A couple of weeks ago, I got a press release from Bohemian Guitars saying that they were getting ready to launch their BOHO series of guitars. I had previously seen a video of these guitars from NAMM 2014, and honestly, originally dismissed them as yet another gimmick. After all we’ve got cigar box guitars, and other “interesting” construction guitars. I suppose the purist in me has had a hard time accepting that a “real” guitar has to have a traditional wood body.
But something about the press release intrigued me. Not sure what it was. Maybe it was the Manhattans that I was drinking (I was on vacation when I got the press release). Or maybe it was the high altitude; our resort was close to 8,000 feet above sea level at the top of Heavenly Valley ridge at South Lake Tahoe, Nevada. Whatever it was, I replied to the press release and asked if I could get a review unit.
Amazingly enough, the guitar was waiting for me when I got home, so I opened it up and saw… a gas-can with a guitar neck attached to it…
Okay, I will honestly admit that at first blush, I thought “gimmick.” I really didn’t want to like the guitar. It looked kinda cool, but I was extremely dubious about it being a real instrument. So I let it sit in my living room for a couple of days.
But I did ask for a review unit, so to be fair, I brought it into my man-cave studio, plugged it in, and… was VERY surprised at how good it sounded. The neck felt very nice, and the action was set just right. As for the sound, I have to admit that I really dug the sound; REALLY dug it. And when I dig a sound, I know I can make music with it. So I recorded a quick reggae clip to demonstrate the guitar’s clean tones. Take a listen:
The rhythm track was recorded with the neck pickup, while the lead track was recorded with the bridge pickup. Both guitars were plugged into an Aracom VRX18 running into a custom Aracom 1 X 12 with a Jensen Jet Falcon speaker. For the lead, I used a VOX Big Bad Wah. Also, while the clip is mastered a bit with some compression and reverb, the guitars were not EQ’d. Very nice tone.
What impressed me about the guitar is that amazingly enough it has some very nice sustain. I didn’t expect that out of a guitar that’s selling for $299.00. But I’ve learned in my many years of reviewing gear, that you can’t judge gear based upon its price. For heaven’s sake! Look at the Squier Classic Vibe series guitars: Cheap but by no means lacking in quality.
If I have one nit, it’s that bending the first string around the 12th or 13th fret while really digging in will cause the string to fret out, but I think that’s something that could be solved with a setup. After all, this thing was shipped to me, and who knows how it was handled. Plus, I think this is the same guitar that you see on the YouTube videos, so it has seen some use. But other than that, the guitar has kinda grown on me.
I’ve actually been recording raw tracks for my formal review which I’ll release in the next couple of days. So stay tuned. I think this is a totally fun guitar. Can’t wait to gig with it!