Metal Picks by Nici Laskin
As soon as I received my picks in the mail, I started unwrapping them
instantly and was instantly in love with them: they were crafted to
absolute flawlessness. No hard edges, no dents, all in all greatly done.
The picks are slightly larger than a regular celluloid pick, but that
just means there's more to grab on to, it doesn't get uncomfortable at
all. During my testing I used an Ibanez JS1000 with 2 Dimarzio PAF Pro's
run through a Laney TT50H. I also used a Yamaha Pacifica 112J with
stock pickups for the drop D and drop C testing.
I received a bronze, aluminum and copper pick, which all had their own
specific qualities. In comparison to a normal celluloid pick, they all
made the sustain on the guitar longer, with copper being the best in
that category. aluminum came closest to sounding like a regular pick,
but having the same advantages of a metal pick (which I will talk about
later). The sound doesn't really change all that much comparing to
celluloid, except for a little more brightness. The pick is also really
light, much like the weight of a normal pick.
The bronze pick offered a bit more sustain that the aluminum one and
also added a little bit of brightness to the sound. It can sound very
warm too when you play it close or over the fretboard, but the
difference is very obvious played right next to the bridge. I imagine
this difference will be even greater when playing with a very heavy
single cut guitar, like a Les Paul.
My favorite one is absolutely the copper pick. This one looks just
amazing, radically different than a regular pick and it feels super
awesome. It's got a lot more weight to it, making playing guitar a lot
more challenging sometimes, but it's very good for playing heavy riffs
in drop D for example. The sound of the pick is very bright and the most
defined compared to the other two. It also gives the longest sustain of
all three picks, which is one of the main reasons why I like it the
Now let's talk about some cool techniques you can do with these metal
picks! To start of we'll take your regular pick scrape: you brush the
pick over the strings up or down to make a scratching sound, which
sounds pretty cool, right? Well, the metal picks amplify the effect of
the pick scrape, making it sound a lot fuller and more organic. Also,
you can speed up or slow down while doing your pick scrape and the sound
will stay very hard, unlike celluloid that tend to have a weakened
sound when you slow down with the scrape.
Natural harmonics ring louder and way clearer with these metal picks of
win, so get ready to make some awesome soundscapes! Add some delay and
reverb and you're on your way to some massive sounds!
One of my favorite things to do with the picks is to use them as a
bottleneck slide replacement: put the pick sideways on the strings and
play with your fingers to pick the notes. Because of the metal, the
sound will keep ringing and you will get the same effect as if you were
using a bottleneck slide. There is also a small difference in tone
depending on the kind of metal, the aluminum gives some warping sound
that rings through your notes, but also has the least sustain. The
bronze pick has the clearest sound of them all, without giving any other
feedback, while the copper pick seems to add more buzz to your sound,
which can sound really cool, depending on genre and preference.
Another fun thing to do, is to tap your strings with the side of the
pick above and between the pickups, making some crazy robot-like tones
by just tapping. When using enough distortion, you can also rub the
upper strings to create some ghostly effect.
Continuing from the last 2 techniques, when you use those in combination
at your fretboard while pick-tapping, you can pick tap and slide at the
same time, creating some nice possibilities while playing.
All the techniques described above can be used with some added effect
pedals to create even more amazing, creative and original sounds. Over
all, these picks are a must have for the experimental guitarist that
wants to try something a little more challenging than buying a new FX