Rigged: Rivers of Nihil Guitarist Brody Uttley
Rivers of Nihil release their debut full-length album The Conscious Seed of Light TODAY on Metal Blade Records. Produced by the legendary Erik Rutan (Cannibal Corpse, Morbid Angel, etc), the album is a firestorm of everything you love about death metal: the stomp and fury of Gojira and Morbid Angel, the intensity of Decrepit Birth, the progginess of The Faceless, the groove of Decapitated, and, most importantly, a unique character all its own. Stream tracks from the record here and here. Order it on CD with or without a sweet t-shirt here, or on iTunes for only $8.99 here.
Here’s guitarist Brody Uttley on what makes his live rig sound so badass:
Today I’m going to take you through my rig and try to make it as boring… uh, as interesting as possible! I have all of my equipment set up to be as efficient as possible in a live setting. So here we go.
Currently my main guitar is an Ibanez Prestige RGD 2127z that I am absolutely in love with (don’t make fun of my outer space carpet). The main reason that I love this guitar so much is because of that 26.5” scale. We tune to drop F sharp (F#, C#, F#, B, E, G#, C#) so the extra length on the neck keeps my strings tight and my intonation perfect. For strings I use Ernie Ball 8 string sets and just take out the .64 gauge, so my lowest string is a .74 and my highest is a .10 gauge. On paper the tuning and string gauge sound stupid and they totally are, but on my normal six string guitars I have a guitar tuned to C# standard with a low F# for our super tuff sounding parts, so it works out. The pickups in this guitar are stock right now, but I plan on throwing some DiMarzios in it ASAP.
My backup guitar is an Ibanez S7320 with DiMarzio D Activator pickups in it. The scale is only 25.5” but I have figured out a few tricks to keep this naughty nurse intonated and playing great.
The other two guitars that I use at home and in the studio for a few odd clean parts and solos are pictured below; both are tuned to C# standard. One is an Ibanez Jem 555BK that I have upgraded by installing an original Floyd Rose tremolo. I ALSO PUT A REALLY COOL SWIRLY PICKGUARD ON IT. The other is a PRS CE 24 upgraded with PRS Dragon II pickups. I love the way both of these guitars sound and play, but they only have six strings and are simply not hip enough for my super-cool seven string band.
While at heart I am an analog fanboi jerkoff nerd, throwing my stuff into a trailer every night isn’t the best thing to do with high dollar analog effects, rack gear, and amps. I feel like my setup has the perfect blend between analog and digital pieces.
I recently picked up an endorsement with EVH and I couldn’t be happier with their products. My main head is an EVH 5150 III running into EVH 4×12 and 2×12 cabinets. For years I used the super high wattage Vader cabs, and while they are great cabinets I found that I really like the sound of a lower wattage cab. During the recording of our new album The Conscious Seed of Light Erik Rutan introduced me to Celestion Greenback speakers and I was instantly sold on their sound. This was my main reason for switching to the EVH cabs. The 5150 III head is a monster and needs no introduction. This is the best sounding head on the market in my opinion and I probably won’t change my mind about that until they put out a 5150 IV.
As I said before, I am a big fan of the traditional analog/tube sound, which is why all of my main tone comes from my 5150 III. HOWEVER, the perks of the 21st century have allowed me to get the best of both worlds. I run a TC Electronic G Major 2 through the FX loop of my EVH to get all of my delay, reverb, compression, and chorus tones for my solos and atmospheric parts. The G Major 2 is basically an Axe Fx without the amp simulation. This is an idea that I have always loved: preserving your core tone by using a tube head while having the simplicity of a digital unit used only for your effects. I control this with a Behringer FCB1010 midi controller.
In the front of my amp hidden in a fancy drawer are my “front of the amp” pedals. I use a Korg Pitchblack tuner to make sure that my guitars stay out of tune. I like these tuners because they have a “strobe” setting on them that looks cooler than regular chromatic tuner readouts. I then go into a Maxon OD808 with the first knob off, the second knob at half, and the third maxed out. These setting allow me to get just the right amount of extra push out of my amp. I really prefer the Maxon to the Ibanez TS9 that I used for years; it just has more body to it. After my overdrive I then go into an ISP Decimator to keep my feedback hidden. I also have a light noise gate on in my G Major 2 in the FX loop, so my rig is totally silent when I need it to be.
That’s about it guys! I would like to thank Instagram for all of the siqasfug filters on these pix. Also, I would like to thank Andrew Thomas of Black Crown Initiate for his help with these pictures and for his competition winning facial forest: