Friday Top 10: Ugliest guitars

Guitars are beautiful and they make anyone look good. But what happens when some musicians get extremely ugly ones? Is it because they lack good taste or do they just want to stand out?

Either way, some guitars used by known musicians are atrocious looking, and that’s what this Top 10 is all about. Make the jump and let’s laugh at some hideous instruments.

Note: This top is based solely on aesthetics (it means ‘looks’ for all you SOAD fans). It has nothing to do with price, quality or the guitarists themselves. It is based on what I consider ‘ugly looking’ instruments.

Everybody on? Good. Great. Grand. Wonderful.

*UPDATE*: Dear trolls and nitpickers, I have written my follow-up to this article: Top 10 Best looking guitars. Enjoy!

#10 – Steve Vai’s Ibanez JEM

I feel kinda hypocritical listing it here because Ibanez guitars will always have a special place in my heart. And this is arguably the best Ibanez money can buy, and I kinda want it. But I said quality has got nothing to do with this top so just look at it.

What the hell is that handle for? Is this a guitar or airplane luggage? And what’s with all the flowers? I know Steve Vai isn’t the most masculine of musicians, but nothing screams ‘rock’ like a couple of vine inlays, eh?

The photo above shows the best looking JEM, too. There is also a pink version. In fact, I think Steve himself has one with pink hardware on it. You know how guitar playing gets you laid? This guitar will get you bullied. Guaranteed.

#9 – Kirk Hammett’s Ouija ESP

Maybe it’s just me, but if you want to learn the alphabet, there are proper ways to do it. You don’t need to write it on a guitar.

I know Kirk’s a big horror/mystical/whatever fan, but this guitar is ugly as hell. The artwork symbolizes an Ouija. Apparently that’s something that helps you communicate with the spirits of the dead. I think Kirk uses it to talk to Newsted’s career — OH SNAP!!!

#8 – Brian May’s Red Special

I feel bad talking shit about this legendary instrument, especially since it was built by Brian May himself and his father — in the early 60s. So considering it’s not made by a big guitar manufacturer, it is weird laughing at it. Eh, I’ll get over it.

God, it looks awful. The headstock is pretty decent but the body itself is hideous. It’s the instrument version of Snooki. Small, bloated and considered pretty by some for no reason at all. I wouldn’t want my name on it.

#7 – Eddie Van Halen’s Kramer (maybe)

I don’t want to embarrass myself here, I don’t know exactly what kind of guitars Eddie uses. The one in the image above might be a replica, by the way. If I do make a mistake, please excuse me.

Anyway, it’s the artwork itself that troubles me, not the shape. It looks like it was drawn by Charlie Sheen while on a drug binge with his goddesses. I’ve banged my girlfriend while she was on her period and the sheet looked better than this. It’s seriously an awful design with an awful choice of colors.

#6 – Dimebag’s Dean Razorback

Who cut the wood for the body, Michael J. Fox? Seriously, what is this shit? I like Dime’s traditional guitars but this shape is uninspired. It looks like a toy, really. It looks like a cheap toy.

And boy oh boy, what is with those flames? This is something Elton John should play, not fucking Dimebag.

Sorry, extremely fugly.

#5 – Max Cavalera’s Brazilian Flag ESP

Okay, I get (and respect) patriotism. But surely there is a better way of adding your country’s flag to the artwork without making the whole guitar green and yellow.

Also, guitars with only one pickup bug the shit out of me. They look incomplete. Stop being cheap, get two, dammit.

The only reason this guitar isn’t higher up is because of the decent inlays. That and I have a huge thing for Brazilian women. Huge thing in my pants, that is.

#4 – Alexi Laiho’s weird ESP

One pickup again. GOD DAMMIT. Let’s all chip in and buy Alexi a second humbucker for the neck. Aww…

Other than that, what’s with the yellow? It looks like something from Watchmen, only less believable. And what’s with this color scheme? Gold hardware with yellow lines? This is like something Flavor Flav should play (only rappers can’t really play instruments, sing, or do any kind of music, really).

Yeah, it’s horrible. But it fits Alexi’s band, if I’m honest. Haha, pwned.

#3 – Daron Malakian’s WTF Ibanez Iceman

Second Ibanez, damn. But this is just too ugly not to be here.

The shape looks like Ibanez were trying to make an Explorer and halfway through decided “Fuck that, let’s make it a strat” and then got drunk. What is that shape, anyway?

The one in the picture is a DMM1 and only 300 models were built. Mainly because they couldn’t find 301 people or more who would buy this ugly thing. The artwork was done by Daron’s father and it looks like some sort of Picasso/Dali painting with a twist of Gary Busey.


#2 – Andy McKee’s Harp Guitar

Blah, what is the point of this? Did Daron Malakian’s father design this as well, cause it looks like Cubism to me. Also, keep in mind the one in the photo actually looks better than Andy McKee’s version, but I couldn’t find a proper photo of that with a clean background. Here it is though.. It looks like a deformed penis.

I know Andy isn’t as big as any of the names mentioned in this article but he’s a great guitarist and again, this is all about guitar looks, nothing to do with musicianship.

The harp guitar needs to die.

#1 – Prince’s Symbol Guitar

Well, well, well. This is it, isn’t it? The worst looking guitar ever used by a recording artist. I know Prince doesn’t really fit on our site, but you can’t mention ugly guitars without including this piece of shit. WHAT THE FUCK DOES IT EVEN REPRESENT?

I mean I know it’s sort of like the symbol Prince was known as for a while, but Jesus Christ, I could get eye cancer from looking at it. And it’s fucking purple, too… Like the rain, right?

It’s an aesthetic aberration if you ask me. Only Prince could come up with something like this. Yuck.

So there you have it. The 10 ugliest guitars, in my opinion. Stay tuned next week as I’m gonna go through what I consider the best looking guitars. It’s all about the looks, yo.

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