Legendary noodler and revered tonemeister Eddy Van Halen partnered with Peavey Electronics in the late 1990s to make a signature series six-string named the Wolfgang. Production stopped in 2004 and Van Halen subsequently nestled under Fender's wing for his own EVH brand. Rumors of a new Wolfgang have been floating around for a little while now, and Peavey appears to have done them justice with the launch of the HP2 at the Summer NAMM show in Nashville.
Though the official blurb makes no mention of any Van Halen ancestry, the HP2 has the Wolfgang looks and design elements. Its asymmetrical body is basswood at the back and maple to the front – selected for the same tonal reasons as with the EVH model – and allowing for easy access to the higher frets. A solid basswood version is also available.
The 25.5 inch scale neck and oil-finished 22 fret fingerboard are fashioned from the same piece of birdseye maple, while dual graphite reinforcement bars and a steel truss rod keep things nice and stiff. The neck ends in a tilt-back head with 3+3 Schaller tuners, with the strings feeding down to either a Peavey/Floyd Rose double-lock tremolo or a tune-o-matic stop bridge.
Peavey says that the familiar-looking black/white custom humbuckers are made using a two-step wax dipping process for low noise operation and feedback resistance, with coil splitting available via the push/pull volume and tone knobs.
Though it's pretty clear where this guitar's roots are planted, the HP2 name is actually a nod to the company's founder and CEO Hartley Peavey. There's no word on pricing or availability, but Summer NAMM visitors can get a closer look at the company's booth this week.