Brian May Signature review by Burns USA

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  • Sound: 9
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 6
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 8.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.2 (57 votes)
Burns USA: Brian May Signature

Price paid: $ 686.25

Purchased from: eBay

Sound — 9
I play mostly heavy rock, stuff like Queen and the Darkness, it suits me perfectly, but, be warned, when buying this guitar try it through amps like yours or think about buying a new amp because this thing hates most marshalls. Also note that buying this guitar wont make you sound like brian amy, it gives you some of his sound but many thigns are needed to make you sound even 1/10th like him. I play throguh a Fender Frontman 15R with no added effects except echo for those Brighton Rock moments. I've been playing for a year and a half now and even though I'm not the best of guitar players. It brings out the ebst of my abbilities.

Overall Impression — 9
I play rock and it suits it perfectly, the tri-sonics have that Strat sparkle but also have that Fat Les Paul sound with none of the bad points. I also have a Stagg Les Paul Copy which compared to this is crap, This certainly will be my number 1 for a while. If this guitar was stolen I would get the guy Who stole it, kick his ass then make him lick dirt 'cause I love this guitar and would recomend it to anyone looking for a versatile, nice looking guitar. I love the fact that it's brian may, I love the colour and the way how you can coax almost any sound out of it with the right amp. I hate the Strat type trem. I wish it had the actual bridge/vibrato design which Mr. May himself designed but it had to be sacrificed to save it from costing 1000+.

Reliability & Durability — 10
I haven't yet had chance to play it live full blast to an audience but I'm pretty sure I could play this onstage without a backup. I've played this guitar like I've never played another and there is almost no wear on anything, the hardware still gleams and the finish still shines.

Action, Fit & Finish — 6
The action was moderate (not to high or low) with no string buzz. The pickups were set up at high height but I adjusted them low into the body. The neck pickup was in the wrong way round which doesnt't really alter the sound but it bugged me huntil I changed it. Baring in mind this guitar is second hand, it was in excellent condition except for a few marks on the abck of the body.

Features — 10
I baught this from eBay because they are difficult to aquire anywhere else. Made in Korea or somewhere like that. It's got 24 large frets, a thin neck (thinner than the original), volume and tone pots with 3 on/off and 3 phase switches. The body is unique seeing as brian made it himself but I think it looks like a cross between a Strat and a Rickenbacker. Strat style burns of london trem unit with weird looking trem arm that rests comfortably in the palm. S/S/S configuration burns tri-sonic pickups.

12 comments sorted by best / new / date

    i would like to try out this guitar. would anyone happen to know where you can find it?
    this can't be as good as May's oridginal, since he built it himself and used wood from a mantel piece or something like that, still a very nice guitar
    I have owned a signature Brian May for just over a year and I bought one as a big Queen fan who enjoyed playing their stuff on a Strat. If you get one, take your time to get used to it and then you will like it but I have heard of several people how have bought this guitar, expected it to feel like a Fender and then chopped it because it did'nt. A note of causion is that this guitar is not for the beginner. The original Red Special is a notoriously difficult to play and this version also has some of these traits. This said, it creates a lovely tone and you can sound very 'Queen' authentic but you need to treble boost (like May does) and also run it through a Vox amp or good Vox emulator. I like my guitar but it only comes out for Queen/May work. I still use my Strat and Les Paul for everything else and I'm about to get a Jackson DK2S for other things so the May guitar has a place, but a very specific one in my collection.
    I've bought the RS one thing that I noticed when I played it for the first time was that the strings are further apart thatn a normal guitar...but I got used to it...
    revo crazy
    I have this guitar and it is amazing now i have to save three grand for an ac30 lol
    It's the same one as on, just made by a different company. It's now made in Asia, but has very good quality control.
    I learn about the guitar by way of other people who play them. I never saw one to play, I think I like them?
    Emster 23
    I was no fan of Queen, but like the guitar, esp that it is chambered. Anyone try it through a Fender Mustang amp? I like natural or green, but don't seem to carry in US. How about tarnish? Black and gold looks tasty, but plating comes off in no time where I live (Thailand, visit USA once a year). Anyone compare it to a G&L comanche??