The Final Cut 1983

Read more: settings and setups

The Final Cut marks the end of the Roger Waters era. During a bitter time for the band the album is written and recorded largely by Waters alone featuring David Gilmour and Nick Mason merely as session musicians. Richard Wright had left the band at this point.

Still, Final Cut feature some of David’s finest work and for many, a much more honest guitar sound than that on The Wall, although much of the same gear and setup were used.

Pete Cornish pedal board and additional effects recording sessions

Pedal board effects listed as in chain
Dallas Arbiter Fuzz Face (BC109)
Electro Harmonix Big Muff (Ram’s Head)
MXR Phase 90
Electro Harmonix Small Stone
Electro Harmonix Electric Mistress
Pete Cornish (ST-2) Treble and Bass Boost
Cry Baby wah wah
MXR Dynacomp
(send/return for additional effects)
Pete Cornish tone pedal
Pete Cornish volume pedal
(send/return for MXR DDL)
MXR Noise Gate/Line Driver

Additional units

MXR Digital Delay System I
Tremolo/vibrato effect

Note: David mentions that he used a Cornish board for the sessions although it’s not documented whether he used the Wall studio board or the Animals/Wall stage board. Roger Waters did play some of the guitars. Mainly acoustics but also electrics here and there.

Guitars and amps recording sessions

Fender Stratocaster The Black Strat
– 1969 black alder body with a black pickguard, Charvel 22-frets maple neck and Fender 1971 neck and middle pickups and a Seymour Duncan custom SSL-1 bridge pickup
Gibson Les Paul with tremolo arm
Jedson lap steel (blonde)
Ovation Custom Legend 1619-4 acoustic steel string guitar
Martin D12-28 12-string acoustic guitar
Martin D35 6-string acoustic guitar

Hiwatt DR103 All Purpose 100W heads
– with Mullard 4xEL34 power tubes and 4xECC83 pre-amp tubes.
Yamaha RA-200 revolving speaker cabinet
Alembic F-2B tube preamp
– Yamaha preamp.
WEM Super Starfinder 200 cabinets
– with 4×12? Fane Crescendo speakers.

Note: The Les Paul with tremolo arm was mentioned by David in an interview with Sound Magazine in 1983. It’s not known which Les Paul this is but a fair guess is that he’s referring to the 1959 Gibson Gold Top with Bigsby tremolo system that was later used on On an Island.

David’s Gear on Final Cut

In an interview with Guitarist magazine from 1995, Gilmour explains: “We went in and did some guitar overdubs for that album in Wax studios and we took the big guitar gear. We just put the big stuff in and Phil Taylor wasn’t around. I had someone else who wasn’t a roadie or anything to take it in.

I told him more or less what to plug in and we just turned it on and it instantly sounded great! We did all the guitar stuff just there and it was so easy. I don’t know why, that room for some reason at that particular time just worked so great.”

So it’s fair to assume that his “big gear” was the same setup David had been using since the recording of Animals. Judging by the original demo tapes, David just came in, did his stuff and that was more or less it. Some of the songs aren’t close to finished, but David’s tracks are as we hear on the album. Roger Waters also insisted on that Gilmour had to agree on not being co-producer or there would be no album.

In another interview dating right after the album’s release in 1983, David says to Sound magazine “I used both the Fender guitar and a Gibson Les Paul, both with tremolo units on them. For amplifiers I used a Hiwatt 100 and two 4×12?s. I’ve got two Yamaha-type Leslie things that I have going at the same time. I’ve got a pedal board with a whole bunch of effects stuck on it. I use a DDL echo machine, chorus pedals, flangers, fuzz boxes.”

Acknowledgements and credits
The Final Cut (album 1983), The Final Cut demo tapes (1983, Sound Magazine (Guitar Heroes 1983), Guitarist Magazine (1995), The Final Cut – A Historty of Pink Floyd 1982-83 (Vernon Fitch). See feature for other references.