ES-335 Reissue review by Gibson

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 9
  • Features: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 9.2 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.5 (83 votes)
Gibson: ES-335 Reissue

Price paid: £ 1300

Purchased from: eBay

Sound — 10
This guitar is perfect for the style of music that I play. My music tastes range completely from the cleans of bands such as the National, the twang of The Libertines and Arctic Monkeys, all the way to the rock and distorted tunes of the Foo Fighters. By just changing the channel on my amp, an Orange TH30, I am able to achieve the tones I want. It sounds great for everything I play, with light distortion or cleans being a particular delight. I was initially drawn to this guitar before I purchased one due to its looks but its tone and choice amongst bands I love made me go for it. It completely blows my Les Paul Jr. and Fender Strat (fitted with a Seymour Duncan JB at the bridge) out of the water. So much so, they've both subsequently become redundant.

Overall Impression — 9
For me and the music I play, this guitar is fantastic. I've been playing for over 6 years now and whilst I can not claim to have played every Vintage or style of guitar, this is certainly the best sounding I've ever managed to play. Considering the massive price of this guitar and the cost of my rig, I would expect nothing less than tone heaven from this guitar; unsurprisingly, it duly obliges. I love everything about this guitar and hate nothing, it is simply a beautiful and elegant instrument, one that I would replace ASAP if lost or stolen (once I'd worked up enough money to purchase one). I hope to keep this guitar until I am too old to play it and shall hopefully pass it on to a family member. This is a fantastic guitar, one I recommend all guitarists to try out.

Reliability & Durability — 9
The guitar seems a little bit fragile. I am not sure whether that's due to the fact it's a semi hollow or the fact it cost me a whopping great amount of money. Either way, I am extremely careful with it! More so than my other guitars. I throw my Les Paul about and prefer it looking more scuffed and battered but I would cry my eyes out if this got even the smallest scratch. The lack of a strap lock has caused a few scares but that has now been amended. I have played it for hours on end with no problems, once the string slid off the saddle, but apart from that no problems. I would always gig with a back up just in case I break a string but if I was not able to, I would not be concerned. Considering the age of the guitar, it has held up extremely well.

Action, Fit & Finish — 9
It's very difficult to judge these considering the age of the guitar and the fact it's second hand. The action is a little bit too low but everything else sounds fantastic! The finish on the whole is very good, shows some sign of age but that adds to the beauty.

Features — 9
This is a 1990 Gibson ES-335 (OLDER THAN ME!!!) purchased from eBay. It has 22 frets, a cherry red lacquer finish with a black racing stripe running down the middle of the body. It is absolutely stunning and completely unique. It's made from a maple body and a mahogany neck with a rosewood fretboard fitted to it and of course, the dot inlays. It has the two '57 pick ups, a three way pick up selector and the two volume - two tone knobs. One of these is a little loose and worn due to the age of the instrument. On the whole, it's full of features that I want to use. Some people may bemoan the lack of a tremolo but I am not one of these. It didn't come with a Gibson hard case which was a bit of a disappointment for me, instead it came with a Mono Gigbag, which despite being very strong and impressive is not the same as a big loveable hard case.

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