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Intermediate Member
Username: alembickoa

Post Number: 108
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Friday, August 17, 2012 - 11:16 pm:   Edit Post

Anyone who knows me will attest to the fact that I think Alembic is the finest bass made. Period. It has been debated, argued, and pondered with others countless times over the years. My feeling and answer always has been the same. Alembic is the best. Just how best was dropped into my lap tonight and was without doubt. The surprising thing was the instrument. The only Alembic bass I ever owned was a magnificent all-koa constructed Series I built in 1981. I have played many other Alembics, but never in a gig situation. They all have sounded great, but, of course, weren't used under fire. All of the Alembics, I thought, were great...but...they weren't a Series. Yes, there was a tremendous bigotry in my thinking. If you have an Alembic, well, cool...but is it a Series? That bigotry was pulled out from under me tonight and left me stunned.

It says in the product description of the Orion here at the website..."Set neck construction gives the Orion warm, well-defined midrange response." This is so very true. This bass has a startlingly clear and complete tone. My normal procedure with an active instrument and amp is to run them flat, pickups set equally, then try and use the instrument EQ to achieve what is needed tonally. I ended up running dead flat all night, save for one ballad where I boosted the neck pup for a big old round tonality. This bass was so amazing I had people saying that the bass sounded better than it looked. Folks in the band were stunned. The girl who runs the power point at this gig, who, for all I know, wouldn't know good bass tone from a rooster crowing at sunup told me that..."that bass sure sounded amazing". Geez...I've been playing this gig for almost six years and never heard that. And here's the surprise...

It's an Orion, for mercy sakes!!! Yes, it IS an Alembic, but come Orion is not a Series!!! It is only the third rung of the Alembic family. The guitar player says to me..."How much are those new?" Seven grand, I tell him. "Oh, one of the cheap ones. Funny it don't sound like a cheap one", he says.

Well...I am pretty amazed. Seven years ago I lost my mind, became homeless, and ended up selling the koa. It was truly devastating, losing that friend that had been with me and done so much for me, for the bands I was with, and for the people that had the pleasure of hearing that truly astonishing bass. I swore I would have another Alembic, but never thought it would be anything other than a 4-string Series. Well, it's a 6-string Orion and I could care less that it isn't what I "thought" I would have. Circumstances gave me this instrument, and I couldn't be happier. This whole set neck on an Alembic idea is really growing on me. If I sound maudlin with this post, well, so be it...I am basking in the afterglow.

Like I've said at least a gazillion times...thank you, Alembic!!!
Senior Member
Username: serialnumber12

Post Number: 993
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Saturday, August 18, 2012 - 11:37 am:   Edit Post

Now why do you think i've kept mine for 32 yrs!.......and counting!!!
Username: davehouck

Post Number: 10864
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Saturday, August 18, 2012 - 4:34 pm:   Edit Post

That's a cool story.

A decade or so back, I was playing my Essence through an Eden rig at the Double Door in Charlotte. One of the best and most well known bass players in town (a pro that did tours with big name Nashville acts as well as constant gigging with hot local dance bands) was there and came right up beside my side of the stage and listened for a while. At the break he told me that he came up to see if it sounded as great on stage as it did out front. My all Maple Essence. It made an impression on me that this particular guy paid that complement.
Username: that_sustain

Post Number: 23
Registered: 8-2012
Posted on Saturday, August 18, 2012 - 5:11 pm:   Edit Post

I've never played any one Alembic that wasn't absolutely fantastic in every way. They're the Strad of the Bass(but with better electronics).

My bass is a symbol of personal gain, as well.
Username: that_sustain

Post Number: 24
Registered: 8-2012
Posted on Saturday, August 18, 2012 - 5:17 pm:   Edit Post

Congrats, alembickoa!

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