There were 2 rigs, broadly, speaking, for the New Year’s Run at MSG: one for the floating platform and one for the main stage. Some highlights:
- Amps and Eccos. There were 2 extra guitar amps — “Special Guest Amps” or “SGA’s”– on stage in addition to the Komet 60s. See the Amplification section below for more on these. Notably, the SGA’s were used at times as fully “dry” rigs, with a customized Keeley Eccos reverb/delay in the Ambikab loops being the only effects on these amps. And because the Custom Eccos is in an Ambikab loop (post amplification), there is not a single effect — no interruption — between the guitar pickup and the first preamp tube (V1) of the SGA amplifier. That scenario is the tone-chaser’s dream, as that interaction between the guitar pickup and V1 is where the real magic happens. In that scenario, all effects from the CAE controllers were running into the Komets, which were effectively “wet” amps.
- TRS outputs: In order to achieve the direct line between his pickups and V1 while still maintaining access to his effects, Trey had TRS stereo outputs installed on his guitars, where one of the two stereo channels runs direct to the SGA and the second runs into the Bradshaw effects switching system and then a Komet 60. Though he doesn’t use both amps at the same time, Trey can set loops/delays/reverbs with the effects on the Komets and then switch outputs and play over them on the SGA. So you may hear what sounds like two guitars at once. Reports indicate Trey and the team are quite pleased with the results.
- Koa 2 is back. There are likely many reasons for this, but I know that Trey and his team took some measurements on all the guitars and determined that the bridge pickup on Koa 1 is about 3/8″ closer to the bridge than on Koa 2. The result is that the bridge position on Koa 1 is a touch harsher than on the other guitars. The SGA guitar amp heads — and the way the various guitars interact with them — may be a factor here as well. The series/parallel selector switch is gone from Koa 2 (and the other guitars as well, as I understand it) and a push-pull controlled TRS stereo output is installed to facilitate the wet/dry amplifier configuration.
2 x Komet K60. 2 x Special Guest Amps (Note: Trey was using 2 loaner guitar amp heads (the “Special Guest Amps” or “SGA’s”) in addition to his customary pair of Komet 60 heads. The SGA’s are on loan from a high end amp shop in New York and it’s unclear at the moment whether they’ll be incorporated as part of the permanent rig. I’ve done some reporting on these amps, but Trey is not ready to talk about them publicly yet, and I’m going to respect that boundary here as well.
On both the floating platform and the main stage, the amplifiers had a kind of wet/dry configuration, where the Komet 60’s were used to run all effects and the SGA’s were used without any effects at all, except for the post-amplification Eccos reverb/delay in the Ambikab loops.
5 Komet Ambikabs. The Ambikabs are wet-dry rigs-in-a-box with their own effects loops with separate 10″ speakers. The 12″ speakers are Celestion Heritage 65’s. Trey is using customized Keeley Eccos pedals for reverb and delay functions in all Ambikabs. There were 2 Ambi’s on the floating platform and three on the main stage, one facing forward and 2 facing rearward.
Electric: Koa 2. Ocelot is backstage. Backup is Blonde No. 2.
• 2 x Tube Screamer (vintage TS-808)
• Ross Compressor (it’s not getting used much because of the natural compression characteristics of the Komets and SGA, but it’s still there).
• Digitech Whammy II
• 2 x Electro Harmonix (“EHX”) POG2
• Boss OC-2 Octave Pedal
• EHX Key 9 x 2 (different sensitivity settings — see note on Envelope Filters below)
• CAE Wah
• 2 x Beigel Tru-Tron 3x Envelope Filter
Note — Trey was experimenting with Envelope Filters during this run. He also used a Keeley Neutrino and Q-Tron +. Previously, the second filter has been set to sweep DOWN while the first sweeps UP (“wah” vs “haw” sound). But Trey has also experimented with a setup where both filters sweep up but have different sensitivity settings, so that one works better with less input (eg, when Trey is in single coil or has the volume rolled off the humbuckers to clean up the amps). You’ll recall that when Trey used a P-90 equipped guitar at Riviera Maya 2019, the lower output pickups had issues triggering the filter. This is also the reason for the second EHX Key 9.
Time-Based (reverb and delay)
• Eventide Space Reverb (Centaurus algo)
• Customized Keeley Eccos delay and reverb in Ambikabs
• 2 x Way Huge Supa Puss atop rack (all have the R79 removed from the printed circuit board, allowing for a smoother curve or more linear slope on the mix control. One is set to quarter note, the other to dotted eighth)
• Ibanez DM-2000 digital delay
• Digitech Obscura Reverse Delay
• Victoria Reverberato
• Shin -Ei UniVibe
• Boss RT-20 Rotary Ensemble x 2 (fast and slow; settings 1 and 4. The second Rotary replaced the CHOP).
• McMillen SoftStep midi foot controller (NYE only).