We met up with lead guitarist Jacob Binzer from D-A-D during his sound check in Aarhus, DK (Aug. ’21). Jacob kindly showed us his rig and demonstrated some of the settings he uses, when playing live with D-A-D. One of his signature settings is his famous “Spaghetti Western sound”, which has been an essential part of D-A-D’s sound since the late ’80’s. This specific sound was made famous by the song “Sleeping My day Away”, where it is the theme sound of the song.
The gear used
Jacob is an avid Caveman Audio user and has multiple custom made products from Steen Skrydstrup. The SC1 System Controller is used to control his entire system – and Jacob uses a mix between preset and direct-access controls when performing. All the pedals are interfaced via the MR10 Loop System to ensure maximum performance.
The latest edition to the amps, is the Friedman BE-100 Deluxe. It is used for the “dirt rhythm” sounds, where as the JCM 800 is used for the clean sound.
All amps are connected to the Amplifier Interface, custom built by Steen Skrydstrup.
The Amplifier Interface switches between his amps, and provides a Line Level signal to the TC Electronic G-Force from each amp. The effects signal is then sent to the stereo power amp.
The system is a WET-DRY-WET system.
Dry sound in the center cabinet, and the stereo effects in the two outer cabinets.
The live sound is a mixture of the 3 cabinets.
“My guitar needs to have a very clear signal chain. I want to go from my guitar and out of the cabinet as uncomplicated as possible.The shorter a signal path you can have, the more core sound you get. The more “body” you will have in your sound. That’s my philosophy”.
– Jacob Binzer, Lead guitarist of D-A-D
D-A-D Live Concert
Jacob’s trusted guitars
The main guitar that Jacob uses at the moment is the Gibson Les Paul, Murphy Lab ’59. His back up guitar is a Gibson Les Paul Classic from 2000.
Jacob’s PRS Mira guitar is only used for the last song in the set, because as a finishing act Jacob always throws his guitar up in the air, and usually it lands safely (in a softy net) behind his cabinets.
Whenever Jacob wants clean sounds on the stage he uses his Fender Jazzmaster (1963). The guitar came with a Jaguar bridge, which is actually better than the original bridge.
The tunings with D-A-D are all standard tunings, except for a few songs, where it is in drop D. The strings that Jacob uses are 10-46 on the Les Paul’s and 11-48 on the Jazzmasters.work that well in a live situation. Then make sure to make a hi cut and low cut, so you have a mid range sound. The rest is up to you and your fingers.
“This piece of wood, plastic and metal is the only material thing on this earth that I would be very unhappy to lose. Because I have never come across a Jazzmaster that sounds like this. I have used this specific one on every recording since 2000.” -Jacob Binzer, Lead guitarist D-A-D
Pedals & effects used live
These are the effects that Jacob uses when playing live with D-A-D:
Boss CS2 Compressor
MXR Micro Amp
Boss Metal Zone
TC Electronic Spark Booster
Tube Screamer TS-808
Electro-Harmonix, Pitch Fork Pitch Shifter
Voodoo Lab Proctavia
Voodoo Lab Pedal Power 2 Plus (Power adapter)
TC Electronic G-Force
The Metal Zone is used only for the song “Reconstrucdead”, which have a very distinctive punchy riff sound.
The Tube Screamer TS808, the Boss CS2 Compressor and the MXR Micro Amp is used only for the clean amp sound.
The TC Electronic Spark Booster is only used on one preset as a “Gain down” for the Friedman amp.
The Pitchfork is used as a Whammy pedal and the G-Force is only used for delays.
The Voodoo Lab Proctavia is used for the riff sound for the song “Monster Philosophy”
Jacob’s signature “Spaghetti western” sound, from the song “Sleeping My Day Away” is made by going into the CS2 compressor, to the MXR Micro Amp and then adding delay from the TC Electronic G-Force.
To be able to make the sound, you need a single coil guitar and add compression, boost and delay.
The delay effect can be replaced by reverb, but it has a tendency not to work that well in a live situation. Then make sure to make a hi cut and low cut, so you have a mid range sound. The rest is up to you and your fingers.
Mics & mic preamp – crucial elements
The main mic used on the cabs is the Shure SM57. The addition to the SM57 is the Royer Labs-121. The combination of the two mics together works really well.
The SM57 and the Royer goes into the Dual Mic Preamp, custom built by Steen Skrydstrup. The Dual Mic Preamp makes a huge improvement to the sound you hear out front on the PA system. Jacob suggest that you experiment with mics and preamps and try different gear, in order for you to decide what works best for your sound.
“When I record guitars in the studio, I have a lot of mics on the cabinet. I move them around all the time, and use different preamps and different mics.
If you have your mic directly in the center of the speaker coil, then you get the most top end sound. The further away you come from the center, the less top end you get and and the more low end you add to your sound. So that way you can really change the sound, only by moving the mic. Even very small adjustments to where the mic is placed, can change the sound a lot.”
– Jacob Binzer, Lead Guitarist D-A-D