“This is not a piece of art that you put under a spotlight to look at, it’s a bass.”
Let me first make it plain, that a singlecut like Elevation is not simply a bass with an unusual bodyshape and exotic woods in order to stand out. Of course I admit that the design is not mainstream. And an unconventional bodyshape does allow for a creative expression that otherwise would probably be unacceptable. But still that is not the essense of an Elevation, for me at least.
This is not a piece of art that you put under a spotlight to look at, it’s a bass. It needs to be played. And not just that, it should play great, sound great, feel great. This is where Elevation as a singlecut stands out.
The bodyjoint of the neck is so deep that it goes from the 24th up until the 13th fret. That’s almost half the neck! This has a lot of impact on the sound. You can imagine that this instrument processes string vibrations in a completely different way than a bolt on neck.
To me it feels like the bass has a natural compressor built in. Put negatively it means that it is less dynamic. Put positively it means that you can walk all the way down to the lowest note without being afraid of those overly loud low-peaks, caused by uncontrolled attack. It means the string-to-string balance is more in harmony. It means your upper notes do not become thin. It means you have a distinctly perceivable place in the mix.
The playability is improved, because there is no neckheel to stop you from reaching the upper register. The stability is improved, because the neck is less reactive to humidity changes, since it is for a large part glued to the body. That in turn improves playability again, because now you can have a low action without a lot of adjustments and maintenance.
As for electronics, many pickups will work in Elevation. Here is where you can personalise your bass. Most of the time players prefer a modern warm sounding humcancelling single coil type of sound. I mean, if you’d put a vintage P-pickup in there, you’d want it to be a bolt on and look more like a P. Looks and sound demand each other. So often we end up with soapbar style passive pickups combined with a versatile preamp.
While it is a bass that needs to play great, sound great and feel great, I would like to add that lastly it also has to look great. Even though it’s not júst art, it is still art. So if you’re going to glue half the neck into the body, you might as well come up with something that looks elegant.
Now we have come full circle, where physics and aesthetics together define Elevation.