Fishman has announced that Slipknot guitarist Mick Thomson has officially become an endorsee, following several months of speculation.
Formerly a Seymour Duncan and Jackson endorsee, the guitarist sparked rumors of change back in April when images surfaced of Thomson using ESP and Fishman products.
Now it seems the paperwork is all cleared up and the pickup manufacturer is able to confirm Thomson’s arrival.
“We’re excited to announce that we have officially signed Mick Thomson to our esteemed artist roster,” says Ken Susi, Fishman Fluence Brand Manager.
“His exceptional talent, passion, and dedication to his craft are truly remarkable, and we’re thrilled to have him on board. We wholeheartedly believe that this collaboration marks the beginning of a long-lasting relationship.”
“I’m honored to be part of the Fishman family,” says Thomson. “Their Fluence pickups are unlike anything else there is. The result is a punch and clarity that is much improved.”
As is often the case with endorsee announcements, the statements are somewhat vanilla, but we’re excited to see what the mind behind some of the most abrasive and challenging metal tones of the last 20 years is able to bring to the Fluence table.
There’s no official announcement of a Thomson signature set just yet, but Susi’s mention of “a long-lasting relationship” hints that might change in the near future.
What’s more, from what we know about the Fluence manufacturing process, it doesn’t take long to produce a set once an artist has found their sound.
Ever since the arrival of its Fluence pickup design in 2014, Fishman – previously best known for its acoustic pickups – has been scooping up endorsees at a rapid rate.
The trend is particularly notable among heavy players, who value the ability to replicate a tone across seven-string and eight-string guitar builds – something that can be difficult to accurately achieve with a traditional magnet and pole construction.
The Fluence’s construction also uses microchips to route the signal through the coils and, while it might lack the romance of the traditional hand-wound process, it makes it much faster (and cheaper) for players to create voicings according to their preferences.
“It goes back to creating solutions for players,” Fishman’s VP of Marketing and Artist Relations Chris DeMaria told Guitar World earlier this year.
“We’ve been able to sit in our studio with the artist and, in real time, create voicings that perfectly match the idealized sound they’re looking for. Once those voicings are created with the artist, we can then reproduce it consistently in our manufacturing process. There’s not a dud in the bunch.’’
The process is a world away from having to go back and forth, experimenting with pole pieces and different windings, and it suggests a set of Thomson signature Fluence pickups could be here sooner than we might think – and a dead cert to feature in confirmed future ESP signature models from the Slipknot guitarist.
It’s more good news for us mere mortals, then, as we’re increasingly spoiled for choice when it comes to pickups.
For more on Fluence’s evolution and innovative gear from the likes of Seymour Duncan, Bare Knuckle and beyond, check out our piece on the new golden age of pickups.
For information on Fluence, head to Fishman.