Gear Review: Moniker Guitars Reedsdale ES Neptune

(Image credit: Billy Voight)

Like American car companies did 50 years ago, the gang at Moniker Guitars offers a few body designs and lets you tell them how to finish it. Pickups, paint, bridge, tuners, binding and inlay—it's all your call.

Can’t decide? While each guitar is a "one of one" creation, there are a few already-assembled guitars and basses available in the company's online shop.

That’s where this Reedsdale ES Neptune came from. It’s a brand-new model, and Moniker is still ironing out the details. This is one of the first—if not the first—Reedsdale ES Neptunes out there.

The body is alder that has been chambered, and the neck is maple with a rosewood fretboard and 22 medium jumbo stainless-steel frets. Other perks of the Reedsdale ES Neptune are Grover tuners, a GraphTech nut, a Tonepros bridge and Lollar Imperial High-Wind humbuckers. At the moment, all Moniker guitars are a 24.75” scale. Each guitar is handmade in Austin, Texas.

The Reedsdale ES Neptune arrived safely in snow-covered Pennsylvania ready to be played. The body and neck are finished in satin black, making it easy to navigate up and down the neck. Even unplugged, this guitar is loud. Moniker compares the body to an ES-335-style guitar. This comparison makes sense as far as dimensions go, but with the contours, it plays and feels much like a Strat.

In both clips below, I used a Fender Hot Rod Deluxe amp; any reverb and delay is from a Center Street Electronics StellarVerb pedal.

CLIP 1: Here’s the Neptune clean. The rhythm parts were recorded with both pickups on. The lead parts start on neck pickup, then I switch to the bridge pickup.

CLIP 2: It's time for some overdrive. The rhythm part is all bridge pickup, and for the lead parts I start on the neck pickup and end up on the bridge pickup.

PRICE: $2,000

You can't believe everything you read on the Internet, but Billy Voight is a gear reviewer, bassist and guitarist from Pennsylvania. He has Hartke bass amps and Walden acoustic guitars to thank for supplying some of the finest gear on his musical journey. Need Billy's help in creating noise for your next project? Drop him a line at

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