Monty’s Guitars releases signature Bill Steer pickup set

The second in its signature sets dials up the melodic death metal.

Bill Steer

Image: Jordi Vidal / Getty

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Monty’s Guitars has teamed up with founding Carcass guitarist Bill Steer for a signature set of pickups.

The set includes a high-output bridge-pickup paired with a more vintage-voiced neck pickup, meaning if you grab both you’ll have crushing chugs and smooth leads under your strings as you see fit. The combination also leads to a particularly chewy sound when both are engaged.

The neck uses an Alnico IV magnet, and is rated at, 7.7k Ohms, while the bridge uses an Alnico VI and is rated at 16.5k Ohms. The pickups are available individually or as a set, coming in Open Black, Open Cream, Open Zebra, Nickel, Raw Nickel, Chrome or Gold.

Bill Steer's signature pickups
Image: Monty’s Guitars

Monty’s Guitars said about the design process: “Bill asked us to make him a set of pickups that matched a high-output bridge pickup with a slightly less aggressive vintage-voiced neck pickup. In particular, he wanted both pickups to keep plenty of top-end sparkle and clean up really well. Simply put, he wanted a set of pickups as versatile as he is, able to cover a massive range of tones. Designing a bridge humbucker that fulfilled all these requirements meant departing from the typical formula; high output Humbuckers often end up using ceramic magnets and very thin wire, both of which keep things nice and tight at high gain but often make the pickup very flat and brittle as you turn down. We’ve used an Alnico 6 magnet instead, matching power with alnico warmth. We’ve also used a pretty substantial offset between the two coils, helping keep clarity and responsiveness despite the thinner wire. The neck pickup is a slightly more traditional affair, essentially an overwound version of our PAF pickup with an Alnico IV magnet, with a wonderfully full, thick sound that never loses clarity.”

Bill Steer is best known for his work in Napalm Death and Carcass, helping to pioneer grindcore and melodic death metal respectively. His extreme metal music isn’t his only approach, however, as he also played and sang in blues rock band Firebird across the 2000s.

To hear the pickups in action, take a look at Monty’s Guitars’ demo below:

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