In this episode, I have a look at Slash’s guitar tone, with particular emphasis on early Guns N Roses stuff and Slash’s first solo album.
Guns N Roses’ debut album “Appetite for Destruction” is definitely one of the most iconic rock guitar tones. It is one of the classic ‘Les Paul through a Marshall’ guitar tones, and has set a standard for rock guitarists the world over.
In order for me to get close to this tone, of course I reached for my Gibson Les Paul Studio. Ironically though, Slash used a Les Paul replica to record this album, built by California luthier Kris Derrig.
Slash’s guitar tone is a bit nasty sounding to my ears, with lots of mid range howl to it. To get me close to Slash’s snarling guitar sound, I went through two separate methods, although I used the same type of amp model for both, a Marshall Jubilee.
For this first version, I downloaded a profile from the Rig Exchange called PaulTS Jubilee Marsh, which is a profile of a Marshall Jubilee 2553 amplifier. From here, I added a tubescreamer model in the Kemper, with the following settings:
This added even more snarling midrange howl, but also a fair amount of noise. To combat this, I added in a 4:1 noise gate stompbox, with the threshold set to 2.9.
Since no Slash guitar tone would be complete without a wah pedal, I added in the Crybaby wah model in the Kemper, with the standard settings.
To round out the tone, I just added in a touch of reverb from the Large Room module, with the following settings:
Del+Rev Balance: +58%
For the second attempt, I started with a third party profile of a Marshall Jubilee, the Top Jimi profile named TJ-Jubilee Ld Med-3.
From this stock profile, I added a tubescreamer stomp to give it more midrange and gain. I used the following settings:
Once the tubescreamer was added, I was already pretty happy with the tone, so all I did was add some reverb back into the profile using the stock Top Jimi reverb settings:
Del+Rev Balance: +58%
And of course, to top it off I added a Crybaby wah stomp in the Kemper, keeping the standard settings.
So there you have it, two approaches to Slash’s guitar tone using the Kemper, both sound a bit different but still in the ballpark of Slash’s classic guitar tone. So strap on the Les Paul, crank up some Guns N Roses and enjoy!
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