Johnny Marr wields a nine(!)-pickup Strat on his new "electro soul anthem," Spirit, Power And Soul

Johnny Marr plays a very unique custom Stratocaster
(Image credit: BMG Records)

Though his last solo effort was 2018's Call the Comet, Smiths (not to mention Modest Mouse, The Cribs, The The...) electric guitar hero Johnny Marr has kept busy in these COVID times, teaching fans how to play Smiths classics on Instagram and revealing juicy, hitherto unknown gear secrets about some of his most famous riffs.

Evidently, with today's announcement of his new double album, Fever Dreams Pts 1-4, he's also spent the last 17 months or so writing and recording plenty of new music.

You can check out the music video for the album's first single, the propulsive Spirit, Power And Soul, below.

Spirit, Power And Soul is a kind of mission statement," Marr said of the song in a press release. "I had an idea about an electro sound with gospel feeling, in my own words – an electro soul anthem.”

Now, that's all well and good (so is the song, for that matter), but what's got us buzzing is the absolutely bonkers custom Stratocaster Marr is using in the video.

We count nine pickups on that beauty, each (by the looks of it) with a pair of switches to boot. Even more interestingly, the Strat – like Marr's signature Fender Jaguar – boasts only two master knobs.

This might be a long shot, but could we be in for the release of one of the wildest custom Strats we've ever seen? We'll have our eyes peeled...

In any case, Fever Dreams Pts 1-4 will be released as a series of four EPs, with the first arriving October 15 via BMG Records. You can check out Pt. 1's cover art and track list below.

To preorder Pt. 1, step right this way.

The cover of Johnny Marr's new EP, Fever Dreams Pt. 1

(Image credit: BMG Records)

Johnny Marr – Fever Dreams, Pt. 1:

1. Spirit, Power And Soul
2. Receiver
3. All These Days
4. Ariel

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Jackson Maxwell

Jackson is an Associate Editor at He’s been writing and editing stories about new gear, technique and guitar-driven music both old and new since 2014, and has also written extensively on the same topics for Guitar Player. Elsewhere, his album reviews and essays have appeared in Louder and Unrecorded. Though open to music of all kinds, his greatest love has always been indie, and everything that falls under its massive umbrella. To that end, you can find him on Twitter crowing about whatever great new guitar band you need to drop everything to hear right now.