"I think what sets Lentz guitars apart is my experience with so many guitars over the years. I've refinished hundreds of vintage Strat's and Tele's, not to mention several 50's Les Pauls. What this is has done for me is to give me an ear for certain nuances that I found to be the essence of guitar sounds I like." -Scott Lentz
Always a great day when our delivery service shows up with a Lentz-marked box. This time around, we excitedly unboxed a Legendary Venue Series / Reserve "Monterey Pop" S-Style!
As one might expect, this top-of-the-line Lentz takes its look from the Strat Jimi famously used during his Monterey Pop performance. To be sure, this isn't an attempt to recreate Jimi's guitar down to the last spec - more a nod to an iconic instrument.
Let's get one thing out of the way right off the bat - this is an astonishingly great Strat-style guitar, period. Just a touch over 6 and a half pounds, you know you're in for a treat the second you pick it up out of its case. Lentz's legendary "Lamp Black" finish is incredibly luxurious and deep and the flamed maple neck grabs your attention immediately. The neck is given a "barely there" satin finish that we absolutely love - no sticky maple neck issues here whatsoever.
The playability and feel are classic Lentz. Slinky, super easy to to play, wonderful/fat neck carve...this is a very loud guitar when strummed acoustically (another Lentz "signature"). Plugged in? Chime, sustain, articulation, and power...in spades. It can be challenging to articulate something so subjective in a web listing, but Lentz has mastered huge dynamic range coupled with a raw power in a way that we simply can't get enough of. Tons of harmonic content and again, the sustain is outrageous. We were plugged into a 20 watt Milkman combo, not very loud, and chords just rang and rang....amazing. We can't really overstate the importance of the "Lentz feel" - it's everything with these guitars and impossible to pinpoint, but it's addictive and one of the reasons these guitars as so highly regarded by so many.
The LVS/Reserve line of Lentz guitars utilizes cabinet aged woods (25+ years is typical), lightweight one piece bodies (in this case 3.5 lbs), super flamed maple necks, pickups wound specifically for each guitar, nitrate guards, and the electronics are carefully matched in order to achieve the best tones possible - no detail is left untouched.
In short, this Hendrix inspired beauty is one of the best S-styles we've encountered (seriously). Sound too good to be true? Try one. We think you'll agree.