Part of the Premium line of guitars, the RG721FM sits squarely in the middle of Ibanez' product range, below the Prestige and J-Custom lines concerning price, and above the affordable Standard range and the no-nonsense Iron Label series.
High end looks and feel
Superb (if divisive) neck
Wide range of tones
Excellent build quality and finish.
Lack of colour options
The neck profile will turn some players off
Ibanez RG721 Premium
Ibanez has been producing the RG range now for 30 years, however,Â with every new modification, this model continues to remain fresh.Â Nick Jennison reviews the RG721FM.
The Ibanez name (and particularly the RG series of guitars) conjures up strong images in the minds of guitar players of a certain age. If like me, your musical upbringing happened between the late 80s and early 90s, I'm pretty sure that you're imagining a hairy young individual tearing up and down an impossibly thin neck with wild abandon. The guitar is menacingly pointy, the licks are bombastic, the whammy bar abuse is plentiful, and perhaps some ill-advised trousers are involved. Considering I've just described myself at 18, I don't need to imagine too hard. The trousers were snakeskin, by the way
In 2017 however, the RG is a somewhat different animal. You might say it's grown up. Embraced by touring metal players and fusion luminaries alike and sporting the kind of elegant appointments one would normally associate with high-end American-made instruments, today's RGs have an aura of class that's distinctly modern. Clean, sharp lines and premium materials with a focus on functionality and playability over retro stylings. If a '62 Strat is aÂ Jaguar E-type, the modern RG is a Tesla.
Part of the Premium line of guitars, the RG721FM sits squarely in the middle of Ibanez' product range, below the Prestige and J-Custom lines concerning price, and above the affordable Standard range and the no-nonsense Iron Label series. Made in Indonesia, the build quality and fit-and-finish are superb; reminiscent of the J-Customs made in the early 2000s in both style and quality but at a much lower price point. Boasting an American basswood body and flame maple top (not a veneer as seen on many guitars at this price point) and finished in a matte satin black, this guitar is as pleasing to hold as it is to look at.
As with so many Ibanez guitar, the neck is the star of the show. Slick and eminently playable, with a super sturdy 5-piece maple and walnut construction and a thin satin finish. While the neck profile is a hair thicker than the Wizard necks of yesteryear, it's still remarkably thin and fast, with a profile that's just round enough to be comfortable with a 'thumb over the top'
If one thing is for certain, it's that Wolf Hoffmann is a man who knows how to achieve the goals he sets for himself.
German metal pioneers, Accept are back with a brand new album, 'The Rise of Chaos'. To mark the occasion, lead guitarist and co-founder, Wolf Hoffmann took some time out during his recent visit to London to chat exclusively to Jonathan Graham about the new studio release, their Wacken Open Air 2017 performance and more in this issue's cover feature.
If one thing is for certain, it's that Wolf Hoffmann is a man who knows how to achieve the goals he sets for himself. As a teenager, he quickly developed his skills on the guitar and dreamt of establishing a band that would help take him around the world. By his mid-twenties, those dreams would granted (and exceeded) as Accept would become household names in their native Germany and circle the globe multiple times over. Later, during Wolf's break from music he would even become a successful and well-respected photographer. So when he decided in 2009 to reform Accept and planned to make the band even bigger and better than ever before was there ever going to be any doubt?
Accept's beginnings can be traced back to the late 1960s but was officially formed in the mid-1970s by Wolf Hoffmann, former vocalist Udo Dirkschneider and bassist Peter Baltes. Although moderately successful in Germany from the outset, it was during the early to mid-1980s when the band shot to fame thanks to the release of their fifth studio album 'Balls to the Wall' (1983) which earned them critical and commercial success worldwide.
The band split in 1997, and apart from a very short-lived reunion in 2005, Accept lay dormant until reuniting again in 2009 with new frontman, Mark Tornillo. Since then, the band have released their three highest charting albums to date; 'Blood of the Nations' (2010), 'Stalingrad' (2012) and 'Blind Rage' (2014). The latter would mark a first for the band, as they reached the number one spot on the album charts in Germany.
Their latest album, 'The Rise of Chaos', will be released on August 4, 2017, via Nuclear Blast, making it Accept's fourth collaboration with the independent record label as well as respected producer Andy Sneap.
The cover artwork was created by the Hungarian artist Gyula HavancsÃ¡k and portrays the band's previous stage set-up destroyed. "Like After a catastrophe", explains Hoffmann.
Right from the opening track, 'Die By the Sword'