I leaped at it when I did. Once I had it in my arms, I was surprised yet confidently aware of how absolutely comfortable this guitar was. Whether sitting with it on my lap or standing with a strap it was a perfect fit. Having spent many years with other body shapes and styles of smaller profiles, I expected this to be much bulkier. However, with its thin profile and arched top and back it wasn’t that much different from handling a Les Paul or Telecaster. Plus, with it being a semi-hollow body, it is very light and perfect for playing through long sets.

Well, now that I had it in my hands I just had to put it through its paces. I took this baby to rehearsals for my pop punk band, my indie/shoegaze band, my church’s worship service, and to my friend’s home studio. What I found was that although it wasn’t tonally limitless, it certainly wasn’t limited. I did have to adjust to the placement of the pickup selector switch (which operated quite smoothy) but otherwise it was very simple to dial in tones that suited my needs.

Both pickups were great clean and offered excellent articulation of chords and clarity while remaining full and vibrant. With the tone knobs all the way up, it gave a great chimey, bell-like character that brought to mind the sounds of early rock-and-roll icons like the Yardbirds or the Beatles.

When I threw on a little bit of overdrive, it maintained that hollow-body charm while allowing that tone-block to really spread its wings and let every note soar on forever. This guitar really does bring in the best of both worlds from solid body and hollow-body guitars into one package. Notes sustain forever on this majestic beast while sounding open and woody.

Taking my all-tube amp to total saturation, I noticed that the pickups did lose some articulation but did not lose their character. They still sounded full and warm but I also noticed that in high gain situations it was more prone to feedback. Now, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing because I found that with a little bit of dancing it was controllable. By dialing back the guitar’s volume knob and facing the guitar to/from the amp, I could entertain myself for hours with this musical feedback (and quickly annoy everyone else).

Hollow-bodies aren’t just for jazz players anymore. Anyone looking for greater diversity and tonal versatility in their rig needs to pick up the Sheraton. From blues to prog-rock, this guitar can handle most anything you throw at it and with style and grace. This guitar will definitely appeal to those that are looking for a classic hollow-body sound with greater sustain and output. They will find that the Sheraton II is the missing link in their quest to cover a more complete tonal spectrum.

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