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Alembic Club » Owning an Alembic » Fun Stories » Archive through July 31, 2004 » My Rig (faint of heart, keep out) « Previous Next »

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Username: paulembic

Post Number: 1
Registered: 6-2004
Posted on Wednesday, June 09, 2004 - 8:48 pm:   Edit Post

Basses.. .An 8-string Alembic (The Riff King) and a 4-stringer on the way. A custom stereo 4-string fretless, a Ricky 4001 (stereo). The Non-Alembics run inbto the Rick-O-Sound stereo splitter, the Alemibic/s into the Alembic stereo power supply.
The treble pickups route through an effects loop of wah, distortion, delay/reverb, flanger floor pedals and loop machine. (all connected with Planet waves cables then to the treble anp--a vintage Bassman 4x 10.
The bass pickups route through a sub-octave stompbox box then into the bass amp-an Ampeg 400 watt head and 2x 15 ported cabinet.
Switching works like this...
Alembic/s are always wired in, but when my second one comes, I'll need to swap pin cables as I set up from one number to another, or introduce another layer/level of A/B switching. The fretless and Rick also need a cable swap when I switch, but are also ready-wired. Straplocks and straps on everything

My 2 Morley A/B boxes are set so one foot click each box changes the treble and bass paths from Alembics to fretless/Rick.

ALL stereo.

Thunderous sustain and deep boom always clean. Color, brightness, noise, effects and such always on top.

Miles of cables. A custom pedalboard. About 30 minutes set up each show.

Then, I have to set up my Hammond, my synth, my MIDI foot synth pedals, my keys looper, my Taylor W-15, my saz, my Les Paul, my theremin, my darbuka, dumbek, tabla, bandir, finger cymbals, dumbek, .. seriously. I love juggling and dancing from one thing to another, making three sounds at once

Here's a pic of us in our acoustic improv set. Lterally everything on the left (left of that Strat) is mine. The Riff King is hidden by a frame drum, but you can see it at

Jealous? Or relieved it's not you who has to set it all up?

: )

nashid set up
Advanced Member
Username: bob

Post Number: 246
Registered: 11-2002
Posted on Wednesday, June 09, 2004 - 9:32 pm:   Edit Post

I'm certain I'm in the "relieved" camp... though it sounds pretty interesting, and I'm listening to some of your music as I type this (off to a good start).

However, the one thing I'm pretty sure of immediately is that you simply cannot stick with the user name 'paulembic'. I understand, you are Yet Another Paul (meaning will become clear over time), and the Alembic link is obvious (Riff King is a beauty, of course, congrats)...

But we already have a 'palembic', well up over a thousand posts (I forget, he must be a master or something by now), and it would just be too confusing.

Of course, I have no authority here, so just take this as a kind suggestion :-) Meanwhile, I'll move on to 'Relapse".

Oh, welcome. Just earlier today, a couple of people were talking about the saz and oud, so I'm sure there will be some interesting discussion here.

(decided to fast forward over Relapse, but the next one is nice...)
Username: valvil

Post Number: 472
Registered: 7-2002
Posted on Wednesday, June 09, 2004 - 11:45 pm:   Edit Post

If I'm not mistaken, aside from being an old Alembic hand, Paulembic dates back to the old Yahoo club, so I'd guess he's entitled to it. After all what's one more Paul? Can't really get much more confusing than it already is.
Besides...Paul TBO's average message content makes it unlikely that anyone could ever mistake him for someone else or viceversa. :-)

Advanced Member
Username: bob

Post Number: 247
Registered: 11-2002
Posted on Thursday, June 10, 2004 - 12:05 am:   Edit Post

Fair enough, 'moder Val'. Ha! (now I'm starting to sound like one of them...)

I remember when a couple of the group jumped on Clifton not long ago, thinking it was important to 'defend' something or other, and of course he also turned out to pre-date most of us, and had only the best intentions.

Good that we can all take these things in stride. So once again, with no qualifications this time - nice to have you here, paulembic.
Senior Member
Username: palembic

Post Number: 1378
Registered: 9-2002
Posted on Thursday, June 10, 2004 - 3:51 am:   Edit Post

Paulembic and Palembic


What would be this club without Pauls.
Yes ...and I am a recent one!!!
I only talk too much!
THat's mainly the high post reason.

Paul the bad one

PS: anyway I would be glad to change my name to Paulthebadone!
Hurrrah ....sets my countes back to zero ...can I be welcomed again ...reliving the Alembic membership sensation.
Username: son_of_magni

Post Number: 52
Registered: 1-2004
Posted on Thursday, June 10, 2004 - 6:27 am:   Edit Post

What? No sitar?
Intermediate Member
Username: 811952

Post Number: 198
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Thursday, June 10, 2004 - 8:00 am:   Edit Post

My mind says SWEET! but my back says (insert sharp pain sounds here)! Ahhhh, the Riff King.. What a beautiful instrument!

Username: northlight

Post Number: 10
Registered: 5-2004
Posted on Thursday, June 10, 2004 - 10:15 am:   Edit Post

That is a great setup - and your Riff King is an absolute wonderfull piece of art! I just love it! (It has inspired me for a bass that I recently ordered...)
Thank you for sharing it with us "Paul the recent one"

Username: paulembic

Post Number: 2
Registered: 6-2004
Posted on Thursday, June 10, 2004 - 11:29 am:   Edit Post

A SITAR? Funny you shoud ask.
Actually, I do play sitar, too. But NO WAY I'm going to add that fragile thing to the monstrous set up at present.

I also play mandolin, kalimba, air synth and a few other guitars, which may find their way into nashid someday.

Advanced Member
Username: hollis

Post Number: 228
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Thursday, June 10, 2004 - 11:36 am:   Edit Post

Whew! I'm relieved!.... When I first saw the Riff King, and read about it belonging to Paulembic..... And then Paul TBO kept talking about Bonnie, but never metioned the Riff King... I'm easily confused enough as it is...... Now it's all much clearer too me. Thanks!

I've often admired the Riff King, and your set up is indeed amazing.

I just learned how to walk and chew gum at the same time so, needless to say , you're way past me!

Looks like fun though.

Senior Member
Username: palembic

Post Number: 1379
Registered: 9-2002
Posted on Thursday, June 10, 2004 - 12:03 pm:   Edit Post

Ho ....huh ...and ...a ukelele??????

Paul TBO

PS: BTW Paul , I Just visited the site of the band. VERY stylish and intriguing. The music is worth to sit down for and let to flow over you. A lot of energy there indeed and you guys must have quite the guts to start that.

(Message edited by palembic on June 10, 2004)
Intermediate Member
Username: kenbass4

Post Number: 104
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Thursday, June 10, 2004 - 4:31 pm:   Edit Post


Sounds like you cause more grief to your band than I do!! Why, I've just got my Rogue, Rick 4001, SVT Classic w/ 810, 88-key controller, with rack (12space)Korg Wavestation SR,X-3, Prophecy, Roland XV3080, Alesis QSR, DM-5 and 17 pedal foot controller. Thank GOD I'm using a hammond simulated with Synths!!! (although it doesn't sound as good, it weighs WAY less!!!)

Ken (TEO)
Username: paulembic

Post Number: 3
Registered: 6-2004
Posted on Thursday, June 10, 2004 - 9:12 pm:   Edit Post

Grief indeed. Some gigs, the others guys sit there (after their compartively simple set ups) and watch me set up for an interminable amount of time and say "why do you have to bring all that stuff?" with a frustrated scowl. Then, mid-set after triggering a choir, strings, flutes, harmonium, playing The Riff King with one hand while waving the theremin into action.. they just grin and grin and grin... the audience tends to drop their jaws, too.

We have a new song of mine called "Satori" that we haven't recorded yet-it's about ten minutes long and features mind-crushing time skips, 136 bpm riffs, eerie echo-y soundscapes, brief qoutes from Holst (you can guess which riff of his), Bach-like church organ bits and more--all trundled along by one ferociously gorgeous Series II 8-string . I', also using that beast in the most deicate, pretty fashion on an under-two minute tune I wrote called "Bird At The Window" where I roll off the treble pickup quite a bit and pick out an upper octave melody as counterpart to a delicate acoustic guitar and the sound of a rainstorm and a chirping bird. The Riff King really shines played like gossamer threads, too.

BTW, on our site you can hear our crude basement tapes including two songs featuring The Riff King: "Relapse" and "The Journey South To End All" ( a song about madness that actually goes mad itself.)

Also a footnote: My Hammond XK-2 is about 50 pounds, and with road case, it is a crusher. But it's a lot easier to haul around than my L-102 or C-3 and Leslie 122!

My dream gear will someday have MIDI in all instruments, including Alembic someday building me touch guitars a la Warr..... s i g h..... another instrument and playing style to learn.

: )

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