Hi guys! I'm looking to buy a new guitar. I've played for nearly a year now, and i think i'm up to intermediate level or atleast decent. Anyways, i have a band that i play lead guitar and do vocals in. I also play at my local church. Currently my setup is this: Yamaha Pacifica( i forget which model exactly) its SSH pickup setup. I play on a 30w Roland Tube Amp. Now that i'm play more live i want to upgrade my old guitar to something more suitable for live gigs. Currently i'm looking at buying an Epiphone Les Paul Standard or Custom( under $500 versions) or maybe the Yamaha AES 620/420. I wanna get some advice on which would be a better buy. Also, i have read some disturbing things about epiphone pickups and how they are pretty bad. I would prefer to get a guitar with a nice crunchy sound, cause my band plays a lot of modern rock sounding music with palm muting and heavy distortion. Its not really important if the guitar sounds great clean, because my Pacifica will be for that anyways. So long story short, could anyone give me some tips on picking out a LP or a Yamaha, or a guitar that u think would fit my needs. O yea my price range is up to about $500. Thanks